What Is A Turkey In Bowling?

Where Does Bowling Originate From

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It’s called a ” turkey when a bowler gets three consecutive strikes. It’s called a “turkey.” The term “turkey” may have originated during Thanksgiving decades ago.

In the United States in the late 1800s and early 1900s, bowling prizes were given to bowlers who had three strikes in a row during the Thanksgiving holiday, which was a typical custom. Since then, the phrase has grown around the country despite the termination of turkey prizes.

Keep reading if you want to learn more about turkey in bowling.

Why Is Three Strikes In A Row Known As A Turkey?

In the late 1700s and early 1800s, bowling tournaments were enjoyed by both the working class and the aristocracy. This sort of contest generally gives out food baskets with prized goods like giant hams or turkeys!

Turkeys were a prize for winning a bowling tournament at one time, and because of this, they became more widespread.

Prizes were also introduced to encourage players to continue their streaks. For striking three turkeys, it became customary to refer to bowling a turkey; other accomplishments such as “hambone,” “wild turkey,” and “golden turkey” acquired their names as a result of this.

Strikes in a row were considered a significant accomplishment in the early 20th century. The pins were not neatly spaced, as they are at modern bowling alleys. Instead of the smooth, well-oiled hardwood lanes seen at contemporary bowling alleys, old school lanes featured manually placed pins that were often irregular and uneven.

Even the bowling balls were out of balance, making it difficult for bowlers to maintain their level of consistency in the game that is required to nail strike after strike after strike.

To make matters worse, some bowling tournament officials would weigh the pins’ bases to make knocking them down even more difficult!

It’s much easier to obtain three straight strikes these days, especially if you put in the effort. In our past blogs, we’ve covered such topics as how to achieve a strike or which bowling ball to choose.

As the adage goes, practice makes perfect, so get out there and bowl during open bowling hours, enroll in bowling lessons, or participate in any bowling leagues to put your new abilities to good use!

Turkey’s origins

A turkey, or three strikes in a row, maybe achieved by any skilled bowler today. Bowling used to be considerably more challenging than it is currently; as a result, achieving a flawless score was almost unheard of.

The lanes were uneven, the pins were hand-set, and they tended to be heavier in the past, making it more difficult to knock them over.

In the 18th and 19th centuries, tournaments frequently offered substantial rewards, such as food baskets, hams, and even live turkeys, to outstanding performers.

The practice of giving live turkeys to bowlers who score three consecutive strikes began with bowling tournament organizers handing out live turkeys to bowlers who achieved three consecutive strikes. It was a common award at US holiday tournaments.

These days, a gobbler is a problematic word to come by, but the phrase “turkey” has been used to describe three-strike accomplishments for over a century. We’ve created numerous new phrases for multi-strike victories in the bowling lexicon as time has gone on.

Bowling Lingo 

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What Is A Turkey In Bowling?

Aside from “Turkey,” there are several other notable bowling accomplishments. Bowling is an excellent method of learning a language. Consecutive strikes are given various names depending on how many times they occur in a row.

  • A “double” occurs when a player reaches two strikes in a row.
  • Rob Stone coined the name “Hambone,” which signifies four consecutive strikes.
  • A “brat” is made up of five strikes, just like a box of bratwursts.
  • Wild Turkey/6-Pack – The names get creative when you’ve completed a half-perfect game. Each of these symbols depicts six consecutive strikes in a row.
  • The name “Ham-Turkey Dinner” is derived from the words “ham” and “turkey,” that’s seven in a row.
  • An “octopus” refers to eight strikes in a row, regardless of whether it’s tentacles or bowling pins.
  • It’s tough to get three turkeys in a row, much alone a golden one. It takes bravery to go nine games without getting hit.
  • The “dinosaur” 300-point game of 12 hits is so unusual that it is near extinction.

However, these aren’t comprehensive in terms of all possible events, and it’s easy to mistake them for each other. If you substitute any term with “bagger,” you’ll sound like an expert (four-bagger, six-bagger, eight-bagger).

Is It Possible For An Inexperienced Player To Bowl A Turkey?

A “turkey” in bowling is when three consecutive strikes are achieved. It’s a significant accomplishment, and it doesn’t happen often. One method to enhance your chances of bowling a turkey is to do one or more of the following.

First, you must understand how the lane conditions influence your ball’s trajectory. You must also be able to regulate the ball’s velocity and spin accurately.

Finally, you must determine which shots are most likely to result in strikes. Even inexperienced bowlers can learn to bowl turkeys regularly if they put out the effort and time.

If you’ve been having trouble making those final few balls, don’t give up yet; with a bit of work, you’ll be bowling turkeys in no time.

What Are The Benefits Of Getting A Turkey In Bowling

Getting a turkey in bowling – three strikes in a row – is one of the best feelings a bowler can have. It’s also one of the rarest accomplishments in the sport.

A bowler’s average chance of throwing a turkey is just 1 in 21,852, according to 2007 statistics from the United States Bowling Congress. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worth striving for. Here are three reasons why:

1. A turkey is an impressive feat. Bowling is a game of split-second timing and precision. String together three strikes in a row is a testament to a bowler’s skill and focus. When you throw a turkey, you can be sure that your friends and fellow bowlers will be impressed.

2. A turkey can give you a significant score boost. Each strike counts as 10 points in most bowling games plus the number of pins knocked down on the next two rolls. A turkey can add 30 or more points to your score in just one frame. If you’re looking for a way to improve your average, throwing more turkeys is a great strategy.

3. Throwing a turkey is just plain fun. Something about those three strikes in a row feels excellent.


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What Is A Turkey In Bowling?

Why not try turkey bowling now that you know everything there is to know about them? Aside from impressing your friends, this course may lead to the development a new interest for you. The possibilities are endless; you might even start winning some significant tournaments? Thank you for joining us on our trip into the fascinating world of turkey bowling.

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Shmulik Dorinbaum

I play bowling almost daily, and on the days I'm not? I'm writing about my day and what I need to do to improve myself as a better bowling player.

Picture of Shmulik Dorinbaum

Shmulik Dorinbaum

I play bowling almost daily, and on the days I'm not? I'm writing about my day and what I need to do to improve myself as a better bowling player.

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