Why is Pool so Addicting?

grobbs

Greg R
I find pool incredibly addicting. Can't stop playing it. Went on vacation to Hawaii a few weeks ago, and seeked out and found a pool hall, and spent several hours inside there.

I'm also curious what people's thoughts are on pool and drug/alcohol use. I had a real bad addiction to drugs for years, and played pool virtually everyday. After getting clean, I had to quit pool for a few years as I associated to much with my past. I finally picked up the sport again, and love it.

So I'm wondering what are your thoughts on these? Is it part of just having an addictive personality? Anyone have a story or want to be open about substance abuse and pool?

I saw a Joe Rogan podcast clip where he talks about this and it made me think of it. He even talked about how he once moved into a specific apartment just so he could be closer to his favorite pool hall.

Just mindless thoughts here, and curious on others perspectives.
 

Boxcar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
In terms of money spent and time away from family, I'd just go back to the dope. You'll be happier, and a buzz is more fun than losing a set of 9-ball. Azinger said that he quit competitive golf because he was tired of how pissed off he got from missing three-footers. 'Course, don't pay any attention to me, I'm full of shit.
 

Rocket354

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Maybe it's not the sport that's addicting, but the personality that is prone to addictions? People can get addicted to anything--drugs, gambling, food, sex, TV. Games.

If someone is an "addictive" personality, or if someone is looking for an escape, then pool is just one of many options in which that person can lose himself.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Do you play pool alone most often- if so, you could just be addicted to the solace that it brings to your state of mind - sort of like many other hobbies like woodworking, etc.

Do you play pool most often , but with others for fun, you may find the social setting most enjoyable and fulfilling.

Do you mostly play pool for money - possibly a gambling addiction.

Do you play pool mostly in tournament settings- could be satisfying a competitive need, proving to oneself their status in a particular setting.

And- it could be a combination of some or all of the above - or maybe there is no addiction at all- you just like it! But, when one begins to alter "normal" life behaviors to engage in a certain behavior- like going to Hawaii on VACA and spending a lot of time in a pool room- could be an issue there my friend.

I think that the poster who spoke of personality behavior hit on something- most of the folks that I know who have an addiction of some sort usually went through addiction phases with a multitude of activities- at one time or another.

Addiction and Involvement usually have separate connotations - often addiction is viewed as an activity that is engaged in to a degree that brings harm to a person and possibly others either physically, mentally, emotionally, financially, and also resulting in the neglect to other more life sustaining activities.

Involvement usually connotes a more healthy approach to an activity resulting in much more satisfying and beneficial outcomes from that activity for all involved-
 

justnum

Principal Investigator of Magic Trick Shots
Silver Member
If you think your friend needs help, then reaching out is good.

If someone is hiding something its usually best to wait until they are ready
 

judochoke

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I had the misfortune of losing two good friend of mine last year at 63. One was because of political differences, and the other was because I chose my friends son in their family drama.

then the pandemic hit, and as a senior citizen, I did not go out much. Only to Costco, Home Depot, and the gym.

i can basically say that practicing pool for three hours a day for over a year without missing a day, has given me so much enjoymen, and kept my mind from being lonely.

I do not ever play against a opponent, very rarely going to a small bar near me. I just practice, day in and day out

i can’t explain how much I love this game. I turn on the radio, light some incense to get my pool room smelling nice, and just play. The dog is laying nearby, the wife is at work, time just flies by 😎

I am coming up on my three year mark on July 17. I thought it would take two years to get where I wanted to be.
but it’s taken me three years. I am now getting more break and runs per practice session in 9 ball,
and will start looking for tournaments near me to play in now that I’m vaccinated.

I love this game❤️❤️❤️❤️
 

Boxcar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I quit smoking and drinking on the same day 30 years ago. If you can't quit something, then you're hooked. I never blamed my weakness on the booze and the Winstons. Pool is not addicting. Pool is a game. Don't blame it on pool.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I think the ultimate question is do you plan pool around your life's activities or do you plan your life's activities around pool? The latter could be a sign of addiction.
 
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dquarasr

Registered
I find pool incredibly addicting. Can't stop playing it. Went on vacation to Hawaii a few weeks ago, and seeked out and found a pool hall, and spent several hours inside there.

I'm also curious what people's thoughts are on pool and drug/alcohol use. I had a real bad addiction to drugs for years, and played pool virtually everyday. After getting clean, I had to quit pool for a few years as I associated to much with my past. I finally picked up the sport again, and love it.

So I'm wondering what are your thoughts on these? Is it part of just having an addictive personality? Anyone have a story or want to be open about substance abuse and pool?

I saw a Joe Rogan podcast clip where he talks about this and it made me think of it. He even talked about how he once moved into a specific apartment just so he could be closer to his favorite pool hall.

Just mindless thoughts here, and curious on others perspectives.
As a rank amateur, intermediate beginner, for me it’s the allure of a fresh rack: the call that the break-and-run is just sitting there, waiting for me to unleash it, past failures be damned, ever optimistic that this rack will fall.

P.S. I don’t do drugs, and I don’t drink until I’m done playing so I have no input on the relationship between pool and alcohol or drugs.
 

buckshotshoey

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Reminds me of a tshirt I seen once....

MY DRINKING TEAM HAS A POOL PROBLEM!

For me, it helps me cancel out all of the negative thoughts in my day. When I'm on the table, I can forget the daily grind, politics, bills, everything that causes stress in my day. When I get a day I'm playing well, and hear the sound of balls hitting the back of the pocket, its calming somehow. It think I've been addicted since my very first break and run. From there on, I had to have more.
 

boogieman

It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that ping.
I find pool incredibly addicting. Can't stop playing it. Went on vacation to Hawaii a few weeks ago, and seeked out and found a pool hall, and spent several hours inside there.

I'm also curious what people's thoughts are on pool and drug/alcohol use. I had a real bad addiction to drugs for years, and played pool virtually everyday. After getting clean, I had to quit pool for a few years as I associated to much with my past. I finally picked up the sport again, and love it.

So I'm wondering what are your thoughts on these? Is it part of just having an addictive personality? Anyone have a story or want to be open about substance abuse and pool?

I saw a Joe Rogan podcast clip where he talks about this and it made me think of it. He even talked about how he once moved into a specific apartment just so he could be closer to his favorite pool hall.

Just mindless thoughts here, and curious on others perspectives.
As far as addiction goes, pool is relatively harmless unless you tie it in with gambling. I mean, if you had to either drink a bottle of bleach, or a bottle of cola, the cola is a much better option. Look up "addiction transfer." It's quite common. If you give up one bad addiction you have to be alert for others taking it's place. That said, changing your addiction from smoking to jogging is a much better thing as long as you don't let the "good addiction" get out of hand. It's about finding a healthy life balance and not neglecting other important things.

Personally I don't see trying a different pool hall while on vacation a terrible thing, but you have to be careful it wasn't at the expense of others.

Why is pool addictive? Well it hits all the brain chemical producing spots. You have cortisol, adrenaline, dopamine, endorphins, serotonin, etc. all in one game. You have the pleasure of learning new things, the fear of a miss or "selling out" reward chemicals for a well made shot, etc. While playing pool at a deep level you're high on life.

types-of-neurotransmitters_med.jpeg
 

sjm

Sweating it at Derby City
Silver Member
I have no medical or psychological insights to share, but what I think makes pool addictive is the guaranteed variety. The rack you just played will come up just once in a lifetime. It may be similar to something you've seen in the past or will see in the future, but the balls will never lay exactly this way again.
 
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SlateMan

Registered
I have no medical of psychological insights to share, but what I think makes pool addictive is the guaranteed variety. The rack you just played will come up just once in a lifetime. It may be similar to something you've seen in the past or will see in the future, but the balls will never lay exactly this way again.
Unless Earl gets his way with "position pool"....
 
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DieselPete

Active member
Pool ranks high in having the factors that contribute to a sense of intrinsic motivation, provided you develop the basic skills to have some competency and can see in yourself the opportunity to improve and move toward "mastery." This list comes from healthline.com and I think we can see that in pool we have the platform to satisfy most of these points:

  • Curiosity. Curiosity pushes us to explore and learn for the sole pleasure of learning and mastering.
  • Challenge. Being challenged helps us work at a continuously optimal level work toward meaningful goals.
  • Control. This comes from our basic desire to control what happens and make decisions that affect the outcome.
  • Recognition. We have an innate need to be appreciated and satisfaction when our efforts are recognized and appreciated by others.
  • Cooperation. Cooperating with others satisfies our need for belonging. We also feel personal satisfaction when we help others and work together to achieve a shared goal.
  • Competition. Competition poses a challenge and increases the importance we place on doing well.
  • Fantasy. Fantasy involves using mental or virtual images to stimulate your behavior. An example is a virtual game that requires you to answer a question or solve a problem to move to the next level.
 

Boxcar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Pool is a game, an inanimate object, that only comes to "life" when humans play it. Pool is not addicting. Some humans are addicts. Denial is a significant component of addiction. Blaming one's addiction on an inanimate object is a form of denial. It's always somebody else's fault.

To confuse and conflate love of something with addiction is typical.
 
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justnum

Principal Investigator of Magic Trick Shots
Silver Member
The rules for the game always change.

Someone always has a chance go make changes for more fun.

Consider racking with a triangle, how many players do you know make adjustments after letting the triangle do its job.

Should adjustments be allowed?

If your addicted at least be a competent addict and well informed.
 

PoolBoy1

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I find pool incredibly addicting. Can't stop playing it. Went on vacation to Hawaii a few weeks ago, and seeked out and found a pool hall, and spent several hours inside there.

I'm also curious what people's thoughts are on pool and drug/alcohol use. I had a real bad addiction to drugs for years, and played pool virtually everyday. After getting clean, I had to quit pool for a few years as I associated to much with my past. I finally picked up the sport again, and love it.

So I'm wondering what are your thoughts on these? Is it part of just having an addictive personality? Anyone have a story or want to be open about substance abuse and pool?

I saw a Joe Rogan podcast clip where he talks about this and it made me think of it. He even talked about how he once moved into a specific apartment just so he could be closer to his favorite pool hall.

Just mindless thoughts here, and curious on others perspectives.
I find pool incredibly addicting. Can't stop playing it. Went on vacation to Hawaii a few weeks ago, and seeked out and found a pool hall, and spent several hours inside there.

I'm also curious what people's thoughts are on pool and drug/alcohol use. I had a real bad addiction to drugs for years, and played pool virtually everyday. After getting clean, I had to quit pool for a few years as I associated to much with my past. I finally picked up the sport again, and love it.

So I'm wondering what are your thoughts on these? Is it part of just having an addictive personality? Anyone have a story or want to be open about substance abuse and pool?

I saw a Joe Rogan podcast clip where he talks about this and it made me think of it. He even talked about how he once moved into a specific apartment just so he could be closer to his favorite pool hall.

Just mindless thoughts here, and curious on others perspectives.
Drugs and bad habits aside live your life as you see fit. Must be satisfied with one's self. You are here to enjoy life!!! Of course at no others expense. I've been playing since 13. 66 years now. Took a couple years off for golf but always found a table in a bar or someone's home to show my skills. Which are only good by the way. Nothing exceptional. At my son's house i'd sneak down to his game room for a couple hours by myself. I average 4 days a week playing on a 7 footer at my complex. Enough players there to satisfy my ego trouncing them. As long as an addiction is healthy for you go for it. It's your life...I'm addicted to pool...
 
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