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DeadCrab
01-06-2008, 08:57 AM
The standard teaching is that the forearm should be perpendicular to the floor at the time the cue tip strikes the cue ball. This is probably true for individuals who can assume an otherwise perfect stance, but I have my doubts that this holds for those of us who ain't so perfect and never will be.

Consider the "perfect" stance you see the pros using: Back flexed close to 90 degrees, shoulder extended about 45 degrees. Now look at the elbow and it's position. It will be flexed to about 110 - 115 degrees at the time of impact. And yes, it will be about perpendicular to the floor.

Now look at the not quite perfect stance depicted on the WPBA logo found on this site's home page. Back flexion about 60 degrees, shoulder extension about 45 degrees, with upper arm forming a 15 degree angle to true horizontal. The elbow will be at about a 100 degree angle at the time of cue-cueball impact, just a bit past perpendicular to the floor.

Now consider a player who doesn't bend so well, say 35-45 degrees. When in stance, their upper arm is going to be more parallel to the floor. When the forearm is perpendicular to the floor, their elbow will be at or less than 90 degrees flexion.(see the Cue U animated logo on this page for a crude depiction)

I would postulate that the functionally optimal stroke depends more on having the elbow in the proper range of flexion at the time of impact, 100-115 degrees, than it does on the position of the forearm relative to gravity.

For the bending-impaired to achieve this optimal elbow flexion, they will likely have to position their grip hand forward a bit, and to keep the stroke smooth, the grip hand will need to function as a true pivot point.

Comments?