View Full Version : Open or closed bridge??

06-13-2002, 11:50 AM
Fairly new to the board, recreational player that simply loves the game - have a question. I notice that when I shoot a 'short' shot I instinctively use an open bridge - and when I shoot a 'long' shot I revert back to a closed bridge. While watching the pros shoot, I notice that a majority of them always use an open bridge on almost every shot. My question is this - fundamentally, what is the correct bridge to use? Does it matter? Opinions and advice welcome!

06-13-2002, 11:59 AM
Both ways are normal for any player.

The open bridge gives you a more open view of the shaft, cue ball and aim line to the object ball. But it also only gives you two points of contact on your fingers for feedback on your practice strokes.

The closed bridge partially blocks your view (mentioned above) but also provides more feed back of your stroke. It also provides a squeezing source for a stroke that may require more english (left right top or bottom) than normal. I like to use a closed bridge when the shot requires a little more focus and concentration (difficult cut, or long cut with english) than normal shots.

Scott Lee
06-13-2002, 12:08 PM
Tom's post is right on the money. Most top pros swap back and forth from open to closed bridge, depending on the shot, and their feeling at the moment. A closed bridge generally works better for shots where a powerful stroke is needed, as it helps keep the cuestick on the bridge hand. Sometimes a good player will inadvertently lift the cue off of their bridge hand as a part of the stroke. IMO, this is incorrect (most of the time), and a closed bridge will help eliminate this error.

Scott Lee

06-13-2002, 12:08 PM
I think that an closed bridge helps people when they are lacking confidence with their strokes on long hard draw shots and shots of that type....there is no shot that cannot be accomplished with either bridge but as tom says an open bridge gives you a cleaner line of sight... if your fundamentals are not near perfect a closed bridge may be more helpful to you at this time and power shots.

06-13-2002, 12:14 PM
you just said it how i wanted too but didnt know how to put it thanks scott

06-13-2002, 12:20 PM
There is the break shot, that I rarely see anyone using an open bridge, unless they are using a soft break.

The reason I hear most often for using the closed bridge on the break (a power break shot) is to keep the cue as level as possible during the forward motion, avoiding a miscue, or even the scoop jump effects.

Confidence is gained by repeating all shots (difficult and non-difficult) buy experimenting on the practice table, NOT while performing. Closed bridged shots provide the most feedback for these critical shots. Practice both ways and see which is more suited for your game and skill level.

06-13-2002, 12:49 PM
The open bridge is good for shots requiring no english, little force, or a long reach. The closed bridge is normally used for extreme follow, power draws, or force shots such as the break. The pros move the ball around the table with such little effort that they seldom find themselves in the position of needing to power draw a ball or use extreme follow, etc. to gain position. JMO

06-13-2002, 04:30 PM
A couple of months ago John Horsefall was telling me that he was being teased by a couple of big name (I forget who but I think earl was one of them ) because john almost exclusively uses an open bridge... they got to jawing back and forth.... John saying that he most definately does not need a closed brige for any kind of power draw shot... the others saying that it helps and that they can draw back further because of it.... John asked them both to bet 100 bucks each to see who could draw the furthest with the OB near a corner pocket and the CB in the kitchen...as the story was told to me.. John walked away with all of the cash.

<------uses an open bridge 95% of the time and has never had problems spinning or drawing the CB

06-13-2002, 06:35 PM
Far be it from me to say that it can't be done, I just think most people feel more comfortable shooting strong shots or extreme follow/draw shots with the closed bridge. I'm just the opposite of you. I use a closed bridge more of the time. I use an open bridge for close in and touch shots. I don't really notice myself making any conscious decision as to what bridge to use. I just do what feels right without thinking about it.