Cracking the Debate: Is Bowling Truly a Sport?

Bowling is a popular recreational activity. A great way to connect with friends or family is over a competitive game of bowling.

It is regarded as one of those activities that you can play spontaneously – with no prior preparations, and people of all ages can engage in it. Bowling is seen as both a solo sport as well as a fun group activity. However, this question still remains: Is bowling a sport?

And we have the question to this answer! Yes, bowling is a sport that is recognized by several organizations, such as the World Bowling and based in America, the United States Bowling Congress. While as a sport, it may be seen as one of the least popular sports, I definitely think it is a great pastime activity! Read all about this fun, engaging sport below!

How Bowling Transcends from Leisure to Competitive Sport?

Bowling, also commonly referred to as “tenpins,” is a highly recommended leisure sport. The infamous bowling ball is rolled down a lane, in order to knock down a line of pins – ideally all of them at once. This is known as a ‘strike’ in bowling. A ‘spare’ is referred to as a move where all the pins are knocked down on the second turn.

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A lot of bowlers play amateur bowling – if there is a big group of people, then they can be divided into teams of two and play against each other in a friendly competition.

 However, there are professional bowling leagues too. Bowling tournaments are held for individual players as well as for teams with up to five players included in each team. Bowling is an official sport that has been a part of the World Games since being first played in the United States in 1981. The two variations of the bowling played at the World Games include nine-pin bowling and ten-pin bowling.

How is bowling different from other sports?

While Bowling is a physically demanding sport, you do not have to necessarily be in an ideal physical shape. The great thing about bowling is that it can be played by people of all ages, sizes, and skill levels. This is what makes it a popular family activity too as there are mixed players.

However, the fact that bowling requires a great deal of technique and focus cannot be ignored! Being a low-impact sport, it is not physically straining. You can enjoy this indoor sport without having much to do, just be sure to not hurt yourself while throwing down the heavy ball!


Q. How is bowling a sport?

Bowling is considered a sport by many organizations such as the World Games.

Q. Who made bowling a sport?

It is said that Dutch explorers under Henry Hudson brought some origins of pin bowling.

Q. Is bowling a difficult sport?

As compared to other sports, bowling is an easy sport to play by people of all ages.

Q. Is Bowling an Olympic sport?

No bowling is not part of the Olympic games.

Author’s opinion

What I like about bowling is that you can enjoy it alone as well as with others. This makes for a great solo activity and on the other hand, a fantastic and competitive group sport.
For older people, it is an ideal activity that is easy on the joints and the muscles. I definitely think it is safe to say that if you have no skills or aren’t that fit, you can still engage in bowling. Also, if you are looking for a sport that is beginner-friendly and easy to master, then bowling is an excellent option to go for!

What do you think?

Written by Usama

Usama J. is a passionate writer about the sports and works as an in house sports journalist at Openiun, and covered many international sporting events including ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022.