Thumbnail splitting

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Viper
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Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

Thumb (2).jpg
Hello and Good Evening! In search of a possible solution to a very recent problem with my thumb (left, I'm left-hand). I'm a senior in my 70's, having taken up 10-pin bowling 15 years ago. I use a Turbo SG with a custom molded insert (which is glued into an innersleeve). My fit was a combined effort of Mo Pinel and my bowling coach at the time, a fit I have used for ten of the 15 years I have been bowling. This season I have had to deal with my thumbnail splitting (tip of the nail to about halfway down the nail). I used the services of a nail technician to put a thick acrylic nail on the the thumb so I could continue to bowl. At one point the nail grew out to the point the split was gone. The acrylic nail came off and I bowled for two months or so with no problem. After a period of eight straight days of bowling (league and weekend tournaments) the nail split again so I am back to where I started. I placed a piece of white tape on my thumbnail to see if it marked, which it did. The picture attached is my thumb. The red line is the split line (it does not go all the way to the cuticle), and the black area is the area receiving the pressure. My thumb hole is zero/zero. The slug is an oval: 0.960 degrees at 45 degrees. I can mount my slugs myself so changing the angle is doable. Yes, I have been to a doctor (dermatologist), essentially, they have been of little help. I do take all the right vitamins, confirmed by the doctors. Again, the problem is very new, and did correct itself, only to return. An aside, the same thing happen with my middle finger but that has healed and not returned. Any suggestions/recommendations would be appreciated. And thanks in advance.
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PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
TomaHawk
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by TomaHawk »

A lot of things can change in ten years.

Take a couple more pictures, one with your hand in the ball and another with just your thumb in the ball, fingers laying across the holes.

If you can provide a video of you rolling the ball down the lane, it might be helpful as well.
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Viper
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

I'll get those pics. Have video but will have to research how to post. Thanks for your quick reply.
Left-handed
PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
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Viper
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Posts: 355
Joined: March 14th, 2012, 3:36 am
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Positive Axis Point: 5 x 1/2 up
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Rev Rate: 315
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Medium Oil Ball: 14 lbs. Hammer Raw Orange/Black Hybrid
Location: Short Pump, VA

Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

Let me know if these work for you. If not, I can re-do. Let me know what angle you are looking for.

As for the video, I've researched the Wiki and FAQ but don't see how I can upload. File too large for me to add as attachment.

Again, I appreciate the help.
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Left-handed
PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
TomaHawk
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by TomaHawk »

The fit looks good. Release angles are somewhat co-related to pitches. There is also another element to the release, friction.

For some people, particularly people with drier skin or smoother skin textures, it may be difficult to hold onto the ball without squeezing. The type of issue you are describing suggests that could be the case.

If you haven't changed your inserts in awhile, you might want to consider doing so. Also, use rubbing alcohol to clean the thumb hole. For good measure, place a piece of narrow white tape in the front of the thumb. That will provide just enough friction to help secure the ball to your hand.
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by EricHartwell »

Does your current grip serve you well otherwise?
No Pains in your fingers,hand or wrist?
I would hate to make a grip change and introduce a different problem.

Thinking out loud here...

Do you work with your hands?
Have you ever suffered an injury to your thumb in the past and it possibly weakened the nail?
Like trying to use a hammer right handed.
Illnesses can also cause issues with fingernails as your body rids itself of toxins.

I have a couple of fingernails that have a tendency to split like you describe. Injuries.
Luckily it is not my bowling thumb.
I need to keep those nails trimmed regularly to minimize the splitting.

Have you thought about some preventative medicine?
Keep the nail reinforced with the acrylic.
Maybe not the whole fake nail thing but just try using an acrylic fingernail polish.

WoW, I just googled searched that and there are tons of products not only coat and protect but stimulate growth too.

I"m thinking if my thumbnail split during competition I would actually use Super Glue and a bit of a paper napkin.
Then buff it smooth with a 500 grit pad.
Eric Hartwell

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Viper
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Medium Oil Ball: 14 lbs. Hammer Raw Orange/Black Hybrid
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

Tomahawk, thank you for your input. I change my inserts every 60 games. Religiously. I keep a card on each ball with all the information, date games thrown, number of games, resurfacing, etc. I do use rubbing alcohol to clean the thumb hole, and I also use white tape in the front of the hole, either one or two pieces, depending on the weather. I don’t have to jam my thumb into the hole but it is snug. I never have an issue with the release. The ball always comes off the hand cleanly/smoothly. I have no other problems with the thumb such as sore spots, bumps, bruising, cuticle problems, etc. I do have dry skin (and thinning at my age) so I regularly use hand lotion, even in the summer. When working in water for a prolonged period I do wear those yellow rubber gloves (per instruction of dermatologist).

EricHartwell, thank you for your help. That’s a lot of thinking! I’ll do my best to cover your questions.

My grip is damn near perfect in my book. I have invested a lot of time and money in getting it right, and it has served me well. No, I don't have any problems with my hand(s) or my wrists, but I do wear a wrist brace now, a physical therapy recommended device, not something bought at a pro-shop. The PT a result of severe tendonitis in my elbow and the muscle in my forearm (this more than five years ago).

I’m fully retired now and the rule in the house is no more projects! Many things I used to do or tinker with I no longer do. I would say, no, I don’t work with my hands.

I’ve never suffered any hand injuries. Illnesses, I have a couple of health issues which require regular visits to specialists, but I’ve spoke with them about this thumbnail issue and they all say the same thing: See a dermatologist. Essentially, my existing conditions play no part in the thumbnail splitting according the specialists. I keep my nails trimmed, too.

Preventive medicine? Outside of vitamins, no. Presently, I have a full acrylic nail on the thumbnail. I have used a product “Hard as Nails” in the past. I may try it again once I get the nail grown out enough to leave me a healthy nail. I’ll research the protect and stimulate growth.

Funny the super glue. I used the paper/superglue trick. The acrylic nail applied by the professional works the best long term. With the superglue I found you can build a nail by applying a coat of superglue gel, and then cover it with baking soda. It cures immediately and can be shaped, filed, and sanded as desired, but it's still not nearly as strong as acrylic.

Maybe my solution is to learn to bowl without using the thumb! Just kidding, I think I’m too old for that now. I don’t need to aggravate something else on my bowling arm/hand.

I may remount one of my slugs and take the angle from 45 to 50 and see what happens. I will still try to find a way to load a video of me throwing a ball.

Appreciate the help and discussion.

Joe/Viper
Left-handed
PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
TomaHawk
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by TomaHawk »

Viper wrote: April 28th, 2023, 3:52 am Tomahawk, thank you for your input. I change my inserts every 60 games. Religiously. I keep a card on each ball with all the information, date games thrown, number of games, resurfacing, etc. I do use rubbing alcohol to clean the thumb hole, and I also use white tape in the front of the hole, either one or two pieces, depending on the weather.
I had to make those suggestions. A lot of people come to the shop describing similar issues to yours. I'll look at the ball, the grips have never, ever been changed and the tape in the thumb is old / dirty. Glad you're not one of those people.

Obviously, something is going on with your hand though.

We have a wide variety of ages that come to our shop. Some have been customers for way longer than I should mention. And, because they have been coming to us for an extended period of time, it has put me in a position to witness their aging process. ***One common denominator, none of them are the age their birth certificate says they are, they're all 29 years old.

As we age, what our mind perceives and what we are physically capable of doing is often two different things. The process of re-training our body and mind to do something "we already know how to do" is somewhat time consuming. To put it mildly, it can be frustrating too.

You mentioned that you are now wearing some sort of a support on your hand. Some can significantly change the way the ball sits on your hand. Just about all apparatuses will create a quicker release mechanism.

You also mentioned, you use some sort of lotion.

Short personal story. I was bowling at a fairly high level for a period of time. All of a sudden, I could not get the ball to the target no matter what I tried. One day, while washing my hands, I noticed my wife had bought soap that contained some sort of lotion. My thought: "Naw, that can't be an issue". It turned out, it was. Changed soap, was back to bowling well again.

The point is, every little thing matters and everything changes. Our overall strength, quickness, stability, decision making process, and ability to get to the line.... all change.

Yes, sometimes it's a subtle change in our grip. Chances are, a few other things that might need to be addressed too.

If you're interested in posting a video, upload it to YouTube. It may seem like a daunting process at first, but you'll get it.
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Viper
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Posts: 355
Joined: March 14th, 2012, 3:36 am
THS Average: 199
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Positive Axis Point: 5 x 1/2 up
Speed: 15 at the foul line
Rev Rate: 315
Axis Tilt: 15
Axis Rotation: 45
Medium Oil Ball: 14 lbs. Hammer Raw Orange/Black Hybrid
Location: Short Pump, VA

Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

ITomahawk,

I should probably take a pic of my wrist with the device for you to see (you can sort of see it in the video). It's really one of those things people fighting carpel tunnel syndrome wear for support. It's not a "proper" bowling aid, but it does keep my wrist firm. And I've been wearing it now for more than a couple of years without issue. But I can go without it for a period of time to see what happens. Shoot, maybe my game will improve!

Funny you should mention YouTube. I just finished creating a channel and posting a 6-sec video of me going against the the 7-pin. Let me know what you think. I have other videos I can post if need be.

I did order a product off Amazon that is supposed to strengthen/harden the nails, which I start using on my fingers to start with and then thumb when the nail has grown out to normal. Hat tip to EricHartwell for that lead.

Appreciate the conversation!
Left-handed
PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
TomaHawk
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by TomaHawk »

A full shot video from the left side would be nice. Record at least 3-5 shots.

Note: EricHartwell really digs into a topic. Hopefully, his suggestion will ease your issue until a remedy is found.
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Viper
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Posts: 355
Joined: March 14th, 2012, 3:36 am
THS Average: 199
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Positive Axis Point: 5 x 1/2 up
Speed: 15 at the foul line
Rev Rate: 315
Axis Tilt: 15
Axis Rotation: 45
Medium Oil Ball: 14 lbs. Hammer Raw Orange/Black Hybrid
Location: Short Pump, VA

Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

Will do but it will take two weeks or so. I'm between leagues and using the time to give the hand a break and catch up on non-bowling stuff. I'll be back with the videos. Thanks!
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kajmk
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Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by kajmk »

I know you've consulted with a doctor.
The doctor probably told you that aging can lead to changes in our finger and toenails.
I remember my father having to deal with a thumbnail problem when he was in his early 70's, he was retired, not engaged in physical activities that could stress or injure his nails. He had long since stopped bowling.
Some of our most knowledgeable, experienced and helpful members are currently working with you to alleviate and hopefully solve your problem.

My wife does not bowl (a broken wrist and ankle put a stop to that.)
We are both in your age bracket.
She WAS having several problems with her nails.
A while ago, we both jumped on the supplement train.
One such bring Natures Bounty Biotin Gummies.
Of course, check with your medical professional.
Something like Natures Bounty Hair, skin, nails gummies, has Biotin, Vitamin A, Antioxidant Vitamins C & E, non GMO.

She no longer has nail problems. Could be coincidence could be other dietary factors
Realizing that there are many variables in this equation, I offer at the risk of redundancy
This bit of information
https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-life ... t-20044954


I've been out of bowling over 15 years, stopped following the tours, so my knowledge is dated, especially when it comes to equipment.

Good luck.
May all beings everywhere be happy and free,
and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life
contribute in some way to that happiness
and to that freedom for all.

John
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Viper
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Rev Rate: 315
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Axis Rotation: 45
Medium Oil Ball: 14 lbs. Hammer Raw Orange/Black Hybrid
Location: Short Pump, VA

Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

John, I appreciate the information. Aging has not been fun. Seems as soon as one thing is "fixed" another breaks. (smile) I am taking the Natures Bounty product in pill form, and have been for awhile now, ahead of this present problem with my thumb. Which is perplexing. I have added another, something one of the dermatologists suggested-- "HNS." That's not the exact name but if you searched on Amazon it will pop up. I believe it is helping, as I had my middle finger nail splitting along with the thumb but no longer. Once it healed it has stayed healthy. I'm also going to use something that EH mentioned, a component of a 'nail growth system' to make nails healthy. I just got it today via Amazon, "Duri Rejuvacote #1" The #1 version per a chat with a rep at the manufacturer's website. Once the acrylic nail grows out I'll start using it. Fingers crossed!

And, thanks for link! Helpful.

Viper/Joe
Left-handed
PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
User avatar
Viper
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Posts: 355
Joined: March 14th, 2012, 3:36 am
THS Average: 199
Sport Average: 172
Positive Axis Point: 5 x 1/2 up
Speed: 15 at the foul line
Rev Rate: 315
Axis Tilt: 15
Axis Rotation: 45
Medium Oil Ball: 14 lbs. Hammer Raw Orange/Black Hybrid
Location: Short Pump, VA

Re: Thumbnail splitting

Post by Viper »

Tomahawk, Here are three videos of full approach (or what I determined to be). If not usable let me know, advise, and I'll redo in the near future. Update on nail: The professionally applied acrylic nail continues to serve well. It will take probably to the end of the summer for it to grow out for me to see if nail is healthy and will remain so as I continue to bowl.



Left-handed
PAP 5 x 1/2 up
Tilt: 15*
Rot: 45*
Rev: 315
Speed: 15 at the camera
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