View Full Version : Practice and Getting Your head in the game
05-04-2007, 04:57 PM
I have a table at the house and enjoy getting a regular dose of pool therapy. This means practicing on my own frequently. Sometimes I want to put some real pressure on myself like I can feel in a tournament. I truly enjoy the competition and the high that come with intense one on one battle. However, by yourself this can be hard. THis may sound sick but this is what I do sometimes.
Ok, pretend that you have been trapped by the devil sort of like a deveil went down to Georgia theme (loosely based). The devil has taken you and 100 hostages. He says that someone must shoot pool balls to save people. Misses are death and made balls are one person each saved. Making multiple balls at once is multiple saved people. Now shoot straight pool and see how man you can save. Remember each miss is a dead person. If you want to make it a bit easier you could pretent that the Devil gives you a mulligan for each rack or somthing. So get your mind into saving 100 lives and get to shooting. There is no time for ego or excuses. There is no time for sloppy low percentage wild shots. Everything is up to you. There is no time limit and there is no opponent to snooker you. Anyway this works sometimes for me.
Does anyone else have any similar ways of getting a real focus on for practice?
05-05-2007, 06:17 PM
By the way this is practice at focusing not shot technigue or making a particular type of shot. To me that is why it is a bit unique. When you are in focus the game can be surpisingly easy.
05-05-2007, 11:58 PM
When I really want to practice focus, I pick on the resident pro at my pool hall and play him a race of some sort for $30-$50. (On the edge of my comfort zone.)
05-06-2007, 01:14 AM
I tried it.....and i'm sad to say....the herd got thinned out quite a bit today....all the hostages were killed in the first hour.......
do you have any less bloodletting practice tips?
05-07-2007, 05:28 PM
Sometimes I play speed pool. This is sort of the opposite of "dancing with the Devil". Shoot everything fast and loose. The intent is to try to unlock your instincts and just shoot purely off feel and quick thinking.
But on the other hand if the Devil is killing everyone off you might want to think about why? Are you shooting sloppy? Missing easy shots? Not setting up next shots? Not fixing problems early and leaving them to the end? Shooting too hard and making yourself have to shoot the same ball over and over again? Shooting too hard instead of table speed wheere more balls fall even if your accuracy is off? IF you dance with the devil over time perhaps you can judge whether you are improving or not. I would not just give it up if a lot of people are dying. Try to figure out how to save more. You could change it too hamsters if that makes it less traumatic. OR you could change it to terrorists. For each made shot a terrorist goes to club Gitmo. IF you miss they get away.
05-07-2007, 08:50 PM
Kelly, I actually have my own table...9 ft'r with 4" corners.
I just enjoy being able to hit some balls...very relaxing...
when I practice seriously I play "equal offense"...or play the ghost in 9 ball.
I like your idea of just trusting your instincts, and sort of free-wheel...it's amazing some of the position shots you can make doing that.
But, after playing for all these years without a "stroke"...I spend more time now....trying to acquire one.....
"shooting too hard"...that's another problem area...that's the first thing Scott Lee noticed about my game...10 minutes later, he gave me my money back, and suggested I try bowling instead.....
05-07-2007, 09:55 PM
I bet Scott said something like "There are good shooters and hard shooters, but there aren't any good hard shooters!" I was fortunate to hear that from Scott early in my never ending journey to where ever my game is headed. Honestly I don't know, sometimes I find my stroke in the strangest places. The trick is sticking with it and finding out what you are doing differently. I like to set up on a high percentage shot then close my eyes and do the stroke. A lot of times you can sense what is "off." Maybe a strong safety could revive a dead person. Pool like any game is not only offense but defense. /ccboard/images/graemlins/shocked.gifYou can really take someone out of their game by making their first 5-6 shots a 2 rail kick. /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif
05-07-2007, 11:24 PM
'course I was kidding about Scott...I took a lesson from him,
and it did help. He pointed out a few things I was doing wrong, and gave me some good practice drills.
I sometimes shoot like my eyes are closed....but I can hold my own in the local tournaments.
05-08-2007, 01:28 PM
I have often worked a French Maid fantasy into my pool workouts but never considered saving the world or lives with my game. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smirk.gif
05-08-2007, 05:31 PM
I might be interested in more on the French Maid fantasy.
One comment on some earlier replies. Didn't mean to give the impression I like to shoot hard. In fact farthest from it. I heard Mosconi had said something to the affect that a pool shot should be like "Easy, Easier, Easiest". That's me. Especially for 8 ball. IN fact speed pool doesn't necessarily mean hard. It just means fast as in don't spend a lot of time thinking. That does sometimes translate into some harder than normal hitting though. I do a little bit of coaching and this is the one thing I try to install first off. Shoot easy, you make way more balls, you don't chase the same ball all over the table, you block pockets when you miss, you learn control, you don't early eight (I swear we had one oplayer that was cursed on this) and so on and on... Ok, prolly preachin to the quire at this point. I have a term for those fast shootin hammer down slamma jamma players (Jack Rabbit).
05-08-2007, 10:08 PM
We have a player that we've nicknamed "Thunder". He actually thinks he is robbed when hit hits the object ball as hard as possible to get as many rails and balls in play. When one actually hangs he thinks all the rolls are against him. Problem is that it works for him enough that we can't get him to ease up.
05-09-2007, 11:29 PM
Cydpkt...You can't help people who don't want to be helped.
It's kind of akin to those folks who will quite willingly post $500-$1000 for a pool cue, but wouldn't dream of spending a hundred or two, to actually learn how to use the darn thing! They already KNOW how to play! /ccboard/images/graemlins/tongue.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif LOL
05-10-2007, 08:36 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote KellyStick:</font><hr> I might be interested in more on the French Maid fantasy.
One comment on some earlier replies. Didn't mean to give the impression I like to shoot hard. In fact farthest from it. I heard Mosconi had said something to the affect that a pool shot should be like "Easy, Easier, Easiest". That's me. Especially for 8 ball. IN fact speed pool doesn't necessarily mean hard. It just means fast as in don't spend a lot of time thinking. That does sometimes translate into some harder than normal hitting though. I do a little bit of coaching and this is the one thing I try to install first off. Shoot easy, you make way more balls, you don't chase the same ball all over the table, you block pockets when you miss, you learn control, you don't early eight (I swear we had one oplayer that was cursed on this) and so on and on... Ok, prolly preachin to the quire at this point. I have a term for those fast shootin hammer down slamma jamma players (Jack Rabbit). <hr /></blockquote>
<font color="blue"> Kelly,
Aside from the French Maid, I think a more reasoned approach is to hit the ball with the proper and needed speed. There is nothing wrong with velocity, just useless velocity. I actually advocate some planned practice at speed.
Scott's point is one I make often, everyone needs an expensive cue but no one needs lessons from a seasoned and trusted professional. There are people with $10,000 in cues, case and devices who will never learn this game beyond a banger level.
Practice EVERYTHING, especially the things you don't so well. If you don't have focus for this type of detail type technical/feel game and mental memory developed through long hours of trying things others don't bother with, you will limit your pool life. That's o.k. but understand and learn to lower your expectations a bit. </font color>
05-10-2007, 03:48 PM
Scott, I hear that. Its funny that some people want to be coached but won't practice what you tell them. Its those people who blame their $1000 cue for their misses or problems. I placed in a lot of small tourneys to get my cue and you won't see me slamming it on the floor. A guy recently threw his cue across the bar (at least 20 feet), he has since been "let go" by the league. I will spend my time with those who want to learn. Take care!
05-11-2007, 09:30 AM
...as well he should (be tossed out of the league). Keep shooting straight, and sharing it with others!
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