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View Full Version : aiming by feel and contact point aiming


irock
03-10-2010, 12:50 PM
Long ago, I use to be an instinct shooter or as most people say, I shot by feel. I would determine what english I wanted to use, and how hard I wanted to shoot, then fall into the shot and pulled the trigger, and for the most part was usually quite successful. The only problem I would run into, was, sometimes in pressure situations, I would bare down and that would throw everything out of whack for me. Now I do both, I go by feel and fall into my shot and fine tune by aiming, and fire. Shooting by feel worked great by itself when I was in stroke, but for me every once in a while when the balls got bigger and the pockets got smaller, I would have a problem. Has anyone else altered their technique over the years?

dr_dave
03-10-2010, 01:32 PM
Long ago, I use to be an instinct shooter or as most people say, I shot by feel. I would determine what english I wanted to use, and how hard I wanted to shoot, then fall into the shot and pulled the trigger, and for the most part was usually quite successful. The only problem I would run into, was, sometimes in pressure situations, I would bare down and that would throw everything out of whack for me. Now I do both, I go by feel and fall into my shot and fine tune by aiming, and fire. Shooting by feel worked great by itself when I was in stroke, but for me every once in a while when the balls got bigger and the pockets got smaller, I would have a problem. Has anyone else altered their technique over the years?I've improved my understanding of squirt, swerve, and throw a lot over the years. This has helped me have better "feel" when making aiming corrections for these things when English is required. FYI, I have a good summary of all of the effects here:

http://billiards.colostate.edu/threads/aiming.html#English_effects

Regards,
Dave

CreeDo
03-10-2010, 03:46 PM
hard to get what you mean here. What's the difference between falling into your shot, instinct, feel, bearing down, and aiming?

What I mean is, they're all kinda tied together. I aim when I'm bearing down. I use instinct when I aim. Feel could be called a form of aiming. They're all kinda interchangeable. I don't know how to shoot a ball without aiming. I can rush it or spin it in I guess, that feels less like aiming than my usual routine.

If I'm reading you right, you used to just not consciously aim at all, and when you really needed to make it, you'd 100% consciously aim. Now you get the best results with a mix?

I think I get my best results when I am as careful and methodical as possible. Then my leaves get really tight and aiming just doesn't matter as much anymore... all the shots are easy and I don't need to force the cue ball to get position. On shots that really need to be cinched I slow down and aim carefully. No instinct here. I don't even know someone shoots by 'instinct'. I'm pretty sure most of the players I know start at a point that looks right, analyze it, and then tweak to the left or right until it looks perfect. The only thing that varies is how much time they spend on this process.

center pocket
03-10-2010, 03:59 PM
hard to get what you mean here. What's the difference between falling into your shot, instinct, feel, bearing down, and aiming?

What I mean is, they're all kinda tied together. I aim when I'm bearing down. I use instinct when I aim. Feel could be called a form of aiming. They're all kinda interchangeable. I don't know how to shoot a ball without aiming. I can rush it or spin it in I guess, that feels less like aiming than my usual routine.

If I'm reading you right, you used to just not consciously aim at all, and when you really needed to make it, you'd 100% consciously aim. Now you get the best results with a mix?

I think I get my best results when I am as careful and methodical as possible. Then my leaves get really tight and aiming just doesn't matter as much anymore... all the shots are easy and I don't need to force the cue ball to get position. On shots that really need to be cinched I slow down and aim carefully. No instinct here. I don't even know someone shoots by 'instinct'. I'm pretty sure most of the players I know start at a point that looks right, analyze it, and then tweak to the left or right until it looks perfect. The only thing that varies is how much time they spend on this process.

Hey OP, if what creedo mentioned is what you are going through then there is a simple fix. You have to become aware and learn your personal eye pattern when aiming. This along with aligninig your body with the shot are the two most important factors in aiming. If you learn how you aim when you are aiming naturally, you can do what you have learned (what you normally do) when you need to focus 100%. I know that sounds confusing. Basically now that you know your own process of aiming, you can consciously aim and make shots instead of only doing it unconsciously. Learning what your process is for eye movement and body alignment is only as important as making sure you do it consistently and every time. This builds confidence in your newly discovered processes and familiarity which will help you when its crunch time and you need consciously execute.

I hope this confusing explanation helps.

DogsPlayingPool
03-10-2010, 04:07 PM
I used to aim by feel but now I aim all my shots using the Double McTwist 1260 method. I'll be in your area soon and am available for private or group lessons.

Seriously, I find that when I'm not playing well it usually comes down to not focusing enough on the contact point. I suppose what I mean is that my focus tends to get a little fuzzy, as though I will look at the object ball as a whole rather than pinpointing and zeroing in on the contact spot.

Once I get my focus back the balls seem to find gravity more frequently.

irock
03-11-2010, 05:24 PM
I think that all of you are accurately describing what I meant. At one time when I got down in my stance, rarely did I have to tweak anything. But now, although I think I am a better all around player, when I get down on a ball, sometimes I make adjustments. Sometimes I get up and start over if it doesn't look right, but ever once in a while I pull the trigger even though inside I know I shouldn't. I bet that there is not one person on this board that has not had that tiny voice inside their head say stop, stop, but you shoot anyway. (lol)

DogsPlayingPool
03-11-2010, 05:35 PM
I think that all of you are accurately describing what I meant. At one time when I got down in my stance, rarely did I have to tweak anything. But now, although I think I am a better all around player, when I get down on a ball, sometimes I make adjustments. Sometimes I get up and start over if it doesn't look right, but ever once in a while I pull the trigger even though inside I know I shouldn't. I bet that there is not one person on this board that has not had that tiny voice inside their head say stop, stop, but you shoot anyway. (lol)

I feel ya' bro, true dat. I guess I get lazy and figure since I'm aware I'm aiming wrong I'll just correct for it on the actual stroke. And for some reason, this always seems to happen when I'm aiming too full. I rarely overcut a ball I know I'm not aiming at properly. Almost always I know I'm aiming too full but pull the trigger anyway.

RoryHunt
03-11-2010, 06:09 PM
I was searching for a magical aiming system for almost a year. I used almost every one of them to varying degrees of success. Finally I stopped using any of them. I walk over and draw a straight line from object ball center to target pocket focusing on the exact point on the object ball. Then I walk over to my cue ball, with my eyes still focused on the object ball. As soon as I see the angle, I stop. Line up and shoot.

I know my brain is making a calculation to adjust for the "contact point aiming" but I don't do it on purpose. It is done by my peripheral vision, even. It is weird and works for me. all I know, is that I am making a lot more balls now, and it is all a "feel" aiming system. On long, thin shots, I usually revert to the fractional system if I can't see/feel my angle perfectly.