Carpet bowling is competitive and fun

Kamloops will be hosting the 2013 BC Seniors Games from Aug. 20 to Aug. 24, 2013

Nina Clearwaters

Nina Clearwaters

Written for Kamloops This Week

By Sarah MacMillan

Nina Clearwaters has been carpet bowling for 33 years and it all began when she saw the game being played.

“We just decided we would like it,” said Clearwaters.

Carpet bowling also gives Clearwaters the opportunity to compete.

“I’m a competitive person,” said Clearwaters.  But another bonus for Clearwaters about participating in the games is the opportunity to meet and compete against different people. “You see people from all over the province.”

Clearwaters participates not only in the Seniors Games and other tournaments but she also plays recreationally.

“I play it twice a week in Barriere.”

Clearwaters says it’s a mentally demanding game.

“It’s mentally demanding,” said Clearwaters, “Especially in competition, trying to make your shot.”

The game of carpet bowling is especially mentally demanding for the reason that the bowls used aren’t round, but instead are cut on a bias.

“It curls like a curling rock when you throw it” said Clearwaters.  “Therefore you have to hold the bowl the way you want it to go.”

Carpet bowl is played on a six by 38 foot rug in which a 2.5 inch diameter jack is placed on the centre line approximately six feet in from the end of the carpet.  Eight ends are then played, and points are rewarded for every one of the bowls that is closest to the white jack than the opponent.

Clearwaters warns there are quite a few rules, including a three strikes rule in which a competitor is warned twice for any infraction and a third time they are disqualified.  A person also does not want to knock over the jack, because the other team is than awarded points, and the amount of points awarded to the opposition all depend on which player knocked over the jack.  If the first person to throw knocks over the jack the opposition is awarded one point, but if the fourth player knocks over the jack then four points are awarded to the other team.

“You don’t want to help the other team out anymore than you have to,” said Clearwaters.

However, though there are quite a few rules she says it is a fun game, one that anybody can learn.

“Anybody that’s really trying can pick it up quite easily,” said Clearwaters.


For more information about carpet bowling or if you would like to participate in the B.C. Seniors Games, please contact zone eight carpet bowling co-ordinator Sharon March at 250-677-4234 or by email at, or visit the B.C. Seniors Games website at