Code of Bowling Etiquette
Bowls’ Etiquette, proudly observed and honored by lawn bowlers over time as the unwritten laws of the sport, is foundational to the game’s legendary sociability. The canons of etiquette are a combination of good sportsmanship and good manners. They are not optional.
1. Be conversant with the Laws of the Sport of Bowls and observe them at all times.
2. When bowls need to be measured, the team or singles player that will probably or certainly concede a shot(s) should do the measuring and place identified counters together.
3. Be punctual and come to each game properly attired.
4. The player whose turn it is should step onto the mat from its left side and exit to the right.
5. Keep quiet and refrain from moving when players are on the mat.
6. Stand behind the mat while your opponent is delivering a bowl.
7. The team or singles player that rakes the bowls should mark the scoreboard if one is being used.
8. Always stand still at the head when a player is about to bowl. Movement, talking or gesturing at the head is very distracting and is considered gamesmanship. Do not use gamesmanship to beat your opponent. Win your matches on the green.
9. Always pay your skip the respect of waiting for his/her instructions.
10. Keep track of play and be ready with bowl in hand to step on the mat when it is your turn.
11. Be sure that complete access to the head is accorded to the team with possession of the rink.
12. Neither applaud nor complain about lucky results. Accept them graciously, knowing that they equal out over time.
13. Never say “thanks” for a bad shot that goes your way.
14. Never shout instructions for your opponent’s bowl to miss its target or fail in its intended task.
15. Admit a “fluke” in good spirit.
16. Learn to be a good marker. Markers can make or break a game. Obtain a current copy of the Laws of the Sport of Bowls to learn the duties of a marker.
17. Compliment a team member or an opponent for a good shot.
18. When an umpire is called, retire away from the head as you no longer are part of the decision making. Respect the decision made.
19. Players should assist in collecting bowls when the end is complete. The lead who will roll the jack should hasten to gather and place the mat in preparation for the next end.
20. Walk close to the center of the rink with minimum delay when changing ends as you could distract play on adjacent rinks.
21. Respect the green at all times. Do not drop or loft bowls. Walk on greens only when playing.
22. Always inform your opponent if you wish to leave the green.
23. If you lose, be a good loser. Don’t blame your loss on other people, the green, weather conditions, etc.
24. After each game, congratulate the winners and shake hands with all. Don’t be too impressed with your win today as positions could reverse tomorrow.
25. Be a bowler who is renowned for always helping put the equipment away.
26. When playing singles, whether you have won or lost, be sure to thank the marker. Remember that markers are volunteers and have given their time to assist you in your game. Your courtesy is their only payment.
27. It is always gracious and appropriate to thank event administrators and the umpire(s) before leaving the green.
28. Skips should always remember that the players on their team are doing their best.
29. Above all, enjoy the game of bowls for the fun, fitness, pleasure and the lasting friendships itCode of Bowling Etiquette