First, tell me, do you know what the rev rate is? Amazing, if you do. Basically, the rev rate of a bowling ball indicates the number of revolutions you impart on it. Rev rate bowlers have high RPM (revolutions per minute). Low rev bowlers on the other hand have low RPM. But how does one know about their rev rate? How do they measure and calculate the rev rate? Is there any rev rate calculator out there to make things easy? Well, I’m sure you have a lot of questions on your mind right now. That’s why I’m here for y’all.
How to calculate rev rate?
Here is a simple and quick way you can follow to calculate your bowling ball’s rev rate.
First, grab yourself a video camera, or just a smartphone that can record high-quality videos. You can either set the recording device on a tripod/stand or ask a friend for some assistance. With the help of the video, you can easily and accurately know your revolution rate. The entire process is also very fast. Now, time to know your PAP (point of axis). Remember to note that down somewhere after you know it.
Now hit the record start button and throw your bowling ball the way you usually do. Once the ball is thrown, you can go watch the video that was just recorded. Do check if the axis in your shot is stable throughout the first couple of revolutions, right before the ball gets in contact with the lane. Now that you have identified the PAP, put a strip of tape (go for a colored tape that doesn’t match the ball’s coverstock color) from the point of axis to exactly above the finger holes of your bowling ball. This strip will now be used as one of your measuring tools.
Now go back to the camera and hit the record start button again and come near your lane and throw the ball again. This time, after you have captured the video, play the video in a way where you can see each frame at a time. You need to count how many revolutions your bowling ball makes while it’s headed toward the pin. Once you have that, you need to know how long it takes for your ball to go from your hand to hitting the pins.
Let me give you a numerical example—
Let’s say, your captured video is showing that your bowling ball turns over 12 times in it took two seconds (based on 24 frames per second) to get to the pins.
Now, the formula we will use is —
12 rotation / 2 seconds = X / 60 = Rev rate
Time to remember your high school days where you did the cross multiplication. So based on the example,
12 x 60 = 720 and 2 x X = 2X
So, X= 720 / 2 = 360 RPM.
Here’s how your Rev rate will vary based on the number of revolutions:
Stroker, Slow Rev Rate = < 250 RPM rev rate
Tweener, Medium Rev Rate = 250-350 RPM rev rate
Cranker, Fast Rev Rate = 350+ rev rate RPM
Rev Rate and Ball Motion
Your rev rate is highly conditional on your bowling ball motion. Let me simplify. If you have a high rev rate, meaning, if you are a rev dominant bowler, your bowling ball will display a bowling motion on the lane that is different from what a low rev rate bowler will display. If you have a low rev rate, your bowling ball will have comparatively less speed than that of rev dominants. While the rev dominants will prefer a less aggressive ball to control the overreaction, a low rev bowler will seek a more aggressive ball to match with the ball speed.
Based on your rev rate, you can be in one of these three categories: i) stroker, ii) tweener, and iii) cranker. To understand the overall bowling ball motion better, it is paramount to know the ball’s rev rate and its connection with your ball speed, as well as axis tilt/rotation. This surely specifies the kind of ball that would be the best for you and the method you need to apply to play better. Knowing about your rev rate also helps you correct the bowling mistakes that you may have been making unknowingly. Therefore, learning how to calculate the rev rate is very important.
Nowadays you can find apps or automatic machines that can help you know your bowling rev rate. This saves the hassle of calculation. However, many pro bowlers rely on the good old result they have gained from a rev rate calculator. All you have to do is collect and put the numerical data you know and the calculator will tell you your RPM rate. But you need to practice and be precise in calculating your rev rate. A lot of it depends on yourself. So, train your eyes to measure accurately to get the correct rev rate. Remember, your usual rev rate(s) are the ones that are repetitive and you should use that during competitions or league games.