A word about learning sidespin

The_JV

'AZB_Combat Certified'
Had a comment on BHE... lost interested midway through. What's the point really. CJ will just jump in and tell me I have tons to learn and should take up the guitar...lol.

I will say that Tin Man's take on rolling with english rather than drawing the CB around the table, was a turning point in my game. It makes the game so much easier. It's more than a shot perference though. It's a mindset in pattern play. Bangers will need to adopt and fight to stick with it, but if they do it's the easiest way to get a ball or two stronger, imo
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
Demetrius,

I still think a system like the System for Aiming With Sidespin (SAWS), which accounts for squirt, swerve, and throw, is useful. SAWS allows somebody to be effective using sidespin immediately over a wide range of shot types, distances, and speeds. The system and the required "pre-calibration" procedure also help teach "intuition" and "feel" over time, assuming the player pays attention to and learns from the SAWS lines of aim. Eventually, the intuition and feel will be good enough to use the system less or not all.

Regards,
Dave

Dave,

Thank you for the explanation. To be fair I learned by feel and haven't had the experience of using SAWS to guide me through the learning process. I can see how that could be a big aide.

When I hear people talk about back hand English they are usually saying things like "This isn't working for me". But they just started it and wonder why they are still missing after 10 shots. Or I hear people that gave up decades ago and don't hit off center.

I don't think I have a gripe with any type of system so long as people understand 1) the ultimate goal is to develop your feel to the point it comes naturally and 2) this will take time and effort. As long as they have the right destination and know it will take some travel I'm fine with it.

Concerning the bold red point in your quote, I once thought that also. But I've been using SAWS for a few years now, and I still plan to continue to use it. My "feel" is better, but I like the confidence SAWS gives me. I don't need to "judge" or "feel" anything. I just aim center ball (which is natural and easy), do the pre-determined pivots based on shot distance, speed, and tip height, and then focus only on stroking straight. I don't need to think, judge, or feel anything when I am down on the shot, so there is less chance for doubt or indecision.

Regards,
Dave
 
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dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
As somebody who has tried to develop a feel to adjust for spin at different speeds and distances, and has now been using the SAWS system, I can give you some observations about my experience using it. Overall, I think SAWS is good to learn, even if you just use feel for spin shots.

Learning SAWS will make you understand the variables, since you can't apply the system unless you account for the variables of the upcoming shot. The variables include distance between CB and OB, speed of shot, amount of follow/draw, and bridge length (if something different than your standard one). Even if you purely use feel to apply side spin, it's useful and necessary to think about these variables.

Thank you for sharing that. Excellent point. Even if you don't use SAWS, the process of learning SAWS can greatly improve your understanding, intuition, and "feel."


Once I decide to use SAWS on some shot, I don't let myself override the shot with any FEEL after I've applied it. I've learned that if I do things properly, then the system gives me the best results. In fact, when I miss a shot, the most likely reason is that I didn't see the center-ball aiming line correctly. SAWS starts with orienting to the center-ball aiming line. If you don't get that right, you're applying a system on top of a bad starting point.

Lastly, it has improved my confidence on spin shots. The whole reason I started down the path to learn it was when I was doing a certain practice shot, which needed a good amount of tip offset (tip or more), hit at a soft speed, and a long distance between CB and OB. This is like the worst case scenario for a side-spin shot. At the time, I only used parallel shift with feel. I couldn't gauge the swerve after the initial squirt with any reliability. Before, I'd never expect to make this shot more than 1 out of every 10 times, but with SAWS I'd have a fighting chance, because I've learned to take into account the variables and spent time learning the techniques.

Take these observations for what they're worth. I'm not a touring professional. I'm a bar-box league guy, who practices at home on a 9 footer. I'm hoping to climb from A to AA rating some day, but still just a hack.

Thanks again. All of your points were very well stated.

Regards,
Dave
 

justnum

Billiards Improvement Research Projects Associate
Silver Member
Imagine the ball as a block for estimating side spin. A rotating block has a visual profile similar to a sphere.
Its useful because the change of direction in rotation after contact.

Side spin on direct hit shots VS Side spin going rail first

Try it on the table and see the difference
The simulation below is to show a spinning object will spin the other way after contact at critical areas, on a sphere its less obvious.
This is related to side spin.

www.myphysicslab.com/engine2D/collision-en.html
 

ShootingArts

Smorg is giving St Peter the 7!
Gold Member
Silver Member
Does that mean keeping the cue parallel with the shot line, with no angled squirt compensation? Do you purposely create the right amount of swerve to “cancel” squirt, or does that “just happen”?

pj
chgo

I don't angle to adjust for squirt. I change my aim point on the object ball to deal with all of the factors that will affect anything but a shot where I am hitting centerline of the cue ball.

The_JV, I don't know how to multi-quote but I strongly agree with your post. I focus on playing position so that angles will get the cue ball where I want it for the next shot but it is pretty common for me to have a little running english on the cue ball. Makes the angle better coming off of the first rail and the cue ball has a natural roll which is easier to judge how far it will roll than If the cue ball is behaving differently.

Some move into the spin to win stage and never get past trying to make shape focusing on spin. Some discover how easy pool is when they start getting proper angles on balls and discover the extreme spin that they worked so hard to get a handle on is rarely needed.

Hu
 

HawaiianEye

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I don't angle to adjust for squirt. I change my aim point on the object ball to deal with all of the factors that will affect anything but a shot where I am hitting centerline of the cue ball.

The_JV, I don't know how to multi-quote but I strongly agree with your post. I focus on playing position so that angles will get the cue ball where I want it for the next shot but it is pretty common for me to have a little running english on the cue ball. Makes the angle better coming off of the first rail and the cue ball has a natural roll which is easier to judge how far it will roll than If the cue ball is behaving differently.

Some move into the spin to win stage and never get past trying to make shape focusing on spin. Some discover how easy pool is when they start getting proper angles on balls and discover the extreme spin that they worked so hard to get a handle on is rarely needed.

Hu
Angles are the key.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I think and from experience I believe that it makes way more sense to spend much more time learning to position the cue ball by getting the correct angle on each shot rather than one using sidespin very aggressively just because you are not getting the correct angle on a shot that would lead to proper position for the next shot with more center cue ball than sidespin.

That's what playing 14.1 is all about- learning cue ball control with proper angles and speed control. That's what pattern play is all about- moving from ball to ball with the least amount of cue ball work. To each his own, but if I am going to teach someone this game- it is not by having them shoot endless sidespin shots- rather they spend the hours learning cue ball control via 14.1. there are hundreds of 14.1 videos available for free that one can use to begin and to guide them through the 14.1 learning curve.

Constant need for severe sidespin usually means that someone is "out of line" way too much and out of line means that one did not get the proper angle. Better to spend more practice time learning to stay "in line" than expecting to be "out of line" very often.
 

The_JV

'AZB_Combat Certified'
The_JV, I don't know how to multi-quote but I strongly agree with your post. I focus on playing position so that angles will get the cue ball where I want it for the next shot but it is pretty common for me to have a little running english on the cue ball. Makes the angle better coming off of the first rail and the cue ball has a natural roll which is easier to judge how far it will roll than If the cue ball is behaving differently.
I posted this in some other thread, but I have total clarity on the moment that I figured out the better way to play the game. A buddy that I simply could never beat, made a comment after I dumped yet another set to him and while I was complaining about my struggles. This guy played the game in such a smooth fashion it seemed effortless. He asked me why I played so many trick shots. Of course I thought he was being a jackass, so at first I scoffed, but then asked him to explain. He told me ever time I attempt to make the CB do something it didn't want to do naturally, it was a trick shot...

The explanation didn't go further than that, but I did ponder it for a while. Although I was at my peak "banger" game, and could pot most anything, and when the stars aligned I could swing that CB around the table endlessly, the truth was I sucked...lol. It took a little while to reprogram myself, but when I did, man did my play take off.

I do my best to pass that advice along to those who will listen. Unfotunately, most bangers need to hit that success wall so to speak before they will entertain doing away with all the applause they recieve from spinning the hell out of the CB
 

Geosnookery

Well-known member
Ronnie OSullivan puts spin on 100% of shots. Never as in ‘never’ hits centre ball. I’m more like most snooker players...use spin 85% or so of shots.

The most basic differential calculus would show that there is infinite odds against both the object ball and cueball landing exactly in the desired spot with perfect centre ball hit... hitting centre ball can only be ‘good enough’.

I don’t use any system other than feel. All the more reason to get a cue, tip and stick with them over the years. I’m not against ‘systems’ as long as they make the player think about ‘why’ balls act as they do. Then a player can adapt a system to their own style.

On top of all this, using spin can just be ‘fun’. I play games on my table where I try to cut in balls from almost impossible angles getting maximum spinning action with a snooker cue. I’ll do things like place balls a few inches out and past a side pocket and try to backspin them in and and use the rails to bring the cueball back to centre table. A challenge for each of the six pockets.
 
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straightline

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
...I've been using SAWS for a few years now, and I still plan to continue to use it. My "feel" is better, but I like the confidence SAWS gives me. I don't need to "judge" or "feel" anything. I just aim center ball (which is natural and easy), do the pre-determined pivots based on shot distance, speed and tip height, and then focus only on stroking straight. I don't need to think, judge, or feel anything when I am down on the shot, so there is less chance for doubt or indecision...
Had to extract this. Complete agreement. I haven't delved into SAWS but the stability of an effective method is the nuts.
Tournaments are psycho soup. Anybody on feel alone better have a valid pass.
 

Tin Man

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
Had to extract this. Complete agreement. I haven't delved into SAWS but the stability of an effective method is the nuts.
Tournaments are psycho soup. Anybody on feel alone better have a valid pass.

My feel pass isn't expired and is good for all season.

I just responded to a PM and will link and example of what I'm talking about as to the benefit of spin with a rolling ball. Go to 4:35 in the video below. DeLuna is a power player so if there was anyone I thought would stun his ball around instead of playing my style it would be him. But no. Look at how he shoots the 6. He doesn't stun out for the 7. He rolls the 6 with a half ball hit (to get the maximum glance angle and not sink through the tangent line) and uses outside to come back for the 7. Then notice the 7 to the 8. He doesn't stun out, he rolls it in with outside to come one rail across.

Rolling with sidespin is very easy to control the cue ball in terms of direction and speed. On the 7 he was crossing the shot line of the 8 and speed was critical. First game. New table. Pressure. Trust the rolling ball!!!

Now, you can say "well, with those angles sidespin makes sense I guess" as if it was a necessary evil he was forced into. But it's not. He PLAYED for those angles specifically so he COULD use sidespin with a rolling ball.

Incidentally, at 43:19 you can see Albin put to death the notion that top players don't use more than one tip of sidespin. He juiced this ball with inside to hold for the 5. And he's a Euro-bot who likes to keep close to center and use stuns more than most. Doesn't mean he's unfamiliar with the outside of the ball.

Hey, you guys can play how you want to play. There are a lot of ways to play and I'm the first to admit it. If you are effortlessly weaving through 9 and 10 ball racks all day long then stick to it.

 

straightline

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I don't have a problem with english or feel. I ask the question; how often and how high do you cash on feel? Getting down by the seat of your pants will drift out of spec sooner than later. BHE is just a mechanically consistent way of applying self compensating english that will always be in spec.
 

ShootingArts

Smorg is giving St Peter the 7!
Gold Member
Silver Member
I posted this in some other thread, but I have total clarity on the moment that I figured out the better way to play the game. A buddy that I simply could never beat, made a comment after I dumped yet another set to him and while I was complaining about my struggles. This guy played the game in such a smooth fashion it seemed effortless. He asked me why I played so many trick shots. Of course I thought he was being a jackass, so at first I scoffed, but then asked him to explain. He told me ever time I attempt to make the CB do something it didn't want to do naturally, it was a trick shot...

The explanation didn't go further than that, but I did ponder it for a while. Although I was at my peak "banger" game, and could pot most anything, and when the stars aligned I could swing that CB around the table endlessly, the truth was I sucked...lol. It took a little while to reprogram myself, but when I did, man did my play take off.

I do my best to pass that advice along to those who will listen. Unfotunately, most bangers need to hit that success wall so to speak before they will entertain doing away with all the applause they recieve from spinning the hell out of the CB

Today's players are pretty much back to that spin hell out of everything stage. I was watching the best in the world play a match on video. He had an easy shot, a little follow and a little inside and the cue ball would come back very sweetly into shape. Instead he drew three or four rails in heavy traffic. Hit another ball and was left with a very tough shot. He missed and lost the game. He did exactly the same a few games later, hitting a ball in traffic and losing the game again. That was a probable four game swing in tournament play and he eventually lost the match.

It seems a lot of today's players are going to live or die with draw and sidespin. It isn't because they can't make other shots, they aren't wired to see them. No question I shoot more draw and sidespin than I once did but I am keenly aware of traffic. I am far from the best and I have seen the best get in trouble in traffic too many times. Exceptions to everything but basically I want to roll the cue ball around the least amount possible.

People have to be ready for advice. When you tell them it is almost all about the cue ball many have trouble grasping what you are saying. "It's about the object ball, that is what you have to put in the hole!" When you control that white ball making the object ball becomes automatic on most shots.

Took some experimenting to learn the little I know:

Click Reply on each post you want to quote - they'll show up in your Reply in that order, and you can edit them and insert your own response(s) where needed.

pj
chgo

Thanks! Things can be very simple but if you don't know, you don't know!

Back to pool, the difference between adding some angle to allow for squirt and swerve and changing my target slightly is that I am still shooting at a definite point, I have a target. As a kid I learned "Kentucky windage" shooting a rifle. A long shot in a stiff breeze I would guesstimate how high to hold and how far over and send off a shot. I hit the target surprisingly often. Later though, in benchrest competition I looked at windage flags and I moved up and over very precise distances looking at lines on paper. My accuracy was far better. By having a target out there shooting pool I have something to shoot at instead of adding one more guess.

Bowling is another good example. You can guesstimate how the ball is going to hook or you can use the arrows to quickly aim and adjust to find the pocket. Once found, you have something repeatable.

Hu
 

boogieman

It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that ping.
Had a comment on BHE... lost interested midway through. What's the point really. CJ will just jump in and tell me I have tons to learn and should take up the guitar...lol.

If you've been doing your homework, you already have the metronome, so guitar seems like a natural transition!:p :)

My mind is in tangent mode today, but I'm thinking about selling my guitar and amp. I've never done much with it other than learn all the major and minor chords. I'm no good at it and have figured that working full time at 40 I don't have time to master a guitar now that I have a pool table in my basement. Anything requiring mastery, practice and dedication is kind of just taking time away from pool. I've never had much fun jamming or playing guitar and would not consider myself anything beyond beginner level. I love music, but I have a record player and youtube music if I want to listen to some masters of sound.

I could probably "magically" turn my guitar and amp into a new pool stick if I put it up for sale, so I think that's what I'll do.

I will say that Tin Man's take on rolling with english rather than drawing the CB around the table, was a turning point in my game. It makes the game so much easier. It's more than a shot perference though. It's a mindset in pattern play. Bangers will need to adopt and fight to stick with it, but if they do it's the easiest way to get a ball or two stronger, imo

I'm probably what you would consider a banger, though I'm a student of the game. I'm going to try to work on the rolling with english rather than drawing. I'm learning pattern play and I always seem to get in a line that requires drawing off rails and such. I need to just force myself to not draw or get BIH when I get offline so I can actually learn where I need to be on a shot. It's like I have a mental block and set myself up for having to draw, even though I know it's the wrong choice. Do you have any thoughts on getting into the mindset? I'd sure like to get a ball or two stronger.
 
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