By Rod Ross on Jul 29, 2019 11:08:47 AM
One of the most unique styles in bowling belongs to Breanna Clemmer. She's a longtime member of Team USA (both junior and adult), a successful college player (with McKendree) and a two-time winner of Junior Gold (U15 in 2012 and U20 in 2014).
I'd like to discuss her unique style, why she does it and how it helps her be an elite player.
First, let's look at her from a few years ago. She had a very strong roll and threw the ball extremely well, but she was having trouble with the consistency of her launch angles. She'd be rolling the ball great for a while, then seemingly out of nowhere, throw the ball out the window.
Let's look at her swing to find out why. As she starts her approach, she gets the ball out to her right, which naturally means as she takes it back, it's going to go to her left, just about equidistant from the center of her body. When that happens, it creates a liability that can result in the lack of consistency in her launch angles we mentioned earlier. Also, as we can see at the bottom of the swing with her hand outside her shoulder, she was losing a bit of power at release.
In order to fix it, she had to start with the pushaway. How can she prevent herself from pushing the ball so far out to the right?
Let's take a look at present-day Breanna. The first thing everyone will notice is her left arm straight out to the side. Well, she's doing that for a reason.
She's trying to stabilize her upper body and shoulders. This way, she can swing from her right shoulder and avoid her tendency to rotate the shoulders, which contributed to the ball getting behind her.
She still pushes the ball a little to the right, but look how much better the ball position is at the top of her swing. Moving forward, look at the ball at release-it's underneath her shoulder and much closer to her ankle, giving her a significantly stronger release.
We also can't see any more rotation in her upper body. Making this change tightened a lot of things up in her game.
Also impressive is the confidence it takes to have an approach this unique, but Breanna has turned it into an incredible amateur and college career.
Let's take a look from the back view to talk about one more element she's been working on: turning her palm up to the ceiling. In the video, it's still pointing down, but since then, she's working on keep her palm up to help roll her left shoulder forward to help lock her upper body further.
Ultimately, this very unique change to Breanna's game gives her more consistency with her launch angles, which helps control the break point.