What Is 9 Pin No Tap In Bowling? How It Change The Game

Bowling is a worldwide played game with different variations and sets of rules. As bowling became popular in other parts of the world, it branched into different variations according to the regional taste. One of the exciting rules is 9 pin no tap; you may have heard it various times that made you question what is 9 pin no tap in bowling.

It is not a rule; it is a variation that changes the whole layout of bowling, making it more exciting and stress-free for the players. No one wants to be disappointed when one pin is left standing right. That’s where 9-pin no tap comes in to save you from that disappointment.

I will discuss 9 pins no Tap, its working, scoring, rules, and why it is so popular. 

What Does No Tap Mean in Bowling?


In 9 Pin no tap is the modified version of ten-pin bowling, a derivative of standard bowling played worldwide. In ten-pin bowling, a player is supposed to knock down all ten pins in one roll, so each game consists of 12 strikes and 300 scores. 

Only some players can knock down all ten pins all the time. So, no tap bowling allows players to enjoy the game with a forgiveness factor. The 9-pin no tap from the name shows that the players are good at striking down nine pins. 

Knocking down nine pins with one roll is a strike in this variation. The system will fall the tenth pin, and all ten pins will be arranged again for the next roll. However, the goal is the same; acquiring many strikes and spares, trying for the perfect score. 

How Does 9 Pin No Tap Work?

The scoring in 9-pin no tap is different, granting excitement and fairness in the game. If a player successfully knocks down 9 pins with the first roll, it will be counted as a strike, and the score will be ten. 

If the player fails to take down in the first roll and needs a spare to take down the remaining, the score will be nine for the frame. The game consists of ten frames, like cliché ten pin bowling. 

The player who gets a high score is the winner at the end. There are more exciting rules, like the rule of 31 in bowling, which makes it more interesting. 

9 Pin No Tap Rules

Like ten-pin traditional bowling, 9-pin no tap also abides by some rules you must know before playing the game. The table below is designed to give you a brief and holistic account of those rules that are easy to remember.

ScoringKnocking down 9 pins on the first roll counts as a strike.Knocking down all 10 pins on the first roll counts as a strike (optional rule). Getting a spare requires knocking down the remaining pin on the second roll.
Game LengthLike traditional bowling, a 9 Pin No Tap game consists of 10 frames.
Maximum ScoreThe maximum score for a 9 Pin No Tap game is 300, assuming all strikes (optional rule).
EquipmentRegular ten-pin bowling equipment includes a bowling ball and ten pins.
Foul RulesStandard foul rules apply (e.g., stepping over the offensive line). Fouls result in zero points for that roll.
TiesIn the case of a link, a roll-off can be used to determine the winner.
Optional Rule: 10-PinScoringSome establishments may allow players to score a strike if they knock down all 10 pins on the first roll.

Reasons Why it Is Famous

This game variation is popular in the bowling community for various reasons, and factors discussed further.

1. Beginner Friendly

One of the main reasons for its popularity is it is a beginner-friendly version. When you start to play bowling, your strikes could be better to take down all ten pins in one go. So,9 pin no tap allows you to get an edge on scores and improve your skills more.

2. Fun and Engaging

It is fun for regular and seasoned players because it adds spice to the game. Besides, you don’t have to put much effort and play equally well with experienced players. It is less stressful as it only demands perfection sometimes.

3. Competitive Edge

Although it has modified rules, the game still requires a sense of competition. The players still have to adjust their approach and know how to aim in bowling to get a strike properly.

Wrap Up

No, you know what is 9-pin no tap in bowling? It is a variation where you can get a striking score for knocking down nine pins in one roll. If you fail to do so and bring a spare, the score will be counted as 9, adding more with each frame. It is one of the best variations for beginner and seasoned players because of its engagement level. 

Name one rule you find more attractive in bowling, and share your opinions in the comment section.


In 9-pin no tap, hitting nine pins is the same as hitting ten pins in ten-pin bowling. If you knock down nine pins in the first roll of the frame, you will get a strike with ten total scores.

In 9 pin tap, the nine pins are arranged in a diamond pattern with the kingpin in the center position. The difference is that a player is not required to knock down all ten pins; nine will do the job.

It is another adaptive version of regular bowling, in which the player gets struck if he manages to take down eight pins on the first roll of the frame. 

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