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View Full Version : Ok, how do I stop playing this way?...kinda long.



peet234
12-08-2003, 08:13 PM
Ok, how do I stop losing is I guess what I meant.

Here's how I've lost so far in games so far in my apa bar league.

1)Missed 8 ball sitting right on the edge of the corner pocket. Across table shot missed it by a foot.

2)Totally lost momentum after running the table to the 8 ball then trying some unlikely shot and scratching. My focus went from extremely high to non-existent within a minute.

3) Hit bottom on a straight 8 ball but I followed through and scratched.

4) Last week, I completely lost focus again when playing a long inning "hit and run" type game when 2 players (yes in lower rankings) whack the cueball around until there are some obvious shots. Make a couple balls then other person shoots. Lots of good accidental safties. It was like I got sleepy and couldn't refocus. I even missed a ball in hand with 5 balls on the table.

So last session, I was about 60/40 wins losses and a 4. Now I've fallen into the basement (yeah a 2) and have only won 1 match. Everytime I shoot now I just feel this pressure to win but don't seem to be able to keep any kind of momentum going. I can only shoot once a week now, which doesn't help as a newbie. The past couple of weeks, several people have suggested about 15 different things I'm doing wrong, since they've noticed that I'm doing terrible now. Problem is, I never knew there were 15 things I was doing right before, so to try and correct these things keeps throwing me off even more! These include grip, follow-through, aim, stance and it is all confusing the heck out of me. I never used to think about it. I would see the table, see the aim angles and sink balls. That was all I tried to do. This time I figured I would try to work on ball placement, know something about english, so I could help myself set up. It hasn't paid off at all, this thinking so much. Should I just go back to try to pocket balls? Thanks

ras314
12-08-2003, 10:14 PM
Sounds like maybe you're losing focus on the ob by paying too much attention to position. Probably should avoid english (side).

I go thru periods of missing by trying too hard for position. Usually can get out of that by deciding how to stroke the cb for position before getting down on the ball. Once down don't pay any attention to anything but the stroke and the ob. Hopefully the stroke will eventually become automatic enough you don't have to think about that either. Ain't quite there myself. /ccboard/images/graemlins/frown.gif

Ain't nothing more fustrating than getting perfect shape while missing.

Scott Lee
12-09-2003, 05:24 AM
ras314...As you know, this is what I refer to as the "80/20 syndrome"...taking 80% of your thought process and execution in regards to CB position after the shot; and only 20% in making the OB. I recommend reversing that, so that you're concentrating mostly on just making the the shot...and relying on your intuitive reasoning skills, to acquire the position you want. However, in this case, I believe the poster's problems are much more related to an ineffective (or nonexistent) pre-shot routine, as well as poor fundamental mechanics. This happens more often than one would think, once you have developed a little bit of ability on the table (hence the saying, "a little knowledge can be dangerous!"). LOL My advice would be to take a stroke lesson from a qualified instructor.

Scott Lee

woody_968
12-09-2003, 10:23 AM
One tip I can give you would have to do with the cat and mouse safety games that you will occasoinally find yourself in. When you play this type of game you should always try to play the best safties you can. This may sound obvious, but what I mean is be precise with where you hit the object ball. Often we get into the bad habbit of knowing we can hit anywhere on the left side and be safe (or whatever the case may be) so we dont really pick a target. After playing several of these shots in a row, when it comes time to make a ball it can be hard to regain your focus.

Just a tip someone gave me a long time ago that I have found very helpfull.

Rod
12-09-2003, 11:41 AM
Well your doing a few things right. At the top of the list is playing pool for fun. Don't loose sight of why you started playing to begin with. As a beginer your going to get confused, you aren't the first and by no means will be the last. Another positive, your asking questions. You'll find people that want to help and offer advice. Just be careful about whom offers and what type of advice you take. Rules and general questions are ok from most but for fundamentals you need someone more experienced. Few pool players are good teachers, they say do it this way without offering why. You need to know why things happen or it may make little sense. Many don't know why, it's just the way "they" do it. LOL

It for sure is a long learning experience so hang in there and learn as you go. Buy a good book or two on the basics and if possible find a qualified instructor or a mentor willing to give a little of their time.

Rod

Bassn7
12-09-2003, 01:59 PM
Read my message to you.

Kato
12-09-2003, 02:55 PM
Fix one thing at a time, stay loose, have fun. When somebody throws a million things at you then you'll never remember them all. Scott says, Keep It Simple Stupid and I believe that whole-heartedly.

Kato~~~is stupid and proves it on the pool table every time I play. /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

SPetty
12-09-2003, 03:30 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Bassn7:</font><hr> Read my message to you. <hr /></blockquote>Hi Bassn7,

One of the nice things about a public forum is that others not directly involved with the question can learn something by reading what others post. If you have some words of wisdom that may help this poster out, I bet they would help some others (like me) too. Any chance you could be persuaded to post your responses publicly? /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

JimS
12-09-2003, 03:35 PM
Too many experts. Get a lesson or two from a qualified professional teacher.

ras314
12-09-2003, 05:37 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote JimS:</font><hr> Too many experts. Get a lesson or two from a qualified professional teacher. <hr /></blockquote>

Uh, I went at it all wrong. Took too many one on one lessons from better players. /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif Sure did add a little incentive. Never heard of anybody that would instruct you for a simple fee when I started playing.

JimS
12-09-2003, 05:52 PM
Me neither.....but times have changed.

peet234
12-10-2003, 07:15 PM
I played last night and all I tried to focus on were 3 things: stroke, grip and aim. I didn't win but I felt better knowing that I was following a much better form and was shooting better. Had help from my team captain there. The only thing I couldn't help was a cut on my last Obj ball that scratched and left the other player BIH on the 8. I did make my ball. So thanks for the responses I gotta remember to have fun and not get stressed.

JohnnyP
12-10-2003, 11:28 PM
Scott: I've been shooting like a rookie lately, too. The only table time I get is about half an hour practice before I play in the local tournament. Durng the match, I've been playing real slow, sighting, lining up, practice stroking, etc. Mostly missing, not to mention getting the TD p.o'd for taking too long.

After my match last night, I stayed and practiced a couple hours. Towards the end, I was looking and knowing the contact point as I got down. I was able to just look and stroke. No aiming, no practice strokes. Just pull back and stroke it in. This includes those fairly long, nearly straight ins, where you put on some high inside just for fun. Compensate a 1/4 ball or so for the squirt, and jet it in. What's really weird is that on the backstroke, I could sometimes see (feel?) the cue carving an "S", but it didn't matter. Of course, I wasn't making everything. That would be like Godzilla. Just making way more balls, without even trying.

So what was the difference between the tournament and the last part of my practice? Just not enough table time? I think I'm past the tournament jitters, but maybe I'm trying too hard.

I'm still having "draw anxiety" though. Afraid of scooping. I can't just pull back and stroke. I pause, practice stroke, scoop. It's different than follow. Why is that?

Any way, I finally ran my first rack in competition this week. Didn't even realize it was happening until after I put up my score. I said, "Hey, did I run that? Yeah, I remember putting the one in the side".

Scott Lee
12-11-2003, 05:15 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote JohnnyP:</font><hr> Scott: I've been shooting like a rookie lately, too. The only table time I get is about half an hour practice before I play in the local tournament. Durng the match, I've been playing real slow, sighting, lining up, practice stroking, etc. Mostly missing, not to mention getting the TD p.o'd for taking too long.

After my match last night, I stayed and practiced a couple hours. Towards the end, I was looking and knowing the contact point as I got down. I was able to just look and stroke. No aiming, no practice strokes. Just pull back and stroke it in. This includes those fairly long, nearly straight ins, where you put on some high inside just for fun. Compensate a 1/4 ball or so for the squirt, and jet it in. What's really weird is that on the backstroke, I could sometimes see (feel?) the cue carving an "S", but it didn't matter. Of course, I wasn't making everything. That would be like Godzilla. Just making way more balls, without even trying.

So what was the difference between the tournament and the last part of my practice? Just not enough table time? I think I'm past the tournament jitters, but maybe I'm trying too hard.

I'm still having "draw anxiety" though. Afraid of scooping. I can't just pull back and stroke. I pause, practice stroke, scoop. It's different than follow. Why is that?

Any way, I finally ran my first rack in competition this week. Didn't even realize it was happening until after I put up my score. I said, "Hey, did I run that? Yeah, I remember putting the one in the side". <hr /></blockquote>

JohnnyP...You can certainly take TOO long in the process of getting ready to shoot, as well as your 'point and shoot' technique (which is just as bad for a lot of players, but if it works for you, so be it). Hard to say what the difference between the tourney and your play afterwards, except that the pressure was off, and you were free-wheeling. Confidance plays a big role here...

The trouble you seem to be having with scooping the CB when shooting draw is common. The likely culprit is that you're not actually contacting the CB where you think you are. Try using one of those practice CB's with circles on them, so that you can set it up and SEE the contact point chalk mark on the ball. If you don't have one of those, you can use the 9ball (the blue chalk shows up well on the yellow stripe), by turning the stripe horizontal to the table, and aiming the top edge of your tip at the bottom edge of the yellow stripe. If your chalk mark is below the stripe you will be scooping the ball, and miscuing. Move your aim up 1/8 of an inch, and try again. Hitting very low draw is a comfort factor for most people. Until they BELIEVE they can stroke the CB that low, generally they continue to miscue. I see this all the time, and have yet to find someone I cannot teach to draw the ball effortlessly, by hitting VERY low, with a soft, smooth stroke. BTW, this would include a pre-shot routine, with a pause at the CB, and a slow backswing, along with a deliberate, smooth, 4-6" followthrough.

Scott Lee

ras314
12-11-2003, 05:41 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Scott Lee:</font><hr> Hitting very low draw is a comfort factor for most people. Until they BELIEVE they can stroke the CB that low, generally they continue to miscue. I see this all the time, and have yet to find someone I cannot teach to draw the ball effortlessly, by hitting VERY low, with a soft, smooth stroke. BTW, this would include a pre-shot routine, with a pause at the CB, and a slow backswing, along with a deliberate, smooth, 4-6" followthrough.
<hr /></blockquote>
I can't speak for anyone else, but this is exactly what happened with my lesson. Worth the lesson all by itself. And I'm not quite a beginner, just sadly out of practice.