Confusion!.......Spin the Cue ball or Center Cue ball MOSTLY?

loggerhead12

Active member
I think what’s going on here is he wants you to start center ball.

My GolfTec instructor only let me hit my 7-iron for almost three months. At that point he had exorcised all the demons of my old swing and built a whole new one. He certainly didn't intend for me to only play with my 7-iron forever (Tin Cup notwithstanding).
 

Poolplaya9

Tellin' it like it is...
Silver Member
Yep, and it's the same with all ball sports. You put deliberate spin on the tennis ball, golf ball, baseball, ping pong ball, soccer ball, volleyball to avoid putting accidental spin on it. Hitting anything dead neutral is hard.
On the surface that may sound intuitive but I think the right answer was already given in post #49 quoted below. 5% off (or 10% etc) is 5% off regardless of where you started from/intended to hit. I think your belief may largely be caused by it being much easier to visually tell the difference between no spin and a little spin, than a little spin and a little more than a little spin, but the amount you were off, and the negative affect it is going to result in, are mostly the same either way. 5% is 5%.
At risk of repeating myself...

Any off-target hit on the CB has the same effect on the outcome as any other - "crossing the centerline" doesn't make it worse. And avoiding centerball leaves a gap in your game.

pj
chgo
 

Korsakoff

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
My GolfTec instructor only let me hit my 7-iron for almost three months. At that point he had exorcised all the demons of my old swing and built a whole new one. He certainly didn't intend for me to only play with my 7-iron forever (Tin Cup notwithstanding).
Tin Cup. Great Movie!
 

Gunn_Slinger

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
The idea of staying on the vertical axis is fine for beginners and recreational players. I know of no accomplished player that tries to stay on the vertical axis. I know of several who say they stay on the vertical axis, but watching their game it's obvious they're not. I have done hundreds of hours of commentary for professional events. There isn't a professional player that doesn't hit most shots with some kind of left/right spin, and the players who people on these board say stay "closer to center" are the ones that really go to extremes like Buddy Hall and Chang Jung-Lin.

I was sitting next to an internet poster who had never seen the elite professionals live, and he literally gasped when Chang stroked a shot with extreme miscue-approach English. And the cueball wasn't even going anywhere special. . And we had this discussion. He always thought Chang stayed close vertical center, but watching up and close and personal, observation trumped all. I also mention Buddy Hall because it amazes me how many people say he stayed closer to center, yet Buddy not only taught the Clock System, but he discusses the importance of being able to use all of the ball in one of his post match interviews after maybe a US Open event on YouTube.

Freddie <~~~ a little off center
In the 60's and 70's with wool cloth and the old balls, many good players played 'center ball' , best I saw was Cole Dickson, although Cole used some 'helper english' , mostly outside english. Inside english was very hard to use with the old equipment. Today, it looks to me that many players style mimics the bar table style of the 70's with the oversized cue ball where you went forward more because of the big ball. There were players who could draw that big rock. I went on the road with 'Baltimore' Buddy Dennis, who could draw that rock, although you could knock your action if you did ! lol.
Pushout forever !
 

Fatboy

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It should make you feel better to know that saying is in reference to skinning catfish, not house cats lol. 👍
Lol I never knew that. Come to think of it, makes sense. I forgot about catfish, we used to use pliers to skin them when I was a little kid, I probably haven’t done that since I was 6 years old. Pretty cool memories actually-my uncle.

best
Fatboy😀
 

Fatboy

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
In the 60's and 70's with wool cloth and the old balls, many good players played 'center ball' , best I saw was Cole Dickson, although Cole used some 'helper english' , mostly outside english. Inside english was very hard to use with the old equipment. Today, it looks to me that many players style mimics the bar table style of the 70's with the oversized cue ball where you went forward more because of the big ball. There were players who could draw that big rock. I went on the road with 'Baltimore' Buddy Dennis, who could draw that rock, although you could knock your action if you did ! lol.
Pushout forever !
Inside English was so difficult on old equipment. Totally different world unless your extremely gifted/
 

maha

from way back when
Silver Member
oh, back to learning...

first you must learn to make your stroke go straight so you can hit the cue ball exactly where you intend to. until then any off center hits will make it worse.

then speed control.

then hi and low

then left and right-- to learn what happens and how the cueball reacts when you do it.

you use english when you determine that centerline on the cueball wont accomplish what you want as easy as side.

position awareness comes along with each of them.
 

arnaldo

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Buddy not only taught the Clock System, but he discusses the importance of being able to use all of the ball in one of his post match interviews after maybe a US Open event on YouTube.
Indeed -- Buddy has some wonderful country boy-inflected savvy comments about english on several classic-times videos when he was on the commentary team:

-- "When the shot needs just a hair of english, don't aim to apply that small touch . . . aim center-ball and just think about the english, and it'll be on the cue ball every time when you hit it."

-- The time when a shooter masse-ed the CB in a beautiful arc -- out and around -- a cluster then curving back in, to pocket an OB a table-length away; his commentating partner exclaiming "What a stroke" and Buddy, equally impressed, jovially said: "Man, he had english on both sides of that cue ball!"

Arnaldo ~ Always loved commentary with Buddy's listen-all-day mellifluous, Southern baritone voice. Same with Grady's.
 

Fatboy

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I play inside on most shots as a preference.

It let’s me keep a “tighter” cue ball.

To me, inside is just as easy as outside.
For me now it’s the same, took me much longer to get to that point and faster equipment seemed to help(or was a coincidence or a little of both). I agree about a tighter CB, as well. Also a little inside gives a bit of bite on the OB on thin cuts.
 

Poolmanis

AzB Silver Member
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For me now it’s the same, took me much longer to get to that point and faster equipment seemed to help(or was a coincidence or a little of both). I agree about a tighter CB, as well. Also a little inside gives a bit of bite on the OB on thin cuts.
what do you mean "gives a bit of bite"?
( I also prefer little inside on thin cuts if possible )
 
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Poolmanis

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
This topic is really interesting for me also because I learnt all by myself in small town where were not any good players. When I practiced alone I did shoot first year just vertical axis. When i had confidence that i can cut balls okay I moved using, understanding and learning english.
I am still happy i did that.

Couple years ago my little sister also started playing again after 20 years off from game. She is over 40 too and she did the same. She just played on vertical axis over year too.
I started coaching her 2019 and she made into women national team to eurochamps 2020.
Covid got it cancelled.. That was bummer coz it was gonna be in Finland too.

Last year i have been coaching her position play with English, break and kicking and banking.

Now she got again on team and won 10-ball women Finnish Champs and ranking events too. Dominating last events. Whitewashing people :)

So i am biased learning first without english and then move to using it when u got strong foundation. Makes learning more straight forward with less mess.
 

Ratta

Hearing the balls.....
Silver Member
This topic is really interesting for me also because I learnt all by myself in small town where were not any good players. When I practiced alone I did shoot first year just vertical axis. When i had confidence that i can cut balls okay I moved using, understanding and learning english.
I am still happy i did that.

Couple years ago my little sister also started playing again after 20 years off from game. She is over 40 too and she did the same. She just played on vertical axis over year too.
I started coaching her 2019 and she made into women national team to eurochamps 2020.
Covid got it cancelled.. That was bummer coz it was gonna be in Finland too.

Last year i have been coaching her position play with English, break and kicking and banking.

Now she got again on team and won 10-ball women Finnish Champs and ranking events too. Dominating last events. Whitewashing people :)

So i am biased learning first without english and then move to using it when u got strong foundation. Makes learning more straight forward with less mess.
@Topic
Of course you need to both sides- and you have to master both things.

@Poolmanis: I see it the same way- And I usually always use the "original" wagonwheel stuff ( and to use it just, as Ted Brown explained how to use it !!) , because imo this is a real eye opener for everyone- as soon as they see, how much you CAN do with just using the vertical axis and understanding the physics by just using different heights on the cueball and using different speed.
And then of course you need to go into detail with spin and all the nuances (and general knowledge, too).
 
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gerryf

Well-known member
oh, back to learning...

first you must learn to make your stroke go straight so you can hit the cue ball exactly where you intend to. until then any off center hits will make it worse.

then speed control.

then hi and low

then left and right-- to learn what happens and how the cueball reacts when you do it.

you use english when you determine that centerline on the cueball wont accomplish what you want as easy as side.

position awareness comes along with each of them.
This kind of structured learning really speeds up skill development. It's remarkable how quickly a 17-year old newbie working with a coach becomes a strong player.
 

chenjy9

Well-known member
The way I see it is this, if you don't know/learn how to hit center ball how would you know how much English is needed when you need to apply it?
 

FranCrimi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Yes, you have to know how to do both but not to the extent people here are saying. The reason why you were given conflicting information from two top tier players is because of a matter of style of play. Some players lean more towards a punch style of playing. They will tell you to stay more towards center ball, but that's because it suits their style. Another style is the spin style of play. Those players will encourage you to play more on the outside of the ball.

But keep in mind that although you have to know how to do both, you will find that your preference will lean you more in one direction than the other. Once you find out what style suits you, then work with players/teachers who also use and encourage that same style of play or you will be conflicted.

You may be surprised to learn that more players than you think started out learning to play with spin rather than center ball. But that type of learning is not for everyone. It depends on the player.
 
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hang-the-9

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Well, yes, but.... I think it's important even for relative beginners to understand side spin shots and use them when required. There are lots of positions where it is either not possible to continue without side spin or it makes the play much easier.

I find myself needing to explain use of side spin very early on to people, but not usually for the sake of having them use it. It's to explain why they should buy one cue vs another due to the shaft technology. When I meet someone new and they are interested in learning, usually one of the first topics that comes up is "I want to buy a cue of my own". Outside of what they can afford the other main thing they need to select is the type of shaft, and without knowing how the shafts work with spin, different diameters and such, they can't make a good decision. So I find myself demonstrating the effects of english on the cueball and how it changes the aiming point then just asking them, would you pay more for an LD shaft so you need to compensate less or do you want to start with something cheap but will need to learn to compensate for the spin more?

They also need to know about spin to know why they miss shots due to not hitting center ball, since their accuracy on the hit is poor, they hit off center and deflect off the aiming line and have no idea why they missed and can't correct it on their own.
 

jay helfert

Shoot Pool, not people
Gold Member
Silver Member
Yes, you have to know how to do both but not to the extent people here are saying. The reason why you were given conflicting information from two top tier players is because of a matter of style of play. Some players lean more towards a punch style of playing. They will tell you to stay more towards center ball, but that's because it suits their style. Another style is the spin style of play. Those players will encourage you to play more on the outside of the ball.

But keep in mind that although you have to know how to do both, you will find that your preference will lean you more in one direction than the other. Once you find out what style suits you, then work with players/teachers who also use and encourage that same style of play or you will be conflicted.

You may be surprised to learn that more players than you think started out learning to play with spin rather than center ball. But that type of learning is not for everyone. It depends on the player.
Good anaylsis here. Some players just gravitated to using lots of english on almost all their shots and other players hit more of a flat ball most of the time. On one extreme was Efren who could spin that ball in any direction he wanted and control it! All the Filipinos seem to follow suit using extreme english on many shots. Earl and Corey may be the best American players who shoot in this style. On the other hand the disciples of the East Coast 14.1 circles probably used as little english as possible to move the cue ball around, depending instead on speed of stroke and playing natural running english on most shots. A lot easier to play accurate position this way imo. They might use throw on tight little shots near the pocket. You tell me Fran if I'm close here. I do know Ginky could really spin the cue ball if he had to.
 
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