Are you headed out on a bowling date this weekend? Are you looking to dress to impress with your bowling attire at a company function?

Are you just looking for bowling outfit ideas for league nights or casual weeknights out with your best friends?

If you’re not sure of what to wear bowling, we’ve got the skinny on all things bowling fashion. Bowling alleys are a place for you to have fun and enjoy yourself in all aspects. That includes putting together cute bowling outfits that put the rented bowling shoes and drab clothing options away in favor of brighter colors and comfier fabrics.

So, put away those skinny jeans and find some athletic pants that accentuate your form just right. We’re here to find you comfortable clothing for going bowling that will help you both look and feel like a million bucks from bowling game to bowling game.

The Complete Guide To Bowling Alley Fashion

1) Wear athletic-style bowling shoes or traditional options that are high in both quality and comfortability.

Most bowlers rent bowling shoes and use a house bowling ball for a casual night out at the lanes. However, bowlers that are serious about both fashion and their performance should invest in performance bowling shoes that double as cute bowling shoes.

Why is that? For one, using your own shoes is a much cleaner option. You don’t have to worry about a bored bowling alley attendant failing to disinfect your shoes properly before renting them out to you. Rented shoes are also relics of years past oftentimes, and they don’t hold a candle to the comfortable feel and night-out good looks of the best bowling shoes in the marketplace.

One important outfit reminder about your shoe choices for the bowling alley — wearing sandals or any type of open-toed shoes is a no-no. While it’s okay to go the casual outfit route when bowling, sandals are a health hazard at the lanes and are often banned by bowling centers for this same reason. You don’t want to drop your bowling ball on your exposed toes and risk a trip to the local emergency room.

Can you wear sneakers for bowling?

Experts recommend wearing proper bowling shoes that are built to slide and grip with equal efficacy. Sneakers are not built for bowling lanes, and can actually damage the surface if you’re not careful.

There’s plenty of good-looking pairs of bowling shoes to choose from both at local pro shops and online. Don’t risk wearing sneakers and having to pay for damages at your local alley.

2) Wear socks that offer proper support and bring a second pair with you.

Be sure to bring socks with you to the bowling lanes. A comfortable regular pair of socks is fine, but we recommend those which both absorb sweat and provided needed ankle support for your four-step or five-step bowling approach.

Most bowling alleys sell socks either in vending machines or kept behind the counter. They often mark these up quite a lot and they’re often dollar store rejects that aren’t cute and don’t offer much support.

Bring your own socks and don’t be afraid to add a bit of your personality to the proceedings. Do you want two different socks with a pattern going into one shoe and a solid going into the other shoe? Do it! Do you want to wear athletic socks with a fun design that also feel comfy when you’re walking and sliding around? Do that!

The most important outfit choices for bowling promote your comfort and self-expression. Unless you’re bowling in a tournament with a dress code, feel free to experiment with your sock choices to your heart’s content.

3) Put on a bowling shirt that facilitates free movement and doesn’t constrict during your shot.

Traditional bowling shirts combine the look of a brightly colored polo with the flexibility necessary for long nights at the lanes. However, you don’t have to buy a bowling shirt if it’s not your particular cup of tea.

Half-sleeve shirts or short-sleeved tops made of breathable, flexible fabric are good alternatives. A short-sleeved top or t-shirt is a great option because it allows your arms to swing freely without the constriction of a rigid sleeve construction getting in the way. You don’t want to wear a shirt that impedes your throw, because that could lead to decreased scores and potential injury.

Also, leave the leather jacket at home or near your bag. The less bulky fabrics you have to carry going up to the foul line, the better chance you’ll have at executing a split or stringing strikes together.

Ladies can substitute a short-sleeved or half-sleeve shirt for a soft blouse, provided that the fabric doesn’t flow in the way of your shot or approach.

4) Flexible bowling pants are a must for your bowling outfit.

If you’ve ever tried to wear jeans during a bowling league night, you know how uncomfortable that can be. Unless your jeans are made of a stretchy fabric that moves with you and doesn’t pull against you in the middle of a shot, denim is not the most comfortable choice at the alley.

What pants do you wear bowling?

Yoga-style pants, leggings, or athletic pants made of breathable fabric are all great options for your next bowling night out. And for ladies that want to wear a skirt, the best skirt length for bowling is knee-length or mid-length. This ensures that you are fully covered during a shot and will also give you a full range of motion to convert spares and hammer strikes home at the same time.

If you’re headed to a bowling zone where casual dress is okay, sweatpants are also a good option to consider. If you want to be a bit more fashionable with your choice of bottoms, there are plenty of colorful and flexible athletic pant options out there for you to consider.

Is it okay to wear shorts while bowling?

It can be! It just depends on the shorts. The material is what makes the difference, so short shorts made of constrictive denim are probably not worth the pain and reduced movement. Find shorts that are made of stretchy, breathable material that moves with you and doesn’t inhibit your natural movement.

5) Keep the accessories to a minimum, especially if they get in the way.

Never wear necklaces, bracelets, or added accessories that get in the way of your shot. And please, don’t wear rings on your throwing hand that could get stuck in the holes of your bowling ball.

You can look good at your local bowling center without putting your health or range of motion in jeopardy. Earrings are fine as long as they don’t dangle oddly and cause you trouble during your shot. And necklaces are a-okay if they don’t dangle into your shot path or cause you to be uncomfortable while sliding to the foul line.

You can definitely wear some accessories in the gathering areas or bar of your local bowling alley. Just bring a bag with you that you can place them in for safe-keeping until after you’re done throwing for the night.

6) Don’t be afraid of putting together your own version of a cute bowling outfit.

If you love bowling and love looking good as well, don’t be afraid to mix things up a bit! The most important outfit choices you make are the ones that make you happy. If you’re comfier with a more conservative style of dress, don’t push yourself into bright colors and wild patterns.

And if you’re more eccentric with the types of clothes you tend to wear, don’t be afraid to infuse your bowling outfits with a wide range of colors and interesting textures. Bowling should be fun, and dressing for bowling should be part of that.

Cute bowling outfits are in the eye (and closet) of the beholder. Whether you’re looking to find love on a bowling date or just want to leave an impression at your local bowling alley, just do your thing. You’ll be happy you did.