Why is Pool so Addicting?

smoochie

NotLikeThis
Many long answers in here, ill give you a short one but actually a legit one.

Cause its very hard to master it. Even the best out there will miss sometimes! you cannot perfect/master your billiard game ever.

Many other hobbies you get bored with once you perfect or master it, its very simple.
 

Black-Balled

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.
You got some good shit in this thread, boxie.
 

Black-Balled

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Many long answers in here, ill give you a short one but actually a legit one.

Cause its very hard to master it. Even the best out there will miss sometimes! you cannot perfect/master your billiard game ever.

Many other hobbies you get bored with once you perfect or master it, its very simple.
Agreed.

It is a perpetual challenge that can never be 'solved'. Interest and motivation may waver, but the game is always ready to challenge you again.

For me, big part of the attraction is the escape. You have to pay attention to what you're doing and as a result, life seems to fade from consciousness for a moment.

Cycling is the same for me, though the consequences of inattention are far more painful. Nice thing about cycling though...you can make up for a lot of errors through brute force. Not the same in pool.
 

Chili Palmer

AzB Gold Member
Gold 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.

And this is my take on the current "apparel" some pro's wear, it's not a pool thing - it's a people thing who just happen to play pool ;)
 

Chili Palmer

AzB Gold Member
Gold 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 100% have an addictive personality and when I started playing pool at 16 it's all I could think of, for YEARS I would be in the middle of a conversation with someone and all I was thinking was "If I hit the CB off that window at that angle it would hit that lamp and knock if off the table." I couldn't care less about the conversation at hand and that was ALL DAY - EVERY DAY. For the first 5 or so years of playing pool that's all I thought about, even today, I still find myself doing that occasionally.

Ironically, I had stopped using drugs about 3-5 months before I went into my first pool hall, so drugs were never part of my pool world and I was never a big drinker so that was not an issue.

Good to hear you're off the drugs ;) Congrats.
 

Chili Palmer

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
Many long answers in here, ill give you a short one but actually a legit one.

Cause its very hard to master it. Even the best out there will miss sometimes! you cannot perfect/master your billiard game ever.

Many other hobbies you get bored with once you perfect or master it, its very simple.

I think it's the perpetual problem solving (angles, speed, etc.) that intrigues me. I got my ass kicked a while back in a race and the guy I was playing played very similar to me, quick and technical, and I was legitimately mesmerized watching him solve the problems on the table.

It's a beautiful thing.
 

Fatboy

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.
Pool is worse than dope, I’ve never been a dope guy but I seen what pool has done to me and others. I’ve seen what dope has done. Close call. Seriously
 

Kickin' Chicken

Kick Shot Afficionado
Gold Member
Silver Member
"Why is pool so addicting?"

For me there are 3 main reasons and myriad sub categories. Here's my 3 main ones:

1. Every single rack we break is like a puzzle needing to be solved and it can change dramatically as we shoot each ball. This is very exhilarating and challenging.

2. There is infinite nuance in pool and it's a blast figuring out as much of it as we can then trying to master these well enough to use effectively in situ. This is a perpetual learning experience and again, challenging and a lot of fun

3. Even average Joes can come with world class shots every now and then and when it happens it feels fantastic. Knowing such shots are within us keeps us coming back for more and it fuels a fire to continue to be better and more consistent.

Being in dead stroke feels like art on a pool table.

best,
brian kc
 

ChrisinNC

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.
Some of us were exposed to it and got obsessed with it at a relatively young age, when we had the time to do so, but that is certainly not the case for everyone. It’s a game you can get relatively good at with enough practice, even just playing by yourself for hours.

Whether playing alone or with someone, you can get so absorbed that there is a tendency to lose track of time and have no concept of how long you’ve been playing, and you just don’t want to stop.

The competition of playing another player, particularly of similar skill level or a little better, in itself is quite addicting, and of course if you add gambling or a tournament setting to that, even more so.

Obviously it’s very satisfying when you play well, and for those that really love it and are extremely competitive, when you don’t play well, it inspires you to practice even harder to try to overcome that.
 
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chefjeff

Nazis are back.
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.

I have never awakened at 4am and wanted to do a drug; I have awakened at 4am and wanted to play pool.


Jeff Livingston
 

garczar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Just like golf you can't truly master it. Regardless of your level there's always something to learn/overcome. Also the sights/sounds are part of the attraction imo. I love playing with no or little background music so you can really hear the game. Fkng magical.
 

BobTfromIL

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I like the fact it's a game you can play long and continue to learn long after other sports are no longer possible. I recently lost my 88 year old 1P opponent due to the effects of a stroke, he was still playing very good. We have quite a few players in their 70's and 80's, some are decent and a few are beginners .
 

middleofnowhere

Registered
Many long answers in here, ill give you a short one but actually a legit one.

Cause its very hard to master it. Even the best out there will miss sometimes! you cannot perfect/master your billiard game ever.

Many other hobbies you get bored with once you perfect or master it, its very simple.
Add to that if you take time off you have to try to get back where you were. Some days this works and that doesn't, the next day visa versa.

It can't be mastered, just played. The challenge is always there. Also different games can be played. I got hooked on banks one time. I could not believe how good I was able to get at it.
Always something new to learn.
I could go on.
 

Nostroke

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It isnt! The overwhelming majority who have tried pool, never play more than 3-4 times again.
 

middleofnowhere

Registered
It isnt! The overwhelming majority who have tried pool, never play more than 3-4 times again.
Addictive was probably the wrong word by the OP.
There is a fascination that keeps people coming back.

Pool is very difficult for a beginner and most probably don't have enough interest to try to learn and that's Ok.
The ones that do though seem to get hooked.
 

Boxcar

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
The desire to get better at things we like is hardwired. Some guys are doctors, some girls are homemakers. When it is practical and simultaneously sustaining, we tend to follow our bliss. It all goes back to Maslow's hierarchy. The disconnect comes when we confuse the myriad dynamics of fulfillment and begin to reinvent and attach significance to misunderstood compulsions.

The obvious example is dope. Dope gives some people a feeling of being something they are not, while concurrently blocking authentic responses to typical human behaviors.

Bottom line, an addict is an addict, and whether people like or not, everything out here is dope. The magic is being man enough to know the difference, and then being man enough to make the right decision.
 
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