The Differences Between Candlepin and Ten Pin Bowling

Candlepin bowling, in some communities, is like the neglected stepchild of bowling. However, there are many people who actually prefer it to ten pin or “regular” bowling. Here are some of the similarities and differences.

What They Have in Common

First of all, to differentiate between the two by calling one “ten pin” is a bit misleading. Both types of bowling utilize ten pins. This is the primary similarity between the two.

Some of the Differences

In candlepin bowling, not only is the ball smaller and the pins thinner, there are some key differences in the rules. The biggest is perhaps the fact that you can bowl three times in one frame. This allows you more chances to try to get a spare if you don’t bowl a strike on the first roll.

You also get another advantage when it comes to the pins. After bowling, the pins that are knocked down can be left right there in the lane. This means you can aim for a downed pin and use that to help you knock down those that are still standing.

Another big difference is in the way you go about deciding when to bowl your ball. In ten pin bowling, you have to wait until your ball is rolled back up to you. In candlepin bowling, this is not the case. You just have to decide when you want to bowl next and you can then simply grab whatever ball is available.

It is possible to use this to your advantage. One way is to try to benefit from the pins that are left in the lane. If one of them is moving, you can take advantage of that and strike it when it’s in the best possible position. Not having to wait can make this possible.

There are a lot of different ways the two types of bowling differ, particularly in strategy. Your best bet is to try both and enjoy each for the great fun they provide.

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