Category Archives: (FAQ) Frequently Asked Questions

Lots of useful details and information for players at all levels.

(FAQ) What happens when you apply English (side-spin) to the cue ball?

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English is side spin that the cue tip applies to the cue ball on contact. It can occur only if you hit the cue ball on the left or right side of the vertical center line. FYI, contacting the cue ball on the center vertical line is NOT English. And another FYI, English (British) players call this “side”. My preference is to call it “side spin”. The term is more accurate. If you are talking with any player influenced by the former British Empire (England, Canada, Ireland, India, Australia etc.) the use of “side spin” won’t cause confusion. (It also makes sense to any player anywhere on the planet.) Continue reading

(FAQ) What is a good pool stroke?

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There are many sources for answers to this question. For some people, the search is no further than their reach as they develop a pool stroke early on. The reason might be because of good coaching or mentoring, or the result of a few dollars spent on effective instruction. Continue reading

(FAQ) How do you handle an angry opponent?

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There will be matches during your playing career when you happen to get stuck with a player who should take an anger management class (or two). This will always happen when they are behind in a match. (The same individual never acts this way when they are winning. Go figure.) Continue reading

(FAQ) How to master a controlled draw shot!

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Do you watch other players effortlessly do a draw shot on the cue ball to make it travel amazing distances or do carefully controlled slow rolls to perfect positions? Are you filled with envy and carefully concealed jealousy over the draw shot skill?  Well, be envious no longer. Here is some good advice on developing the necessary understanding of details and effort that will put you on the path to achieving effective draw shot control. Continue reading

(FAQ) What is the real secret to winning at pool?

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People with all sorts of table billiards experience from everywhere in the world believe that they have the real pool secrets of winning. Those that actually do know tend to hold this knowledge closely; and would not share, even under torture. Every generation has a few holders of the pool secret and who also let the pool secret out of the bag. They reveal this information to favored students. A few more require various amounts of  cash as an incentive to cough up the details. Continue reading

(FAQ) What is a well-racked set of balls?

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A good rack allows all the balls to touch when pushed forward and the rack is lifted from the table. Even with a good rack, if the table cloth is uneven from dings, balls can separate. If the rack is properly made, the balls should cluster together when pushed together. A poorly designed rack will leave gaps between the balls. (The balls could also separate because of unequal diameters.) Continue reading

(FAQ) Why is chalk necessary?

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Pool chalk comes in small cubes. It is applied as a thin layer to the cue tip. When contact is made between the cue tip and the cue ball, chalk helps "grab" the cue ball and keeps the tip from slipping around the ball, causing a miscue. It is important that the layer be thin and even. Continue reading

(FAQ) Do you play the opponent or play the table?

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This question has been asked to players of many levels. Several pro-level players, when asked, recommend concentrating on playing the table. Their rationale is based on the fact that since you are on the table, and your opponent isn’t, so just run out the balls and win the game. Their competence makes this a viable approach to competition. There are several thousands of professional players. There are millions of regular players. Their approach works for them because, when given an opportunity to shoot, the table gets run out to the win. Continue reading

(FAQ) What is the "Zen" of Pool?

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Few players attain the attitude and mindset that is detailed here. Most don't even know that it exists. Yet it is experienced by many players and is most often discovered by accident rather than by intention. Continue reading

(FAQ) Game Rules - Chicago (rail version)

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These series of "Game Rules' provide rules of many different games for the pool table. The rules here have been simplified from the official versions - to make them a little easier to understand.

There are other games that have been invented, copyrighted and generally available to the playing public. Web searches will turn these up and the rules printed out for use.

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