taking the chin off the cue (mini story)

center pocket

Got Heart?
Silver Member
Weird thread title right?

Well I bought the Darren Appelton Perfect Practice and I have to say it is a great investment. Better than the SVB videos (except for his breaking vid). One of the subjects he talks about when doing the straight back draw shots (stroke builders) is making sure that your forward stroke and back stroke are at the same speed. Sounds really simple right and its a point easily disregarded by many players. Mike Page made a great video discussing this but I never implemented it.

Well I was working on my table length draw thinking about this concept. I can already draw full length of the table but I noticed that I tend to accelerate my forward stroke faster than my back stroke. So I started to try to feel the speed of the stroke needed for the draw and ensured that I made the backstroke the same speed the forward stroke. I started to put more spin on the ball with less effort!!! Who doesn't want that?

So this led to me experimenting with how much draw I can put on the ball stroking this way. This led me to trying to level out the cue even more. In turn I had to drop my elbow a hair which took the cue off my chin. The cue was much more level and combined with the the equal stroke I was drawing table length with much less effort.

A bonus of putting in this work, I noticed my body alignment was very square when addressing the ball. I would twist my upper body to get online when getting down on the shot. This led to me stroking ever so slightly across my body and putting a bit of left english on the ball with my natural stroke. I now stand doing some air strokes and line those up with the shot line before getting down. My body is more inline now and my natural stroke is inline with the shot instead of slightly across it.

Many of you might think these little things are not a big deal. I have been playing for far to long to know better. If I can stroke smoother and easier with the same amount of spin (kinda like Efren!) that should lead to me missing similar shots from 10% of the time to maybe 5% of the time, or even 2% of the time!!! Usually this kind of fundamental work carries over into most shot making so maybe I drop my miss percentage on all shots by 2~5% that would be awesome.

Implementing these changes takes conscious work which is taking me out of my preshot routine. Again another reason many don't make improvements in their game. I am willing to accept this short term slump in order to focus on implementing these changes. Besides it should only take 2~4 weeks of conscious effort until it starts to become automatic enough that I can go back to focusing on making the ball with the right spin/speed for position.

In summary by trying to equal out my stroke, it led me to leveling out the cue more, which led me to noticing my poor body alignment. All it took was time at the table practicing the RIGHT THINGS. I hope this mini story opens the eyes of some of you newer players struggling to improve.
 
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SmoothStroke

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Good Stuff
I posted this not long ago about leveling out. For me it is what I pay most attention to when cueing.
Using my bridge hand and swing arm like seesaw, I find where level is between the two and hit my cue ball at that point for max cue ball response ,clean and pure hit, and to clear my cue. The cue ball works easily.

With draw the rails get in the way, I find if you drop the cue on the cloth,lower the swing arm, you can raise the bridge hand up slightly and get a nice clean hit and great draw response.

Also if you raise the bridge hand slightly up the ladder (measured in eyelashes) it is easier to find level and I believe key ingredient in controlling the distance of draw, 12345678 ft. etc. and anything in between.

Nice thread here, I like what you said.
Gather the intel and put it to work
 

center pocket

Got Heart?
Silver Member
Good Stuff
I posted this not long ago about leveling out. For me it is what I pay most attention to when cueing.
Using my bridge hand and swing arm like seesaw, I find where level is between the two and hit my cue ball at that point for max cue ball response ,clean and pure hit, and to clear my cue. The cue ball works easily.

With draw the rails get in the way, I find if you drop the cue on the cloth,lower the swing arm, you can raise the bridge hand up slightly and get a nice clean hit and great draw response.

Also if you raise the bridge hand slightly up the ladder (measured in eyelashes) it is easier to find level and I believe key ingredient in controlling the distance of draw, 12345678 ft. etc. and anything in between.

Nice thread here, I like what you said.
Gather the intel and put it to work

Its funny because I thought for the longest time that having the chin on the cue was a good thing. Look at all the snooker players that play well for example. Maybe for beginners it helps them get a straight stroke with good head alignment. Eventually you have to lower the cue to get it level for that maximum response that you talk about.
 

Careyp74

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
What do you mean by forward and back strokes at the same speed? You draw back and stroke forward as fast as you can?
 

Pidge

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
...cant you get your chin on the cue when the cue is as low as it can be, and as level as can be?
 

center pocket

Got Heart?
Silver Member
...cant you get your chin on the cue when the cue is as low as it can be, and as level as can be?

I have had this thought, I am thinking of trying to get lower, I am already focusing on 3 things at a time. Let me get these set first and I will try it.
 

Poolplaya9

Tellin' it like it is...
Silver Member
What do you mean by forward and back strokes at the same speed? You draw back and stroke forward as fast as you can?

I have to assume he means the speed at which you push the cue forward and the speed at which you pull the cue back should be the same in all your practice strokes. Otherwise it would make no sense because nothing about your practice stroke speed is going to be as fast as that last stroke forward where you are actually hitting the ball on a shot that required a lot of power and speed for example. In fact it is relatively rarely that your practice strokes are at the same speed as the actual forward stroke that hits the ball even if it is not a massive power shot, but the forward and rearward motions of your practice strokes can still match each other in speed up until that last forward stroke. Not positive for sure if this is what he meant but it is the only thing I can come up with.
 

flyrv9

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Very interesting Center Pocket - I'll have to try this. Since I have much better vision in my left eye - I use it for aiming. I'm right handed; so I'm sure I'm twisting my body to line up a shot. Sometimes the results are as you described - unintentional spin. I need to compensate for this somehow. Thanks for the info in your post.
 

center pocket

Got Heart?
Silver Member
What do you mean by forward and back strokes at the same speed?

Keeping them equal speed, think about a wave with similar frequency at positive negative amplitude versus a wave with longer frequency up top and shorter frequency at the bottom of the wave.

You draw back and stroke forward as fast as you can?

No that sounds ridiculous, but I would accelerate the cue through the cue ball faster than I drew it back in the backstroke.


Basically what he said:

I have to assume he means the speed at which you push the cue forward and the speed at which you pull the cue back should be the same in all your practice strokes. Otherwise it would make no sense because nothing about your practice stroke speed is going to be as fast as that last stroke forward where you are actually hitting the ball on a shot that required a lot of power and speed for example. In fact it is relatively rarely that your practice strokes are at the same speed as the actual forward stroke that hits the ball even if it is not a massive power shot, but the forward and rearward motions of your practice strokes can still match each other in speed up until that last forward stroke. Not positive for sure if this is what he meant but it is the only thing I can come up with.
 
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SmoothStroke

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Many players are not chin players, watch Corey,Efren,Shane, Earl to name a few.
Study the distance of the chin on each shot, you will see it varies from lower to higher.
The distance you are set for each shot is very important for max smooth delivery of the cue and head position, it's all footwork.

As to leveling out,clean and pure hit, I like this analogy.

If you ever had to countersink a finish nail with a nail set / counter punch
You know how important it is to be accurate, in line with the nail,level as humanly possible

Setting the punch is just like setting the cue stick, it has to be accurate and deliver the hammer accurately. If you are off a slightly things change.I know that's old school and they have nail guns today.

We can't always be level, sometimes we don't want to be, but we can try to get there as much as we can.
 

Careyp74

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Keeping them equal speed, think about a wave with similar frequency at positive negative amplitude versus a wave with longer frequency up top and shorter frequency at the bottom of the wave.



No that sounds ridiculous, but I would accelerate the cue through the cue ball faster than I drew it back in the backstroke.


Basically what he said:

But here is the problem. You say:
"
Well I was working on my table length draw thinking about this concept. I can already draw full length of the table but I noticed that I tend to accelerate my forward stroke faster than my back stroke. So I started to try to feel the speed of the stroke needed for the draw and ensured that I made the backstroke the same speed the forward stroke. I started to put more spin on the ball with less effort!!! Who doesn't want that?"

This isn't what Poolplaya9 was saying at all. It is also what I was concerned about. I think the most important aspect of the draw shot, as you already do, is the controlled acceleration through the ball. But the second most important to me, is the slowing down and stopping on your final back stroke, to prevent any shoulder motion from throwing off your aim.

I agree with Poolplaya9, the practice strokes should all be the same speed, but not as fast as your final stroke on a draw shot.
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
Well I bought the Darren Appelton Perfect Practice ...
One of the subjects he talks about when doing the straight back draw shots (stroke builders) is making sure that your forward stroke and back stroke are at the same speed. Sounds really simple right and its a point easily disregarded by many players. Mike Page made a great video discussing this but I never implemented it.
Could you post a link to the Mike Page video you mentioned? This doesn't sound like something Mike would recommend ... pulling the cue back as fast as you expect to accelerate it forward for a draw shot. It seems like this would lead to a jerky transition, which can have bad consequences.

Thanks,
Dave
 

FranCrimi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Could you post a link to the Mike Page video you mentioned? This doesn't sound like something Mike would recommend ... pulling the cue back as fast as you expect to accelerate it forward for a draw shot. It seems like this would lead to a jerky transition, which can have bad consequences.

Thanks,
Dave

I agree. In fact, I go out of my way to rid players of the bad habit of a quick backstroke.
 

center pocket

Got Heart?
Silver Member
Could you post a link to the Mike Page video you mentioned? This doesn't sound like something Mike would recommend ... pulling the cue back as fast as you expect to accelerate it forward for a draw shot. It seems like this would lead to a jerky transition, which can have bad consequences.

Thanks,
Dave

I have looked but can't find it. Read what I wrote about a wave, that's what he used to describe the stroke. You guys are over thinking this. It's not pull back and stop than go forward, it's draw back at the speed of the stroke needed to a smooth stop then a smooth forward acceleration AT THE SAME SPEED you DREW THE CUE BACK.

I don't know how to explain it any better
 

mikepage

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Could you post a link to the Mike Page video you mentioned? This doesn't sound like something Mike would recommend ... pulling the cue back as fast as you expect to accelerate it forward for a draw shot. It seems like this would lead to a jerky transition, which can have bad consequences.

Thanks,
Dave

Yes. He mis-remembers what I said:

Go to 3:54 into the video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0hs4Ka1xMA#t=03m54s
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
Could you post a link to the Mike Page video you mentioned? This doesn't sound like something Mike would recommend ... pulling the cue back as fast as you expect to accelerate it forward for a draw shot. It seems like this would lead to a jerky transition, which can have bad consequences.
I have looked but can't find it. Read what I wrote about a wave, that's what he used to describe the stroke. You guys are over thinking this. It's not pull back and stop than go forward, it's draw back at the speed of the stroke needed to a smooth stop then a smooth forward acceleration AT THE SAME SPEED you DREW THE CUE BACK.

I don't know how to explain it any better
I'd still like to see a Mike Page video that suggests what you are saying. Again, it would certainly be unexpected.

Personally, if I stroke forward at the same speed that I stroke back, I would not get any draw at all. I (and I think most people) generate much more acceleration and speed going forward than when going back (with or without a distinct pause at the end of the backstroke).

Regards,
Dave
 

center pocket

Got Heart?
Silver Member
I'd still like to see a Mike Page video that suggests what you are saying. Again, it would certainly be unexpected.

Personally, if I stroke forward at the same speed that I stroke back, I would not get any draw at all. I (and I think most people) generate much more acceleration and speed going forward than when going back (with or without a distinct pause at the end of the backstroke).

Regards,
Dave
Well all I can say is by trying to make the two opposite swings the same speed, it really helps with a smooth transition. Think about it, if I go back slow than forward really fast that could easily lead to jerky change in direction. In 4:08 of Mike's video he shows an example of the wave I have been describing.

I'm done arguing about this in this thread. If you want to pm me fine.
 

dr_dave

Instructional Author
Gold Member
Silver Member
Well all I can say is by trying to make the two opposite swings the same speed, it really helps with a smooth transition. Think about it, if I go back slow than forward really fast that could easily lead to jerky change in direction. In 4:08 of Mike's video he shows an example of the wave I have been describing.

I'm done arguing about this in this thread. If you want to pm me fine.
I prefer to discuss things openly so others can benefit and participate. I'm not trying to argue with you. I'm just trying to make sense of the advice you are posting (from Darren?).

One thing that is clear is that a jerky transition is a bad thing. As Mike points out in his video, the backstroke should always be very slow. The forward stroke should also start very slowly, but it must accelerate to get the cue up to the speed necessary (which will be much faster than any part of the backstroke with a draw shot).

I think that is advice that most people (if not everybody) can agree with.

Catch you later,
Dave
 
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