The basic equipment needed to play:
Mat, Jack, Bowls & Measure
Mats and jacks are provided at every bowling green. The only things you’ll need in regard to equipment are a set of bowls and possibly a measure (to decide shots if required). There is also a mention further on this page about clothing and footwear which is important reading.
The mats and jacks are provided by the club, so you need not worry about the finer details of sizes, but you can read about all this technical information using the World Bowls Laws of Sport link if you wish to know more.
Footwear could be mentioned alongside equipment, because there are rules regarding footwear. The official, up-to-date ruling from World Bowls as it appears in the Laws of the Sport is:
A.2.1 Players, umpires and markers must wear flat-soled (‘heel-less’) footwear when
they play on the green or act as umpires or markers.
A.2.2 WB and Member National Authorities can approve specific colours for
footwear and the types of sole.
In the UK we are able to wear any colour of flat-soled (‘heel-less’) footwear, ideally from recognised bowls shoes manufacturers such as Drakes Pride, Aero, Taylor etc
Clothing is dependent on whether it is a league or cup match, a friendly match or a social roll-up:
At Millwood BC a basic rule of thumb is that league matches are white from the waist down: trousers, shorts (not cargo) or skirt. Evening cup games and friendlies are greys from the waist down: trousers, shorts (not cargo) or skirt. Some afternoon league matches may vary from this. Club shirts are worn above the waist, and a white waterproof if required. For social roll-ups, ‘Spoons’ and our internal Monday League wear anything comfortable.
In regard to shorts (and trousers) for league matches:
Bowls as stated in the Laws of the Sport:
52.1.1 Bowls must be manufactured from materials or products approved by
WB, such as plastic resin (called composition or plastic bowls), and may
be any colour or combination of colours. The bowls colours must be
incorporated during the manufacturing process.
52.1.2 Indentations designed to help the player grip the bowl during delivery
(for example, grooved rings or dimples) can be incorporated during the
manufacturing process. They can also be added at a later date, but only
by a Licensed Manufacturer or a Licensed Tester.
40 August 2022
52.1.3 Each set of bowls can carry a player’s individual emblem, logo or
engraving as a distinguishing mark on both sides of every bowl.
184.108.40.206 The distinguishing mark must be the same design and colour
on each bowl, but can be different in size.
220.127.116.11 The distinguishing mark on the bias side of the bowl must
be inside the smallest grooved ring surrounding its centre.
18.104.22.168 If there are grooved rings surrounding the centre of the nonbias side, the distinguishing mark must be inside the
22.214.171.124 If there are no grooved rings surrounding the centre of the
non-bias side, the distinguishing mark must be inside the
indentations designed to help the player grip the bowl during
126.96.36.199 As well as the distinguishing marks, each set of bowls can
carry a player’s name or signature. Imprints on the running
surfaces of bowls must be avoided.
World Bowls Stamp:
52.2.2 To check the accuracy of the bias and the visibility of the World Bowls
Stamp, all bowls must be re-tested and re-stamped at least once every 10
years, or earlier if the date of the stamp is not clearly legible.
52.2.3 For domestic play, Member National Authorities can decide the
requirements for re-testing and re-stamping bowls.
53 Bowls: World Bowls Stamp
53.1 Licensed Manufacturers and Licensed Testers are entitled to imprint the
registered World Bowls Stamp on the bias side of bowls. Imprints on the running
surfaces of bowls must be avoided wherever possible.
WB World Bowls
A is the code letter of the Licensed Manufacturer or the Licensed Tester
Number is the year that the stamp expires (in this example, 2032)
R shows that the stamp is a registered trademark
53.2 The current World Bowls Stamp was introduced on 1 April 2002 and must be
used on all new and re-tested bowls from that date.
53.3 Both the International Bowling Board (IBB) and the World Bowls Board (WBB)
stamps, which were used before the current World Bowls Stamp, will be valid
until the end of the year that the stamp expires. (For example, the stamp in the
above illustration would not be valid after 31 December 2032.)
53.4 If bowls are imprinted with the registered World Bowls Stamp and are in line
with the Laws of the Sport of Bowls in all other ways, they can be used in all
games under the control of WB or any Member National Authority.
53.5 For domestic play, Member National Authorities can decide the requirements for
the stamps on bowls.