View Full Version : I hate books on pool
02-14-2006, 04:58 AM
I bought a few books on pool. Thought that I could advance my game to the next level. When infact it has done the opposite. I tried changing my stroke to a textbook stroke and my game has gone down the toilet. So for a month now with hitting balls everyday. I cant get back to where I was before. Now I cant make a straight in shot to save my life and will miss some easy cut shots also.
I believe when I'm at the table getting ready to stroke the ballI have all this info in my head running around and it's killing the shot.
What should I do to reverse this. I know the problem is in the stroke. Before reading any of these books I would make 8 out 10 straight in shots now it's like 1 in 10.
Talk about depressing I'm at a loss here.
02-14-2006, 06:22 AM
You are thinking too much when you are playing. The time to think is during practice time. Practice is the time to evaluate what you are doing and to fix any problems you might have. It should be a completely different mindset from when you are playing. If you develop good habits in practice, they will find their way into your game without thinking about it.
02-14-2006, 06:44 AM
You either have one of two conditions. One, you are over saturated in knowledge and hadn't adjusted from your own habits. Two, you are trying too hard. I've soaked myself in books, days of pool school, personal instruction and thought I was a new, refined player each time only to find out that each one pushed me back in the short term. I suggest that you take a week or two off from pool, watch good players and study their execution, and come back from your sabbatical without thinking, just have fun. You'll come back. There is a great bit of good from written material on billiards, you merely need to recognize the ones that you need. Just play your game and add in things a little at a time. Jm2c...sid
02-14-2006, 07:45 AM
If you are making major changes in your mechanics, you will definitely take many steps backward, in your game, before you begin to move forward. It will take you time to adjust to the new mechanics.
Also, make sure you are interpreting the information from the books correctly. Not everyone learns well from the books. I know I don't. I am a visual learner, meaning, I learn better from seeing someone else do something. I learn from an instructor giving a demonstration, from an instructional video or from watching better players, play the game. I can read all day and not understand the correct way to do something. Just a thought.
02-14-2006, 08:04 AM
remember it takes time and practice for anything new that you do to come full circle. Obviously you turned to some books to fill some holes you already had existing in your game. And with any change (be it mechanical or mental) comes at least a small degree of hesitation and discomfort at first.
For me it came some time ago when I was forced to take an extended period of time off. Before my hiatus I was a pretty strong shooter, but had pretty well learned all on my own and had a ton of bad habits that I naturally had adapted my game to. For the level I was playing at this was fine even with those habits, but at the same time I'd never step up to a higher plain than where I was already at because of the limitations on my game from those same habits. After the time off I figured it was a good time to pretty well start from square one and go from scratch again. The result was months of poor playing and re-learning again, because I was dropping out of my comfort zone (which included those many bad habits). Eventually with time and prectice my game has gotten back to and beyond the level I was playing at before, and am now comfortable in playing with proper mechanics and strategies. The difference this time is I can still see constant improvement in my game.
So my advice to you is to stick it out, maybe even get some good instruction from someone who knows what they are doing, and eventually once you are comfortable and confident again that shot that was 8 out of 10 at best may become 10 for 10.
02-14-2006, 08:46 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote pooltchr:</font><hr> You are thinking too much when you are playing. The time to think is during practice time. Practice is the time to evaluate what you are doing and to fix any problems you might have. It should be a completely different mindset from when you are playing. If you develop good habits in practice, they will find their way into your game without thinking about it.
Steve <hr /></blockquote>
Steve i think you hit the nail on the head. To further that thought i adapted the "you'll do what your mind and body does most of the time" in a pressure situation idea and incorporated it into my practice time.
I do this by devoting only 30 or 40% of my time doing drills and fine tuneing mechanics, that leaves at least 60% of my time in "game mode", playing racks out and free wheeling just to burn in the rythm and feeling of being in command of myself and the table.
Now when i'm out there, i just forget about everything and do what i do, just like the 'majority' of my practice /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif
So far results are pretty good. All my numbers from last year are up 10%......and i thought i was doing pretty good last year. St.
02-14-2006, 10:23 AM
It is instructor time! Someone else, an expert on this, needs to watch you and see what you are doing.
Also may want to search billiards forums for the term muscle memory. Learn all you can about this.
It may be that you need to re-learn how to shoot using a good stroke. This will be the pits for the short term. But best in the long run. Could be several months.
But you don't want to practice several months doing the wrong things, so best to be sure and get someone else - the best qualified you can find - to watch you.
You have a bunch of good answers on here, so most of what i say has been said. Books do some things better than others. IMO teaching a stroke isn't one of their strong points. For this IMO you need an instuctor. It also really helps to videotape it. Looking at the pretty pictures in the book will not show you what you are doing.
Also there is a learning curve. Anytime you make a change it will take a while. I started taking a few lessons a while ago and tried to incorporate the stuff. I am still working on it. In fact, I just recently figured out something to help me feel what I was working on. It takes a lot and a book won't get you there. Books do offer some helpful information.
02-14-2006, 03:20 PM
You might want to try video-taping yourself to actually see what you are doing yourself instead of having someone else tell you. Or maybe a combination of both. If you don't own a video camera, borrow or rent one. Might be worth the time/money/effort.
02-14-2006, 04:01 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote stevelightning:</font><hr> I bought a few books on pool. Thought that I could advance my game to the next level. When infact it has done the opposite. I tried changing my stroke to a textbook stroke and my game has gone down the toilet. So for a month now with hitting balls everyday. I cant get back to where I was before. Now I cant make a straight in shot to save my life and will miss some easy cut shots also. ... <hr /></blockquote>
You probably had developed hitches and swerves in your stroke to fix some other problem like faulty alignment. You got rid of one but not the other. You need to either put the one fault back or get rid of the one you still have.
No one here can diagnose your problem. The best suggestion I've seen is to video tape yourself. Borrow a handycam, and study your fundamentals next to Allison Fisher's.
02-14-2006, 07:56 PM
Thanks for all the replies. I did find one big problem in my stroke today and it was the elbow moving in and away from the body. So I changed my stance a little and that seems to help. In fact I played tonight and it was better.
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