Bowls Behaviour

Koo Wee Rup Bowling Club encourages the highest standards of sportsmanship from all members and endorses the Bowls Victoria publication - "Guidance for new bowlers and the etiquette of bowls" 2010 (1) .  This section includes direct quotes from this publication (shown in italics) as well as paraphrasing of information contained in it.

Since its inception in Victoria, in 1864, the game has the reputation for being recognized as a "gentleman's game", with the conduct of the game played in a friendly but competitive atmosphere. (1)

Key Points

  • Don't behave in any way that could bring you, our Club or the game into disrepute.

  • Don't distract a bowler when they are on the mat and about to deliver a bowl.  Some examples include - Movement of players or spectators in the line of sight of the bowler, conversation which could be heard by the bowler, shouting compliments or encouragement to a player/s on another rink.

  • Don't intrude onto an adjacent rink (even when you think the players on that rink are far enough away not to be influenced).

  • When an umpire is requested, all players must retire to the bank while measuring is underway.  You must accept all umpires decisions without displaying signs of disagreement.  (Procedures exist for appeal at a later time.)

  • Ensure you follow the Regulations for Attire and the dress rules which are relevant to the competition you have entered.

Customary Courtesies

  • Be gracious in defeat and humble in victory.  We can all have a good day or a bad day.  Be the first to offer your hand in congratulations for a game well played.

  • Don't blame outside influences for a defeat.  Examples include - the 'green', the weather, 'lucky' shots, spectators.

  •  In games on our green we are the 'host'.  We must treat all players as guests.  We must be sociable at all times and display a friendly manner.  It is customary to invite your opponent to join you in a friendly drink on completion of the game.


This page is designed to assist Club Members to:


1.             Find resources to improve your bowling and provide advice on representing the Club,


2.             Help you find ways to develop and improve the knowledge and capabilities of the Koo Wee Rup Bowling Club.

With this in mind, the Club encourages Members to develop their skills by becoming qualified as umpires and/or coaches.  Some links below will give you more information on coaching and umpiring.

2. Position Play

How should the Lead, Second, Third & Skip play their positions?


  •  LEADS - play same hand

  • Don't change unless approved by Skip
  • Aim for bowl on and a bowl behind


  • Support and compliment Lead
  • Play position bowls
  • No short bowls
  • Minimal weighted shots


  • Plays shot asked
  • Plays positive into head when down
  • Plays carefully when holding
  • Understands shot required
  • Gives changes in head to Skip
  • Third will inspect the head as often as required


  • Uses good body language
  • Gives clear instruction
  • Vocal with praise. Quiet with advice
  • Implements Game Plan
  • Plays positive into head when down
  • Plays carefully when holding
  • Skips will inspect the head before drives

1. Team Play

What is good team behaviour?

  • Discipline
  • Encourage all team members across the green
  • The BIG scoreboard is the focus
  • Use positive verbal and non-verbal signals
  • Do not get on mat until Skip has given instructions. Stay 1M back
  • Be vocal and applaud good shots by your team mates
  • Support your team mates: Talk to the opposition after the game

Article - Notes for Markers 

If you are asked to be a Marker for Club Events it is important you are aware of the following Do's and Don'ts below.

Note -   A course is now available for Markers and you may wish to achieve Accreditation as a Marker.  If so please discuss your intentions with the Club President.


Copyright 2013. Koo Wee Rup Bowling Club. All rights reserved.

Game Courtesies

  • Always extend your thanks and appreciation to the Marker when one is required in your game and offer a refreshment on completion of the game.

  • Pick up the mat in a game whenever your opponent has delivered the last bowl of the end. 

  • You must not be in the area of play after your bowl comes to rest.  Therefore you should be a minimum of 1 meter behind the mat or the jack and away from the head when your bowl comes to rest.  (Exception - when you are marking a toucher)

  • In a team game, the Lead should pick up the 'Jack' and/or the mat and hand it to their opponent when the previous end was won by the opponent.  In a singles game the same applies to the singles player.

End of Page

"Planning for success"

The following excerpt is taken from The Shot Issue 21 May 2014 with title above.

Intellectual Property Acknowledgement: The Club recognises that this is a published article in "The Shot" magazine. The article is on page 40 and written by Rob Huddle . The excerpt includes Items 1 & 2 from the article. 

Note: Members are encouraged to read the article in its entirety.

Improving Your Game

The link/s below may help you to develop new skills and/or offer solutions to problems you are experiencing.  Remember to speak to the coaches at the Club who will also have suggestions or drills to help you to improve. 


‚ÄčTim Katz  0499477457      


  • be correctly attired

  • know each player's bowls

  • centre the jack after it comes to rest

  • ensure the jack is 21+ metres from the front of mat

  • stand approx. 2 metres behind & 1.5 metres to side of jack

  • keep your shadow away from Head

  • stand still and watch player on mat

  • stay alert and mark touchers as soon as they stop

  •  place markers on the bank for jack & touchers in the ditch

  • answer all questions briefly (e.g. Yes or No) and only to player on the mat

  • indicate distances if requested (bowl to jack, bowl to another bowl, relative positions to shot etc)

  • keep clear of the Head when players arrive (THEY DECIDE THE RESULT NOT YOU).


  • move about when a player is on the mat

  • stand among the bowls

  • stop the jack before it finishes rolling

  • move in to see who has the shot unless asked

  • answer questions from another rink

  • invite a player to inspect the Head

  • give misleading answers - rather ask the question be rephrased

  • give extra information which is not requested

  •  talk to spectators on the bank

  • applaud either player or make comment on shots


  • tell the players when they arrive who has the shot or how many

  • signify that the jack is on the 2M mark unless asked