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04-22-2002, 12:03 PM
While holding the cue I maintain a very loose grip holding the cue, like one would hold a child's hand, just firm enough to keep the cue from slipping out of or through my hand. Holding the cue loose and light will allow for me to have the greatest available range of motion from my wrist.
04-22-2002, 01:06 PM
You will find quite a few opinions here. /ccboard/images/icons/wink.gif http://www.billiardsdigest.com/ccboard/showthreaded.php?Cat=&Board=ccbboard&Number=5996&p age=&view=&sb=&o=
I use a bucketload of different grips which has certainly stunted my growth in the pool world. When I play my best it is a feather touch. When I play my worst I'd give the Boston Strangler a run for his money. I couldn't tell you why I grip it how I do or why.
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Kato:</font><hr> I use a bucketload of different grips which has certainly stunted my growth in the pool world. When I play my best it is a feather touch. When I play my worst I'd give the Boston Strangler a run for his money. I couldn't tell you why I grip it how I do or why.
Kato~~~~the anti-knowledge <hr></blockquote>
seems to me that it's probably best to use different grips for some shots but overall i do much better with a very light grip. couple of years ago, ####leonard posted here that he uses a light grip and only used the middle or back fingers. tried it and took to it immediately. actually, it started when i said i had a "steering" problem and he suggested i try hanging the cue off my little finger. worked fine. the theory, as i understand it is that some of us tend to use the wrist to re-aim and steer the shot at the last possible instant before impact. taking the thumb and forefinger out of the shot seems to keep the wrist out of it.
I grip the cue so lightly that it can hardly be called a "grip". I wrap all four fingers around the cue (with space above the cue), keep the hand and wrist as loose and relaxed as I can, and maintain this loose and relaxed hand and wrist through the stroke. I don't do any wrist-whipping in my stroke. I let the big muscles (my triceps and biceps) do the work.
When I stroke forward, the cue will pivot in relation to the hand, and come to rest pressed between the little finger side of my hand and (mostly) the index and middle fingers. This keeps the cue from flying out of my hand, without having to grip it tightly.
04-22-2002, 06:58 PM
I also have been experimenting with grip & grip pressure of late. Here are my conclusions:
1. A loose grip tends to allow for a longer, smoother stroke. When I use a loose grip, I like to hold the cue more in my fingers, with the 1st bend of the fingers (1st from the tips) supporting the cue. With this type of grip, I can stroke like Niels Fiejen(sp?). When I backstroke, my last 2 fingers actually release & reattach (grip) upon stroking forward.
2. A tighter grip tends to allow for better accuracy on short-stroke shots. When I use a tighter (not tight) grip, I like to hold the cue along the path of my "love lines" directly opposite the upper knuckles. This really locks in a straight stroke but doesn't allow for a great follow through. With this type of grip, I stroke more like Ginky.
3. I haven't decided whether or not to adopt one or the other, or a combination of the two.
4. When I'm thinking about my grip during a match, I tend to lose focus on my match goals.
5. I've discovered that pre-cocking the grip on power shots really aids in getting power. I learned this by seeing Allison & asking her about it. On power strokes, if you hold the grip closer to the fingers than the palm, and cock your wrist towards the cueball, than you get extra power when releasing the stroke provided you release at the appropriate time. I believe this is how players such as Francisco get tremendous power from their stroke.
6. Allison says that the pinky finger is absolutely useless and is not needed. However, I tried stroking just now with HoustonDan's idea & it felt pretty good.
04-22-2002, 10:01 PM
Are you sure Allison said that? I would suggest you squeeze the grip till it's rock hard and then relax it. Then you should feel the cue just craddle in your hand. Then, the cue should not touch the palm of your hand. Use your two middle fingers to put the slightest pressure to stroke. You could use also the first 2. Whatever seems good to you. The feeling is the thing you have to have.
WhiteWolf, if you go back to the archives this topic has been discussed in depth. That's probably the reason it hasn't come up for a while. The cue should be held light for most shots. More important IMO is that the (grip pressure, man I hate that word), should be consistant from start to finish. Usually the common mistake is to increase the grip on the cue as soon as it starts forwards. This will likely cause any number of errors, first in line is shoulder or head movement, missed shots, poor position, miscue, steering, cut off or no follow through, lack of rythm and timing etc. Quite a list of possibilities huh?
Anytime there is tension, a mistake is waiting to happen.
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Cuemage:</font><hr> Allison says that the pinky finger is absolutely useless and is not needed. However, I tried stroking just now with HoustonDan's idea & it felt pretty good.Tha Cuemage <hr></blockquote>
to clarify, the idea of hanging the cue off the pinkie was just to establish that you really can do it and get completely off the thumb and first finget. moving all the way to the back of the hand to see what it feels like to use pure stroke with no steering from the front of the hand.
as a practical matter, the evolved grip does not use any little finger. it rests moreon the middle fingers with some shifting between the third and fourth.
I can understand why Allison is teaching you to hold the cue that way. Snooker players are trained to keep the cue level through their stroke. In order for that to occur, the pressure must first be in the front of the hand. However, as you are stroking, the cue should be rolling back into the back of your palm as you go into your follow-through. Allison's finishing position is not with the pressure on her first two fingers. The pressure has rolled back into her hand. It's quite complicated and difficult to explain.
With Allison's recommended grip, if your pinky is on the cue it will upset the rolling back of your hand as you follow-through.
The advantage of Allison's method is that the cue remains level through the stroke. The disadvantage is that the wrist is freer to move in 'unwanted' ways without tons of practice.
On the other hand, I am a big advocate of keeping your pinky on the cue. The cue will not remain level throughout the stroke, however, it will go straight. To me, straight is more important than level, especially to someone learning fundamentals.
04-23-2002, 08:49 PM
whitewolf...I think it's more important to see if you are significantly 'flexing' your bicep when you contact the CB. Most "grip" problems that I encounter teaching, seem to be the students who flex their muscles so hard that it transitions into a death grip on the cue at the moment of impact. I hold the cue with a full hand (and, yes Chris, it DOES touch my palm), but I NEVER grip tightly, even on the break shot. IMO, it is just not necessary, and moves away from K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Silly). Often I will put my hand on the student's bicep and have them stroke through the CB. If there is much flex, I massage their bicep as they stroke through the CB, showing them that all that strength and power is not needed for 90%+ of shot situations...even breakshots and power draws! Relax the grip...you'll do better!
I don't use any pressure in the front of my hand and on tough shots where precise accuracy is required I often let go of the cue and let it slide forward in my hand as I stroke...sort of throw it at the cb. This appears to be especially effective when I know it's an important shot and know I'm nervous and know I'm likely to grip too hard and maybe/probably try to steer the shot.
What do the more experienced and knowledgeable players/teachers think of this?
Fran, what you are describing with the transfer of pressure is similar to what I do and described in another post. One of my coaches was a pro Snooker player who is now a pro 9-ball player. As you said, it is difficult to describe. But not too hard to demonstrate in person. As I said in the other post, once the pressure has been transferred to the pinkie-side of the palm and the (mostly, but not totally) first couple of fingers, the cue is "wedged" in place, without needing to grip hard. The person that taught me this demonstrated by holding the cue this way, with space between the cue and the webbing of skin between the thumb and first finger, and said "try pulling this cue out of my hand".
Although I do have all four fingers on the cue. The main point is that I keep my hand and wrist as loose and relaxed as possible, and maintain that all the way through the stroke. Like that coach has told me "Just let the hand hang from your forearm. Let the big muscles in your upper arm do the work. Keep the muscles for the wrist and hand relaxed."
This guy also has one of the best strokes in Pool. My other coach, who is also a pro player, describes this guy as having "Mike Massey draw".
When teaching me one time, this guy put an object ball about a foot from a pocket, towards the foot of the table. He placed the cueball on the headstring, leaving a straight in shot, about 6 feet away. He then got down, and with AN OPEN HAND BRIDGE, shot the object ball in the pocket, drew the cueball all the way back up to the head of the table, it bounced off the rail, and went all the way back down to stop at about the foot spot. This was done without any fancy wrist-whipping action. That was the point he was trying to get across to me. It certainly made an impression. /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif
Hi Mike. From how I'm reading this it sounds like you and I stroke pretty much the same way. I think the difference between us and Allison is that she puts more pressure on the front two fingers at the onset than we do. That's why she has to have her pinky off the cue. When I stroke through the shot, the pressure transfers from the middle finger to the back rather from the front to the back. That's very doable with the pinky on the cue, but without the complete transfer from front to back the cue isn't going to be perfectly level. That's OK with me.
Yeah, your stroke does sound similar to what I do. I haven't seen you play yet, but from what you describe, it is similar. I'll be at the BCA 9-ball event the entire time this year, as my best friend got one of the invites to the men's pro event. I know lots of players in both the men's and women's event, but before only came down for a three-day weekend vacation. This time, I'll be travelling with my friend, and I'll be there 8 days! I'll track you down and say "Hello". /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif
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