Best Reactive Bowling Balls [2022 Reviewed]

Larry Schroeder
Written by
Last update:

Most of the time, bowlers have a hard time choosing the right bowling ball.

It’s not because of an inadequacy, or a lost trophy. A lot of bowlers who are classified as experts are having problems finding the perfect bowling ball for their situation. As a matter of fact, it’d be closer to the truth to say that a lot of bowlers simply do not understand how to actually choose between the myriad of options they are met with.

The first step you need to take before looking for a bowling ball is defining what kind of bowler you believe yourself to be. For most people, this is as simple as looking at your bowling scores from your last game and saying “I’m this kind of bowler.”

Unfortunately, there are so many factors at play in today’s game, and on so many different levels, that you might need to dig a little deeper and figure out if you’re the kind of bowler you think you’re.

Radical Katana Legend 14lbsBest OverallRadical Katana Legend 14lbs
Storm Hy Road Bowling BallBudget PickStorm Hy Road Bowling Ball
Storm Code x Bowling BallUpgrade PickStorm Code x Bowling Ball

1. Radical Katana Legend 14lbs

Our rating: 9 / 10

Radical Katana Legend 14lbs

Check Price on Amazon


  • High-quality ball construction
  • Deep grooves to enhance ball motion
  • Higher weight to give it more momentum
  • Symmetrical ball core
  • Composite coverstock
  • Thicker coverstock at the finger holes


  • Can be too heavy for beginners
  • Inconsistent performance because of its weight

The Radical Katana Legend is the strongest, heaviest weight bowling ball in the Katana family. It’s made in the USA and made from high-quality materials; this bowling ball is the top of the line. Like other balls in the Radical series, this one also has a strong hook potential when used with an aggressive slide. It also has less tendency to over skid.

The Katana Legend has the highest strength, the heaviest weight, and more surface area than other balls in the Radical line, and it’s specifically designed for sports venues with heavier conditions.

The ball has a high-performance core that is stronger than previous Katana cores. It weighs 14 pounds, which is heavier than other 14-pound balls. For the extra weight, the Katana Legend has more of a potential for hooking on the back end.

2. Storm Hy Road Bowling Ball

Our rating: 8 / 10

Storm Hy Road Bowling Ball

Check Price on Amazon


  • Aggressive/reactive coverstock
  • Solid backend reaction
  • Throws great on medium oil conditions
  • Very durable
  • Ideal for power players
  • Great price compared to competitors


  • High initial hook
  • Too much hook for beginners

The Storm Hy Road is a great medium-difficulty ball for bowlers who like their hooks. It’s a solid buy for most bowlers looking for a cheap yet durable option that’s made of solid components. It’s got a higher than average durability, which is why we put it on our list of top picks for reactive recreational balls.

The Hy Road actually feels like a dual-reactive ball to throw. It has a stronger reaction off of the initial strike, then a smooth transition to a strong backend motion. It gives bowlers a lot more control than reactive balls in the past have.

This ball really shines on medium-condition oil patterns, but it can also take on a little bit drier oil. It’s not one of those balls you’re going to want to use on a drier oil pattern like a house pattern.

3. Roto Grip No Rules Bowling Ball

Our rating: 8 / 10

Roto Grip No Rules Bowling Ball

Check Price on Amazon


  • Best for hookers.
  • Very different but good feel on the lanes.
  • Unique Ball Motion Make it fun to throw.
  • You can play around with this ball and make it a hook ball, back-end ball, or whatever ball you want.
  • Its Low price make it great for practice or just to have some fun.
  • The ball are very durable and can be drilled as a normal ball.
  • Great for beginners and advance bowlers.


  • The ball are very grippy so be carefull with the back end.
  • Some bowlers don’t like the ball or find it difficult to control on the back end
  • If you’re buying this ball to play tournaments you need to know how to play with a very high hook ball.

Roto Grip, 25 years in business, has some very good quality bowling balls. The Roto grip No Rules ball, although it’s a reactive resin coverstock, it’s not very reactive when compared to other reactive balls. This ball has everything that you would want from a inexpensive ball, including a great motion on the back end.

This ball works great for people that are not ready to play a serious hook. The front part is not so aggressive but the back end is.

4. Storm Code x Bowling Ball

Our rating: 7 / 10

Storm Code x Bowling Ball

Check Price on Amazon


  • Good for beginners
  • Perfect weight for beginners
  • Very reactive
  • Sends the ball flying off the pins

The Storm Code x bowling ball is a great entry-level ball for those interested in learning the basic techniques for bowling. This ball is great for all skill levels as it’s not too expensive but it’s extremely reactive and can be used to send the ball flying off of the pins.

This ball should be used in an alley that has medium to heavy oil. The ball is available in 4 colors – Black/Blue/Purple or Red/Green/Orange.

Top post-sales service is also given by Storm Bowling as they’ve made available a free replacement if the ball does not meet your expectations.

5. DV8 Pitbull Bowling Ball

Our rating: 7 / 10

DV8 Pitbull Bowling Ball

Check Price on Amazon


  • DV8’s classic Pitbull design
  • Demo ball available
  • Very responsive
  • Telluride core
  • Reactive coverstock


  • Hooks too much on slower surfaces
  • Not really great for beginners

The DV8 Pitbull is a polished reactive bowling ball. It comes factory-assembled with the Prima coverstock, and it has an RG of 2.50 and a differential of 0.058. It has a symmetrical drilling with a widest point of 7.75 inches.

The polished Pitbull has a very short track layout with a length of 35.75 inches and a 3.25 circumference. It comes in 12 to 16 lbs. The Pitbull covers a medium area on the lane with a high volume of oil.

The all-new DV8 Pitbull bowling ball has become an instant classic for several reasons. It is dynamic and exciting. It strikes like a dream. It is easy to use. It can be controlled and manipulated, so it can be adjusted to the bowler’s style. It is designed for all styles of bowling. It is a perfect game ball, an incredible spare ball, and an excellent reaction ball. It is the first ball in the DV8 line featuring the Telluride core.

6. Motiv Trident Abyss Bowling Ball Gray

Our rating: 7 / 10

Motiv Trident Abyss Bowling Ball Gray

Check Price on Amazon


  • Detailed Graphics
  • Smooth and Advanced Ways to Maximize Performance
  • Good value
  • Better than Most


  • A Minor Nuisance To Apply The Factory Finish
  • Not suitable for beginners

The Motiv Trident Abyss bowling ball is a unique piece of equipment for any type of bowler as it comes equipped with several high technologies to give you an advanced bowling experience.

The ball is made with a Dynamic R2S Pearl Reactive coverstock that comes with its Fast Finish Polish technique and Diamond Mele coverstocks that are designed to maximize positive reaction once the ball hits the lane.

Let’s take a look at the ball’s details. We can see that it comes with a colorway that is glossy and offers an advanced feel that will take your game to the next level.

7. Brunswick Vintage Vapor Zone Bowling Ball Purple/Blue Pearl

Our rating: 5 / 10

Brunswick Vintage Vapor Zone Bowling Ball Purple/Blue Pearl

Check Price on Amazon


  • Awesome 3D graphics
  • Great for bowlers of all skill levels
  • Strong feel to the ball
  • Good value for the money

Taking into account several factors like price, durability, gameplay, and after-sales service, our top pick for reactive bowling ball is the Brunswick Vintage Vapor Zone Bowling Ball.

This product has a 3D graphic design and comes in three color variations – purple and blue pearl, black pearl, and blue and green pearl. It also has an impressive weight of 15 ounces and a 2.50-inch diameter. This bowling ball has a vibrant, shiny finish which gives it the look and feel of a much more expensive bowling ball.

Whether you are an experienced bowler or just learning the ropes, this bowling ball is sure to set the pins up for you every time. It has a soft ball reaction and can be used in any lane condition, making it very versatile.

8. Hammer Gauntlet Bowling Ball

Our rating: 5 / 10

Hammer Gauntlet Bowling Ball

Check Price on Amazon


  • Strong
  • Fast Shipping
  • Fairly cheap compared to other reactive bowling balls

If you are a more experienced bowler and are looking for a ball that reacts strongly to skid and hook, then the Gauntlet is a good choice. The soft core and outer rubber reaction allow you to slide the ball and hook it with some force out of the corner of the lane.

Reviews state that although the Gauntlet reacts well it does not react as strongly as other reactive bowling balls. Also, it is occasionally noted as having a small pin hole which would indicate a softer core.

Reviews also state that the Gauntlet has limited pin carry outside of the third arrow yet still opens up on the back end. It also does not carry quite as much spare as a stronger ball might. There is a small amount of skid in the midlane, but the stronger reactions on the backend tend to balance that out.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best reactive bowling ball?

You can’t use a conventional ball with reactive bowling because the extra hook will cause the ball to ball to travel far outside the lane. Reactive balls are meant for straight lanes and are available in different forms:

Neo – A single-piece ball that is very popular with beginners and pro bowlers alike. They’re designed so the ball will travel straight on medium-length to longer-length lanes.

Spot – A two-piece ball that provides more hook at the beginning of its roll so it travels out quickly, but hooks hard enough to still maintain a lot of control. They’re mostly used on long-distance lanes.

Hybrid – A two-piece ball that combines the best of both worlds. These balls come with a small, lightweight core despite powerful core material and this makes them perfect for medium-length lanes.

How long does a reactive bowling ball last?

The best way to extend the life of your reactive bowling ball is to avoid dropping it. For this reason, you might choose a brighter color so you can quickly find it after you toss it. You might also want to avoid sliding an aluminum ball against a painted lane because it chips off the paint.

What is the strongest bowling ball on the market?

The strongest bowling ball on the market is the Roto Grip Halo Pearl. You can also check out our top bowling ball guide for more information.

It features a new reactive coverstock technology, which is an upgraded version of the popular Roto Grip Revolution Coverstock. Reactive coverstocks have special crystalline structures that create vastly improved surface energies and smoother lane movements. These balls tend to shape very easily and easily pick up more revolutions than traditional balls.

What balls do professional bowlers use?

First of all, when you first start out at the bowling alley, just grab whatever is available. You probably won’t be able to tell the difference between bowling balls from different manufacturers, and you certainly won’t be able to tell the difference between professionals. Once you’ve decided you want to get serious about bowling, buy a Brunswick Rhino, which is an excellent intermediate frame. Once you become a more experienced bowler, you may want to invest in a professional ball. These include the Gold Tip, the Columbia 300, and the Storm.


From what we could determine, our top pick for the best reactive bowling ball for beginners is the Hammer F15.

This bowling ball is a great choice for beginners. You can throw it straight and hook it into the pocket for strikes. Due to its strong hook reaction, the F15 is not ideal for experienced bowlers.

Our Recommendation

Radical Katana Legend 14lbsBest OverallRadical Katana Legend 14lbs
Storm Hy Road Bowling BallBudget PickStorm Hy Road Bowling Ball
Storm Code x Bowling BallUpgrade PickStorm Code x Bowling Ball