EULESS, Texas - After four events in four different cities, The Next Revolution, a USBC event, came to an exciting close at AMF Euless Lanes near Dallas on Sunday.
The two-weekend, whirlwind tour gave more than 500 bowlers and fans in Detroit, Chicago, Houston and Dallas an up-close look at Australian superstar Jason Belmonte, the world's premier two-handed bowler.
The Next Revolution was created to bring exposure to the two-handed style that is sweeping the globe as well as give participants a chance to revolutionize their own games with help from Belmonte and his fellow pros.
At the first three events, Belmonte was joined by two-time U.S. Women's Open champion Kim Kearney, Team USA member Diandra Asbaty and Colombian standout Clara Guerrero, respectively. At the finale, Belmonte teamed up with Professional Bowlers Association star Chris Barnes and some of USBC's top coaches.
Sunday's festivities included an entertaining exhibition match between Belmonte and Barnes (Belmonte won 232-189), an hour and a half of on-lane coaching for participants, a question and answer session, autographs, a Storm bowling ball demo and a raffle to benefit The Bowling Foundation, the charitable arm of bowling. During the four events, nearly a thousand dollars was raised for The Bowling Foundation.
"To be able to bowl in an event like this at such an affordable, family-friendly price is great for the fans and the sport," said Warren Caldwell, who attended the event with his 10-year-old son Wyatt. "My son would much rather watch recordings of the PBA telecasts these days than cartoons, and to be just a few feet away from the guys we see on TV and get tips from them was special. I don't think it could've gone any better. It was a fabulous experience."
Since bursting onto the international bowling scene, Belmonte has competed on six continents, winning on four. He has bowled in more than 30 countries and been named World Bowler of the Year on two occasions. His revolutionary style has helped him develop quite a following, but he also has encountered a few skeptics.
As he travels the globe to compete, he continues to win people over with each success and believes that the most criticism comes from those who simply aren't familiar with his style.
"The thing that meant the most to me about this tour was seeing that USBC is there to support me and my style," said Belmonte, who became the first two-handed bowler to win a Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour event by capturing The Bowling Foundation Long Island Classic last season. "This was all about people coming to see how it works, and having USBC there to help explain things and teach them was great. I am glad to see all of the efforts being made to keep kids and adults interested in the game."
To help spread the word and help people understand the fundamentals of two-handed bowling, USBC also has developed a special coaching class to teach coaches how to coach two-handed bowlers. The first class kicked things off Sunday morning at AMF Euless Lanes and immediately proved to be a success.
"I don't know if this is really the wave of the future, but anyone who wants to bowl two-handed should be able to do so and have the tools and coaching to be able to improve," said USBC Gold coach Susie Minshew, who attended Sunday's coaching class. "You have to take what people do well and maximize it, rather than try to make everyone look the same. The textbook doesn't bowl, so you have to be able to adapt for different types of styles. I'll certainly be more confident when I'm helping the two-handers, and I look forward to the open communication with USBC Coaching."