View Full Version : What's the worst advice you've been given in Pool?

10-01-2002, 04:25 PM
Here are the two that come to mind for me...

"As long as its comfortable, that's all that matters." (He was referring to alignment and technique)
"Correct technique is NOT uncomfortable!"
BTW...Those two quotes came from two different people.

There are some others in the running for 2nd place, such as...
"You should never pause in your stroke. It should be a constant, fluid movement." (Not saying that you SHOULD pause in your stroke, because many players do fine without it. But looking at some of the players that DO pause in their stroke, it is absurd to give across-the-board advice to not do it.)
"The cue shaft is NOT a long gun-barrel to aim with! You should ignore it, and just look at the balls." (Many great players, especially in Snooker, certainly do use the cue shaft to help them sight some shots. This is the same person that said the line about correct technique not being uncomfortable.)
"There should be no body movement in the break. Keep everything still and just swing the arm, like any other shot." (Except for the Sardo rack and the 9-ball being racked on the spot, I can not think of a SINGLE pro player that breaks like this. Not one. Not a single one.)

Luckily, I'm smart enough, know enough about the game, and have enough professional friends/coaches/ex-girlfriends to have ignored all of these gems of wisdom.

Anyone have others?

Voodoo Daddy
10-01-2002, 04:28 PM
Worst advise? "Keep playing, you can be someone in this game". What I should have said was; "Play pool after your job and your family are in order". Oh, you mean pool advise? I dont know, most of my stuff works pretty good....

10-01-2002, 04:32 PM
the worst? "Play him for money he is not that good you can even spot him a game"... I went on to loose 3 straight sets /ccboard/images/icons/frown.gif

I got a couple of more but this one hurt the most

10-01-2002, 04:59 PM
this isnt really advice but was said to me before i joined apa

'join my team,we need cruddy women players'


10-01-2002, 05:25 PM
About 8 yrs ago, when I first started shooting pool on the bar boxes ... I was told to "turn my wrist to get the most english on the cueball" lol

10-02-2002, 06:51 AM
"If you hit the ball harder it'll force it into the pocket"

I laughed.

8-ball advice: "You should ALWAYS run as many balls off the table as you can"

10-02-2002, 07:03 AM
"If you want maximum back spin raise the butt of stick and hit it a little harder"

don't forget to make sure noboby is walking close by.
Unless they have "that insurance"


Fred Agnir
10-02-2002, 07:42 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Mike:</font><hr> Anyone have others? <hr></blockquote>
I think any advice can be great or evil depending on the situation, who is giving and who is receiving. So far, some of the 'worst advice' mentioned are things that I tell people if I think that it's appropriate. A correlation is that advice given with a lack of judgement can be detrimental.

That being said, I think the worst pieces of advice are those that keep a player from expanding the limits of their game. Nobody gets better by shying away from their weak areas (heavy english, hard/fast shots, deep draws, combinations, banks, kicks).


10-02-2002, 09:37 AM
The absolute worst advice... "You need to hold the cue with your right (back) hand closer to the end of the cue. You can't get a good enough follow through if you hold it in the middle of the wrap. I don't even know why they put the wrap there. They should put it at the end of the cue. They are setting up new players to fail because they think you are supposed to hold it too far up." He literally wanted me to hold onto my ivory butt cap.

Thanks... I'll keep that in mind, buddy.

Just about all the advice I've ever gotten has been bad. It's been my experience that people who give unsolicited advice usually have no idea what they are talking about. There is a guy that I play with on my Monday night pool team who is famous for giving bad advice. I've asked him in the past to only offer the advice I ask for, but he doesn't listen. So I amuse him one night when he tells me I should have hit this cut shot natural instead of putting draw on the ball. The objective was to break out a cluster. We set the shot up after the match and sure enough, hitting with natural was not going anywhere near the cluster. Hitting with draw wasn't going to do it either, but it got it close - it needed some outside english too, but you get the point.


10-02-2002, 10:49 AM
"You should always try to run out, or make a shot.. even if you don't have one."

10-02-2002, 11:09 AM
The worst advice was given to me after I had played for a year with no help or instruction and then the first guy that offers advise tells me that my open bridge was no good and I must try to shoot everything with a closed bridge. I listened to the guy cause he was letting me use his cue and when I played with his cue I had to listen to him. He was 80 and I was 15. What good thing did I learn from this 'old man'? Old poolplayers are nice people... /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

10-02-2002, 12:16 PM
I disagree that "any" advice can be good or bad, depending on other factors. Taken to an extreme, telling something they should always shoot one-handed under their leg with one eye closed is bad advice, regardless of any other factors.

But I do see your point that some points of advice can be good or bad, depending on other factors. The problem is, as you mention, that it is often given with no judgement whatsoever. It is just something that some player repeats like a broken record to anyone that wants to listen.

The vast majority of players you will find in Pool halls dispensing advice are not remotely competent to be a coach in any physical activity. The statements regarding comfort (not referring to physical pain, but referring to what feels natural) and technique are dead giveaways that someone should not be listened to. Among those that are competent to coach physical acivities, it is understood and accepted beyond question that proper technique can be uncomfortable when one is not used to it, and improper technique can be comfortable when one has been doing it that way for years.

A good example is Tiger Woods. I saw an interview where he was talking about the coaching and changing of his golf swing after winning the Master's at 17 under, 12 strokes ahead of 2nd place. He said that he HATED some of the drills his coach made him do. He HATED them. They felt so awkward, unnatural, and uncomfortable. But the results after a year or more were spectacular.

I think this is one area in which Pool is lacking. Yes, there are exceptions, but almost every other sport has standards regarding proper technique and execution. Why do you think MLB teams have pitching coaches? Why do you think a pitcher making millions of dollars a year will spend time with a pitching coach making little tweaks and changes to his technique? I've seen struggling pitchers between innings in the dugout, working with the pitching coach on small adjustments to get back into their proper, successful form. You never see this in Pool. Players are struggling, and they just keep going with what they have. Because "As long as its comfortable, that's all that matters".

10-02-2002, 12:32 PM
When I first started playing, there was an old Italian player that gave me some advice on drawing the ball. He told me to whip the cue backwards after the follow through to "help the ball come back". (I didn't buy it...).

Also, another guy told me to twist my wrist on the break to "put all kinds of action on the balls".

-wasn't too damaged....

10-02-2002, 12:36 PM
Fred once told me to jack up my cue more than neccessary to get draw.


-rsb inside joke....

billy bob
10-02-2002, 01:13 PM
was playin my brother for who milked the cows when the rooster crowed. we were drinkin a little and i can't see anyhow. paw says shoot the one in the middle, i did but there wern't no ball there. then he says have another swig billy bob well i did and passed out. i ain't listinin to paw any more. i milked in the morn

10-02-2002, 02:54 PM
"If you want to get better, you have to play for money."

I don't know, maybe I'm just stupid, but I didn't see the correlation. Or maybe I just had a little too much respect for my money (Or, more accurately, the lack thereof!).

Fred Agnir
10-03-2002, 07:11 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Mike:</font><hr> I disagree that "any" advice can be good or bad, depending on other factors. Taken to an extreme, telling something they should always shoot one-handed under their leg with one eye closed is bad advice, regardless of any other factors.<hr></blockquote>
Well, if you want to be nit-picky, then this might be great advice, if you're the opponent.