Man cave ideas, Bowling alley

How Much Space is Needed For a Home Bowling Alley

If you love bowling, you might be thinking of adding a bowling alley into your home to enjoy alone or with family and friends. A bowling alley can be a great place to blow off some steam after work as well as being an incredible talking point for entertaining guests, not to mention being able to get in some practice if you’re a serious bowler that likes to compete.

However, installing a home bowling alley isn’t the same as installing a new light fixture. You need to take into consideration many factors such as soundproofing the room and the amount of space you’ll need to install a home bowling alley in your home. Today, we’re going to look into how much space you’ll need for a home bowling alley and which type of bowling alley would be best for the space you have available at home.

Regulation bowling alley or mini bowling system?

First, let’s look at the specifics when it comes to sizing up the space in your home for a bowling alley. A regulation bowling alley can typically be between 60 and 100 foot, sometimes not even including the amount of approach room you need to bowl. If you have that kind of space, a regulation bowling alley is great for getting that authentic feel of being at an actual bowling alley.

However, a mini bowling system can be as compact as 27 feet depending on which system you decide to go for. This will give you ample space to bowl while still giving that authentic feeling of bowling in a bowling alley – but in the comfort of your own home. So, if you don’t have enough space for a regulation bowling alley, a mini bowling system is the perfect choice for your home.

Let’s look at regulation lanes and mini bowling systems in more detail so you can make an informed choice about the right sized home bowling alley for your home.

Regulation bowling alley


Depending on how many lanes you’d like to build in your home, you will need about 1,000 to 1200 square foot per lane to have enough space for everything that’s needed. As briefly mentioned above, the space should be about 100 feet long for a regulation size bowling alley. The bowling equipment itself needs 87 feet, which includes the approach (16 feet), the lane and pinsetter machine (67.5 feet), and a service aisle behind the pinsetter (minimum 3.5 feet). Add a seating area (roughly 13 feet) and you’ve got yourself a 100-foot space.

You also need to take into consideration how much width you’d need in your bowling alley room. Some people choose to use the entire width of the room for their bowling alley, but this isn’t recommended because it often makes the room feel like a tunnel and users may scrape their hands on the walls when bowling. It’s recommended to have around 14 feet in width per lane – around 8 feet for the lane itself and 3 feet on either side, which also allows space for the service aisle too.

Ceiling height is another measurement to take into consideration. At an absolute minimum you’ll need an 8-foot ceiling. Not only because lanes are very long and could draw the room in, but players can become enthusiastic and throw the ball a little higher than anticipated and therefore damage your ceiling or the bowling equipment you’ve had installed. It’s recommended with regulation bowling alley lanes that you should have a ceiling height of around 10 or 11 feet. Higher ceilings also allow technicians to service or repair your bowling equipment.

Mini bowling system


Mini bowling systems are perfect for homes with not as much space but without losing out on any of the fun bowling can bring to groups of friends and family. The great part about mini bowling systems is that they require very minimal space and very little maintenance, which means you can enjoy playing bowling either alone or with your loved ones. Our mini bowling systems can be installed pretty much anywhere, and as mentioned above, can be as small as around 27 feet. There are larger systems available as well as the ability to choose how many lanes you’d prefer to have in your home. Our Rollerball mini, for example, is around 33 feet in length (with around 3 feet behind the pinsetter, making that a total of 36 feet) and just under 7 feet wide for two lanes of enjoyment.

Because our mini bowling systems are designed as a unit and the lanes are contained, you can enjoy a quick and simple bowling alley without missing out on anything you’d get from a regulation bowling alley. Younger bowlers can also avoid disappointment thanks to the automatic bumpers that appear with the simple push of a button.

You may still want to take ceiling height into consideration to avoid any damage to your ceilings and to avoid the room looking small once the mini bowling system is in place. We recommend having 12-foot ceilings to comfortably fit the bowling systems in place without the worry of damaging your ceiling or any of the equipment.

Our mini bowling systems also come fitted with everything you’ll need for an immersive bowling experience such as 43” monitors, scoring setters, graphics above the pins (your choice) and designs that are fun for any aged bowler.

Single lane or multi lane?

With our mini bowling systems you can choose from single or multi lane systems to your choice. Because the systems are so compact, even smaller spaces may be able to host a two-lane mini bowling system. You can check our brochure for sizing here. They are perfect for birthday parties, corporate functions and simply enjoying the game with your friends and family – of all ages!

With this information, we hope you can make an informed decision about how much space you’ll need for a home bowling alley and more importantly, what kind of home bowling alley will suit your needs and your home.

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