How Much do Professional Bowlers Make?

The top earners in the professional bowling world have an average annual salary of $200K-300k per year, while the lowest earners make around $25,000 per year.
pba tour trophy

Top professional bowlers and international celebrities make the most which can be upwards of $1 million while many bowlers make a decent living doing bowling exhibitions.

Professional Bowlers Association

Joining the Professional Bowlers’ Association (PBA) is the best way to turn bowling talent into a money-making proposition. There is big money to be made by those who participate in PBA-sanctioned events as a professional bowler.

PBA Tour

pba tour

If you are trying to increase your average yearly salary trying to get on the pba tour is a necessity. PBA Membership can help a professional bowler get exposure which could help earn them a sponsorship deal.

Even the runner-up in professional bowling tournaments can earn a decent living depending on how much money you need for living expenses.

The vast majority of a pro bowler’s income is derived from tournament participation, paid sponsorships, and appearance fees. In order to maximize earnings potential, it is important to be discovered by tournament directors and sponsors.

That can only happen by regularly participating in championship events. The PBA provides its members with a platform to showcase their talents and earn a living doing something they love. There is no better way for talented bowlers to make a name for themselves and start earning big money.

How Do PBA Bowlers Make Money?


Pro bowlers on the PBA Tour are professional athletes, and as such, can make very good bowling salaries. They normally get all of their living expenses and travel expenses paid.

Being the Best

The best bowlers in the world could make several million dollars a year in winnings and endorsement deals. The top bowlers (highest earners) also make money by giving bowling clinics and appearing in commercials. Top athletes earning million-dollar contracts earn twice as much money as those competing in the professional sport in local tournaments.

One major factor in pro bowling that is the same as other sports is that top earners are usually male bowlers. Even in other countries, male bowlers tend to make more. Nfl stars, NBA stars, and pretty much all other sports stars all make more when they are male.

Most pro bowlers are very well-paid, but there is a wide range of incomes among different bowlers. A bowler’s income depends on his or her popularity, talent, and results in tournaments.

Walter Ray Williams Jr.

Walter Ray Williams Jr.

Walter Ray Williams Jr. is one of the highest-paid American professional bowlers. He currently holds the record for all-time standard PBA Tour career titles (47) and total PBA earnings (over $4.9 million through 2019).

He is a seven-time PBA Player of the Year, and won at least one PBA Tour title in 17 consecutive seasons (1993 through 2009-10); both of these feats are also PBA records.

Williams starred in the documentary about ten-pin bowling called “A League of Ordinary Gentlemen.” As of June 26, 2022, he is also the leader of the all-time title on the PBA50 Tour, with 16. He has won three majors on that Tour and has been named PBA50 Player of the Year three times. Williams has also rolled 110 perfect 300 games in the PBA competition through 2019.

Talent and Practice

So, if a bowler wants to earn a high income, he or she needs to be very talented and consistent enough to win multiple tour titles. Even if they started bowling very young, got their own bowling balls, and practiced with Walter Ray Williams Jr. they would need to compete very hard to earn their place as a professional sports star of bowling.

While it is difficult to earn a high income as a professional bowler, it is certainly possible for talented bowlers who work hard and are lucky enough to have some success.

How Do Pro Bowlers Make a Living?

For bowlers with a passion for the game, being paid to bowl might seem like a fantasy come true. In this section, we’ll look at what it takes to become a PBA bowler as well as what life is like as a PBA bowler.

There are three main ways for pba bowlers to make money:

  • Prize money from tournaments
  • Sponsorship deals
  • Income from products and endorsements



Pro bowlers routinely participate in tournaments as a way to make money. Often, these events offer handsome cash prizes for top scorers, making them an attractive option for those looking to earn a living through their bowling skills.

Sponsorship deal

In addition to prize money, talented pro bowlers can also make money through paid sponsorships. As a method for advertising their products, bowling companies will often invest money in pro bowlers’ careers by sponsoring them and providing endorsements.

For example, a pro bowler might wear a company’s logo on all their bowling shirts in exchange for payment. Or, the pro bowler might appear in the company’s commercials.

Additional Income From Products and Endorsments

In addition to prize money, pro bowlers can also make money by appearing at events. For a fee, bowlers will agree to appear at an event and interact with guests.

This could include giving a speech, introducing special guests, or simply mingling with attendees. While the appearance fee may seem like a lot of money, it is important to remember that pro bowlers are often in high demand.

Professional Bowler Salary

The vast majority of pro bowlers are independent contractors who are paid by the tournament or venue where they are competing. As a result, their average salary is largely dependent on their performance.

This makes it really hard to define the average salary of a professional bowler. Especially since high earners can win million dollar contracts and low earners have bowling salaries that barely pay the bills.

Some say professional bowling’s decline has to do with lowering payouts but in 2022 the cash prize for all the major bowling tournaments on the pba tour is 100k for first place. So i would say that the sport is still going strong.

How Much Do Pro Bowlers Make When They Win?

When it comes to prize money in pro bowling, professional bowlers are in a league of their own. For example, the PBA planned to award $100,000 prizes to first-place winners in the 2022 PBA Tournament of Champions and the PBA World Championship.

As a result, they can make a very comfortable living off of their Fo bowling skills. For aspiring professional bowlers, these big payouts may provide motivation to hit the lanes and perfect their game.

But not all PBA events are so high-stakes – smaller tournaments offer decent cash prizes as well. For example, in 2020 the PBA offered top prizes of $30,000 for all standard singles events. This excludes a few special tournaments that had slightly larger top prizes.

Even so, $30,000 is nothing to sneeze at – it’s a significant amount of money, and it goes to show that there are multiple ways to win big in the world of professional bowling.

The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) website lists the prize winnings for championships, competitions, and tournaments.

Do Pro Bowlers Have Sponsors?


While there are many companies that will sponsor a pro bowler, many of these athletes get sponsored by bowling equipment companies. When a pro bowler enters a sponsorship agreement with a company, they not only receive free products but also represent the company in a positive light.

In exchange for a good advertisement, these companies offer top-quality support to the athlete. This can be a great deal for both parties involved. Pro bowlers are sponsored by a variety of brands and companies. In exchange for cash and goods, these bowlers agree to represent the brands and companies in a variety of ways.

The top bowlers in the world can command high fees for their appearances, while lower-ranked bowlers may have to settle for less money. In addition, many pro bowlers also earn income from endorsements and sponsorships.

This arrangement can be beneficial for both the athlete and the company. The athlete gets access to high-quality equipment and clothing, while the company gains valuable exposure for its products.

In the world of professional bowling, sponsorships are essential. They provide bowlers with much-needed financial support, and they give brands a chance to connect with a passionate and engaged audience. Sponsorships can take many different forms.

In addition to the financial benefits, sponsorships also give bowlers a chance to connect with new brands and reach a wider audience. For both bowlers and sponsors, sponsorships are a win-win situation.

How Much Do Pro Bowlers Make from Sponsors?

The amount of money that a pro bowler can earn through sponsorships varies greatly depending on the company involved and the bowler’s level of success.

Top-performing bowlers are able to command much higher payments from companies looking to gain exposure through sponsorship agreements. For example, some of the most popular bowlers in the world are able to earn hundreds of thousands of dollars per year through their sponsorships.

However, even lesser-known bowlers can still find sponsors willing to pay them a few hundred dollars per month for their representation. Ultimately, the amount of money that a pro bowler can earn through sponsorships is largely dependent on their level of success and popularity.

Professional bowlers often sign contracts with companies in order to receive compensation. These contracts typically last for one year and may require the pro bowler to use only the company’s bowling products, make special appearances, and/or appear in company commercials.

Do Pro Bowlers Have Other Jobs?

Many professional bowlers have to supplement their income with other jobs in the bowling industry. For example, even some of the top-earning pro bowlers still work in pro shops or at bowling centers. Imagine walking into your local bowling center and seeing your favorite bowler.

Other pro bowlers may choose to work in bowling equipment manufacturing as a way to stay involved in the sport even when they’re not actively competing. Of course, lower-earning pro bowlers who aren’t regularly winning tournaments and competitions often have to pursue other careers entirely outside of bowling.

No Longer the Golden Age

Since it’s a professional sport, for some athletes, professional bowling is an exciting hobby or side hustle, but they still need to work a regular job to make ends meet. Ultimately, many professional bowlers have to balance their passion for the sport with the practical realities of earning a living.


Thanks for reading. If you know ways other bowlers make money let us know in the comments.

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I get a little off the top to help me keep this website running. 

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