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Week #1 Handout

Taking our Game to the Next Level

Introduction to the Program


This coaching program is designed for anyone at any level who wants to improve their game.  I think everyone enjoys any activity more when they improve.  As a friend of mine said, “It’s more fun when you’re improving.”

Here are a few general principles we’ll try to follow during training and competition:

  1. Fun is always a part of the game, no matter what level we play at.

  2. Kids play games; athletes train

  3. During both training and games, focus on the process, not the result

  4. Training is about not only improving technically, but developing confidence and discipline.

  5. Have a game plan for both the team and the individual team members

    1. After a game, have a debriefing – what worked, what didn’t

  6. Use of mat-length (ML) to describe distances – easy to visualize

  7. Practice and play only absolute minimum and maximum lengths = no one else does

  8. Always be positive.

  9. Don’t worry about being shot too early in the end.

  10.  More often than not, we don’t need to know who is shot.

  11.  Expect your opponents to make their shots.


Today’s Drills


These drills are great starting points.  They are focused more on the front end, but everyone will benefit.

  1. Caterpillar (warm-up) – draw all four bowls as close together as possible; if you are perfect, all four bowls will be in a row, touching

  2. Draw to one yard behind the jack

  3. Draw as close to the ditch as possible

  4. Draw shot around a guard placed 1 yard in front of the jack and in the line of the draw

  5. Alternate delivering a jack and then bowl – set a target where you want the jack to be; regardless of where the jack finishes each time, try to draw each bowl onto the target

  6. Place a jack 2m from the ditch and a bowl jack high and one bowl’s width to the side; put the jack in the ditch


Two Fun Ways to End Practice

  1.  Everyone lines up 2 metres from the ditch and delivers one bowl to the ditch.  The closest one to the ditch without going in wins (and gets a drink?)

  2.  Scatter 5 jacks all over the green (a jack can be closer than the minimum distance).  Everyone uses all four bowls and plays for themselves.  Playing alternately, the game is to be shot at more jacks than anyone else.

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