There's a lot to be said for bowling. It's loud. It involves a kind of controlled violence. It requires strength, coordination and genuine technique. And it's damn fun.
Here, for no other reason than we like the sport and because the pictures are pretty cool, LIFE.com presents photographs of men, women and kids bowling. Some of the bowlers are serious. Some are what we might call hobbyists. Some are clearly awful. But what they all share is the evident desire to smash the pins. To make that improbable spare. To nail a convincing, resounding, unmistakable strike.
Ready to roll?