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View Full Version : Why Do Snooker Players Bend Their Elbow?


Pidge
11-08-2015, 08:51 AM
Its something not many do instinctively... The natural way for many is to lock their bridge elbow. So why do they go against what comes naturally?

Well, here is my take on what benefits a slight kink in the elbow has. Firstly, it allows you to comfortably transfer more weight forward in your stance without putting too much pressure onto the shoulder and hand. Getting the elbow on the table feels weird at first because it forces you to lean slightly forward into the shot. For me it feels a lot more stable with the extra body part touching the table. So stability is another reason.

The way snooker players align the hips and shoulders to the shot plays a part. The hips and shoulders tend to be a lot squarer to the shot which with a straight arm means they would have to twist and bend the torso slightly more... Which becomes very very uncomfortable after a full day of practice. So a slight bend of the elbow can bring the bridge hand onto the line of aim without the shoulder of the bridge arm being anywhere close to the line of aim... So less twisting and bending.

The biggest pro for me is it adds extra inches to my follow through. With a locked elbow I follow through 6-7 inches. With my elbow on the table and a bend in it my follow through is 10 inches. What this means is I get through the ball a lot better. I can draw the ball much further, hit the ball harder all with the same bridge distance. I like to pull the cue back all the way to my bridge which means a pull back of around 13-14 inches, even on the slow shots. With a locked elbow in these shots I tend to jab because my follow through is limited or I try and force more follow through and drop my elbow at the wrong time or too much.

Now, the traditional pool stance does not gain anything from a bent elbow.. A locked elbow is far more beneficial to a side on higher stance. But, I've read a lot of posters on here are taking up snooker fundamentals but may be used to playing with a locked elbow... Give this a try and see how cleaner you get through the ball.

randyg
11-08-2015, 09:01 AM
Maybe a "locked elbow" creates stress.

randyg

Pidge
11-08-2015, 09:12 AM
Maybe. I just feel all hunched up with a locked elbow. It also puts a lot of strain on the elbow joint.

Zphix
11-08-2015, 09:16 AM
Pidge,

When I was having problems with a perfectly straight stroke, I was messing around with my body mechanics (literal body mechanics by the way) to see how different bends influence the rest of my body for shooting and I stumbled on this but eventually got rid of it.

What bending my elbow did for me is it forced me to turn my chest inward and get it out of the way of my stroke, it also pulled my grip-hand shoulder behind my head farther to keep everything on the shot line.

However, I found it hard to concentrate on the shot because so much unnatural stimuli was in my view when down on the shot.

It has it's benefits and I think it's a relatively short way to learn to get them. But I had a few drawbacks and had to re-think my approach as well and that lead me to stop bending my elbow as much as possible.

Ralph Kramden
11-08-2015, 09:24 AM
Maybe a "locked elbow" creates stress.

randyg

randyg..
I think you're correct saying a locked elbow creates stress. A bent elbow
is more comfortable. The longer you play, less stress means less fatigue.

.

Straightpool_99
11-08-2015, 09:41 AM
As someone who plays a lot of snooker (at least until recently) I have always been puzzled by the emphasis placed on the bent elbow. I was taught this, and have been playing with it for many years, but about 2-3 months before my forced hiatus from all things billiards due to a medical issue, I started using a straight arm, partly because of playing some 3 cushion, in which the stance is different. The medical issue affected my cueing arm and shoulder, and was unrelated to the change, btw.

I loved the stability offered by the straight arm. So I started using it in pool and snooker too. Same findings. It makes it so much easier to keep still, and I can't really find any drawbacks to it. I still get through the ball equally well, I don't feel a great deal of stress although if I was playing for 20 hours at a time, maybe I would feel it more.

Extending the limbs fully IS somewhat unnatural, but what is natural is not always what works best. So long as you don't experience any pain or discomfort (in which case I would revert to the bent elbow) I don't see the harm. If it feels uncomfortable and wrong to you, then ok, it's not for you. But the part about "getting through the ball" is just silly. The long follow through is just taught to ensure that you hit the ball with a well timed stroke, and that you don't stop or jerk the cue. In fact after the hit, it pretty much does not matter what you do with the cue AS LONG AS YOU DON'T TRY TO STOP IT'S MOVEMENT OR DO ANYTHING THAT MIGHT AFFECT THE CUEING "PRE-STRIKE", LIKE TENSING MUSCLES IN ANTICIPATION OF THE STOPPING MOTION. You can accellerate equally welll and smoothly with a somewhat shorter follow through caused by straightening the arm. I dare anyone to prove otherwise.

Pidge
11-08-2015, 09:43 AM
Pidge,

When I was having problems with a perfectly straight stroke, I was messing around with my body mechanics (literal body mechanics by the way) to see how different bends influence the rest of my body for shooting and I stumbled on this but eventually got rid of it.

What bending my elbow did for me is it forced me to turn my chest inward and get it out of the way of my stroke, it also pulled my grip-hand shoulder behind my head farther to keep everything on the shot line.

However, I found it hard to concentrate on the shot because so much unnatural stimuli was in my view when down on the shot.

It has it's benefits and I think it's a relatively short way to learn to get them. But I had a few drawbacks and had to re-think my approach as well and that lead me to stop bending my elbow as much as possible.
You touch upon another great benefit... Alignment. It helps get everything (of improtance) onto the line of aim.

Its a shame you didn't stick at it if it was getting everything aligned. I remember trying the square stance with the feet 90 degrees to the shot line and I went home with sore hamstrings pain in my lower back muscles all because its not a natural way to stand. But I stuck at it and it helped my alignment hugely and my game went up. Comfort is important but alignment is the most important part of any cue sport.

Pidge
11-08-2015, 09:49 AM
As someone who plays a lot of snooker (at least until recently) I have always been puzzled by the emphasis placed on the bent elbow. I was taught this, and have been playing with it for many years, but about 2-3 months before my forced hiatus from all things billiards due to a medical issue, I started using a straight arm, partly because of playing some 3 cushion, in which the stance is different. The medical issue affected my cueing arm and shoulder, and was unrelated to the change, btw.

I loved the stability offered by the straight arm. So I started using it in pool and snooker too. Same findings. It makes it so much easier to keep still, and I can't really find any drawbacks to it. I still get through the ball equally well, I don't feel a great deal of stress although if I was playing for 20 hours at a time, maybe I would feel it more.

Extending the limbs fully IS somewhat unnatural, but what is natural is not always what works best. So long as you don't experience any pain or discomfort (in which case I would revert to the bent elbow) I don't see the harm. If it feels uncomfortable and wrong to you, then ok, it's not for you. But the part about "getting through the ball" is just silly. The long follow through is just taught to ensure that you hit the ball with a well timed stroke, and that you don't stop or jerk the cue. In fact after the hit, it pretty much does not matter what you do with the cue AS LONG AS YOU DON'T TRY TO STOP IT'S MOVEMENT OR DO ANYTHING THAT MIGHT AFFECT THE CUEING "PRE-STRIKE", LIKE TENSING MUSCLES IN ANTICIPATION OF THE STOPPING MOTION. You can accellerate equally welll and smoothly with a somewhat shorter follow through caused by straightening the arm. I dare anyone to prove otherwise.
How low do you get on shots?

Getting through the ball better because of a kink in the elbow is something professionals and instructors alike all agree on in snooker. If you don't have issues in getting through the ball with a locked arm then it will not help much. But if you do this is something that can really help.

Joe Davis played with a locked arm. It didn't seem to bother him. But as times change there is reason for all the top 16 players in the world playing with a bent elbow. If it didn't help they wouldn't do it.

Zphix
11-08-2015, 10:06 AM
You touch upon another great benefit... Alignment. It helps get everything (of improtance) onto the line of aim.

Its a shame you didn't stick at it if it was getting everything aligned. I remember trying the square stance with the feet 90 degrees to the shot line and I went home with sore hamstrings pain in my lower back muscles all because its not a natural way to stand. But I stuck at it and it helped my alignment hugely and my game went up. Comfort is important but alignment is the most important part of any cue sport.

If you can find a picture to give a visual example that would help. "Bend" seems to be ambiguous here.

The bend I was talking about was going from having my elbow at a 135 degree angle to an almost 90 degree angle. That much bend was uncomfortable but I still shoot with my elbow bent at a 135 degree angle instead of being nearly straight. I never noticed it but because of this thread I looked over a few videos and pro pool players seem to have their bridge hand very straight. That doesn't work for me because I'm taller.

Would need to see a picture of the "bend" you're talking about to confirm or deny me continuing to do this.

-Richard

Straightpool_99
11-08-2015, 10:10 AM
How low do you get on shots?

Getting through the ball better because of a kink in the elbow is something professionals and instructors alike all agree on in snooker. If you don't have issues in getting through the ball with a locked arm then it will not help much. But if you do this is something that can really help.

Joe Davis played with a locked arm. It didn't seem to bother him. But as times change there is reason for all the top 16 players in the world playing with a bent elbow. If it didn't help they wouldn't do it.

I get all the way down, chin on cue, but not in the traditional way.

I feel that snooker coaching is somewhat schizophrenic. On one hand, most snooker players have a pretty realistic view on the role of eqipment (tips, cues) etc, which is to say, the don't overemphasize this. Also the techniques taught are very down to earth, not a lot of fancy aiming systems and junk like that. On the other hand there is a lot of "magical thinking" in the snooker world. Unrealistic views on deflection and swerve, stupid claims about spin transfer between cueball and object ball not happening and a lot of strange views about the stroke, that the follow through is somehow creating effects in and of itself. While I do think that the timing and quality of the stroke is extremely important, after the cueball has left the tip, nothing you do matters UNLESS YOU DO THE STUFF I MENTIONED IN THE OTHER POST.

The braced back leg and bent arm and stuff works, since all the snooker pros (with a handful of exceptions) are using it. If you are not a young, slender man in perfect health, on the other hand, you may have to look elsewhere for instruction on how to position your body in order to get your chin on the cue etc. I think the braced arm can replicate SOME of the effects of the braced back leg, in people that are not able to bend like that. I need to bend both my knees, because my back is not perfect. So I guess the arm helps to brace me a bit, although a straight leg might be better.

Pidge
11-08-2015, 10:23 AM
If you can find a picture to give a visual example that would help. "Bend" seems to be ambiguous here.

The bend I was talking about was going from having my elbow at a 135 degree angle to an almost 90 degree angle. That much bend was uncomfortable but I still shoot with my elbow bent at a 135 degree angle instead of being nearly straight. I never noticed it but because of this thread I looked over a few videos and pro pool players seem to have their bridge hand very straight. That doesn't work for me because I'm taller.

Would need to see a picture of the "bend" you're talking about to confirm or deny me continuing to do this.

-Richard
http://www.thesnookerblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/378x286xGavin_TipToWhite_Frontview1.png.pagespeed. ic.MjqMh09fNA.jpg
Hopefully this link works.

90degrees seems like a hell of a lot of bend.

Pidge
11-08-2015, 10:29 AM
I get all the way down, chin on cue, but not in the traditional way.

I feel that snooker coaching is somewhat schizophrenic. On one hand, most snooker players have a pretty realistic view on the role of eqipment (tips, cues) etc, which is to say, the don't overemphasize this. Also the techniques taught are very down to earth, not a lot of fancy aiming systems and junk like that. On the other hand there is a lot of "magical thinking" in the snooker world. Unrealistic views on deflection and swerve, stupid claims about spin transfer between cueball and object ball not happening and a lot of strange views about the stroke, that the follow through is somehow creating effects in and of itself. While I do think that the timing and quality of the stroke is extremely important, after the cueball has left the tip, nothing you do matters UNLESS YOU DO THE STUFF I MENTIONED IN THE OTHER POST.

The braced back leg and bent arm and stuff works, since all the snooker pros (with a handful of exceptions) are using it. If you are not a young, slender man in perfect health, on the other hand, you may have to look elsewhere for instruction on how to position your body in order to get your chin on the cue etc. I think the braced arm can replicate SOME of the effects of the braced back leg, in people that are not able to bend like that. I need to bend both my knees, because my back is not perfect. So I guess the arm helps to brace me a bit, although a straight leg might be better.
I agree the snooker world do have a warped sense of some of the physics behind the game. They don't have a Dr Dave though to be fair. More and more are starting to read through his website and more and more are getting to grips with what actually goes on when playing with side.

The follow throigh doesn't effect the shot, I understand that but what the follow through does is tell you how you've hit the shot. If you have a lengthier follow through then your cue action has more time to transition from stop to finish. It makes it easier to control acceleration imo.

Pool players are just as misinformed as snooker players, its just the stuff pool players know are the things snooker players don't and visa versa.

Zphix
11-08-2015, 10:31 AM
http://www.thesnookerblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/378x286xGavin_TipToWhite_Frontview1.png.pagespeed. ic.MjqMh09fNA.jpg
Hopefully this link works.

90degrees seems like a hell of a lot of bend.

The link works and that's pretty close to how I'm positioned when playing.

The 90 degree bend was a lot but it did force my body into a better position but there were too many drawbacks to it so I had to go back to the drawing board. After a few months I got it figured out.

Good thread Pidge! This was something else I'd have never noticed without someone pointing it out.

Bella Don't Cry
11-08-2015, 12:37 PM
I agree the snooker world do have a warped sense of some of the physics behind the game. They don't have a Dr Dave though to be fair. More and more are starting to read through his website and more and more are getting to grips with what actually goes on when playing with side.

The follow throigh doesn't effect the shot, I understand that but what the follow through does is tell you how you've hit the shot. If you have a lengthier follow through then your cue action has more time to transition from stop to finish. It makes it easier to control acceleration imo.

Pool players are just as misinformed as snooker players, its just the stuff pool players know are the things snooker players don't and visa versa.

^^^ That's funny! Snooker players only happen to be the best cueist in the world! :thumbup:

snucar
11-08-2015, 12:53 PM
I feel that snooker coaching is somewhat schizophrenic. On one hand, most snooker players have a pretty realistic view on the role of eqipment (tips, cues) etc, which is to say, the don't overemphasize this. Also the techniques taught are very down to earth, not a lot of fancy aiming systems and junk like that. On the other hand there is a lot of "magical thinking" in the snooker world. Unrealistic views on deflection and swerve, stupid claims about spin transfer between cueball and object ball not happening and a lot of strange views about the stroke, that the follow through is somehow creating effects in and of itself. While I do think that the timing and quality of the stroke is extremely important, after the cueball has left the tip, nothing you do matters UNLESS YOU DO THE STUFF I MENTIONED IN THE OTHER POST.


You have everything figured out, haven't you? How much do you charge for a lesson? Any DVDs or books? Do you accept PayPal?:smile:

Ron Swanson
11-08-2015, 01:32 PM
I agree the snooker world do have a warped sense of some of the physics behind the game. They don't have a Dr Dave though to be fair. More and more are starting to read through his website and more and more are getting to grips with what actually goes on when playing with side.

The follow throigh doesn't effect the shot, I understand that but what the follow through does is tell you how you've hit the shot. If you have a lengthier follow through then your cue action has more time to transition from stop to finish. It makes it easier to control acceleration imo.

Pool players are just as misinformed as snooker players, its just the stuff pool players know are the things snooker players don't and visa versa.

Snooker players know the hows but not the whats, while pool players know the whats but not the hows.

Bella Don't Cry
11-08-2015, 01:49 PM
Snooker players know the hows but not the whats, while pool players know the whats but not the hows.

When it comes to Pool I agree with this ^^^.
However there isn't a living pool player that could teach a Snooker Pro about Snooker.
Not sure if that's what you meant. Apologies if not... :thumbup:

Bella Don't Cry
11-08-2015, 01:51 PM
Snooker players know the hows but not the whats, while pool players know the whats but not the hows.

When it comes to Pool I agree with this ^^^.
However there isn't a living pool player that could teach a Snooker Pro about Snooker.
Not sure if that's what you meant. Apologies if not... :thumbup:

O'SulliReyes
11-08-2015, 02:43 PM
The main advantage of the bent elbow is that it allows you to get more action on the cue ball. The extra inches of follow through is the natural side effect of this. See what former world snooker champion John Parrott has to say about this at the 3:30 mark of the following clip: http://youtu.be/2U9C4x0IggY

Patrick Johnson
11-08-2015, 03:40 PM
The main advantage of the bent elbow is that it allows you to get more action on the cue ball. The extra inches of follow through is the natural side effect of this. See what former world snooker champion John Parrott has to say about this at the 3:30 mark of the following clip: http://youtu.be/2U9C4x0IggY
I don't follow this. How does bending the bridge arm change the stroke or its distance? Isn't that all about the stroking arm? Unless you line up a different distance from the CB I don't see what difference it makes.

pj
chgo

Pidge
11-08-2015, 04:23 PM
I don't follow this. How does bending the bridge arm change the stroke or its distance? Isn't that all about the stroking arm? Unless you line up a different distance from the CB I don't see what difference it makes.

pj
chgo
Its how it forces the body to be positioned. You effectively don't hit the chest as soon as you do with a locked elbow.

Nick B
11-08-2015, 04:24 PM
I don't follow this. How does bending the bridge arm change the stroke or its distance? Isn't that all about the stroking arm? Unless you line up a different distance from the CB I don't see what difference it makes.

pj
chgo

Remember most snooker cues are shorter and thus with your bridge hand fully extended you don't have a lot of cue to work with. Your hand and elbow become to stable contact points which also helps with your stability over the table....or at least that is the way I was taught.

Pidge
11-08-2015, 05:01 PM
Remember most snooker cues are shorter and thus with your bridge hand fully extended you don't have a lot of cue to work with. Your hand and elbow become to stable contact points which also helps with your stability over the table....or at least that is the way I was taught.
Snooker cues are the same length. They just don't have a rubber bumper so when they are upright on the floor they look slightly smaller by an inch or so.

Nick B
11-08-2015, 05:06 PM
I just checked my 3 cues which have never been cut down. All are 57 inches or less. None of my pool cues are that short without the bumper.


Regards

Nick B

FranCrimi
11-08-2015, 05:36 PM
You can have a straight bridge arm without locking the elbow and it's very comfortable and not stressful at all.

I like my vision on the cue ball at approximately arm's length. If you bend your elbow you must increase your bridge length significantly to have that same visual distance from the cue ball.

A bent elbow does allow the player to face the shot more, however, it is the position of the feet that allow for a lean forward or back in weight distribution. Since the top half of the torso is bending forward, countering it with a lean back of the bottom-half puts the body in balance. I'm not a fan of an all-lean-forward type of stance.

Snooker is different from pool and I appreciate the differences. Pool players prefer more swing room between their hip and shooting arm -- heavier balls and all that. A straight, relaxed bridge arm works nicely for that.

Just different methodologies, I guess, but don't knock us pool players when it comes to fundamentals. We know more than you think.

BeiberLvr
11-08-2015, 06:12 PM
You can have a straight bridge arm without locking the elbow and it's very comfortable and not stressful at all.

I like my vision on the cue ball at approximately arm's length. If you bend your elbow you must increase your bridge length significantly to have that same visual distance from the cue ball.

A bent elbow does allow the player to face the shot more, however, it is the position of the feet that allow for a lean forward or back in weight distribution. Since the top half of the torso is bending forward, countering it with a lean back of the bottom-half puts the body in balance. I'm not a fan of an all-lean-forward type of stance.

Snooker is different from pool and I appreciate the differences. Pool players prefer more swing room between their hip and shooting arm -- heavier balls and all that. A straight, relaxed bridge arm works nicely for that.

Just different methodologies, I guess, but don't knock us pool players when it comes to fundamentals. We know more than you think.


Hi Fran,

I really don't think the idea of needing "more swing room" for power shots in pool is that relevant in today's game considering how fast modern tables play.

Of course, I wouldn't recommend a snooker stance on something like a break shot, but it's fine for everything else.

FranCrimi
11-08-2015, 06:18 PM
Hi Fran,

I really don't think the idea of needing "more swing room" for power shots in pool is that relevant in today's game considering how fast modern tables play.

Of course, I wouldn't recommend a snooker stance on something like a break shot, but it's fine for everything else.

Okay, eliminate the swing room and you still have several issues regarding the bent elbow, such as vision, bridge length, balance and stance.

BeiberLvr
11-08-2015, 06:33 PM
Okay, eliminate the swing room and you still have several issues regarding the bent elbow, such as vision, bridge length, balance and stance.

I play with a bent elbow and have no issues with clearance.

Vision? No problems for me there.

Bridge Length? That can easily be altered by how near or far you stand from the CB at address, and where you grip the cue. I grip my cue so my pinkie is where the wrap ends. This gives me a bridge length of about 10"

Balance and Stance? I feel like I'm well balanced in my stance. Whether or not that's due to the bent elbow I can't say. I don't think it hurts though.

Colin Colenso
11-08-2015, 10:47 PM
I like using a straight bridge arm, especially on longer straighter power shots, but my rotator cuff flares up so when I'm playing a lot, raising my elbow takes most of this strain away.

Colin

Pidge
11-08-2015, 11:22 PM
Okay, eliminate the swing room and you still have several issues regarding the bent elbow, such as vision, bridge length, balance and stance.
With a locked elbow I grip my pool cue at the very back of the butt, not ten on the grip. With a bent elbow I grip at the very bottom of the grip. Shifting about a hand further up the cue so you just have to choke up a little.

Again, with vision, you just make minor adjustments and anyone who has played the game a fair amount will naturally set up their vision centre the same distance from the cue ball when the table allows it.

With such a square stance most snooker players employ, shifting the weight forward which a lot of players like to do means most of the weight being on the toes making it out a lot of pressure on the straight arm. The bent elbow relieves this strain.

Like I said, most pool players stand very side on. A bent elbow isn't ideal for such a side on stance. The weight can be distributed in such a stance by favouring one foot. In a snooker stance such as mine this isn't the case.

Ron Swanson
11-09-2015, 01:01 AM
You can have a straight bridge arm without locking the elbow and it's very comfortable and not stressful at all.

I like my vision on the cue ball at approximately arm's length. If you bend your elbow you must increase your bridge length significantly to have that same visual distance from the cue ball.

A bent elbow does allow the player to face the shot more, however, it is the position of the feet that allow for a lean forward or back in weight distribution. Since the top half of the torso is bending forward, countering it with a lean back of the bottom-half puts the body in balance. I'm not a fan of an all-lean-forward type of stance.

Snooker is different from pool and I appreciate the differences. Pool players prefer more swing room between their hip and shooting arm -- heavier balls and all that. A straight, relaxed bridge arm works nicely for that.

Just different methodologies, I guess, but don't knock us pool players when it comes to fundamentals. We know more than you think.

Then why is it the way you were brought up and, presumably, how you continue to teach, so outdated and discredited?

No one in the rest of the world are copying your fundamentals.

randyg
11-09-2015, 09:45 AM
The main advantage of the bent elbow is that it allows you to get more action on the cue ball. The extra inches of follow through is the natural side effect of this. See what former world snooker champion John Parrott has to say about this at the 3:30 mark of the following clip: http://youtu.be/2U9C4x0IggY



How can this be true?

randyg

FranCrimi
11-09-2015, 09:58 AM
Then why is it the way you were brought up and, presumably, how you continue to teach, so outdated and discredited?

No one in the rest of the world are copying your fundamentals.

Yes, we all know you're a snooker player, and I give them a lot of credit. I studied a lot of snooker books which helped me a great deal in working out my playing and teaching methodology for pool. But pool is not snooker.

I'm not taking your mean-spirited nonsensical bait. But if you decide to post like an adult, I'm all ears (or rather -- eyes), otherwise we're done here.

Scaramouche
11-09-2015, 10:08 AM
The greatest snooker player elbow bender was a Canadian, Bill Werbeniuk.

Singlehandedly he was the cause of the players open bar at pro tournaments being eliminated.

Bending his elbow was a necessity.
His booze expense was ruled a deduction for tax purposes.

Alcohol consumption

Werbeniuk was noted for the copious amounts of alcohol he consumed before and during matches at least six pints before a match and then one pint for each frame. In total, he drank between 30 and 50 pints of lager per day.[2][4] Doctors advised Werbeniuk to drink alcohol to counteract a familial benign essential tremor.[5] Later in his career he also took propranolol, a beta blocker, to cope with the effects of his alcohol consumption on his heart.[6]

Some of Werbeniuk's most famous feats of drinking include: 76 cans of lager during a game with John Spencer in Australia in the 1970s;[2] 43 pints of lager in a snooker match/drinking contest against Scotsman Eddie Sinclair in which, after Sinclair had passed out following his 42nd pint, Werbeniuk was reported to say "I'm away to the bar now for a proper drink";[7] 28 pints of lager and 16 whiskies over the course of 11 frames during a match against Nigel Bond, in January 1990 after which Werbeniuk then consumed an entire bottle of Scotch to "drown his sorrows" after losing the match.[2]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Werbeniuk

http://www.drunkard.com/issues/59/59--top-drunks-bill-webeniuk.html

Haven't read this thread, only glanced at parts of it.
Seemed to have gotten off topic into some arcane aiming/stance/stroke discussion.
Just trying to get it back on track. :grin:

alstl
11-09-2015, 10:19 AM
I say Harry, let's go down to the pub and bend the old elbow.

Ron Swanson
11-09-2015, 11:05 AM
Yes, we all know you're a snooker player, and I give them a lot of credit. I studied a lot of snooker books which helped me a great deal in working out my playing and teaching methodology for pool. But pool is not snooker.

I'm not taking your mean-spirited nonsensical bait. But if you decide to post like an adult, I'm all ears (or rather -- eyes), otherwise we're done here.

What i say is the truth. You can either accept it and change, or you can bury your head in the sand. Your choice.

And I'm not a snooker player, never have been.

pdcue
11-09-2015, 12:41 PM
Its something not many do instinctively... The natural way for many is to lock their bridge elbow. So why do they go against what comes naturally?

Well, here is my take on what benefits a slight kink in the elbow has. Firstly, it allows you to comfortably transfer more weight forward in your stance without putting too much pressure onto the shoulder and hand. Getting the elbow on the table feels weird at first because it forces you to lean slightly forward into the shot. For me it feels a lot more stable with the extra body part touching the table. So stability is another reason.

The way snooker players align the hips and shoulders to the shot plays a part. The hips and shoulders tend to be a lot squarer to the shot which with a straight arm means they would have to twist and bend the torso slightly more... Which becomes very very uncomfortable after a full day of practice. So a slight bend of the elbow can bring the bridge hand onto the line of aim without the shoulder of the bridge arm being anywhere close to the line of aim... So less twisting and bending.

The biggest pro for me is it adds extra inches to my follow through. With a locked elbow I follow through 6-7 inches. With my elbow on the table and a bend in it my follow through is 10 inches. What this means is I get through the ball a lot better. I can draw the ball much further, hit the ball harder all with the same bridge distance. I like to pull the cue back all the way to my bridge which means a pull back of around 13-14 inches, even on the slow shots. With a locked elbow in these shots I tend to jab because my follow through is limited or I try and force more follow through and drop my elbow at the wrong time or too much.

Now, the traditional pool stance does not gain anything from a bent elbow.. A locked elbow is far more beneficial to a side on higher stance. But, I've read a lot of posters on here are taking up snooker fundamentals but may be used to playing with a locked elbow... Give this a try and see how cleaner you get through the ball.

It is, or should be, a matter of alignment.

I am right handed and extremely right eye dominant. More's the pity. To get the shaft under
my right eye, I need to bend my left elbow. Since Snooker players tend to use a stance,'
and everything else that is much more "standard" than do pool players, perhaps that is why you see more bend of the elbow.

Dale

galipeau
11-09-2015, 01:39 PM
Pidge, do you ever use your torso to stabilize the cue on your stroke? I was messing around with it yesterday, and I think it might be helpful in snooker since the table is a bit taller. I personally can't find the traditional squared up snooker stance comfortable at all, but I would like to consider changing my stance for when I'm at the snooker table. Bending the elbow seems to bring my upper body a bit lower, and this was an interesting effect.

Pidge
11-09-2015, 02:36 PM
Pidge, do you ever use your torso to stabilize the cue on your stroke? I was messing around with it yesterday, and I think it might be helpful in snooker since the table is a bit taller. I personally can't find the traditional squared up snooker stance comfortable at all, but I would like to consider changing my stance for when I'm at the snooker table. Bending the elbow seems to bring my upper body a bit lower, and this was an interesting effect.
The cue runs along my chest of that's what you mean, and yes the bent elbow does lower the torso especially the chest a little. This could also be a reason for the bent elbow... To get as low as possible with comfort in mind.

greyghost
11-09-2015, 07:32 PM
The cue runs along my chest of that's what you mean, and yes the bent elbow does lower the torso especially the chest a little. This could also be a reason for the bent elbow... To get as low as possible with comfort in mind.

that bend in the elbow lets the shoulder joint roll out a little as it opens up, putting less tension on the rotator.