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Billy_Bob
01-29-2010, 01:20 PM
I nearly fell off my chair last night due to the sheer amazement of what I saw happening on the pool table last night...

Is THAT guy having a safety battle?

And is he shooting excellent safety shot, after excellent safety shot, after excellent safety shot?

This can't be! This is the guy who can't pocket a ball and can't think ahead if his life depended on it!

Yet here he is playing and having a safety battle and doing a GREAT job at it. Just as good of safety play as I have EVER seen anyone play!

Amazing! I guess something just "clicked" for him and he finally "got it".

I gave up trying to teach this guy anything years ago. He does not want to listen...

But he slowly learned on his own. Just by years of watching me and my best friend have safety battles over the last 4 years.

So here is yet another way for people to learn to play pool. Just by watching what the other players are doing.

I guess the lesson here is choose your pool playing environment VERY carefully. If you are new, lose a lot of games, and sit watching other people play a lot, be sure the players you are watching are very good players! It might just determine how you play 4 years from now...

Pask
01-29-2010, 03:19 PM
In my humble player's opinion, I totally agree : watching is, to my mind an important part of learning and training also, even like you said when you're sitting on your chair during a match.

Since I got back to pool after a several-year break, I've been watching many videos, games or players in the flesh. Pool is a very smart game. What I mean here is that it isn't only a game requiring ability, but also mental, knowledge about billiards physics, strategy and so on. Moreover, it looks very elegant, and a great stroke isn't just the result of a great technique mastering, but also the perfect gesture matching with the shot to be made. Therefore, watching enables the learner to think about all of that, memorize and imitate. Of course there's no magic, and you won't be able to reproduce the same stroke or play. But when you're used to watching, your brain makes kinda backup of all the visual information you have before your eyes. It does it because of your focus and interest in the game. Then, when back to the practice table, it will help you improve in a way.

This is the same for language, and what I say to my students learning English : even if they don't understand or can't speak well, they still learn by practising English passively by listening this language in class all day (I give them the example of a new baby born discovering world). This is exactly the same process for pool.

And also, Billy Bob you're right : it's better to watch the good players of course!

Soflasnapper
01-30-2010, 01:02 PM
For many, this is the value of playing in leagues. Plenty of people know and play safeties in leagues, and it becomes obvious just how powerful some safety play can be.

It is yet another step up to know how to do safety battles, which is far more advanced than a simple one-off safety (give me ball in hand or sell out on the legal contact, please!).

What's very instructive is to see a guy or gal who shoots better than you turn down a shot YOU'D go for every day, in favor of playing a higher percentage safety.

And lastly, deliberately running a pattern TO a pre-planned safety, instead of playing safe mainly as a reaction to a bad roll you got out of line on or a tricky leave the opponent left you, shows the highest integration of safety play into your strategy. (The more offensive-minded players rarely do this, and only bring out their safety game in the two situations I mention.)

KellyStick
02-16-2010, 08:49 PM
I love safety battles. I think they show the real measure of a persons knowledge of the game, thinking ahead, plus insight into a players patience and mental control. There is always someone who knows more and you can learn a lot from a safety battle.

KellyStick
02-16-2010, 08:52 PM
That's right Soflasnapper... Playing save cuz u screwed vs running to a planned deadly safe, to win the game easily, is a whole different ball game. You gotta see the whole table at once and how to win the game from the start.

JJFSTAR
02-17-2010, 02:55 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: KellyStick</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I love safety battles. I think they show the real measure of a persons knowledge of the game, thinking ahead, plus insight into a players patience and mental control. There is always someone who knows more and you can learn a lot from a safety battle. </div></div>

Correct and well said.

gabeski
02-17-2010, 12:25 PM
As an old time player, who was away from the game for about 20 years and just cam back about 7 years ago my comment is. It's a shame that the fine game of pocketing ball has come to where many feel that a game of safeties is a good game. To me personally a ggood game is when I rack and my opponent breaks and runs the table, now that is skill! Looking at the table and seeing a good run but playing safe is not. Just my opinion.

bradb
02-17-2010, 03:18 PM
I see so many players in my 8ball league who don't understand saftey play.... they go for everything and because of that I find them easy to beat!

Laying down a good safety and escaping from it is one of the most important aspects of pool and should be practiced and understood.

Its great to go for those big runs, but if you don't have a shot its better to win the game!! Brad

gabeski
02-17-2010, 04:38 PM
I understand that safeties are a part of the game, but in the leagues I play in I will look at the table and see a very easy run out for the other player, but instead of putting balls in pockets, my opponent will immeadiatly play a safety. That just doesn't make sense to me. I would play for the run every time, but if I ran into trouble, then and only then I would play the safety. I can play the safety game as well as the next guy and many times will come back from his attempt and safety him.

KellyStick
02-18-2010, 06:59 PM
Well you don't play safe for the sake of playing safe! OF course not. Run em if you can of course. BUt don't dig a hole you can't get out of. So many players think that pocketing a lot of balls regardless of the win is all that matters. These players are occasionally deadly but mostly they lose, if I am playing them. So there are times when there is just no real good way out or the percentage is so low. Too me you gotta know both sides of the game. And enjoy both sides. Nothing beats a run out of course. PLaying safe when there is an easy run just shows that the person doesn't understand the game or doesn't trust their game.