Common mistakes a lot of average players make.

middleofnowhere

Registered
1. Standing in right place.
2. Cue as level as possible.
Standing in the right place may sound simple and even silly and go over some people's heads but it's crucial. Even the way you walk around the table and approach the shot prior to getting down on it, has a lot to do with whether you'll actually make it or not.

When you're lined up on the shot before getting down and you get down on that shot you could practically shoot it with your eyes closed if it's done right you'll be on the ball so well. It might require just the smallest of adjustments.

It's when you see the player twisting all over the place leaning moving their feet after they're down on the ball moving their bodies that you realize that they're not lined up. They're trying to do now what they should have done before they ever got down on the ball.

This may sound a little silly also but when walking around the table don't walk around too close to the table, Stand back to give yourself a little perspective as you approach these shots. It can really make a difference in making the game easier to play
 
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BlueRaider

Registered
Standing in the right place may sound simple and even silly and go over some people's heads but it's crucial. Even the way you walk around the table and approach the shot prior to getting down on it, has a lot to do with whether you'll actually make it or not.

When you're lined up on the shot before getting down and you get down on that shot you could practically shoot it with your eyes closed if it's done right you'll be on the ball so well might require just the smallest of adjustments.

It's when you see the player twisting all over the place leaning moving their feet after they're down on the ball moving their bodies that you realize that they're not lined up. They're trying to do now what they should have done before they ever got down on the ball.

This may sound a little silly also but when walking around the table don't walk around too close to the table, Stand back to give yourself a little perspective as you approach these shots. It can really make a difference in making the game easier to play
I agree, and I actually think the oft-repeated advice of "work on your stroke" sends many players down the wrong path. A straight stroke is probably 80% stance/setup and 20% muscle memory. And most of the bad habits people develop in their pool strokes are because their stances don't allow them to stroke straight, so they develop all sorts of quirks and band-aid solutions to correct for it.

I had a lesson with a PBIA instructor about two years into picking up the game. I struggled terribly with long shots and it's because I had a serious chicken wing arm position due to a bad stance. I remember the instructor essentially moved my body into a proper alignment with the shot he had setup. And while it felt horribly awkward at the time, the ease with which I could make long shots once properly aligned was incredible.
 

Bob Jewett

AZB Osmium Member
Staff member
Gold Member
Silver Member
Avoiding using English.
Many beginners have an underlying problem that causes that. They don't know how to chalk. Then they miscue on spin shots. Then they learn that spin shots are not for them. It becomes psychologically impossible for them to hit the cue ball more than a little from center. I've seen this problem over and over in students who have played for a few years on their own.
 

BlueRaider

Registered
Many beginners have an underlying problem that causes that. They don't know how to chalk. Then they miscue on spin shots. Then they learn that spin shots are not for them. It becomes psychologically impossible for them to hit the cue ball more than a little from center. I've seen this problem over and over in students who have played for a few years on their own.
Is it a failure to chalk properly or a lack of tip accuracy?

I think a lot of players gravitate towards center and become unable to draw the ball or apply significant spin with any sort of consistency or distance because when they even begin to approach the miscue limit, they're 50/50 on miscuing because their tip wanders from final pause to actual contact.

Could be due to a dropped elbow or a tightening grip, but something causes frequent miscues and then they become scared. And when they force themselves out of their center ball comfort zone, they're still likely to miscue because they anticipate the miscue, which creates tip accuracy errors by itself.
 

dquarasr

Registered
- Not concentrating enough on fundamentals
- Not giving proper grip enough due (squeezing the cue and twisting the wrist)

And I’ll add a third: thinking the “next best thing” in cue technology (e.g. CF, tips, gloves) will fix many of their deficiencies.
 

sjm

Older and Wiser
Silver Member
I am interpreting the term "average player" as meaning a nine ball Fargo in the 500s.

I think one of the biggest mistakes these players make is focusing too much on the nine ball break. At this level of play, the break rarely decides anything. Of course, better players keep telling them that the break is everything, but it's to their disadvantage to be so advised, for there are other skills that are far more important to focus on at this level of play.

In this range of play, both players get a decent look at the table in nearly every rack, and who wins comes down to decision making and execution, not the break.

Wait until you hit Fargo 600 before you sweat the break too much. Until then, there are bigger fish to fry.
 

middleofnowhere

Registered
I am interpreting the term "average player" as meaning a nine ball Fargo in the 500s.

I think one of the biggest mistakes these players make is focusing too much on the nine ball break. At this level of play, the break rarely decides anything. Of course, better players keep telling them that the break is everything, but it's to their disadvantage to be so advised, for there are other skills that are far more important to focus on at this level of play.

In this range of play, both players get a decent look at the table in nearly every rack, and who wins comes down to decision making and execution, not the break.

Wait until you hit Fargo 600 before you sweat the break too much. Until then, there are bigger fish to fry.
I think average mistakes means just that, mistakes not player speed. Experienced players may make the same mistakes as a newer player that neither should make.

A mistake does not cease to be a mistake because a player has become a good player in spite of it.
 

justnum

Principal Investigator of Magic Trick Shots
Silver Member
stop getting upset after missing or losing

if your a average its for a good reason.

enjoy being a average and have fun learning what you can.

the pros do it but average players shouldnt.

in the 2016 american straight pool match between pagulayan and feijen both miss very makeable balls by low level players. both have a good reason to be upset, they play enough pool to know better.
 
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gregcantrall

Center Ball
Silver Member
Many beginners have an underlying problem that causes that. They don't know how to chalk. Then they miscue on spin shots. Then they learn that spin shots are not for them. It becomes psychologically impossible for them to hit the cue ball more than a little from center. I've seen this problem over and over in students who have played for a few years on their own.
IMHO the underlying problem comes before the need for chalk. Learning to walk first, to me means learn to control the cue ball with velocity and vertical axis. The simple study of tangent lines and variation off that line can lead to more consistent results than adding spin to the cue ball to make it dance off the rails.
Before I learned to walk I had to learn to stand. The shooting platform come first.
 
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