Bowling is a general term referring to a series of sports in which a player rolls or throws a ball towards a target. There are two main variations. In 'pin bowling', the target is usually to knock over pins at the end of a lane. In 'target bowling', the aim is usually to get the ball as close to a mark as possible.
Pin Bowling Variants
Tenpin bowling is currently the most popular form of bowling, though other versions are popular in some parts of the world, or have been at some stage.
- Candlepin — a type of bowling like tenpin bowling using candlepins and smaller balls
- Duckpin — a type of 10-pin bowling, though with smaller balls.
- Five-pin — a bowling variant from Canada with smaller balls and only 5 pins
- Kegel — is a German nine-pin bowling game played in Australia
- Nine Pin — a variation of bowling with only 9 pins set up in a diamond pattern.
- Skittles — a precursor to many bowling games, it is an indoor sport in a bowling alley, using one or more heavy balls to knock down nine skittles.
- Tenpin — a player rolls a bowling ball on to a wooden or synthetic lane to knock down pins.
- Turkey Bowling — a frozen turkey serves as a bowling ball and 10 plastic bottles of soft drinks or water are the bowling pins.
Throwing a bat at Pins
- Finnish Skittles — opposing players take turns to knock down their opponent's skittles by throwing a bat.
- Gorodki — a folk sport from Russia, where competitors strike down a group of cylindrical wooden objects by throwing a bat.
- Kubb — a lawn game where the object is to knock over wooden blocks ('kubbs') by throwing wooden batons at them.
- Mölkky — players use a wooden pin (also called "mölkky") to try to knock over wooden pins.
- Bunnock — a kind of skittles game which is played with bones (commonly known as "Game of Bones")
Target Bowls Variants (Boules)
- Boules — a collective name for a wide range of sports in which the objective is to throw or roll heavy balls as close as possible to a small target ball.
- Basque Bowling
- Bocce — is part of the boules sport family, similar to bowls and pentanque.
- Boccia — a ball sport similar to bocce, bowls, and pentanque for athletes with physical disabilities.
- Jeu Provençal
- Carpet Bowls
- Feather Bowling
- Irish Road Bowling — throw a small cast iron ball along a country road, to cover a prescribed distance with a minimum number of throws.
- Lawn Bowling — the objective is to roll biased balls so that they stop close to a smaller ball called a "jack" or "kitty".
- Klootschieten — German sport in which participants throw a ball as far as they can.
- Bolas Criollas — a traditional Venezuelan team sport like bocce and pétanque in which players throw a set of balls as close as possible to the small target ball.
- Pétanque — a type of boules in which the objective is to throw hollow metal balls towards a small wooden target ball.
- Lagori — from Southern India, this game involves a ball and a pile of flat stones. A member of one team throws a soft ball at a pile of stones to knock them over, then try to restore the pile of stones while the opposing team throws the ball at them (also known as Lingocha).
- Shuffleboard — players uses cues to push and slide weighted discs along a long court into a scoring area
- Curling — players slide stones on a sheet of ice towards the target area.
- Calva — a traditional Spanish sport in which you throw a piece of metal to knock down a bull's horn shaped piece of wood.
- Horseshoes - players toss horseshoes alternately at stakes in the ground.
- Digor — a sport from Bhutan in which a pair of spherical flat stones that are hurled at two targets fixed in the ground at a distance of about 20 meters apart.
- Quoits — a traditional target throwing game in which rings are thrown at a target spike, the aim is to get them as close as possible to the target.
- Washer Pitching — a target throwing game similar to horseshoes, in which players as a part of teams take turns to toss washers into a box or hole.
- Croquet — players hit plastic or wooden balls using a mallet through hoops.
- Roque — an American variation of croquet played on a hard, smooth surface.
- Complete list of sports