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08-02-2019, 07:35 AM

Strategy when not in top form - make sure there is a window in the mens room large enough to climb out of.
  
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08-02-2019, 07:45 AM

When I have a bad day and frustration kicks in, I slow down, and count out about 5 deep breaths. This accomplishes 2 things. Oxygen in your system has a positive effect on calming your nerves. Counting the breaths takes your mind off the frustration, gives you something to focus on. these 2 things helps me get back into a mental mind set.

repetitive routines give you something to focus on. I find I have to remind myself to do it. I will say it in my head, or mumble each item on the list as I do it.

When I am playing more poorly than usual, I will go out of my way to safety. I know I am not running out, so I will try to get that old ball in hand advantage. Pot a ball, safety. Pot a ball safety. I start to feel better about my game, and my opponent starts to get frustrated.
  
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08-02-2019, 07:56 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by garczar View Post
SLOW DOWN and get a good pre-shot routine established. Play 'cinch' pool aka make the damn ball. Take tougher shape if you have to.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisinNC View Post
Not sure I completely agree with that. You have to play your at your normal tempo that you've always played with in both your practice time and in your tournament matches or $ sessions, and the same pace that you've played your best pool with. Self confidence and the mental game is such a huge factor in pool and if you're struggling and you slow down and you change your pre-shot routine and start thinking too much, results aren't always good.
There is a real lesson in what you say. Each idea tends to ring true, tied to a certain perspective. It also has a sense of not being right in other scenarios. Often when a player is out of form they are rushing, getting sped up. As anxiety increases they speed up even more from adrenaline.

The element of playing at your optimal pace is also a great idea. But when your mind and body are sped up, how do you calibrate that? A racing mind can distort time. In those cases, slowing down might not be enough, a reset is needed.

STOP. Take a deep breath, close your eyes and let it out fully. Get still. Feel the pace you need. Start slow with a slow motion version. Feel it. Calibrate to what you need, a deliberate unhurried stroke and finish.

This is a preparatory phase only. Once you feel that drop in tension it’s a signal from your body of readiness. The reset is complete.

Now go play. This usually only takes a few seconds. You may need to take a second breath with release for your body to signal with the readiness drop. Do what you need to do to get there. This is about listening to your body. From slow motion start to increase your tempo. Then while down let it slow again so you can settle with a stop stop, focus precisely on target and let the shot happen.

Of course this is also only a perspective. A perspective with a plan.

All three perspective are likely focusing on and describing the same thing but from a different perceptual position, the importance of pace. Like every perspective they are right but incomplete. The integration of the composites creates the whole.

Last edited by Imac007; 08-06-2019 at 10:56 AM.
  
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08-02-2019, 09:39 AM

Strategy when not in top form :

Hit the practice table, work only on shots I have
trouble with...

Get outside for a while, clear my head, go surfing,
ride the Harley..

Shaking it off, match up again... works for me
  
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Imac007
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08-02-2019, 09:41 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MmmSharp View Post
When I have a bad day and frustration kicks in, I slow down, and count out about 5 deep breaths. This accomplishes 2 things. Oxygen in your system has a positive effect on calming your nerves. Counting the breaths takes your mind off the frustration, gives you something to focus on. these 2 things helps me get back into a mental mind set.

repetitive routines give you something to focus on. I find I have to remind myself to do it. I will say it in my head, or mumble each item on the list as I do it.

When I am playing more poorly than usual, I will go out of my way to safety. I know I am not running out, so I will try to get that old ball in hand advantage. Pot a ball, safety. Pot a ball safety. I start to feel better about my game, and my opponent starts to get frustrated.
I like the idea of taking charge of the frustration. The breathing reset is great. I sometimes do a body scan to see where my body is storing the tension caused by an emotion. I then focus on that area. When you tighten a muscle then release it, the physiological effect is that it goes back to a tension level lower than it was initially. A couple of strong contractions of the affected tense muscles, held, then released, deals with the body. Breathing techniques help with finding the inner rhythm for performance. Rituals then can trigger learned actions.

Great post. It should resonate with players wanting a plan.

It triggered more in my mind. Thanks, I needed to be reminded.

Last edited by Imac007; 08-02-2019 at 11:31 AM.
  
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08-02-2019, 12:32 PM

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Originally Posted by Imac007 View Post
Giving up is an option and this is your decision to make. Reading between the lines there is a player with a passion who wrote this. Years ago I ran across a game called "equal offense". It was based around straight pool. The thing is it starts from a break, then basically ball in hand. An inning is limited to 20 balls, straight pool style. The neat thing about the game was an opponent on site wasnít needed. The game was made to address your competition issue. You could play against another player anywhere using any game. You each start from the same scenario. A scoring system is needed giving each ball weight. In order to give some value to safety, a point could be awarded if it is called and successful. The inning is then over either way but keeps safety play in the game. You would specify a number of innings for a match and compare scores. The players donít need to even play at the same time.

A forum like this could be used to actually set up matches. Like minded players could set up tournaments. This format was used prior to all the mobile devices with video. When I played trust was a major issue. Another issue is comparable equipment since each player is using a different table. Pool hall owners and billiard instructors could tap into this format. They could arrange for matches between students they are training. Instructors often link up with players from different regions. Letting players play and develop without the expense of travel and entry fees in a competitive scenario addresses a problem for players such as Ken.

Other players use the ghost as a format simulating an opponent. The point is that the issues listed by Ken are just that; problems. Creating constraints on how things need to be to solve a problem creates a McGyver test. Chasing a dream sometimes means people have to be creative.

The competition mindset is another issue. Creativity in excuse making is not a tactic. Not meant to be harsh. Meant to emulate what you likely would say to someone who was frustrated, saying they want to quit, but really donít. Try something different when what you are doing doesnít work.

Distractions can be a botch. I simplify. Getting out of the venue is a good idea. Find something like staying down, finishing the stroke, or quiet eyes, a behavior you need on every shot. Dedicate your time away from the table to different kinds of imagined shots, with that behavior there in every imagined case. You say you can shoot for hours, shoot in your head. Ingrain a good behavior while you do.

In venue behavior needs to have its own pre-game/in-game routine to handle issues not pool related. I donít initiate conversation. Iím not rude, I answer if talked to but donít sustain conversation threads.

Keep your eye on the tournament ball. Make sure you know what to do, where to go, how to tick all the not at the table boxes. Check and organize your equipment, your away from the table space, and needed resources, like water, bathroom locations. Get your ducks in a row.

Distractions in the room, while playing. Bookmark your on table activity. Give your full attention to whatever has drawn your attention away. It usually is over quickly or gets boring real fast. Then "ok where was I". I sometimes even restart by vocalizing the on-table situation. "Oh yeah, that 3 ball can go there and the cue ball needs to come in this area for the 4 so I have angle to get to...". Stopping then talking to yourself may seem strange, but getting distracted, missing the shot or position can sit you in a chair. I prefer to be at the table. When you vocalize, hearing your voice and its directions focused on the table, keeps you out of your head. An outward focus on what needs doing.

Each thing here was a solution to a problem. Have a plan, not an excuse. If the plan fails, so be it, at least you tried. Meant to be helpful, not judgmental. Other players reading this thread may relate to your problem and not want to quit, just want ideas.
I've had a passion for pool since I was a little one. I love pool and always will. I'm 44 years old now, not 18 and it's hard to accept that. When I went shopping for a new truck, the first thing I noticed was how much room the Ram new generation crew cabs were in the back. I thought I could go on the road again and sleep back there. I could tow trailers for working around the house and use it for the road. Killing 2 birds with one stone. Realistically at my age, it's a pipe dream.

I'm not a champion on the table, but tackled other accomplishments off the table. The mental key of never amounting to anything. That person ended up working for me when I had my business and I got the person on disability. They depend on me and kiss my ass now. lol
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08-02-2019, 01:53 PM

Go back to fundamentals, I try to look for things like stroking center ball, finding and hitting the correct contact point, fallowing threw with my stroke to the contact point, not jumping up, and taking my time. Hope this helps you get back into stroke best of luck!


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08-03-2019, 10:31 AM

[QUOTE=HueblerHustler7;6450410]Go back to fundamentals, I try to look for things like stroking center ball, finding and hitting the correct contact point, fallowing threw with my stroke to the contact point, not jumping up, and taking my time. Hope this helps you get back into stroke best of luck![/QUOTE

If the response is telling me what I think it is, he mentions fundamentals. Then he goes on to list his top ones. Center ball tops his list but aiming is paramount. Straight stroking through the ball on line, staying down and performing in an unhurried way.

Distilled version of HH7’s fundamentals
Rhythm
Aiming
Straight cueing through to finish - this forces you to stay down

Ronnie O’Sullivan and Jimmy White 3 principles
Step forward onto the shot line
Stroke straight
Stay down

I think I like HH7’s fundamentals better. The rhythm of everything we do usually includes the rituals of preparing us for action. "Taking time" to me is more than tempo or a slow down suggestion; it’s the body preparing itself. Once it settles physically and mentally it’s signaling a readiness to action. It’s an inner wave having a rhythm dipping at preparedness and then rising in tempo to action. There is a flow to it often missing when we are off form

Last edited by Imac007; 08-03-2019 at 10:35 AM.
  
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08-05-2019, 11:00 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scratch85 View Post
I actually wrote my pre-shot routine down, then built on it for about a week and eventually pared it down to where it is now. I still have it in my notes on my phone and occasionally look at it when I'm not playing well and stuck in my chair.
I think this is a great strategy. Finding the keys that worked for you in the past is a good way to trigger the state at the time. I keep journals of my play and practice. Reading them later I am able to single out the common themes that were there on the good days. A key word or phrase can bring back the whole sense of the experience.

Thanks for the reminder.
  
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08-05-2019, 06:45 PM

I use a secret proprietary state of the art advanced high level aiming system.

I can't go into more detail about it.

DM if you want more details.
  
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Imac007
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Always looking to learn - 08-06-2019, 11:00 AM

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Originally Posted by justnum View Post
I use a secret proprietary state of the art advanced high level aiming system.

I can't go into more detail about it.

DM if you want more details.
Done. DM sent.
  
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08-06-2019, 12:56 PM

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Done. DM sent.
Check your inbox. Please refrain from using public communication when discussing any other information regarding this aiming system strategy system.
  
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10-21-2019, 01:01 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by HueblerHustler7 View Post
Go back to fundamentals, I try to look for things like stroking center ball, finding and hitting the correct contact point, fallowing threw with my stroke to the contact point, not jumping up, and taking my time. Hope this helps you get back into stroke best of luck!
Each piece of advice offered here works, within limits. Part of the issue with psr and other habits is the problem of consistency. Lifeguards and others who must be vigilant suffer a watchmanís dilemma, attention deterioration. Doing the same thing over and over leads to it becoming an unconscious process. Elite performers have learned to fight that automaticity.

From Amazon: ďPsychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's famous investigations of "optimal experience" have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life.Ē

Itís easy to confuse flow and the zone. Optimal experience is a happiness measure not a performance one. Players in the zone often experience flow but the euphoria of peak performance often occurs as a culmination of the outcome. The joy of the activity is the lure of flow. The unconsciousness of the activity however, is where errors can occur.

Breaking up each game into segments allows experts to bring shots back to their individual performance uniqueness. The orchestration of a match could be compared to the movements of a symphonic masterpiece. The opening movement is where initial planning takes place. Once decisions are made, a commitment is made to the opening target(s) and needed techniques. Debussy said music is the space between the notes.

The timing of ball pocketing and breakouts are the music of the spheres. Patterns flow together. Often in music the transition from one section into another requires special care. The transitions between shots are often easy shot clusters that need to be linked by tricky transitions. Each is like a separate orchestrated movement. Recognizing the shot keys unique to creating transitions keep us focused on the challenges in the present.

Flow often has a future component that pulls us ahead, out of the present. How many times have you seen players get ahead of themselves? They get up too soon, they overhit or under hit a ball losing position, looking ahead, losing the now, taking the next step before this one is finished, stumbling before the finish.

The final movement of a symphony is the culmination of each that came before. This is the payoff to the groundwork involved to this point. A reset makes sense. Fundamental keys like careful alignment, rehearsed execution, an anchored position and quiet focus are in the tool box. A careful check of what to take to the final stanza makes sense. The last balls linked together bring us to the grand finale. Give each its place, timed steps completed one at a time.

Finding the uniqueness in each shot and the keys to a successful pattern at each turn is how experts keep in the present, avoiding the mindlessness of possibly perceived repetition.
  
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Priming a success strategy
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Imac007
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Priming a success strategy - 02-01-2020, 01:31 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imac007 View Post
I think this is a great strategy. Finding the keys that worked for you in the past is a good way to trigger the state at the time. I keep journals of my play and practice. Reading them later I am able to single out the common themes that were there on the good days. A key word or phrase can bring back the whole sense of the experience.

Thanks for the reminder.
At one time in my life I was a top tier tournament bridge player. I played in tournaments daily. Based on that experience, I was able to distill things to simple common denominators. Once the skills are there the next key is focus, but on what? In bridge there is a central idea that should be there on every hand. You need to count out every hand. It goes beyond getting a clear picture of the hands at the table. It keeps you engaged. It keeps you disciplined.

Of course, this begs the question of what does this have to do with pool? When I asked that question, I also asked, is there an equivalent key in pool? It needs to be something independent of the game situations that needs to be there on every shot. It took some time but the keys emerged, straight stroking and plan the table.

The functional intent behind the count out every hand principle was that that was how to build a complete picture of each hand at the table.

In pool we can try to get that complete table picture through looking at pattern play options. Planning with the end in mind, a way to navigate towards the end result, emerges. Once a full plan is formulated the key is to execute each shot successfully. Each execution requires straight cueing, regardless of where and how hard, the plan says, you should hit the cue ball.

If you look at learning it comprises of four stages
Unconscious - incompetence
Conscious - incompetence
Conscious - competence
Unconscious - competence

It digitally clicks between conscious and unconscious states.

We know that that is an oversimplification. Other terminology was created to distinguish more accurately. The term subliminal has been around for a long time. The word liminal means threshold. Supraliminal and subliminal are essentially the conscious and unconscious. Liminal is the state in between. We can be influenced by stimulus at each level.

There is another term called priming. On the farm when we needed to get the manual pump working we primed the pump. A pitcher of water was poured down the pipe helping create the vacuum drawing the water to the surface, as we pumped. An analogy of the process has been used in describing how decisions can be influenced. When the mind is primed with information, the most recent and strongest stimuli influence what we decide.

Top athletes use it in the form of mental imagery. That is a supraliminal priming activity.

Before a tournament I used to imagine counting out every hand. Developing a complete and total game plan based on the best picture of the hand at the table.

Weeks before a tournament I work on only two things. Planning the table when practicing and priming the straight stroke when not at the table and when getting down on each shot.

I see Canadian professional, John Morra, when between racks and during preliminary preparation, using the straight lines the table provides, to check for straight cue travel. He uses the top of the rail where the felt meets the rail and the kitchen line, as references. He cues above them watching for straightness. It goes beyond that, because the vision center must be aligned perceptually, for the reference comparison to work. The position of the body, the eyes and the cueing action are being primed as a whole in the process. Some of these cueing sessions go on for several minutes. Iím reminded of how a good player when he misses a shot, practices until he can make it. The professional practices until he canít miss it.

During commercials when watching tv or when waiting in traffic, the straight cueing mindset is sitting there at the liminal level. Writing about it here causes it to occur.

This weekend I play in a tournament.

My strategy is consistent. Each layout will be looked at with an eye to a pattern that can be executed reasonably. A decision is then made regarding a pattern related shot or a strategic tactic. Regardless of the decision, a straight stroke is needed. The type is dictated by the decision.

The liminal priming allows precise choice of where on the ball the straight stroke is needed.
  
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02-01-2020, 02:30 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imac007 View Post
At one time in my life I was a top tier tournament bridge player. I played in tournaments daily. Based on that experience, I was able to distill things to simple common denominators. Once the skills are there the next key is focus, but on what? In bridge there is a central idea that should be there on every hand. You need to count out every hand. It goes beyond getting a clear picture of the hands at the table. It keeps you engaged. It keeps you disciplined.

Of course, this begs the question of what does this have to do with pool? When I asked that question, I also asked, is there an equivalent key in pool? It needs to be something independent of the game situations that needs to be there on every shot. It took some time but the keys emerged, straight stroking and plan the table.

The functional intent behind the count out every hand principle was that that was how to build a complete picture of each hand at the table.

In pool we can try to get that complete table picture through looking at pattern play options. Planning with the end in mind, a way to navigate towards the end result, emerges. Once a full plan is formulated the key is to execute each shot successfully. Each execution requires straight cueing, regardless of where and how hard, the plan says, you should hit the cue ball.

If you look at learning it comprises of four stages
Unconscious - incompetence
Conscious - incompetence
Conscious - competence
Unconscious - competence

It digitally clicks between conscious and unconscious states.

We know that that is an oversimplification. Other terminology was created to distinguish more accurately. The term subliminal has been around for a long time. The word liminal means threshold. Supraliminal and subliminal are essentially the conscious and unconscious. Liminal is the state in between. We can be influenced by stimulus at each level.

There is another term called priming. On the farm when we needed to get the manual pump working we primed the pump. A pitcher of water was poured down the pipe helping create the vacuum drawing the water to the surface, as we pumped. An analogy of the process has been used in describing how decisions can be influenced. When the mind is primed with information, the most recent and strongest stimuli influence what we decide.

Top athletes use it in the form of mental imagery. That is a supraliminal priming activity.

Before a tournament I used to imagine counting out every hand. Developing a complete and total game plan based on the best picture of the hand at the table.

Weeks before a tournament I work on only two things. Planning the table when practicing and priming the straight stroke when not at the table and when getting down on each shot.

I see Canadian professional, John Morra, when between racks and during preliminary preparation, using the straight lines the table provides, to check for straight cue travel. He uses the top of the rail where the felt meets the rail and the kitchen line, as references. He cues above them watching for straightness. It goes beyond that, because the vision center must be aligned perceptually, for the reference comparison to work. The position of the body, the eyes and the cueing action are being primed as a whole in the process. Some of these cueing sessions go on for several minutes. I’m reminded of how a good player when he misses a shot, practices until he can make it. The professional practices until he can’t miss it.

During commercials when watching tv or when waiting in traffic, the straight cueing mindset is sitting there at the liminal level. Writing about it here causes it to occur.

This weekend I play in a tournament.

My strategy is consistent. Each layout will be looked at with an eye to a pattern that can be executed reasonably. A decision is then made regarding a pattern related shot or a strategic tactic. Regardless of the decision, a straight stroke is needed. The type is dictated by the decision.

The liminal priming allows precise choice of where on the ball the straight stroke is needed.
Funny. I also played Bridge for fun for awhile. I competed couple times with mediocre player(who was 2200 in Chess) and won those tournaments. BTW this chess player often did offer wrong just to get me playing and he did go buy some beer. Opponents were like "you canīt do this to your partner, put him shit situation like this. He just replied "I trust Matti does his best"
Later on that tournament... I was asked come to play national Junior team . I was like "I am 25 already" they just said 28 is Junior age limit in Bridge..

BTW. I practiced Bridge also alone. just dealing hands and offering myself with all hands and trying all kind unconventional offers. After that I was playing hands alone too just to get feeling importance of defenders first card and how to make a game plan also.


-special man for a special shots-
Straight Pool addict
My Snooker 147 with Pool Cue https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRtIEF_vL0A
HOW TO RUN RACKS IN 14.1 - Livestreamed with 103 run.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgnCaoYpzaM

Last edited by Poolmanis; 02-01-2020 at 02:35 AM.
  
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