View Full Version : How do you feel when in the Zone?

07-15-2008, 11:28 AM
I mentioned in a recent post how lately I have been focusing on focusing. This amounts to me trying to push everything out of my mind except the game at hand. This means watching everything I can abouot the game and trying to figure out just how I am going to win. Then when it's time to shoot putting every part of me into the shot at hand and settling on all the needs of the given shot.

When I really get myself worked up it feels like the pressure in my head begins to rise. Focus becomes easier. Seeing the shot becomes easier and you reach a kind of high. But mostly I feel this sort of wonderful pressure in my head and also a feeling of control and ease.

How does it feel for you when and if you get there? I've always said that if you are really concentrating then the building could be crashing down around you and you would not notice.

07-15-2008, 12:15 PM
I focus on the CB and the smallest dot possible. Lately I have used an imaginary piece of thread from the center of the CB to the OB and from the OB to the pocket.

When I really get into it I heat up. The back of my neck sweats and my whole body is warm. I am usually not aware of the heat until I miss and go sit down.

I have also learned that I have to ignore the people and circumstances between shots or 1) I loose my stroke and 2) it is more difficult to focus. When playing a player of equal or better skill I tend to play the player and this wrecks my game with too many defensive shots. I notice that at these times I don't heat up.

I don't know if I am in a "zone" but I do know I feel great and more alive (if there is such a thing). I am intensely aware of the table, my stroke, and not much else when everything is working well.

07-15-2008, 12:35 PM
KellyStick I canít tell you because I cant remember the 3 times I have been in the zone I was "awakened" by a friend. I have no memory of the events. Wish I could go back there I hear I am one hell of a pool player in that state.

07-15-2008, 01:02 PM
my amount of time at the table has slowed down as of late. but not too long ago I hit it for the first time in a LONG time... too bad it was in a friendly game with a girl i was hanging out with lol! but suddenly the whole table had an intense clarity to it. I didn't have to look at my shots, or layouts or position... my body just knew how to do it. I broke and ran an 8 ball layout I normally would have just dinked around with some safety play on to open up. But in this instance, I just felt it and saw it... and just did it. After I finished she was asking how I did some particular shots in the sequence... and I really couldn't tell her lol. Just couldn't remember the details of what I did or was thinking, it just was.

Then of course the next night I was playing with friends thinking "alright, I'm FINALLY back in stroke now and can eat their lunch". Nah, I sucked /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif


BCA Master Instr
07-15-2008, 01:59 PM
I just spent 5 days in dead stroke at the BCA Nationals. I don't remember a shot!!!!!!....SPF=randyg

07-15-2008, 05:59 PM
I haven't played serious competitive pool in a long time, but as I recall, being in the zone is like my entire being is concentrated in the center of my body, about where the diaphragm is. All thoughts and actions are flowing from there. It is not an everyday kind of analyzing and then acting process. More like intuition. The answers to the table just come up from that center without any conscious thought. The knowledge of how to execute shots I've never attempted much less seen is just THERE. The body needs no instructions on what to do; it just knows the right stance for the shot, the right target on the object ball, the right speed, spin, position, etc. Every part of me is completely integrated into a single, undivided state of being, as if I am a surfer and the session is a wave, and nothing else exists. Time disappears. Hours seem to pass like minutes. But when it is over, I can remember all of it.

It's a very cool thing.

But pool is not the only activity where I and others have experienced it. In fact, I think the in-the-zone experience is available during practically anything a person does provided he has enough knowledge, skill, and experience at what he is doing. This is why I think the zone (dead stroke) can be potentially accessed at will. I am developing a personal theory about how to do it, and being able to do it is my main goal in coming back to the game.

Fran Crimi
07-16-2008, 09:41 AM
For me it's simple. Being in the zone feels like the game is easy. It feels like I know exactly what to do with every shot.


07-18-2008, 02:42 PM
I feel the Welcome of the Green cloth, it makes me feel like I am at home for the holidays! I could not tell what music is on or who else is in the pool hall for all my feelings on in one place. Compleatly without effort of trying. I would say it is like a trance.

07-21-2008, 11:40 AM
Bluey, you mentioned not knowing what music is playing. For me music can be an integral part of pool. I love to shoot with the blues in the background. REcently I've been listening to a CD from Kenny Wayne Shepard where he travels the South and plays with a bunch of old blues players. It comes with a DVD and most of the players are like in there 90s. I don't own stock in the company but anyway the blues and pool go together in my brain. This is just a CD I've been listening to while shooting. I also like BB King and Eric Clapton (Riding with the King). Gatemouth Brown... There are others. I'm no blues expert by any means.

The blues can sometimes serve as a conduit to the Zone or some sort of mental enhancer. Perhaps it is temporary, like only as long as the song maybe. Perhaps it is a bit of a false zone I dunno and I don't really care. Just thought it interesting you mentioned not knowing the music.