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PlynSets
03-10-2006, 06:53 PM
Let me first start about by saying, I'm no dummy.. LOL I know that great pool players don't necesarilly make great teachers. I'm going to finish that up with, I don't consider myself to be a "great" (as in world beater) player. High B player Low A player on my good days.. Average to high B player every other day.

Ssssooooo, the pool hall I frequent puts this little deal on the bar that claims fill this questionaire out and you could win a free week of pool. I had no idea my g/f was so serious about learning how to play pool. Apparently she's been filling these deals out almost everyday. The owner (a friend of mine) takes notice and gives her the free week of pool. To which she explains to me for the next 8 hours a day or so for the next week I'm going to be teaching not playing. LOL (That week just ended)

She went out and bought Robert Byrnes standard book of pool as well as the video (1). I tried use that as much as I could for a baseline for stance and bridge etc..

So here's where I'm at with this thing. She has developed a stroke, but it's much like a (for lack of a better term) phillipino style stroke. That kind where her elbow seems to be towards her body and above her back a little bit. Her stroke seems to be pretty straight for only a week of playing seriously. Every now and again though she'll shoot a shot and it'll go off to the left. It's not consistent or I could correct it.. Seems to happen on every 10th to 15th shot?

Question #1
She seems to be doing very well with the straightness of her stroke, and to be honest she looks pretty "evil" like one of those non text book phillipino players. Should I try to take her stroke more to a traditional style where the shoulder to elbow is inline with the shot? Or should I let her develop her own stroke, and just continue to make sure it's straight?

Question #2
It seems when she lines up on a shot she'll sometimes line up at the correct angle, but about an 1/8th of an inch off center on the cueball in either direction. Again this is intermittent, and not on every shot. About every 4th or 5th shot she'll get down and is just a hair off.. Right angle of attack just off center like I said. It's so slight that she can't seem to see it. While I can correct it when I see it, I'm not sure how to make her see it.
My current plan is to buy that 3rd eye stroke trainer today. I was wondering if there was any more "traditional" ways of teaching her as well.

Those are my first of what's probably going to be a never ending thread of questions on how to teach somebody. I really appreciate any help that's offered here, and I hope to "pay it forward" so to speak in the future.

As well, I am going to video her doing some shots and post it up on the internet so you guys can see and tell me what part of her mechanics I should work on next. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

I am planning on getting her some profesional lessons, but again I want to take her as far as I can before doing that. Guys down here in San Diego aren't exactly cheap. 35 bucks an hour minimum.

Incidentally the 3 instructors I have in mind are listed as follows. I was wondering if anyone knew anything about them, or has any experience with them. One of them is BCA certified, the other two are not. I'm not sure if the "BCA" is organized enough though to have to pass some training program to get that cert, so I'm not quite sure yet if it's worth it's weight in gold or not. (Looking for opinions on this, as well if anyone knows what it takes to get certified.. gives me an idea of how qualified etc.)

Gilbert Cope - Card has an 8 ball on it, and he's local..

Che Devine - Card has an 8 ball, and has "Instructor for Pool & Billiard lessons" I talked to this guy and he seems nice.. 35 bucks an hour though and no BCA cert.

Mike Longmire - Profesional Pool Instructions He is BCA certified. Other than that I know nothing about him..

Any experience?

Thanks guys I appreciate it! Looking forward to the responses.

Incidentally, the owner of the pool hall is absolutely blown away with the progress she's made in only a week. They played each other in last weeks tournament and he spots her the 7 out. He made a bet that she couldn't beat him in the set, and if she did she got another free week.

Looks like I'm going to be teaching her 8 hours a day for another week. /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

I will get into some of the other things that I've been really focussing on (teaching style) in later posts.. Just don't want to write anymore of a novel than I already did.

DJ

pooltchr
03-11-2006, 07:15 AM
In response to your first question, it is much easier to learn consistancy if you have the proper alignment to begin with, along with the proper mechanics for a straight delivery of the cue stick.

For your second question, I use the elephant training balls with many students who are not making contact where they think they are. A well chalked cue will leave a nice chalk mark where contact was actually made, so there is some visual reference to go back to after the shot. It might be that she is not centered properly over the cue, and her visual reference is off just a bit.

The way the BCA program works is basically this. You go work with an Advanced or Master instructor and get recommended for the first level (recognized). You then need to work with a minimum number of students for a year or two, then go back to one of the senior instructors, teach under their watchful eye, and get approved for advancement to the certified level. Knowing an instructor has been through that is a pretty good indicator (although not a guarantee) that this instructor has the knowledge and teaching ability to be able to do a good job with their students. $35/hr is not unreasonable at all for an instructor of this level. You might consider paying for 3 or 4 hours and just focus on the fundamentals, having him video tape the session to check for alignment, or problems with grip, stance, stroke, etc. That alone could get her really on track to a solid, consistant game.

Steve

cheesemouse
03-11-2006, 07:47 AM
You have started down a path of destruction....DON'T GIVE POOL LESSONS TO YOUR GIRLFRIEND....pERIOD...are you nuts? Would you pay $35 dollars an hour for sex???....LOL...

pooltchr
03-11-2006, 08:53 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote cheesemouse:</font><hr> Would you pay $35 dollars an hour for sex???....LOL... <hr /></blockquote>

At my age, that would be worth at least 10 or 12 times!!! Sounds like a bargin to me!!!! /ccboard/images/graemlins/blush.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
Steve

Billy_Bob
03-11-2006, 10:28 AM
I think the best thing for beginners is to be able to instantly "see"; what a good stroke, staying down after the shot, and leaving tip of cue pointing at where you were aiming will do for you.

At the following link at the top of the page is "Bank stroke practice". Shooting these shots will give instant feedback as to what a good stroke will do vs poking and leaving tip of cue in air or up to left - up to right.

You MUST use a good stroke/follow through to be consistent with these shots. Also use the same speed. If the beginner gets frustrated and starts "slamming them in", say "Shooting faster does not improve your aiming any!". And show them how the angle will change with a fast shot. Tell them to shoot all shots at the same medium speed.

So far as cut shots, set up the cue ball and object ball and mark their locations with chalk. Or set them up at intersections of diamonds. This is so they can shoot the same exact shot over and over. Then have them shoot the same exact shot until they can make it 3 times in a row. It is OK to miss. They are learning where not to aim with each missed shot. Keep telling them it is ok to miss, they are learning. So if a particular cut shot is giving them trouble, have them shoot it over and over.

I showed a banger the above practice and he has been doing this for a month. He could not run two balls before doing this practice. Actually he could not run 1 ball, and would only make 25% of his shots. I mean this guy was bad!

Well the guy ran 4 balls in a row last night and won a couple of matches in a tournament! (This is Mr. two and out!) So this stuff works...

Other than that, keep it simple. Don't tell too much at once. Just a few things to work on. Best to stop and rest when they get tired after 45 minutes or an hour. This stuff is *very* difficult for a beginner.

(Click on &gt;&gt; to get rid of ad.)
http://www.geocities.com/billybobnospam/basic_daily_practice.html

Voodoo Daddy
03-11-2006, 03:10 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote PlynSets:</font><hr> So here's where I'm at with this thing. She has developed a stroke, but it's much like a (for lack of a better term) phillipino style stroke. That kind where her elbow seems to be towards her body and above her back a little bit. Her stroke seems to be pretty straight for only a week of playing seriously. Every now and again though she'll shoot a shot and it'll go off to the left. It's not consistent or I could correct it.. Seems to happen on every 10th to 15th shot?

Question #1
She seems to be doing very well with the straightness of her stroke, and to be honest she looks pretty "evil" like one of those non text book phillipino players. Should I try to take her stroke more to a traditional style where the shoulder to elbow is inline with the shot? Or should I let her develop her own stroke, and just continue to make sure it's straight?

<font color="blue">IMO, I would leave her stroke alone...its natural to her and that means it feels good. The going off to the left is her "throttling" with her wrist, better known as cantoring. Watch her wrist &amp; grip for consistancy </font color>

Question #2
It seems when she lines up on a shot she'll sometimes line up at the correct angle, but about an 1/8th of an inch off center on the cueball in either direction. Again this is intermittent, and not on every shot. About every 4th or 5th shot she'll get down and is just a hair off.. Right angle of attack just off center like I said. It's so slight that she can't seem to see it. While I can correct it when I see it, I'm not sure how to make her see it.
My current plan is to buy that 3rd eye stroke trainer today. I was wondering if there was any more "traditional" ways of teaching her as well.

<font color="blue"> Body alignment...watch how she approaches the table and show her a solid pre-shot. If she still has that offset alignment she may be compensating with her back hand which leads back to question one...cantoring. </font color>

DJ <hr /></blockquote>

<font color="blue"> Hope that helps ya /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif </font color>

PlynSets
03-11-2006, 04:59 PM
Well I did alot of reading between here and AZBill.. and everyone (even guys that are strong) is saying the lessons are worth it. Becuase everybody seemed really happy with the "BCA" certified guys I decided to go that route.

I made an appointment with Mike Longmire he is an instructor locally here (North County San Diego) and it sais "BCA Certified" on his business card.

Here's a couple of questions.. This guy isn't exactly 35 an hour, just under double that as a matter of fact. I agreed to it, becuase talking on the phone I got a really good feeling about this guy.. But I want to make sure that the price isn't to far out of line?

Secondly my girlfriend went on the BCA website and there's a list of "recognized" instructors on there.. This guy is not on it?? Does that mean he was certified at one time and maybe stopped paying some dues or something? Or does that mean he's not BCA certified?

Either way I got a really good feeling takling to this guy on the phone. He seemed to have a really good demeanor and I think (just from talking to him) that my girlfriend would be receptive to his personallity so I'm quite excited to see what she's going to learn tomorrow.

DJ

FastJoey
03-11-2006, 05:20 PM
Plynsets:might i suggest the next special day like a birthday ect.get ahold of a real good instructor and pay for a couple hours of lessons .she would love it...good luck

pooltchr
03-11-2006, 08:23 PM
If he isn't on the active instructor list, he may not have paid his membership, or he may not have had enough feedback forms from students to meet the minimum requirement from the BCA. There is another list on that site for reserve instructors...his name may be on that one.

The hourly price seems to be pretty high. You would pay $700 for 10 hours of instruction. I know of at least one Master level BCA instructor where you can spend 3 days, 8 hours a day for less than that. That's 24 hours with a Master instructor for less than what you pay for 10 hours with this guy. Maybe he's worth it. I am a certified instructor and my hourly rate is $35, but I often end up charging less if someone signs up to take the full course.
Scott Lee, who posts here regularly, travels around the country giving lessons. He is an Advanced level instructor and may be less expensive. (He was the last time I heard)
Steve
Steve

PlynSets
03-11-2006, 10:23 PM
Just under double 35 an hour.. He's about 60 an hour. I'm going to go there tomorrow with the g/f and were going to give it a shot. I figure if she takes alot away from it then it's definately worth the 90 bucks to me! From a long term perspective it is on the expensive side for sure, but the guy sounds pretty cool, so I think maybe it's 90 for the first time kinda deal, and maybe something else to continue? I dunno, I'm going to find out everything tomorrow and I'll definately let you know.

Incidentally his name wasn't on the reserve list either (that I could find?) I'm going to ask him about it tomorrow.

I'm one of those give everyone the benefit of the doubt kinda guys.. I can tell you the g/f is really excited about tomorrow!

We're going to go shoot some right now.

DJ /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif

Sid_Vicious
03-12-2006, 06:09 AM
One thing to happen with me and a GF/pool was defiance of some of the fundamentals I'd taught, especially the safety aspect of the game. I'd suggest that you teach her to be the "not a nice lady" when a safety is looming in her sights. Some men and women have a difficult time accepting the rulsets allowing being mean with safeties,,,gotta try to make everything.

Pool became an obsession with my exGF and it soon replaced some of the "personal attention" she gave me away from the pool table, so in my case the interactions with pool and the GF was a destruction to the relationship. I find the love life better off with a seperation of hobbies, pool especially. Hopefully yours will be the exception, but I'd advise that you fix her up with respected instructors and get the relationship away from pool.

My EX was a superior student BEFORE we became involved, she listened and took all of the advise without argument. That all changed after the envolvement began.

Good luck...sid

Btw, video taping on the home table was a key to my teaching method. Set up a long simple straight in shot(Kinnister #1) and let her shoot it over and over again. A review will show her why she misses some shots. sv

Cane
03-12-2006, 10:43 AM
DJ, Where are you located? I bet one of the instructors on here knows a qualified instructor close to you...

I do have to agree with Cheesemouse... DON'T DO IT! I tried to teach my GF how to play (she can't hit the end rail most days) and it almost resulted in one of us moving out. I'm going to send her to Dallas one of these days for three days with RandyG or Caedos (Carl Oswald, aka Oz) in the Beginners class. Well worth me spending the money to dodge the conflict that seems to naturally occur when I try to teach her... ANYTHING!!!

Billy_Bob
03-12-2006, 10:55 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Sid_Vicious:</font><hr> ...I'd suggest that you teach her to be the "not a nice lady" when a safety is looming in her sights...<hr /></blockquote>

Most women I know DO NOT need lessons on how to be nasty! /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

PlynSets
03-13-2006, 11:21 AM
Ok, so we went to the pool lesson yesterday!
I'm not sure why he's not on the BCA list, but I can tell you I'm 99% sure he's BCA certified (or atleast was at one time, which for all intensive purposes is the same thing to me). The guy was a real nice guy, and I feel comfortable sending my girlfriend over to his house without me for further lessons. He had a Gold Crown I setup in his garage (garage is converted into a pool room), the gold crown was setup with 4 1/4 inch pockets with simonis 860 on it, and was first class to say the least.

In any event, he started out by going over the basics with her (which was nice), and then he had her shoot some balls to kind of get an evaluation as to where she is in the game. I think even he was surprised a little when he asked her how long she has been playing, becuase he threw out a couple of months, and myself being the proud boyfriend was able to say going on 8 days now.. LOL /ccboard/images/graemlins/wink.gif

One of the things I've been having alot of trouble with is her back seems to be hurting her after a very short amount of time on the table. I also mentioned that she had that kind of phillipino stroke going on and was unsure if I should change it or not. Well I worked with her on it, and I was changing her stroke arm.. Never even occured to me to look at her stance. Mike took one second to look at her, and then went into explaining how girls and guys typically stand a little different, adjusted how she came up to the table, and made her hips a little more open to the shot, and everything came together at once. That 5 minute portion of the lesson was worth the money in itself. I see my g/f getting much more consistent now, becuase her back no longer hurts (apparently she was doing some contortion act before) her so she can play longer with less breaks, and she's more likely (practice practice practice) to have repeatabillity when she comes up to the table. As the lesson progressed he moved into some aiming methods, and went over a couple different theories (dominant eye, both eyes, centered over the cue etc..) I believe as well that just this portion of the lesson was also worth the money. Just to learn something about yourself (he had her discover her own dominant eye) and how we see, aim, etc. He then went on to some slight cut shots just to see how she's lining up on the ball, and gave her two tips (also worth their weight in gold) on how to better line up to the shot and to make sure your center ball. By this time I was kind of wondering how I ever made a ball without somebody telling me all this stuff in the beginning.. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

My only complaint about the lesson was that we (in my opinion) didn't spend enough time on the fundamentals, and really hammering in those couple things. The lesson started advancing pretty quickly from there, all the way up to 3 ball run outs. I can understand completely why it was structured that way though, especially for a first lesson. Being that it's fairly expensive I'm sure he wanted her to feel like she was getting her moneys worth, and wanted to learn more then just how to stand. As a more advanced (I'm using that term loosely here in present company) I can see how much a stance, or aiming technique can really affect the game down the road and how much time is required to spend on them. He also may have figured since I was there that I'd go over these things with her after we left and in the future, so maybe he felt comfortable that I would retain some of the knowledge and he could go a little faster then what I would feel is normal. She got a "BCA" homework book with some drills in it, the drills are "progressive practice" drills designed by Bob Jewitt (nice drills by the way!) and overall I felt the experience was very possitive. She will definately be going back for more lessons in the future, becuase there's a couple of things that are very important to me. First there's alot of shady people in the world of pool.. I'm comfortable sending her over to his house by herself anytime she'd like to go, so that's worth the extra money in itself. Secondly He's pretty local so the location is convenient. Third his equipment is top notch, and in looking around I can tell he's meticulous which I like. There is a discount on future lessons, not a horrendous discount (so he is still more expensive then everyone else), but for the reasons listed above I think we're going to stick with this guy. I'll do the majority of the teaching to her, but if there's something that I can't figure out what she's doing then we'll give him a call head over and let him figure it out. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif Definately a possitive experience, and I'd recomend him to anyone.

DJ