Bowls | Every Body Moves

Records of people playing bowls in England can be traced back to the 13th century and the sport has been adapted in various ways to offer disabled people a range of options when it comes to getting involved.

Bowls is a game for people of all abilities, disabilities, ages and backgrounds – classifications are based on functional mobility and range from bowlers with sensory impairments, physical disabilities or learning (intellectual) disabilities.

Practical demonstrations of specialist equipment and enlisting the services of facilitators have been used to aid novice and established bowlers’ participation and offered solutions to a range of participation challenges.

These include signage and directors for visually and hearing-impaired bowlers, utilising bowling aids, specially designed bowls wheelchairs and bowling aids to propel woods.

The sport can be played either indoors or outdoors, making it one you can be involved with all year round, and there are plenty of opportunities to give it a try – Disability Bowls England has 465 registered members and 105 Members clubs

Things you might need to get started:

  • Flat shoes
  • Four balls i.e., bowls*
  • A smaller, different coloured ball to use as the jack
  • Measuring tape
  • Scorecards

    * Most clubs will have bowls you can borrow when you first get started and will be able to advise you of the most suitable make and type of bowl for you, they may even have some second hand one’s for you to purchase or you can buy from new from several bowls retailers. Clubs will have bowls mats and jacks (the small ball you aim at) to use.

Find out more

For information about getting involved in England, visit Disability Bowls England: 

For those in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, visit:, or 

Check out The Swans Bowls Club:  

Find your nearest bowls opportunities