Warburton Bowls Club secures grant to bolster all-abilities access

The Warburton Bowls Club is set to purchase new bowler's arms to keep players on the green for longer. Picture: ON FILE

By Callum Ludwig

The Warburton Bowls Club has successfully secured a grant to improve its capacity to cater to bowlers of all abilities.

As part of the Victorian Government’s latest round of the Sporting Club Grants Program, the Warburton Bowls Club received $1000 to put towards adaptable equipment for all-abilities bowls.

Grants Officer at the Warburton Bowls Club Aimee Dostie said that the grant will be fantastic for keeping people in the sport longer.

“One of the things that we’ve identified at the Warburton Bowls Club is that about 20 per cent of our members use a bowling arm, of which there are four different styles that are approved by Bowls Australia,” she said.

“To be able to do this and provide this for not just our bowlers, but anyone in the community who might either have previously bowled and is no longer doing it because of either the cost of the equipment or the stigma around using that equipment, is something e are very excited about.”

Bowler’s arms are used when a player is no longer able to bend down to deliver the bowl correctly, mostly due to hip or knee complaints.

There are four approved types; The Bowling Arm’, the ‘Bionic Bowler Arm’, the ‘DHB arm’ and the ‘S-R Model’, which are available in different lengths and with varying release mechanisms for ease of use. Only devices made by approved manufacturers can be used in pennant competition.

Ms Dostie said these pieces of equipment typically cost around $300.

“Because the price point is relatively high, we thought it would be beneficial to purchase three different types focused on our demographic and get the ones that tend to be most universally used,” she said.

“That way people can come to the club who might be thinking that they need it, may have been told that they need it or are reluctant to buy one and give it a try in their own time,”

“It’s a fantastic sport that is for all ages and abilities, we’re very excited to be able to provide this as an additional service to the community and it’s a wonderful opportunity for us to encourage people to join the sport.”

The Warburton Bowls Club are one of 560 recipients sharing in more than $694,000 distributed through the grants program.

Minister for Community Sport Ros Spence said clubs, coaches, officials and volunteers are integral to community sport, and it just wouldn’t happen without them.

“That’s why we’re backing more clubs with help to purchase uniforms and equipment, and investing in their future through training and development,” she said.

“This is about helping to boost memberships, supporting volunteers and getting behind grassroots sport, which is a vital part of local communities.”