Did you know, there are no high school bowling teams in Arizona? It is time to change that. Walk into any bowling alley in town on a Saturday morning and you will see it filled with youth bowlers participating in Saturday league. Bowling is a popular sport with around 18 million American bowlers under the age of 17. The sport can be played rain or shine. The teams are small and usually consist of 7 players but can have as many as 10.
Adding a high school bowling teams would be beneficial for so many reasons. Bowling is a great non-contact sport. It doesn’t have age, size, strength or gender restrictions. You don’t have to be very athletic to play and it doesn’t compete with other sports for varsity athletes. The bowling alley offers participants a safe, clean, supervised place to play. It offers players additional chances to compete to earn their varsity letters and college scholarships. Being part of a sports team helps promote higher grades and lowers dropout rates.
The startup costs for bowling are minimal because no equipment needs to be bought to play. The bowling alley provides the location and equipment to bowlers. Some would argue that the costs are still a burden because the school would need to pay the fees for transportation, uniforms, coaches, and practice fees. However, some of those costs can be offset by fundraising and participation fees.
I interviewed some of the Saturday bowlers that bowl at Lucky Strike to get their thoughts on forming bowling teams at their schools. Rincon High School Juniors Juan Canez and Andrew Christopher are two enthusiastic bowlers who participate in multiple leagues. Both Juan and Andrew do not participate in any sports at their schools. I asked them if they thought high school bowling should be a sport and why? Andrew said, “yes, I think our schools should have a bowling team, they would actually have a sport that I find interesting.” Juan said, “yes, high school bowling should be available in all high schools in Arizona, it’s one of the only sports that you can win scholarship money in.” Both Juan and Andrew would join their high school bowling team if one were available. I feel that a bowling team would be wonderful to have because it gives students that are less athletic a chance to participate in high school activities.
United States Bowling Congress (USBC), website states that it offers several materials to those interested in starting a high school bowling team. I think it would be great if Sahuaro high school was the first school in Arizona to offer bowling as a sport. Bowling doesn’t cost too much, it’s a lot of fun and it would allow students who want to participate in sports but aren’t athletic the opportunity to represent their schools.