View Full Version : Stance question?
10-24-2004, 12:40 PM
In this months BD cue & eh, Jerry Briesath is asked, "What makes a good stance?" One of the things he mentions is, "Does your arm hit your body when you swing?" Can someone explain this to me? Thanks. Gary
10-24-2004, 01:07 PM
He means to stand somewhat sideways so when you stroke your body is not in the way.
Arm swinging through space = good.
Arm hitting body = bad.
10-24-2004, 03:57 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote PQQLK9:</font><hr>
Arm swinging through space = good.
Arm hitting body = bad. <hr /></blockquote>
Not quite true, my friend. We teach the SET, PAUSE, FINISH, FREEZE method, in which your grip hand or wrist actually makes contact with the upper part of your ribs. By having one spot where the hand always ends up (we call it "home") and using the pendelum stroke, you can most always have the same consistant stroke for every shot. Obviously, you don't want your body to interrupt your stroke, but it's a good thing if gives you a reference for the "finish" part of the equation.
That's why he stated in the article if you answer yes to those questions, you had a good stroke.
10-24-2004, 04:20 PM
I recall Scott describing the stroke as an underhand salute with the hand following through to the chest/breast but I have Jerry's tape in which he describes the stance as "play a game of "chin lock" to line up the shot and then "get your body out of the way" so your arm can swing through unempeded... but what do I know. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif
10-24-2004, 05:02 PM
I don't know Jerry so I can't really comment on what he teaches, but I suspect it's very close to the same thing Scott, Randyg and the rest of the BCA instructors teach.
As for getting your body out of the way, if it keeps getting larger and larger as mine seems to do, that gets harder and harder to do!!! /ccboard/images/graemlins/blush.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/blush.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/blush.gif
I suspect his point is probably to keep your body out of the way of your stroke, but to allow it to be the resting point for the grip hand when the shot/stroke is finished.
It's my understanding that all the Master instructors teach the same basic fundamentals, so I can't imagine Jerry and Randyg having very many differences in what they teach...maybe more in how they teach it.
10-24-2004, 05:33 PM
Crossed my mind...just how many of the top 30% of the professional players finish with a "to the chest" end? When I watch the best players, I fail to see this finale to the stroke. THAT, in itself makes me doubtfull of this concept...sid
10-24-2004, 05:40 PM
I would say it is more a training method and not meant to be a rule. I don't know any players that actually play like that in real play myself. Pool when played really well by a top player is very loose, not robotic as is sometimes taught. It is just a training method to groove what you are trying to learn.
10-24-2004, 05:46 PM
SID: You can start with Allison and Karen plus a few more on the Womens Pro Tour. Not much TV showing on the Men's side. It's a great concept, try it, you might like it....randyg
10-24-2004, 05:50 PM
I think there are just too many variables to the stroke as you play to make that a rule. It may help in grooving your stroke but could be confusing to a beginning player if they think they have to hit their chest on every shot for the rest of their lives.
10-24-2004, 06:39 PM
After more than 40 years of playing, I started doing this about 2 years ago, and found my game took a giant leap forward. I will admit I don't do it every time, but the majority of my shots end up in the exact same spot. I find that if I am in a tough match, when I mentally get really focused, that I do much better when I make sure this happens. Yes, I do get sloppy sometimes, and don't finish the right way, and for some strange reason, those are very often the shots I miss. It's not a "rule", but it sure is a darn good suggestion to get that much needed consistancy we all are looking for.
10-24-2004, 07:07 PM
I think the problem with a lot of things when learning the game is. Once you develop a game you want to begin to play as naturel as possible and not like a robot or some kind of Stepford player, (Just my opinion of course). When you learn to dance you may start out doing the 1234 1234, but soon you just begin to dance. I also think there is a definite difference between tournament pool and just playing, even for the pros. In tournament play everything can be so critical and sudden death you have to play a more rigid type of game if you know what I mean. Gambling is completely different. If one has only seen a pro player play in tournaments, they may not have seen what the player can really do.
I'm guessing the SPFF is a guideline used. Once ingrained with the correct motions of a stroke then is not needed except something to fall back on. For my tastes the wording just sounds to rigid but that's neither here nor there just my opinion.
This finish with the wrist or hand in the ribs surely can't be expected of every player?
10-24-2004, 11:58 PM
Thanks for the clarification! So, it seems to me, that if you are trying to perfect your stroke, ending it at the upper rib/low breast is fundamentally correct?
10-25-2004, 08:10 AM
I always used the right angle for my stance. I would stand with left foot straight and the right straight to form two sides of a right triangle or the Letter L and the cue line passing over the right toes and parallell with the left foot. I could stop playing for years and in two minutes my stance lines up.
But I never hit my body that way.####
10-25-2004, 08:56 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Popcorn:</font><hr> When you learn to dance you may start out doing the 1234 1234, but soon you just begin to dance <hr /></blockquote>
That may be the reason most of us can't dance! /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif
However, Scott taught me to finish with my hand against my chest and it has helped me "finish" my stroke better. I do agree it's all individual and you see many successful styles. It has just helped me become more consistent.
10-25-2004, 10:01 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote GStrong:</font><hr> Thanks for the clarification! So, it seems to me, that if you are trying to perfect your stroke, ending it at the upper rib/low breast is fundamentally correct?
Correct...The idea is to find consistancy, and that starts with having the same stroke on each shot. If you start in the same place, and finish in the same place, your stroke should be the same. The hand in the ribs or chest is a reference point to give you feedback on your stroke after each shot. If you missed, and your hand isn't where it usually ends up, you got a pretty good idea what went wrong.
10-25-2004, 10:16 AM
This concept sounds interesting. However, my stance seems to change quite a bit depending on where the cue ball is on the table. So how would this technique work if you are low on the ball on some shots while on others you are more vertical, etc. The chest/rib would frequently be in a differnt postion.
10-25-2004, 10:22 AM
The consistancy comes from ALL the fundamentals, not just the stroke. In order to be consistant, your bridge, stance, grip, stroke all need to be consistant. I understand some shots require adjustments, but the majority of shots can be made using the same basic fundamentals. It's a bit difficult to really cover it all in this forum. If you have the opportunity to work with an instructor, I think you will see what I am talking about. If you don't have one in your area, contact Scott Lee and get some time with him when he is in your area.
10-27-2004, 09:40 PM
Thanks again for clearing this up. I must say that in last few days of practicing this, finishing my shots in the upper rib/chest area has really, really, improved my stroke. If you finish in the same spot each time there is absolutely no question that your stroke is going to be straight! Also, it seems that I am getting a lot more english on whitey with this finishing touch. I hope others that don't do it would consider practicing it! Gary
10-27-2004, 09:58 PM
BCA Qualified instructors can only teach left brain activity. The shooters you see are more right brain active shooters. Mechanics learned were self taught and burned in more than likely in early youth. Comfortability is the most important as far as stance goes. JAT
10-28-2004, 06:52 AM
It gets even better! Once that stroke becomes a habit, you no longer even have to think about it. That allows more of your thought process to focus on the shot itself rather than the stroke. My personal experience in using this stroke was an improvement of about 2 or 3 balls per rack, just from that one change. I have seen similar results with many of my students. I believe the greater majority of players would benefit from developing this kind of stroke consistency.
Congratulations on the improvement you have already seen. Keep it up!
10-28-2004, 02:27 PM
Hi Chris: That's not entirely a true statement. I can't speak for all BCA Certified Instructors buy I can speak for our school.
We are visited by all types of players and all types of skill levels. Our school system allows us to approach both the Left/Right brain learners with equal success.
Yogi Berra was once quoted as saying, "how can you think and hit at the same time". The same thing is true in pool. If a player is worried (thinking) about their stroke, then how can they entirely focus on their target? Once the redundacy of SET-PAUSE-FINISH is satisfied, the brain then take on the sole task of Aiming. Steve has a very good grasp on teaching. A lot can be heard from just listening.
God bless all of us and help keep our stroke straight.....randyg
10-31-2004, 08:25 AM
I have studied under both Jerry B and Randy G. Both will tell you first and foremost you must be comfortable.
I have been playing 40 years and teaching 15 years, and I have seen many different stances from great players, and some great stances from poor players. The reason SET PAUSE FINISH FREEZE is so good for players is because it concentrates on MOVING THE CUE FROM THE BACK TO THE FRONT IN A STRAIGHT LINE. Both Randy And Jerry Stress this. <font color="red"> </font color>
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