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03-17-2020, 08:06 AM

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Originally Posted by BlueRaider View Post
I agree. As I've refined my fundamentals, I've noticed more and more often that certain shots felt more solid than others, almost like I couldn't miss. It felt like everything was just lined up perfectly. Now I realize that's the effect of getting my eyes and my body aligned just right.

I spent a lot of time working on getting my eyes aligned with the shot and then assuming that my grip hand/stroke would also be in line based on that. Not the case. For me, the slight sideways turn to connect my cue placement with the shot line is the key.

Seeing TH demonstrate what I did for years--standing square to the shot and then just dropping into my stance from that position--and saying it's wrong and won't get the cue on line was really eye-opening. And he's 100% correct. I think I developed that position after watching a lot of pros, who seemingly do just that, but they all turn at least slightly, and I suspect that turn is less about body position and more about body clearance to get their cues on the shot line.
For a long time I leaned over the stick like John Morra. I didn't start this way but fell into it playing miniature pool of all things. At first I thought I was seeing better but after a couple years of "finally getting around to it" I realized my stroke had a hook at the end and leaning over the stick lined up the hook and the shot. It wasn't an eye thing at all. So, back to the drawing board to figure out the misalignments (there were many) in my shot routine.
Strangely I arrived at a "perfected" version of the text book form I had learned as a beginner; basically, same thing more linear stroke.

My solution to dropping in on the shot is to air shoot it; directly above the cue ball. This is hilarious. I can reshoot the shot 10 times if I like, nobody calls foul. lol
  
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06-15-2020, 01:16 PM

So it seems that my "fix" wasn't quite a fix. Or at least, it didn't fix the root issue, which was cueing in a slightly diagonal line.

I used my DigiCue Blue for the first time in about a year a couple days ago and got horrible left tip steer scores on almost every shot. 1-3s out of 10 consistently. Tried a bunch of different grips and stances to see if they had any effect. No dice.

Finally stumbled upon the "cure." It involves making a much bigger step forward with my right (front) foot.

After a lot of experimentation, this seems to be my ideal shot approach.

1. Stand a fair distance away from the table, directly behind the shot as normal, with my head centered on the shot line and feet about shoulder width apart.

2. Bring my left foot in and plant it on the shot line (right next to my right foot), then make a big step forward and slightly out with my right foot to bring myself to the table/cue ball.

That's it. I noticed immediately that my stroking arm felt "freer" and every shot felt cleaner using that stance.

I think the big step forward properly rotates my shoulders. Previously I stood too square to the shot with no shoulder rotation and with my right foot not very far ahead of my left. Then, as described in this thread, I twisted my body a bit to meet my cue, but still wasn't rotating my shoulders enough.

Still a lot of work to do to make this stance second nature. But I suspect that will happen quickly as I begin to notice the benefits of it.
  
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Fixing the diagonal
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Fixing the diagonal - 06-16-2020, 02:19 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueRaider View Post
So it seems that my "fix" wasn't quite a fix. Or at least, it didn't fix the root issue, which was cueing in a slightly diagonal line.

I used my DigiCue Blue for the first time in about a year a couple days ago and got horrible left tip steer scores on almost every shot. 1-3s out of 10 consistently. Tried a bunch of different grips and stances to see if they had any effect. No dice.

Finally stumbled upon the "cure." It involves making a much bigger step forward with my right (front) foot.

After a lot of experimentation, this seems to be my ideal shot approach.

1. Stand a fair distance away from the table, directly behind the shot as normal, with my head centered on the shot line and feet about shoulder width apart.

2. Bring my left foot in and plant it on the shot line (right next to my right foot), then make a big step forward and slightly out with my right foot to bring myself to the table/cue ball.

That's it. I noticed immediately that my stroking arm felt "freer" and every shot felt cleaner using that stance.

I think the big step forward properly rotates my shoulders. Previously I stood too square to the shot with no shoulder rotation and with my right foot not very far ahead of my left. Then, as described in this thread, I twisted my body a bit to meet my cue, but still wasn't rotating my shoulders enough.

Still a lot of work to do to make this stance second nature. But I suspect that will happen quickly as I begin to notice the benefits of it.
Having the same problem, with opposite handedness, led me to a similar process. The first visual I needed to solve was the diagonal sense of the cue. When you have a cue centred on your face the dominant eye is off the center of the cue line. With your right eye dominant eye you see more of the right side of the cue than the left. The cue also appears to angle from left to right.

My question was how do I see more of the non dominant side of the cue? In your case if you turn the cue so you are pointing more to the left, more of the left side of the cue comes into view. Sweeping the cue from left to right allows you to visually find the position where an equal amount of each side of the rounded shaft can be seen. At that point the eyes are aligned with the visual perspective position. That was true but hard to work with. Moving the cue to the head was awkward.

Instead I lined up like a carpenter looking down a board trying to see how straight it is. Walk to the shot line and extend the cue onto the line. Standing square looking down the line with your head and right eye opposite your left side and looking directly down the cue from above but still behind the extended cue is the starting point. Remain erect and move your left foot under the cue and on the cue line. I note that this is different from your description. You started square but somewhere along the way you seem to have gotten your right foot forward and left foot back, then brought the left foot ahead into a square position.

If instead you stay square behind the cue and bring the left foot forward first, the hips aren’t square, they are angled back to the right. Keep your head on line with the upper body feeling almost angled back from the cue line. By staying back it’s now possible to move the entire body straight forward and down the line. The forward stride is longer than the step forward with the left foot. The visual perspective moving forward and down is able to maintain a view where equal amounts of both sides of the cue barrel are visible the whole time.

If your right foot gets much ahead of your left the cue will become visually diagonal again. The first solution above, despite being awkward, had an insight about cue position relative to the body. The cue needs to point left relative to your head or a diagonal cue line perspective is the result. I also make a large stride forward but from a back position. My final bridge side foot position is about a half shoe length ahead of my cue side foot.

Last edited by Imac007; 06-16-2020 at 02:22 AM.
  
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Glad this was posted!
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Glad this was posted! - 06-16-2020, 01:14 PM

I am so glad you posted this question as I have the same issue. My vision center is under my left eye (tested using Dr. Dave's method... once I found the correct vision center I no longer miss my straight in drills... huge difference). In order to have my left eye over the cue, my back leg (right) is over the shot line with my cue running slightly more under my body than most. I really tried to stand more sideways to my shot and open up my hips and shoulders, but the position caused major neck pain. But I wanted to give it my full effort before giving up. Finally, a guy at the pool hall told me to stop forcing it and go back to standing slightly over the line. The neck pain is gone and I am still making shots. He brought up Albin Ouschan on youtube. Cue under the left eye, foot slightly over the line, face square to the shot, and cue slightly under part of the body.
Thoughts?
  
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06-17-2020, 12:23 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leigh View Post
I am so glad you posted this question as I have the same issue. My vision center is under my left eye (tested using Dr. Dave's method... once I found the correct vision center I no longer miss my straight in drills... huge difference). In order to have my left eye over the cue, my back leg (right) is over the shot line with my cue running slightly more under my body than most. I really tried to stand more sideways to my shot and open up my hips and shoulders, but the position caused major neck pain. But I wanted to give it my full effort before giving up. Finally, a guy at the pool hall told me to stop forcing it and go back to standing slightly over the line. The neck pain is gone and I am still making shots. He brought up Albin Ouschan on youtube. Cue under the left eye, foot slightly over the line, face square to the shot, and cue slightly under part of the body.
Thoughts?
When you stand with arms hanging straight down, the arm is beside the body. If you hold a cue extended from the side it would make a right angle with the body. The foot on the cue side is pointed straight ahead but not under the cue. If you allow the other foot to move left the width of your foot and shift your weight towards that foot the cue side hip shifts away from the cue line. There is now room for the cue side foot to slide slightly towards the cue and under the cue line. The feet will be roughly shoulder width apart now. Shifting the bridge side foot about a half shoe length straight forward changes the hip angle slightly towards the tip end. Bending at both the knees and hips, the body can time how to hold the head visually looking down the cue line. During this coordinated lowering the head and the cueing shoulder descend directly down towards the cue, while maintaining a central vision perspective. The cue shoulder dropping straight down allows the hand to find itself holding the cue in a vertical cueing plane. Hold it with a sideways squeeze. The hand feels flattened not fisted. The arm can hinge from the elbow, or swing from the elbow and shoulder down that aligned plane. The cue plane created by the flattened hand must align with the elbow hinge plane.

I highlighted the part about the cue running under the body. Trying to position your head to be looking directly down the cue line while the cue runs under the body brings up a stooped stance picture. It also gives me a crick in the neck just thinking about trying to move my head over the right side of the angled cue plane in order to be able to look down and back. That is the only way to see enough of the right side of the cue. My head must now twist to the left in order to try to find a perspective that is looking down the cue line. I always feel like I’m looking left because I’m having to turn my neck left then twist it my eyes around to look down the left oriented cue. As a right handed, left eye dominant player, the cue angle must be such that the cue appears to extend directly forward. For that perspective to happen the perspective must see equal amounts of both sides of the cue. As you noted, when the cue runs under your body, the gyrations needed to arrive at a perspective that gets predictable results feels unnatural. Running the cue beside the body will also feel odd to start with. It’s not “wrong” though, it’s just different from what you have been doing.

This Dr. Dave link has three still photos. The center photo is the perspective showing equal amounts of each side of the rounded shaft.
https://billiards.colostate.edu/bd_a...011/july11.pdf
  
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06-17-2020, 10:29 AM

This was helpful.
  
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An Annika Sörenstam clinic perspective
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An Annika Sörenstam clinic perspective - 06-17-2020, 01:36 PM

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Originally Posted by Leigh View Post
This was helpful.
I saw a video of Annika Sörenstam giving a clinic to a group of amateur ladies. She used a variety of clubs and swing lengths to send the ball to targets. She stood with her body in different positions and explained that the stance wasn’t as crucial as many thought. She stood facing the fairway with a wood and sent the ball to a target 70 yards straight ahead. The keys to her were the swing direction through impact and how long the swing was determined the distance.

The description I gave about the stance needs to be taken with the same idea in mind. You can simply lower your face and look down the cue length/aim line from the butt. Finding the center alignment vision picture matching Dr Dave’s center alignment photo is the key. I’ve chosen that as my consistent starting point. How you get your body into a stance to maintain that centered perspective and get the body in position to deliver the cue through impact on that same plane is entirely personal. That is called functional intent, the desired outcome.

Every seeming principle can be ignored, even eye alignment. Consider a fine player like Niels Feijen who aligns his aim while standing, then positions his body to deliver down the line. His head while in deliver position is not looking down the cue line. The alignment while standing’s, functional intent is to find the positioning for the cue for the desired shot. His functional intent of his stance is different though. Once the cue is placed every move now is designed to organize his body to deliver the cue precisely down that line. His head placement has two advantages that I can see. He has a sideways perspective of the cue plane relative to the horizontal and he can see the exact height his tip will be contacting the ball.

I don’t have to be aligned directly behind my key in order to unlock a door. We can learn precision. I’m not really aware of my fork or spoon when eating, yet I don’t miss and hit my lips. That said, I find it easier to get the tip to contact the cue ball precisely when I start from a consistent position. Feijen and Strickland are aware of precisely where they have positioned their eyes and head. That is their consistent starting point. Perspective and alignment are two different things. Synchronizing them is a functional intent of its own, arriving at a consistent starting point.
  
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06-19-2020, 12:24 PM

I've discovered another component to the tip steer issue--unknowingly letting my elbow flare out a bit when getting into my stance.

I previously thought that just correcting my stance would automatically correct my chicken wing problem, and for the most part, it did. But a slightly diagonal elbow position remained (maybe 5-10 degrees off of completely vertical on the shot line).

It was actually a comment Mark Wilson made about Filler where he kept his grip hand close to his hips/waist as he lowered himself to the table that got me thinking about this. When I would airstroke during my pre-shot routine, I wouldn't bring my hand/elbow in, and would instead get down into my stance from that airstroke position, causing the slight chicken wing.

I've found that intentionally bringing my hand in towards my body as the last step before getting down on the table keeps everything lined up better.

When I combine the bigger step forward + the more relaxed/inward hand position, I don't have any problems with tip steer and my overall accuracy is better.
  
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Chest to cue
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Chest to cue - 06-19-2020, 06:05 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueRaider View Post
I've discovered another component to the tip steer issue--unknowingly letting my elbow flare out a bit when getting into my stance.

I previously thought that just correcting my stance would automatically correct my chicken wing problem, and for the most part, it did. But a slightly diagonal elbow position remained (maybe 5-10 degrees off of completely vertical on the shot line).

It was actually a comment Mark Wilson made about Filler where he kept his grip hand close to his hips/waist as he lowered himself to the table that got me thinking about this. When I would airstroke during my pre-shot routine, I wouldn't bring my hand/elbow in, and would instead get down into my stance from that airstroke position, causing the slight chicken wing.

I've found that intentionally bringing my hand in towards my body as the last step before getting down on the table keeps everything lined up better.

When I combine the bigger step forward + the more relaxed/inward hand position, I don't have any problems with tip steer and my overall accuracy is better.
Cueing from beside the body, the side of the chest can lower and provide another contact point for the cue. Modern snooker training is a 4 point concept. The grip, chest, chin and bridge provide a “walled” stroke. When the cue is placed on line with the shaft in the bridge, along the side of the chest to the grip hand, sideways movement is constrained. The chin now constrains up/down movement.
  
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