the First step
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blackcat13
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the First step - 08-15-2013, 09:51 AM

I am an amateur pool player and i been playing since i was very young. I want to start to learn on how to become a pro. I know it will take alot of practice dedication studying books and videos. What is the first thing i should do besides playing and studying
thank you
  
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08-15-2013, 09:53 AM

I applaud your optimism.

Be careful what you wish for.
  
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08-15-2013, 09:59 AM

I can't speak to becoming "pro" necessarily, but if you want to see your game improve watch all the pro matches you can get your hands on. Watch their fundamentals and their strategy. Also, when you go to practice don't just bang balls around or rack up 8,9, or 10 ball. Do drills. Stroke drills, position drills, saftey drills. Also, you should take Dr. Dave's Billiard University exams. They give you a pretty good gauge of where some of your strengths and weaknesses are, and the test "questions" double as good drills to do.


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08-15-2013, 09:59 AM

Well starting in september im gonna be taking lessons from a certified PBIA instructor. Im gonna try to get a hour lesson a week. I want to bring my game to the next level
  
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blackcat13
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08-15-2013, 10:01 AM

I been doing alot of cutshot drills and when i play by myself. im gonna play straight pool., then rotation and 9 ball then 8 ball then do some drills then do the same thing. i been studying Jeanettes lees book a guide to killers pool.. Where is this exam at.
  
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08-15-2013, 10:05 AM

1. Finish school.
2. Learn a trade/get a day job, unless you want to live out of your car and never have a family.
3. Play 6 hours a day. Every day.
4. Compete...tournaments and/or gambling.
5. Keep yourself grounded and realistic about what a "pro pool player" is.
6. Wash and repeat.


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08-15-2013, 10:07 AM

i already have a job and i play in 2 leagues. in one league i only have 1 loss on the 2 league all i do is lose lol. Someone told me to get a coach or someone like that who will bring my game to the next level.
  
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West Point 1987
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08-15-2013, 10:15 AM

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Originally Posted by blackcat13 View Post
i already have a job and i play in 2 leagues. in one league i only have 1 loss on the 2 league all i do is lose lol. Someone told me to get a coach or someone like that who will bring my game to the next level.
Leagues aren't a bad way to get initial seasoning and to learn...you can learn a lot from the better players you'll encounter. At some point, you'll need to focus on higher levels of competition to continue to grow, like a regional tour (check the AZB tours and events tab to see what's in your neck of the woods).

An instructor is a good investment, but buyer beware...they're all over the place. Most are good/great, some are not.

Practice, coaching, instructional videos/books, are all good, but the path to getting better is to constantly play players who are better than you until you can beat them regularly.


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What's in my (Instroke) Case?
Playing Cue: Gulyassy PHX, with SPT shaft
Jump/Break: McDermott Stinger NGO1

Other Cues Owned:
-R- 26 1/2 Tribute cue w/Gulyassy SPTX Shaft
Schon SL19/STL17 (retired, again )
Joss J15 (stolen)
Joss J11 (was a break cue for 15 years, now my son's player)
McDermott D-8 (sold, 1989)
McDermott D-23 (sold, 1991)
McDermott D-6 (sold, 1990)
GEM (Gary Medlin) Szambotti Tribute (retired)
  
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08-15-2013, 10:21 AM

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I am an amateur pool player and i been playing since i was very young. I want to start to learn on how to become a pro. I know it will take alot of practice dedication studying books and videos. What is the first thing i should do besides playing and studying
thank you
Every time you lose an important match, sleep in your car for that night.
  
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08-15-2013, 10:26 AM

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I am an amateur pool player and i been playing since i was very young. I want to start to learn on how to become a pro. I know it will take alot of practice dedication studying books and videos. What is the first thing i should do besides playing and studying
thank you
Take up golf.


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08-15-2013, 10:34 AM

Let us know when you can beat your dad using a Cuetec.

Other than that, I think DoubleD and Cornerman gave some good advice.
  
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blackcat13
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08-15-2013, 10:40 AM

i use a mcdoment Black widow cue for my shooting stick and a Nick Vernon for my Break stick and i play golf too just not that good
  
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08-15-2013, 10:47 AM

How old are you and how well do you play now? Do you run out 9 ball racks with ball in hand a lot? If not, you have some years to go to even get to a level or 2 bellow pro speed. Lessons are great, but to play well against even regional top players you are looking at needing to be able to break and run 2-3-4 racks of 9 ball daily, consistently. There is a top local player that I have seen run 4-5-6 racks of 9 ball a few times during a single tournament, that player got a spot from a pro and lost. There are many people I have met that played for a very long time, and they do well in their group of 5 friends, but when coming up against even a B player, they often end up looking silly. I played a guy in a tournament and ran maybe 7 or 8 balls to win a rack of 9 ball, he was amazed that I did that, he said "wow, I never played anyone like you before". That shows that he has not really been in the "real world" of pool.

If the only book you have looked at was Jeanette Lee's, and you are asking this question, I'm thinking you are a C or D level player which is the bottom rung of people that play pool in any type of competition.

To get a rough idea of your rank, a good way is the 10 ball drill, rack 10 ball, break, take ball in hand. Try to run out 10 racks with ball in hand and keep track of how many balls you get each rack. This thread has some info http://forums.azbilliards.com/showthread.php?t=295717

My son just tried this last night, he's a good player for his age at 13, and was playing with me teaching him all the time and with watching videos and other good players live since he was 8. He did 3-4 balls a rack consitently, and in the league match he was able to run 6-7 balls in 9 ball several times. He's a C+, maybe a low B at his best.

As an aside, I did this a few times to warm up and I ran all 10 twice in a row, only had time for two racks. Wonder how I would have done if I kept going, although running out a full rack is not something I do very often even with ball in hand, I'm about a solid B player, B+ more and more often.


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Last edited by hang-the-9; 08-15-2013 at 10:52 AM.
  
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08-15-2013, 10:48 AM

blackcat13...The very first step is to ask yourself this question: "Do I want to BE a pro player, or just play like one?" That is an honest question. If it's the latter, you have avenues you can follow...quality instruction should be your first step, to determine the quality of your stroke, where you stand in the poolplayer hiearchy, and give you things to practice (and how specifically to practice them) to start reaching for your goal. There are thousands of poolplayers who have that kind of skill, but realize that they really want a life, instead of 'the life of a pro player'!

If the answer is the former...good luck. About 1/10 of 1% of "professional pool players" make any kind of living, and you will absolutely sacrifice everything else in your life to achieve that goal (owning a home, family, a good job, etc)...if you even have natural talent (which is something almost every pro is full of). The risks are great, and the rewards are little if anything material. Among the American pro players, you can count on one hand the ones that make any kind of living at all.

Like someone else said...be careful what you wish for. I'm trying less to discourage you, than to wake you up the reality of what you think you desire. Good luck, whatever you do.

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I am an amateur pool player and i been playing since i was very young. I want to start to learn on how to become a pro. I know it will take alot of practice dedication studying books and videos. What is the first thing i should do besides playing and studying
thank you


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08-15-2013, 10:58 AM

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I been doing alot of cutshot drills and when i play by myself. im gonna play straight pool., then rotation and 9 ball then 8 ball then do some drills then do the same thing. i been studying Jeanettes lees book a guide to killers pool.. Where is this exam at.
Here is a link to the Billiard University drills and exams. Also, Janette Lee's book that you are reading is probably very good for beginners (which you may be one I don't know), but if you want something with a little more substantial info you can't go wrong with Play Your Best Pool by Phil Capelle.


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