View Full Version : Biggest Weakness
04-25-2002, 06:26 PM
What's ur biggest weakness?
For me, it's speed control. Do you work on tha weak part of ur game? How do you work on speed control? I've seen several of tha drills where u shoot in increments to master speed control. I've seen tha 2-7-2 drill by tha Monk. I've seen target pool and so on. One problem...all these put me to sleep within 10 minutes. What suggestions do u guys have? Am I just undisciplined? Gimme some pointers, folks...thanks.
04-25-2002, 09:16 PM
Am I just undisciplined?
Answered his own question..
Without practice and enjoying practice.. you will never expand your skills.. you just come to a level and stay there..
To improve, you must continue to do what you do "better" and strive to find ways to improve areas your skill is lacking.
Its very difficult to improve your game while playing. You only make your weaknesses more consistant and end up "giving up" because you haven't much confidence in your abilities.
Sounds like you need to learn how to LIKE practicing..
04-25-2002, 09:18 PM
not caring about the game or set. not taking the game serious anymore................mike
I know what you mean Mike, sometimes I fall into that categorie. In general a lack of desire at times.
04-26-2002, 12:29 AM
I would say my biggest weakness is long shots as to the fact that I wear glasses. I combat this by playing pretty decent position and staying as close as possible to my work, so to say.
I,too, have a problem with cueball-I hit too hard-i've found STRAIGHT pool is the way t go -Good luck!
04-26-2002, 03:46 AM
There's a couple of things that can teach speed. You can roll a ball down table with your hand and while doing it try to land in certain spots. This roll is close to the stroke you would use to get there with a cue.
One pocket is a great source for finding speed control. Your consistantly controling the cb.
Another is putting 15 balls out on the table and making them without touching the back of the pocket.
I've found lately that I'm "OP", over pooled. When I get over pooled then it's just another ball, just another shot, just another saftey. I'm very weak then. My weakness is my attitude toward the game at this time. I don't concentrate and I don't care. I go to the pool room more out of habit than wanting to.
04-26-2002, 10:43 PM
I think you've hit on something there (not liking practice).
Sometimes I start out with a practice plan, then I move on to break & running, break & running. I play 9-ball almost exclusively. A success is a break & runout. Anything other than a runout drags me down. When I run out, it's b/c I've made some decent shots & not necessarily b/c I shot perfect shape. I do consider myself a shotmaker, but position play for me comes down to mostly just trying to get on the right side of the next ball. I know this is what I need to improve on, but the practice drills I've seen cannot hold my attention long enough to benefit my game.
04-27-2002, 07:44 AM
You keep mentioning your dislike of the drills. What if drills were named 'next level' would that incourage you to discipline yourself to do them. Unless you are that one person in a million that is a natural you only have limited choices inregards to how to reach those levels. Drills are the fastest most effective way to those mastery levels, it your choice. Ask yourself this question. "Am I a natural phenomenon in the pool world." Tom in Cincy was much nicer than I would be if you were my student. I tell those looking for the magic bullet not to waist there money on pool lessons but to go buy lottery tickets. It is simple: do the drills or wallow in mediocrity. Some find wallowing enjoyable, I don't...
The chez hasn't had his coffee yet /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif
Gayle in MD
04-27-2002, 08:26 AM
Hi there, I agree that just doing drills over and over can get borring, but if you keep track of your performance, with pen and paper, thereby recording your improvment, it adds a lot of interest to your practice time. Also, Don't know if you have a home table, but if you do, try breaking up your drill sessions, so that you do drills for thirty minutes, for example, then do three or four racks, then back to the drills for another thirty minutes. Since I have a pinched nerve in my neck, I have to practice this way, as being in the same position for an extended period of time causes it to act up. I have found my practice sessions to be much more effective when alternating them with free flowing racks. I keep the drills to no more than thirty minutes at a time. Also if you can video your drill practice, that in my opinion is the single most valuable aspect of insuring you will understand exactly what you are doing, what works for you and what your weaknesses are. Good Music during practice is also a great help. Scott Lee gives you excellant drills to do with his lessons. BTW, did Allison show you any drills to do? Which were her favorites?
Have a great day
Gayle in Md.
04-27-2002, 09:15 AM
Just because my reply to Cuemage was kind of preachy I am in the middle of my hour long set of drills. I also have found that a break in the middle is a must for in order to keep it tight. I also keep a record(ten drills>ten pts each>high score 92>low score 47>one hour to complete>average 78), this record is a good barometer to how focused I am.
I forgot that Cuemage took the lesson from Fisher. I can't believe just being around her wouldn't instill the importance of a disciplined practice routine...Now I've had too much coffee /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif
I think I practice tooo much, at least as compared to the time I actually play.
There's really no pool hall here and the closest place to play is an hours drive. I elect to stay home and practice alone and although I'm sure it helps to hone mechanical skills it sure gets old and doesn't do much to improve my ability to win matches. I need to get out and compete.
Everything is my biggest weakness. I played last night by myself. It was the first time I played in about 20 years. Reading this board made me realize the above is true. Several times I got up and reset my stance. I could just feel it was often off too much to make a shot. Stroke. I have no stroke to speak of. Vision. That was my strongest point in high school when I played from about 65 until 70. For the last two years I have been wearing glasses. I have the ones where at the top is the distance vision, in the middle is about arms length vision and the bottom is for reading vision. Especially on long shots when I would shift my sight from the target ball to the target hole I would be looking above the lenses and was unable to see. I would have to get up from my stance (what stance), adjust my glasses all the way up, and then try aiming again. I'm not even sure of the proper way to aim a shot. I did notice that when I was making long shots, most of the time my vision would be alternating from the object ball to the target pocket. It seemed like when I made the shots the target pocket seem to be the last thing I rembember seeing. Dropping my elbow. I don't even know what that is. My arms, elbows, hands, and body often seemed everywhere.
I don't even know the proper way to practice. I just kept rolling all the balls and cue ball onto the table after I made the last ball. I only lasted practicing 6 1/2 hours. My neck & back was quite sore. Then I made the half hour drive home. When i stepped out of the car I almost fell because my legs were so wobbly and sore. I didn't notice that while playing. I'm sure there were many more weaknesses. I probably don't even know what half the weaknesses are. I must have been crazy to think I could ever play pool again. Even in high school I was just an okay player. Then I tried playing again in 81. I was terrible. But I had a friend I would play 3 cushion billiards with. He is about 10 years older then my 50 years. It seemed he could quickly regain his game while I never seemed like I could play near as good (maybe I should say as poorly) as I did in high school. So I guess I can truly say that everything seems to be my biggest weakness.
I don't think you're crazy to think you could play again...not at all. You can! It takes some willingness to work at it but if you practiced 6 hours or more you certainly appear to have the willingness.
It sounds like you need to get some lessons to help discover what to work on and how to work on it. It's well worth the time and money, or at least it certainly has been for me. Ask around. I'm sure there are some really good instructors close by you.
Don't get discouraged. Make a plan and follow it and you'll find that you can play like the guys 30 years younger in no time and you'll have fun doing it. I'm 58 and took 40 years off so and I'm getting better every day and having fun too!
Here is maybe my biggest weakness. It's health problems. I was too embarassed to mention it before. I have always had a bad stomach. That has caused me to quit almost everything throughout my life. I haven't worked in 4 years. And before that I worked at home. I have gastritis or flatuence, and colitis. This is my basic routine. I usually don't eat anything before about 5 or 6 pm. Or my stomach starts acting up. If I'm going out anyplace I usually still won't eat anything until I'm ready to return. I will drink very little. Usually I drink a 20 oz glass of tang or lemonade each day. And then water. But in the last couple years I've been often drinking two glasses of tang or lemonade a day. But cold stuff can set off my stomach problems. Eating anything can also get my stomach going. When I finished playing I did buy a bottle of water before I came home. If I'm going to someplace like a wedding or funeral, I won't eat for two days ahead of the event. But I don't have the willpower like I use to. I also have bad sinuses. So it would be difficult to play much in the colder half of the year. I lead a very boring life. I mostly stay home a lot because of my health problems.
04-27-2002, 10:46 AM
Maybe it's just the cheese in me but your starting to crack me up.....:)
04-27-2002, 03:02 PM
When you say, "I also keep a record(ten drills>ten pts each>high score 92>low score 47>one hour to complete>average 78)".
Could you explain your ten drill practice and how exactly are you scoring?
04-27-2002, 04:58 PM
Being that I am on the more or less scatter brained side of the fence(suprise! suprise!) I had to get my drills into a black and white format which leads to the ten drills, ten points for each drill scenario. What I did was mark the intersection points of all the diamonds on my home table with a black Hi-Liter pen, hardly noticeable from any distance, and I use those marks as points to place the balls at the beggining of the drills. Now these are just ten drills of the hundreds of drills one could use. I just amended each drill to fit the ten ball format so I would end up with a perfect score of a 100.........excuse me a second, Preacherman....Holy cow this is getting more convoluted by the second.....there, now I feel better. /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif
I put the drills in a binder and I do them in the same order each time. One can get anywhere from 0-10 points on each drill depend on how big of a mutt one is on that paticular day. Over a period of time one has a record of ones progress and in my case the carrot at the end of the stick; the total score. The wanting to score higher and higher keeps me focused on doing well each day that I do the set of drills. Over a period of time I get my high, low and average. The best thing about doing drills is that in game situations nearly every lay of the balls looks like a drill of sorts, with which, you have become very familiar and most of all very comfortable with. Whew!!!!! I have to stop now.... I hope this explained it..........I'm exhausted LOL LOL /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif http://dgl.microsoft.com/thumbnails/IN00/IN00435_(t).gif
04-27-2002, 06:42 PM
Cuemage, The speed drill I use is fairly simple, but kind of fun, as long as you don't just stick to it, and mix it up with other drills. I give myself five trys at each speed. First I shoot a slow speed shot where I lag to the end of the table and back. The object is to have the ball stop somewhere between the rail and the first diamond. Just like lagging for break in APA league. Next is a medium speed shot, just like the slow speed, but three rails, again stopping somewhere between the first diamond and the rail. Next is a hard shot, four rails, same rules. Last is a slow roll shot. This is the hardest. Shoot from one end and try to stop somewhere between the rail and the first diamond at the other end. This is the speed drill I learned from Scott Lee. He also showed me how to stroke the slow roller, rather than dinking or bunting it, with a shortened bridge and an abbreviated back stoke, yet still maintaining a full follow through.
04-28-2002, 07:22 PM
Thanks for the replies.
That was one of the drills (shooting in speed increments) that puts me to sleep. I would much rather hit balls & practice patterns than to shoot the cueball with no object ball as target. The biggest reason is that the only way I would use this in a real game is if I was lagging or pushing out. Thanks for the info.
I too have some health problems that effect my play at times. But I don't let them get me down, & I won't allow them to be an excuse for losing. Most of what I have learned about the game of pool has come from watching PRO's (either live or on tape), or from books. There is a wealth of information in books and on video that can improve your game. I would also recommend taking at least one lesson (preferably on fundamentals) that could get you started on the right path. Keep your chin up, focus, and the balls will fall.
I have often thought that playing alone at my home would allow me the table time needed to ingrain solid play. As it stands, I get to practice once or twice a week (on the weekend) and I usually match up with another player. But I think my time would be better spent alone at home, discovering the game at it's highest level.
I too have worked on my stroke a lot this past year, moreso than anything else. I have not tried the visualization thing yet, but will do so soon.
Thanks for the tips. I've not caught the one-pocket fever yet, but I will try the pocket speed drill soon.
After reconsideration, I do enjoy practice. But I don't have a private table to shoot on, and most days, a fellow player will ask to join me. The result is I practice infrequently & play most often. When I get to practice on a solitary basis, these are the times when I discover new things and recognize others. Getting back to the original point of speed control ideas, what's yours?
Gayle in MD-
Hi again. I have often dreamed of filming myself at the table so I could see what things I was doing wrong. I don't have a table though, and I can't get over looking like a dork for bring a video camera to the poolhall. How about we film some sessions on your new Diamond? As for drills, Allison showed me a few, & I'll show them to you once we play. BTW, what kind of music motivates your practice sessions?
Of course you are right. However, I'm not looking for a magic bullet, just trying to continue improving. I have learned (if not mastered) the fundamentals as well as pattern play, etc. I believe my inability to master speed control stems from the amount of time that I have for practice (&pool in general), which is only on the weekends.
When I started playing decent pool, I too always tried to get as close as possible to my work. Then I was beaten in a couple of tournaments by a player of no greater skill (but maybe smarter). He told me that sometimes I have to settle for the long shot, instead of shooting a heroic shot with shape. Basically, I was trying for PERFECT position every time, and was just rolling behind balls,etc. instead of taking longer shots with the right angle. I changed my approach & showed imediate improvement. Now, my challenge is to get back to more exact position play since my ball pocketing skills are fairly good. Thanks for the input.
04-28-2002, 08:40 PM
Cuemage, I agree that not having a table at home is a distinct disadvantage. When I go to the pool hall to practice, there is always someone there wanting to play. Playing is so much more fun than practicing, it's hard to tell them no.
I think like cheesemouse said, you have to learn to like practice or else you do get stuck in mediocrity. I once read that you get more out of 1 hour of good practice than 10 hours of playing. I also find it tempting to quit practicing when you are at the PH and a friend asks you to play,because playing is much more fun. If you decide to play instead of practice, at least play for something to keep your interest up. If you are just hitting balls and dont care if you win or lose that is bad practice and hurts your concentration level. One way to practice is to have someone go thru the drills with you and to make it a competition, maybe by using points as a gage for winning. I think cheeseman hit it on the head about pattern drills, because like he said all of the shots you will face while competing are just a variation of those patterns, and thus you tell yourself when you are on a shot, Ive seen this shot hundreds of times and know pretty close where the cueball is going to end up, and that instills confidence, which none of us can have too much of when competing. Bert Kinister has a decent pattern tape called The 60 minute workout for nineball. It is nothing but patterns, and also it makes you try and land the cueball on an 8 1/2 X 11 piece of paper, which helps your speed control as well. I like the guys post about marking the intersections of the diamonds as a drill also, thats a good drill. Sounds like the drill in the back of Jack Koehlers book. I think the main thing is to always learn something when you step to the table to practice, dont just beat balls around, that causes lots of bad habbits,lifting up to soon,loss of rythm in preshot routine etc.. All of that said i would have to say my weakest point is consentration, and thats because i let too many people talk to me as i am shooting, and that hurts my game. Also it would be nice if i could play a little more often, man i was in dead stroke about 6 months ago,and everytime i broke and made a ball in 9-ball i felt like i was out. Boy how quickly things can change!! lol
04-28-2002, 10:17 PM
Why? I tell them no all the time. Unless they give me an offer I can't refuse. I like to grab the table that's far away from everyone. If I'm doing my drills or getting ready to play tourney. I always practice by myself. The boys in the ph know when I'm practicing. I'm not rude about it. I just say I'm working on my game and can't play. They understand and so do I.
I'll get there early in the morning and head off to the table. Heck, I'll have 2 or 3 hrs in by the time anyone shows up that's going to play. It's funny in our room though. Usually the same players play each other every time. They do almost by skill level.
If I do play with the lower ranked players than myself. They feel good and I feel it helps them. It doesn't help me any though because I haven't any pressure and in my mind I know I have a shot. So, they know when I'm egnoring a game but friendly enough to say hi.
The last time I attempted to play a 4 yr old boy named Brock came by the table and talked the entire time I was practicing. I'm getting a good straight pool run going and down on the 8 ball and the kid tells me. "You know if you make the 8 ball before the rest, you lose the game." I stopped and looked at him. I said, " You want to play for some money?" That was it, he was on non stop all the way. LOL The cutest kid. I told him his father left and he was going home with me. I said I was going to be his daddy. He says Naw aw, Naw aw, and ran off looking for his dad. LOL He works the room.
C.C.~~hates babysitting but Brock's ok.
04-28-2002, 11:07 PM
Don't give up. The soreness will go away as soon as your body muscles work into it. Don't put so much time into your practice sessions at first. Maybe 2 hrs or 3. You have to have a plan. Some thing you can log and keep track of your progress. You'd be surprised of the things you've forgotten but will remember when you run across them again.
First work on your line up and stance. If you were to set a cue ball on the head spot. Then take an ob one diamond out and one diamond up from the foot spot. Then, line up the balls so they're straight in the corner pocket.
Now take your r foot, if you shoot right handed and while standing behind the head rail. Line up that foot with the cb and the ob straight in the corner. So it looks like your aiming with your foot. Now line up the cue stick in the air with those balls. You should be about 2 ft. away from the table. Now step into the shot placing the cue stick straight and bridge hand down on the cloth. Then, turn your hips side ways till comfortable. Letting your feet pivot with your hips. This should be straight. Your feet are about 2 ft apart. If you want lower and your chin should be straight on the cue. Also, pointing at the shot. One perfect line. That could be a place to start. IMHO Working on your smooth stroke and straight-in shots first.
C.C.~~just trying to help.
04-30-2002, 12:06 AM
Under-practiced, over-weight, over-nicotined, under-alcoholed, over-informed, under-the-weather...all those over/unders, no wonder I cant play a lick anymore!!
Voodoo...plays a fair game of golf, a fair game of pool and a jam-up bass guitar!!
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Voodoo Daddy:</font><hr> Under-practiced, over-weight, over-nicotined, under-alcoholed, over-informed, under-the-weather...all those over/unders, no wonder I cant play a lick anymore!!
Voodoo...plays a fair game of golf, a fair game of pool and a jam-up bass guitar!! <hr></blockquote>
the bass-man huh? bet you can do some buffett too huh?
shoot, i play respectable blues/folk guitar in a merle travis kinda way.
bet we got a whole band here.
dan...voodoo plays "fair" pool?... heard t'was better'n that.
05-01-2002, 06:08 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: houstondan:</font><hr>
the bass-man huh? bet you can do some buffett too huh?
shoot, i play respectable blues/folk guitar in a merle travis kinda way.
bet we got a whole band here.
dan...voodoo plays "fair" pool?... heard t'was better'n that. <hr></blockquote>
Played my last biker bar gig in 1986. I wasn't very good.
Loaned my drums to a friend in 1988 when I got remarried and moved. Guess I could get 'em back now /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif.
It's a long way to Hazard just to get a little brew.
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