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Structure of the Game in Wales
In Wales we have 6 National Governing Bodies (NGB’s) that cover all variations of the game.
The NGB’s are responsible for governing their specific area of the game and for providing help and guidance on finding a club that suits your requirements, as well as information on coaching, volunteering and competitions.
We have prepared the following guide on the 6 NGB’s so that you can find the information needed to suit your requirements.
Below you can find information and contact details for all bowls National Governing Bodies in Wales.
The Outdoor Game
In Wales there are 2 styles of outdoor bowls, these being Lawn Bowls and Crown Green Bowls (see Bowls Explained).
However, there are 3 bodies that govern the outdoor game, these being the Welsh Bowls Association (WBA) and Welsh Women’s Bowls Association (WWBA) for Lawn Bowls, and the Welsh Crown Green Bowls Association (WCGBA).
All the NGB’s welcome enquiries from both new, current and returning players. More information here.
Welsh Bowling Association (WBA)
The men’s outdoor game, traditionally known as lawn bowls, is governed by the Welsh Bowling Association. The WBA has 10 affiliated counties and over 250 affiliated clubs across Wales, which welcome those who are both new to the game or experienced players looking to bowl either socially or competitively.
To get in touch with the WBA and find out more about the men’s outdoor game in Wales simply visit
Welsh Women’s Bowling Association (WWBA)
Like it’s male counterpart, the WWBA governs the women’s outdoor game of lawn bowls across Wales. Since its inception in 1932 the association has grown and now boasts 8 county associations and over 150 affiliated clubs.
The WWBA welcome enquiries from individuals who are interested in finding out more about the women’s outdoor game in Wales, to find out more visit
Welsh Crown Green Bowling Association (WCGBA)
The WCGBA is the national governing body for crown green bowling in Wales.
The WCGBA organise competitions, including the Welsh Club Championship, and manage this area of the game's national side.
Having been in place for nearly a century, the organisation boasts well over 100 clubs in Wales which welcome enquiries from new and current members. To find out more about Crown Green Bowls please click www.wcgba.com.
Visually Impaired Bowls (WAVIB)
Bowls is a sport for all, and the Welsh VI Bowls demonstrate this on a regular basis.
The sport has been cleverly adapted so that VI players are able to enjoy both social and competitive bowls at all levels of the game.
The simple adaptations enable the VI athletes to compete in all general bowls competitions across Wales, as well as in Championships against individuals with similar impairments.
At the highest-level VI bowlers can compete at the Commonwealth Games. 2018 saw Julie Thomas and Gilbert Miles achieve the B2/B3 Mixed Pairs bronze medal in a match that saw them steal the hearts of the Nation.
If you would like to play, and need some advice please visit the Welsh VI Bowls website, by following the link, and you will be provided with all the information you will need to start.
How is VI Bowls played?
The rules for VI bowling are the same as Lawn Bowls. However, in VI Bowls the player is assisted by a director.
The link between these two roles is so important; they play as a team with the director on the green providing support, information and advice to the athlete throughout the match.
A clock system is used to help the player achieve a mental picture of play. This, along with a fine white centre string which runs under the mat and fixed at both ends of the rink, helps the bowler judge the angle for the amount of green required.
To find out more about VI Bowls please click Welsh Visually Impaired Bowls.
The Indoor Game
As with its outdoor relation, there are 2 styles of bowls played indoors across Wales, these being indoor bowls and Short Mat Bowls (see Bowls Explained).
Again, like the outdoor game, there are 3 bodies that govern the game, these being the Welsh Indoor Bowls Association (WIBA) and Welsh Ladies Indoor Bowls Association (WLIBA) for indoor bowls, and the Welsh Short Mat Bowls Association (WSMBA).
All the NGB’s welcome enquiries from both new, current and returning players.
Welsh Indoor Bowls Association (WIBA)
The WIBA is the National Governing Body for the sport of men’s indoor bowls in Wales. Founded in 1934, all 25-member stadiums share the ambition, to promote the sport of bowls to all without exception.
The WIBA member stadiums are friendly, helpful and fully accessible and actively encourage new members.
The WIBA cater for bowlers, who just want to enjoy the community facilities available and the more competitive bowlers who are encouraged to participate in the club and national leagues and national championships.
Details can be found at www.welshindoorbowls.com.
Welsh Ladies Indoor Bowls Association (WLIBA)
As with the male indoor game, the WLIBA is responsible for the governance of the Ladies Indoor Game across Wales.
The WLIBA have 21-member clubs throughout Wales who welcome those keen to discover more about the indoor game both in a social and competitive capacity.
To obtain more information about the Ladies indoor game and to find your nearest club, please visit www.wliba.com.
Welsh Short Mat Bowls Association
The Welsh Short Mat Bowls Association was formed in 1987 to introduce and develop the game throughout Wales.
WSMBA promote and encourage the game of Short Mat Bowls in Wales, provide coaching and additional assistance to both new and existing clubs and players, they also provide news of county, national and international competitions.
The WSMBA has over 150 affiliated clubs throughout Wales, and venues vary depending on where the space is available to play. You can find out more about short mat bowls in Wales by visiting www.wsmba.org.
Club Solutions has been developed by Sport Wales to provide help for sports clubs and volunteers in Wales by providing a wealth of information, guidance and advice. So, if you have questions about anything to do with your club, or simply need a bit of help with a query, Club solutions is your one stop shop for guidance. More information is available on the Club Solutions website.
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