Stroke limit/skill apex

Willowbrook Wolfy

Your wushu is weak!
Gold Member
I was talking to a guy on my league team the other day. He practices all the time and has played for a good number of years. He’s not old. In his 30’s. APA 5/6. He is under the impression that he will never get any better no matter how much he practices. He said in a sense he knows how to do it but can’t. I know people do get stuck at certain levels. Why is that? Always thought it was an effort issue rather than skill apex. Especially at that level of play.

Is it true that no matter how much some people practice they actually can’t get better no matter how much effort is put in? It seems wrong. I’m always under the impression you can always get better and the Sky is the limit as long as you put the effort in.👍😉
 
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Willowbrook Wolfy

Your wushu is weak!
Gold Member
They have reached their natural high, anything after that requires 2-3 times as much work, and 4-5 times as much brain work. I’d bet big his practice isn’t sound and he needs a brain reset.
Good point. And bbb also. I’m just going off personal experience here. I’ve told this story before. But started playing at 8. Call me naive but spent first 8-10 years playing without left or right english. I never had someone to teach me. My dad would show me say that shot into the side where you draw cb back to hit other ball in and that was it. Just left me to it. And almost played no 9 ball. Only 8 and only top/bottom/center.

Once I learned what left, right, and 9 ball were it probably took another 2 years to figure out how to properly adjust for all the throws and angles off the rails. It took a lot of work, but I got to a good spot with the effort. Best thing I ever did was that first 8 years though. I was like a sniper with my cue never using left or right to help with shape. It’s also why I have a different style of 8 ball than most. With only top/bottom/center you are forced to go through a lot more balls to get to your destination and take harder shots you can’t get good shape on……
 
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tim913

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
A lot of times it’s what’s good enough for the player that determines what level they will reach. I know players who have been at the same level for decades, They will never get any better and they bitch and moan, but when asked how much practice they put in from the last time we played and it’s a big zero.
I know another player who missed position off of an easy hanger in the corner, came to my house the following day, set up the same hanger, and shot it over and over for over 3 hours.
 

Wolven

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Good point. And bbb also. I’m just going off personal experience here. I’ve told this story before. But started playing at 8. Call me naive but spent first 8-10 years playing without left or right english. I never had someone to teach me. My dad would show me say that shot into the side where you draw cb back to hit other ball in and that was it. Just left me to it. And almost played no 9 ball. Only 8 and only top/bottom/center.

Once I learned what left, right, and 9 ball were it probably took another 2 years to figure out how to properly adjust for all the throws and angles off the rails. It took a lot of work, but I got to a good spot with the effort. Best thing I ever did was that first 8 years though. I was like a sniper with my cue never using left or right to help with shape. It’s also why I have a different style of 8 ball than most. With only top/bottom/center you are forced to go through a lot more balls to get to your destination and take harder shots you can’t get good shape on……
So, you basically had good center ball training, although a long one. Chinese are very much into that.

Tor Lowery has some good videos where he does a 14 day challenge to transform players.
In fact he has a tone of good material.

v=8j5aBEzhgos&t=802s
 

Tin Man

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
He said in a sense he knows how to do it but can’t.👍😉


This is why.

The reality is this guy does NOT know how to play high level pool. I can promise you he has massive leaks in his cue ball and patterns, his safety play, his speed control, his break, and his mental game. Not execution leaks. Knowledge and strategy leaks that come out in failed runs.

People get good enough to have a night where everything works and they run five racks in a row. They decide they know how to play good pool now and it's just a matter of improving their consistency in executing. They figure this is fundamentals. They work on their stroke a bunch thinking that some day they'll play like they did that one night every night and then everyone will see how awesome they are. After beating their head against the wall for a few months, years, or decades, they decide either 1) "I don't have the time because I have a job/family, or 2) "I wasn't born with the talent the top players have".

The ego will destroy your life in pool. You can either think you're awesome or you can improve. You can't do both.

That's ok. That's my competition. That's my competition. That's my competition. They can do their thing. I'll do mine...
 

straightline

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I was talking to a guy on my league team the other day. He practices all the time and has played for a good number of years. He’s not old. In his 30’s. APA 5/6. He is under the impression that he will never get any better no matter how much he practices. He said in a sense he knows how to do it but can’t. I know people do get stuck at certain levels. Why is that? Always thought it was an effort issue rather than skill apex. Especially at that level of play.

Is it true that no matter how much some people practice they actually can’t get better no matter how much effort is put in? It seems wrong. I’m always under the impression you can always get better and the Sky is the limit as long as you put the effort in.👍😉
Depends what you practice. If you find the problems and devise solutions, sky's the limit.
 

hang-the-9

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I was talking to a guy on my league team the other day. He practices all the time and has played for a good number of years. He’s not old. In his 30’s. APA 5/6. He is under the impression that he will never get any better no matter how much he practices. He said in a sense he knows how to do it but can’t. I know people do get stuck at certain levels. Why is that? Always thought it was an effort issue rather than skill apex. Especially at that level of play.

Is it true that no matter how much some people practice they actually can’t get better no matter how much effort is put in? It seems wrong. I’m always under the impression you can always get better and the Sky is the limit as long as you put the effort in.👍😉

Almost all issues with improving come down to flawed mechanics and table knowledge of patterns and correct shots to play. You can't hit the ball where you want, you will miss, you don't have proper pattern play you will end up stuck with no shot to run out. Usually both come about from only playing in league, APA for example, where you never learn the finer points of the game and rely on handicaps and time outs instead of lessons and practice.
 

Willowbrook Wolfy

Your wushu is weak!
Gold Member
Play 10,000 hours then see where your at.

It takes that long for most people to reach their full potential unless they are extremely gifted. Then maybe 3000-5000 hours.

Playing 1-2 times a week isn’t gonna get it done

Best
Fatboy
See I wish I never quit. Feels like I have to put in 10000hrs just to get back to speed now. When I was 21-22. I fd up my arm arm wrestling. Sounded like a tree branch breaking in the middle of a loud bar. Guy had forearms like Popeye. Never got it checked out. I didn’t have insurance at the time. Whatever I did to it, kept feeling like I was double hitting cue ball after that. I was probably pushing upper shortstop at the time and just gave up pool.
 

Fatboy

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
See I wish I never quit. Feels like I have to put in 10000hrs just to get back to speed now. When I was 21-22. I fd up my arm arm wrestling. Sounded like a tree branch breaking in the middle of a loud bar. Guy had forearms like Popeye. Never got it checked out. I didn’t have insurance at the time. Whatever I did to it, kept feeling like I was double hitting cue ball after that. I was probably pushing upper shortstop at the time and just gave up pool.
I stopped playing twice in my life.

I played my best about 10 years ago. Never had a lick of talent. Came slow and steady. I’m not sue how good I got. Never had a Fargo it wasn’t around when I moved to LA full time and stopped playing-zero action, impossible for me to play. I need motivation.

Some people get better fast, some slower. Some level off. I hit plateaus now and then but would get past them.

Now I’m 55, 1P if I played and banks would be about it for me. I noticed at 40 snooker became massively more difficult to pot balls.

Most people I’ve seen who are good at pool throw 100% at it. There’s a few super strong part time guys (but even then they did play hard for a few years here and there) there’s no shortcut.

Most people who aren’t happy with their game don’t play enough and don’t want to make the sacrifice that it takes. Forget a social life, girls, movies, video games. Total immersion is what it takes. I did that, loved it. No regrets. It was fun for me. So it wasn’t a big price. But I’m not “normal”. I’m all in on what ever I do. Tattoos, making $, traveling, pool, guns, hunting any internet I have I’m in. Pool has most always been #1. The gym was until it wasn’t because of my back. That’s the only exception.

League hobby players are great for pool, but few will ever be great at pool.

Best
Fatboy 😀
 

Willowbrook Wolfy

Your wushu is weak!
Gold Member
So, you basically had good center ball training, although a long one. Chinese are very much into that.

Tor Lowery has some good videos where he does a 14 day challenge to transform players.
In fact he has a tone of good material.

v=8j5aBEzhgos&t=802s
That makes some sense. I have noticed that if I’m shooting bad during a practice session and hit everything center for a while it helps get everything back in-line too.
 

Cameron Smith

is kind of hungry...
Silver Member
I know a lot of people think that everyone has a natural limit, but that’s not the way humans work. In the absence of a physical disability or a severe learning disability you should be able to continue learning and improving as long as you keep playing and practicing. It’s not like your brain will become full and all of the sudden stop taking in new information. Or that you can’t develop new habits, if you can develop bad habits at any time, you can develop good ones too. The difference is mostly how quickly you can learn and how much time you have devote to purposeful practice.

The issue is that when you first start playing pool, you can get better simply by playing a lot of pool and get some advice on proper fundamentals. But if you don’t adjust your approach to practice as you get better, then you won’t learn anything. It’s like in snooker how you will see players only practice the line up but not understand why they aren’t getting better. It’s because the line up only teaches consistency and playing position for balls in the centre of the table.
 

ChrisinNC

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I was talking to a guy on my league team the other day. He practices all the time and has played for a good number of years. He’s not old. In his 30’s. APA 5/6. He is under the impression that he will never get any better no matter how much he practices. He said in a sense he knows how to do it but can’t. I know people do get stuck at certain levels. Why is that? Always thought it was an effort issue rather than skill apex. Especially at that level of play.

Is it true that no matter how much some people practice they actually can’t get better no matter how much effort is put in? It seems wrong. I’m always under the impression you can always get better and the Sky is the limit as long as you put the effort in.👍😉
Natural talent for pool, solid fundamentals, amount of time playing/practicing (preferably with better players) and testing yourself regularly in competition are 4 variables as to how good a player can get. For those fortunate enough to have all 4, their games will continue to improve to a very high-level if they work hard enough and want it bad enough.

If you are missing any one of those elements, then your ceiling is limited and may likely peak at a certain level. Obviously the first one, natural talent, is the one variable that we have the least control over - you either have it or you don’t.
 

philly

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
Play better players....always.
Take your lumps and watch your opponents.
Gamble cheap if that is what it takes to play better players.
Look at it like taking lessons.
Do this in a poolroom setting on 9 footers, not a bar.
Hang out and watch intently and listen.
When you get tired of losing to better players it might spur more serious practice.
 
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