Mushe or Chinese Fifteen-pin Bowling (China)

Mushe or Chinese Fifteen-pin Bowling (China)

Name of sport (game)

Mushe or Chinese Fifteen-pin Bowling

Name in native language

Mushe - 木射

Place of practice (continent, state, nation)



More than 2000 years, since Tang dynasty.


Mushe, a sport that became popular during the Tang dynasty, also called “Chinese Fifteen-pin Bowling”. The goal of the game is to knock down the pins positioned in the distance using a rolling wooden ball.
The rules and methods of the game are illustrated very carefully and skilfully on the painting “Fifteen-pin Bowling Picture” by Lu Bing created during the Tang dynasty.

picture of Lu Bing

• The game usually took place in a spacious room, with fifteen pins resembling bamboo shoots, arranged in parallel at the end of the room. The pins were painted red and black, while ten of them were inscribed with words, in red, representing positive values: Kindness, Justice, Politeness, Ration, Honesty, Gentleness, Goodness, Respect, Thrift and Modesty; while the remaining five pins were inscribed with words, in black, representing negative values: Haughtiness, Superciliousness, Sycophancy, Avarice and Abuse.
• The participants were to throw a wooden ball (usually from the distance of 6 to 10 metres) in the direction of the pins in order to knock them. Knocking the pins inscribed with red words resulted in scoring one point, while knocking the pins inscribed with black words resulted in losing one point.
• The game consists of three sets, giving the participants three chances (three balls) during each set.
• The participants can play the game in a one on one match formula or two on two match formula.
• The winner is decided upon getting the highest score. If there is a draw, an extra-time is added to the match. During the extra-time, the participants play set after set until one of them wins.
• The game is suitable for people of all ages.

Current status

unprofessional sport


The game has integrated China traditional ethics, which is the main feature of China traditional sports as well as the chief characteristic of the Fifteen-pin Bowling.


19 North Tianmu Rd,Tong Shan Ban Dao,
Anji,Zhejiang Province,China 313300
Contact Person:Zhu Qian (as a volunteer)
E-mail:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sources of information



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Fundacja IRSiE

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