Move into the mainstay of popular entertainment

Today, more than 100 million people play each year, and there is currently a movement to bring the sport to the Olympics, headed by the Fédération Internationale des Quilleurs, the world governing organisation for ten-pin and nine-pin bowling. Once derided by the rich for its working class origins, bowling has now become a sport that is enjoyed equally by people of all classes, races, ages and genders.

Emphasising its standing in popular western culture, bowling alleys are now usually housed in large-scale entertainment centres alongside arcades, cinemas, fast-food outlets, restaurants and night clubs. The game has been a revelation with families, as it is relatively cheap compared to watching professional sports, especially as most alleys provide players with balls and the correct footwear. It was has also been the focus of two cult films, the 1996 Farrelly brothers comedy Kingpin, and 1998’s The Big Lebowski by the Coen brothers.