The following introduction covers the basic aspects of the game, as normally played in the UK.
It is not intended to be a complete definition of the game or the rules.
Like many games, the object of Bowls is essentially simple.
It can be played by almost anyone, but to play consistently well demands determination, concentration and practice.
Players deliver their bowls alternately from a mat at one end of the rink, towards a small white ball called the jack at the other end. The bowls are shaped so that they do not run in a straight line, but take a curved path towards the jack. To be successful the bowl must be delivered with the correct weight, along the correct line. The bowl can be delivered either forehand or backhand.
Forehand and backhand lines to the jack (for a right-handed bowler)
Bowls can be played as singles, or in teams of pairs, triples, or fours (a team of four is also known as a 'rink').
In fours or rinks games, each team member has a particular role to play:
The normal game formats are as follows:
Although these are the most common formats, variations are allowed by the controlling bodies. Matches may be mixed or single-sex.