Bowling has a rich history. Most people don’t know that bowling traces its origins way back to the ancient civilizations of Egyptians and Romans. The sport, as we now know it, was popularized in Britain during the Middle Ages. It subsequently gained popularity within the upper classes and the royalty. It was at the turn of the 20th century that the game became widely available to the masses. As with other sports, the technology boom of the 20th century has had a significant effect on the sport of Bowling. The modern bowling experience differs greatly to what our ancestors at the turn of the 20th century enjoyed. Here are some of the major changes that have shaped modern bowling.
The introduction of automated pinsetters
During the earlier years of the 20th century, bowling alleys employed young boys as manual pinsetters. These pinsetters had to reset the bowling pins, clear out the fallen pins from the lanes and return the bowling ball to a player. In 1936, the first mechanized pinsetter was invented. And over the years it has been improved to automate the entire pin setting process. This has increased the average speed of a bowling match, making it a more enjoyable hobby to participate in.
The improvement of bowling balls
During most of its existence, wooden bowling balls made from hardwood trees were used for bowling. This finally changed in the 1930s when rubber balls were introduced to the sport. In the 1970s, plastics such as polyester became the most popular material in the manufacture of bowling balls as they led to higher scoring matches. The modern bowling ball, which is made from urethane resin, was introduced in the 1990s. Urethane resin balls can be customized for different bowling lane surfaces and players. Professional bowlers regularly have their bowling balls custom made to fit their bowling style.
One of the simple, yet profound, development in bowling has been the introduction of automatic scoring. Prior to this, bowlers had to individually keep their scores through notebooks and pencils. Professional bowling tournaments had to hire dedicated scoring staff. With the invention of the mechanical pinsetter, and technological advances in the computing industry, modern bowling now has automatic scoring. While this does not seem to be a major development, it has actually increased the widespread appeal of the game as bowlers do not need to understand how the scoring works before taking up the sport.
The bowling lane evolution
Bowling lanes have traditionally been made from wood. This made them expensive to set up and maintain as wooden lanes were not durable. In the 1970s, synthetic lanes were introduced which were cheaper to install and more durable than their wooden predecessors. Modern day bowling lanes can be made from a wide variety of customizable synthetic materials. With the different oiling techniques employed, each bowling alley has its own unique character which makes modern bowling very interesting. The reduced cost of setting up and maintaining a bowling alley has been attributed as the main driving force behind the popularity of bowling. Most major cities have at least one bowling alley in every neighborhood.
By embracing changing technologies, bowling has become a more enjoyable and accessible sport. The Wow Alley best demonstrates this with its elegant space design, craft beer and wine bar, food menu, comfy seating, music, and much more!
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