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Jager85
05-22-2007, 09:10 PM
I have been working alot on my stroke lately and have noticed a huge flaw. On my follow through my elbow drops. When my elbow drops my stroke, most of the time, is not straight. The only way to aviod this while getting a good follow through is to move my right arm back on the stick, or my bridge hand closer to the cue ball. This, however, creates about a 110 degree angle of my elbow at contact with the cue ball. I am to understand that the elbow is to be 90 degrees at cue ball contact.

my question really is, is it normal for the elbow to drop on a follow through, or is it better to widen my stance for a better follow through while keeping my elbow still?

I was watching Cory Deuel shoot and his elbow drops on his follow through as well. Any advice is appreciated.

Curtis

Rich R.
05-22-2007, 09:21 PM
This issue has been discussed a number of times and I won't pretend to understand the details. IIRC, some believe that the elbow should not drop at all. Others believe the a little elbow drop, after cue tip contact with the cue ball, is not a problem.
It would be best if you searched for the prior discussions for all of the details.

Sig
05-22-2007, 11:09 PM
I try to keep my elbow still and do a proper pendulum stroke, but if you look at the pros I think a slight elbow drop is pretty typical. In fact someone correct me if I'm wrong but it seems a completely stationary elbow is pretty rare, which makes you wonder.

Rather than necessarily widening your stance, if you get down lower over the cue, it might help you bring your grip hand to your chest and complete the stroke without dropping the elbow.

KellyStick
05-23-2007, 11:26 AM
Is it really going to matter much on the follow through? Once you contact the ball it really does not matter if your arms fall off does it? I mean the point of follow through I think is to have a smooth stroke that flows through the ball at a well determined controlled speed and so forth. But whether your elbow moves a bit after ball contact is not going to affect the balls trajectory right? So if your contact is good and your accuracy is good I don't think I would over analyze a cahnge in elbow postion. I think you would be more wrong to correct your elbow on the followthrough by getting off 90 degrees on contact. This would seem to be more worser. Make any sense?

Jager85
05-23-2007, 11:36 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote KellyStick:</font><hr> Is it really going to matter much on the follow through? Once you contact the ball it really does not matter if your arms fall off does it? I mean the point of follow through I think is to have a smooth stroke that flows through the ball at a well determined controlled speed and so forth. But whether your elbow moves a bit after ball contact is not going to affect the balls trajectory right? So if your contact is good and your accuracy is good I don't think I would over analyze a cahnge in elbow postion. I think you would be more wrong to correct your elbow on the followthrough by getting off 90 degrees on contact. This would seem to be more worser. Make any sense? <hr /></blockquote>

This does make sense...but imagine a center ball shot with perfect stroke except for when contact is made the cue slips to the left, because of an elbow dropping, would this not put left english on the ball and possibly miss the shot or shape?

bsmutz
05-23-2007, 11:40 AM
I think the two critical questions are: did you stop accelerating before contact and did your elbow drop before contact? If you can answer no to both questions, then you should be okay. However, if you are prone to dropping your elbow or decelerating, how are you going to know if it is happening before contact or not on every shot? The answer is most likely that you won't know. Therefore, the general consensus on making sure you keep your elbow up and follow through to eliminate the possibility of either of these stroke-destroying flaws getting into your routine. If your elbow is still in the same place, your cue tip is six inches past the contact point, and your stroke hand is stopped at your chest when the ball falls in the pocket, then you know for sure you didn't drop your elbow or decelerate when you stroked the shot.

dr_dave
05-23-2007, 12:18 PM
Curtis,

Elbow drop is probably the most frequently and hotly debated topic in the history of this forum. For a summary of some of the highlights from past discussions, see the numerous links under "elbow drop" under "stroke" here (http://www.engr.colostate.edu/~dga/pool/threads.html).

Regards,
Dave
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Jager85:</font><hr> I have been working alot on my stroke lately and have noticed a huge flaw. On my follow through my elbow drops. When my elbow drops my stroke, most of the time, is not straight. The only way to aviod this while getting a good follow through is to move my right arm back on the stick, or my bridge hand closer to the cue ball. This, however, creates about a 110 degree angle of my elbow at contact with the cue ball. I am to understand that the elbow is to be 90 degrees at cue ball contact.

my question really is, is it normal for the elbow to drop on a follow through, or is it better to widen my stance for a better follow through while keeping my elbow still?

I was watching Cory Deuel shoot and his elbow drops on his follow through as well. Any advice is appreciated.

Curtis <hr /></blockquote>

SpiderMan
05-23-2007, 12:21 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote bsmutz:</font><hr> I think the two critical questions are: did you stop accelerating before contact and did your elbow drop before contact? If you can answer no to both questions, then you should be okay. However, if you are prone to dropping your elbow or decelerating, how are you going to know if it is happening before contact or not on every shot? The answer is most likely that you won't know. Therefore, the general consensus on making sure you keep your elbow up and follow through to eliminate the possibility of either of these stroke-destroying flaws getting into your routine. If your elbow is still in the same place, your cue tip is six inches past the contact point, and your stroke hand is stopped at your chest when the ball falls in the pocket, then you know for sure you didn't drop your elbow or decelerate when you stroked the shot. <hr /></blockquote>

How does a stationary elbow ensure that you do not decelerate prior to contact?

SpiderMan

Bob_Jewett
05-23-2007, 03:45 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Jager85:</font><hr> ... my question really is, is it normal for the elbow to drop on a follow through, or is it better to widen my stance for a better follow through while keeping my elbow still? ... <hr /></blockquote>
Yes and no. Nearly all top players drop their elbows on power shots. This typically happens after the tip has struck the ball and is a normal part of the continuation of the motion of the forearm. Many top players do not drop their elbows at all on softer, finesse shots.

As for your stance, I don't understand your comment. Elbow has to do with the arm motion, and stance is mostly about how stable your feet and torso are.

Do not attempt to exaggerate your follow through for its own sake. A foot of follow through beyond the cue ball requires such exaggeration. See how much follow through you can get with a still elbow and your forearm perpendicular to the stick at impact, with your hand ending by touching your chest. That much follow through is plenty.

Some articles about what the elbow does and other stroke factors, including a catalog of different types of stroke are in the on-line Billiards Digest articles at http://www.sfbilliards.com/articles/BD_articles.html In particular look at the "Different Strokes" articles and the "Where's Your Elbow" articles.

bsmutz
05-23-2007, 06:42 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote SpiderMan:</font><hr>
How does a stationary elbow ensure that you do not decelerate prior to contact?
<hr /></blockquote>
I was discussing two different issues and the most recommended solutions for them: elbow drop causing a non-linear stroke and not following through to a natural ending point causing deceleration before contact.

KellyStick
05-23-2007, 07:41 PM
I have to be honest. I coasted through most of the replies. If the elbow drops AFTER contact with the CB then SO WHAT! Now if it is before CB contact or if it drops because you change speed before or during CB contact or your follow through is not smooth (which might cause elbo drop or whatever) then this is not an elbow issue but rather a stroke issue, elbo drop is a symptom not a cause. Focus on cause not symptoms. I mean just take your stick and cue up on a your bridege hand and stroke at thin air. Watch your stick as you do it. If it is not straight and smooth understand why. Are your arms really short? If so this could be an issue. There are other things but my point, I think is that Elbo drop is likely a symptom not a cause. Find the Cause. However, make sure it is really a problem before even worrying about it. If thin air stroke is good then it is not an elbow thing.

Cornerman
05-24-2007, 09:20 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote bsmutz:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote SpiderMan:</font><hr>
How does a stationary elbow ensure that you do not decelerate prior to contact?
<hr /></blockquote>
I was discussing two different issues and the most recommended solutions for them: elbow drop causing a non-linear stroke and not following through to a natural ending point causing deceleration before contact. <hr /></blockquote>It seems to me that keeping the elbow still ensures a non-linear stroke.


Fred

Snapshot9
05-24-2007, 11:03 AM
Fred ... Only if someone isn't gripping the cue properly with their grip hand, otherwise it is a linear stroke.

SpiderMan
05-24-2007, 02:39 PM
What Fred was saying is that, with the exception of the vanishingly-small instant when the forearm is perpendicular to the cue, a "pinned" elbow results in the cue NOT traveling in a straight line. Also, if the arm is not changing its angular velocity about the stationary elbow, the tip's forward speed actually increases as the system approaches perpendicular, then slows down as this point is passed. So the stroke only approximates linear at one point in it's travel. At all other times, it is "looping" as well as either accelerating or decelerating.

Whether this does or does not outweigh the advantage of "reducing moving parts" in the "pinned-elbow mechanical body model" has been debated ad nauseum /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

From my recollection, it seems that maybe lower-level players might be best served by a motionless elbow because they need to limit their ranges of motion in order to achieve repeatabiity. Pros, with their superior coordination and muscle control, may reap some benefit from letting their their elbows move, as this keeps the stick going in a straight line for a greater segment of the stroke.

It's up to each of us to decide which group, if any, to emulate.

SpiderMan

Bob_Jewett
05-24-2007, 03:14 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Snapshot9:</font><hr> Fred ... Only if someone isn't gripping the cue properly with their grip hand, otherwise it is a linear stroke. <hr /></blockquote>
A pendulum stroke, if vertical, keeps the stick in one plane. I'm certain that's not what Fred was referring to. If you have a pendulum stroke, the cue stick cannot travel in a straight line. The tip does not travel in a straight line, and it doesn't even travel in a circle. This is illustrated in a couple of my articles in BD which are on-line at http://www.sfbilliards.com/articles/BD_articles.html with fairly obvious titles about elbows and strokes.

A true piston stroke, which does cause the cue stick to move along its own axis, requires a complicated motion in the upper arm. Few players have a piston stroke, although two Joneses do, as mentioned in the articles.