The Aiming By Halves FAQ
[I'm updating this FAQ as I hear good new questions. Keep 'em coming!]
Q: Isn’t this already a common way to aim – adjusting a little this way or that until it “feels” right?
A: Yes. Aiming By Halves
just organizes the technique so it’s systematic, quicker and easier to learn and do - and harder to forget.
Q: I need an aiming system because I don’t have confidence in my “estimating” ability. How does Aiming By Halves help me with that?
A: Deciding whether
a shot is thicker or thinner (than the current aim) is much easier than estimating how much
thicker or thinner it should be. Aiming By Halves takes over the job of determining how much adjustment is needed
and only requires the shooter to decide whether
the aim should be thicker or thinner.
Also, by organizing and making the estimating task more visible/clear rather than denying the need for it, Aiming By Halves
builds the shooter’s confidence in his estimating ability.
Q: Isn’t “estimating” just another word for “feel”?
A: Yes, and vice verse. “Feel” can be learned – Aiming By Halves
helps with that.
Q: Why is it OK to shoot if I can’t decide whether the shot is thicker or thinner than the current aim?
A: Because (1) the current aim might be just right – stranger things have happened
, and (2) if you miss you’ll know more about that shot the next time – a big part of what Aiming By Halves
does is systematically train your ability to make these estimations.
Q: Does Aiming By Halves work the same way for shots thinner than half ball as for shots thicker than half ball? How is the half of the Aim Range that's off the edge of the OB (in empty space) used?
A: See my post about aiming shots thinner than half ball. Basically, the technique is the same (uses points on the OB, not in space beside it) but uses the CB's edge
rather than its center to aim at the center of the Aim Range.
Q: Does Aiming By Halves include compensation for the effects of CB spin?
A: No. Aiming By Halves
assumes you'll be hitting centerball on the CB. Add aim adjustments needed for CB spin after finding the centerball aim using Aiming By Halves
Q: Is Aiming By Halves for everybody?
A: Probably not. Some players seem to need to believe that estimation (“feel”) isn’t required to aim pool shots - Aiming By Halves
is very open and direct about the need for estimation, so it may not be right for them. However, it’s possible that Aiming By Halves
could “cure” the “need to believe” for some.
Also, some players can visualize the OB contact point more easily than others. Fractional techniques such as Aiming By Halves
may not be as helpful to them (although it might be a good "crosscheck" technique for anybody).
Q: Is Aiming By Halves just for beginners?
A: Aiming systems usually become less conscious as the player gets better at using them, but if they're based on sound principles they may remain valuable in practice or as aiming "crosschecks" or "refreshers". Aiming By Halves
is an "open source" system whose principles can be easily seen and evaluated by anybody, so it may have lasting value to its users even after they've "internalized" its steps - I hope so.
Q: How Accurate is Aiming By Halves?
A: No system does all the aiming for you, but fractional systems get you closer so you can more easily complete the job. Here's how close Aiming By Halves
To narrow the Aim Range enough to make a majority of shots within 30 inches of the pocket by simply aiming at the center of the Aim Range (without any further adjustment) takes three "halving" steps - thicker or thinner than half ball plus two more. One more "halving" step is enough to make all shots within 30 inches and a majority of shots within 60 inches.
Q: But a majority of shots isn't enough. How are the rest made?
A: By making one more thicker/thinner judgment like the judgment that allowed you to "feel" whether the shot was thicker or thinner than half ball, 1/4 ball, etc. It isn't necessary to "halve" the Aim Range again at this level, just adjust as much as you "feel" is necessary.
Q: Is Aiming By Halves a proprietary system (owned by somebody)?
A: No. It’s not even a particularly new idea. Giving it a name and specific steps (making it a “system”) just makes it easier to understand and remember. But I'm willing to consider getting paid for it.
Q: Won't this turn into just another "aiming wars" thread?
A: I hope not, but just in case I'm already considering names for the "teams" (to get the jump on Joey). I think the "Halves" and the "Halve Nots" might be nice. Maybe some nice jersies too...
pj <- and cute cheerleaders