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ObeOne
10-13-2002, 07:00 PM
I noticed an improvement in my game today, due to a change in my pre-shot routine. Rather than focusing on the object ball during the final stroke, I started focusing on the cueball. I've found that it eliminates the urge for those last instant 'corrections' that can foul up your shot. I've found that it's best to just let the shot take care of itself after you've lined it up and focus on hitting the cueball in the proper spot. What do you guys think?

--Mike

10-13-2002, 07:27 PM
Yeah, definetly. When you start thinking about where your object ball goes you lose sight of what is actually going to make the shot.

10-14-2002, 01:24 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: ObeOne:</font><hr> I noticed an improvement in my game today, due to a change in my pre-shot routine. Rather than focusing on the object ball during the final stroke, I started focusing on the cueball. I've found that it eliminates the urge for those last instant 'corrections' that can foul up your shot. I've found that it's best to just let the shot take care of itself after you've lined it up and focus on hitting the cueball in the proper spot. What do you guys think?

--Mike <hr></blockquote>


I've found the same thing, except that I use the "object ball last" on closer shots, where I need to draw to a certain spot, or hit it firm, but on long, semi-strait shots, or even cuts, I concentrate on where I'm hitting the cueball very carefully. I guess it's because of the need to avoid any english sometimes. I know that if you are shooting over a ball, it's helpful to look at the cueball last.. a secret that Jim Rempe talks about in his "how to run 100 balls" video, and one that has made life alot easier in those times where I must shoot over a ball.

I think for thinner cuts, it's helpful to concentrate on the object ball more, and for fuller hits and almost strait in shots, it's easier to concentrate on the cueball mostly. If you have to put alot of action on the cueball, concentrate on both, but moreso on where you are hitting the object ball, and with what english. Just my opinion and observation.

10-14-2002, 07:32 AM
I think it depends on what works for each individual person.

stickman
10-14-2002, 07:33 AM
I tried that technique for a while and eventually returned to the object ball last for most of my shots. Short range and close shots, I still use the cue ball last method.

phil in sofla
10-14-2002, 05:39 PM
One instructor here some time back now (maybe Scott, maybe Randy?), advised looking at the cue ball last, and claimed it resulted in an immediate one or two ball improvement for the students who went to that approach.

I find concentrating on either one, rather than being sort of inbetween as of the shot, is the key. My best shot making days are when my eyes are on the OB exclusively for the entire last back stroke and forward-- several seconds of OB only. I get into trouble when I'm checking back and forth, and then barely get 'target acquisition' back on the OB hit somewhere in the middle of the forward stroke.

I'd say the preference may come down to which of your trusts is greater-- the trust that your stroke will stay on the line without looking at the cue ball at the end, or the trust that your stroke will stay on line without looking at the OB at the end.

You probably SHOULD be able to trust either one, but for most of us, I would guess trusting the line will be right without the final aim to the contact point being seen at the end (since you're instead looking at the CB) might be harder to trust.

griffith_d
10-14-2002, 05:43 PM
On some long shots, as I am hitting the CB I move my eyes up with the stroke itself and switch from the CB to the OB and that seems to help.

On short sharp cuts, 2 feet or less, I look at OB the most.

Griff

Mike H
10-14-2002, 05:57 PM
I did the same thing in a time of trouble once and it's worked exceptionally well since. I also found an improvement in my focus at the table and have pretty much eliminated any jumping up at all. Stick with your new discovery, it should yield even better results in the future.

EZMark
10-14-2002, 07:56 PM
Scott Lee shoots like that all the time. When I shoot off the rail or over a ball I look at the cue ball last. Sometimes when I practice I look at the cue ball last, but when I play I do not have the nerve. But I do believe that what ever works is the right way. Thnx EZMark

Fred Agnir
10-15-2002, 06:55 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: ObeOne:</font><hr> I noticed an improvement in my game today, due to a change in my pre-shot routine. Rather than focusing on the object ball during the final stroke, I started focusing on the cueball. I've found that it eliminates the urge for those last instant 'corrections' that can foul up your shot. I've found that it's best to just let the shot take care of itself after you've lined it up and focus on hitting the cueball in the proper spot. What do you guys think?<hr></blockquote>
I think you're doing alright. I was working with someone last night that after a few moments of wheel spinning, we switched to "cueball last" approach. It benefits those who need help at cueball/tip contact.

Fred

TonyM
10-17-2002, 02:11 PM
Obeone says:

"I noticed an improvement in my game today, due to a change in my pre-shot routine. Rather than focusing on the object ball during the final stroke, I started focusing on the cueball.:

Are you Scott Lee's illegitimate child?

Tony

socrates
10-17-2002, 07:19 PM
"In aiming, without repeatedly lining up the bridge, the centre of the cueball, and the chosen area of the object ball: is something parallel to the rifleman who concentrates on getting the target in line with the foresight only." Joe Davis World Champion

While the above is silent on what to look at last I am of the strong opinion that it should be the object ball target. Limited exceptions might be when jacked up over an object ball, cue ball frozen to the rail or a jump shot.

By looking at and locking down the object ball target I believe you get the best sense that the entire length of the cue stick is on the proper line of the shot and this gives you the best chance of delivering the cue tip through the intended spot on the cue ball and down the line of the shot for the entire length of the follow through.

To me looking at the cue ball last is akin to the dart player focusing on the tip of the dart instead of the target, the archer focusing on the point of the arrow instead of through the point and looking at the target or the marksman looking at the the foresight only.

While there are comments that looking at the cue ball last has been a benefit I would offer the following:

"When I first try the idea I have success. As I continue with the thought I have a mess." Carl Lohren PGA teaching professional. My point is to make sure you give any new idea you are incorporating into your game the test over time.

I am sure there are some strong players who look at the cue ball last. I think part of the enjoyment of the journey of continuous improvement is the willingness to try differnt concepts and form your own opinion.

I may be wrong, as I often am;however, the above is the basis for my opinion.

Scott Lee
10-18-2002, 10:30 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: socrates:</font><hr> "In aiming, without repeatedly lining up the bridge, the centre of the cueball, and the chosen area of the object ball: is something parallel to the rifleman who concentrates on getting the target in line with the foresight only." Joe Davis World Champion

While the above is silent on what to look at last I am of the strong opinion that it should be the object ball target. Limited exceptions might be when jacked up over an object ball, cue ball frozen to the rail or a jump shot.

By looking at and locking down the object ball target I believe you get the best sense that the entire length of the cue stick is on the proper line of the shot and this gives you the best chance of delivering the cue tip through the intended spot on the cue ball and down the line of the shot for the entire length of the follow through.

To me looking at the cue ball last is akin to the dart player focusing on the tip of the dart instead of the target, the archer focusing on the point of the arrow instead of through the point and looking at the target or the marksman looking at the the foresight only.<hr></blockquote>

Steve...I am one instructor who advocates looking at the CB last, although I never insist that my students adopt that technique. I merely explain it fully, demonstrate the effects, and allow the student to make their own assessment on the individual value. For "throwing" sports, including golf, tennis, baseball (batting), and pool...successful contact with the object ball (regardless of which sport mentioned above) depends on eye contact with the ball at impact. With pool it can work either way, but with the other three, it would be unlikely that you would make solid contact looking anywhere other than at the ball on contact.

IMO, pool is the same...but what works for some, doesn't work as well for others. Different strokes for different folks. BTW, I never claimed an immediate 2-ball improvement by switching to this method, although most students will acheive some measure of immediate improvement,
when they thoroughly understand the thought process behind looking at the CB last, vs the OB! Of course, without having a smooth stroke, with a pause and a slow backswing, it doesn't really matter WHERE you look last...you probably won't hit the ball like you expect to!

Scott Lee

10-18-2002, 11:31 AM
As long as I have been playing this has come up. I don't think it matters because the balls (Q and O) are both on view. What ever seem to work for you. In golf you can't look at the cup and putt. you have to look at the ball, same in tennis, you can't look to where the ball is going and also hit the ball. I don't think it is a good analogy. Actually I do both but do look at the object ball most of the time. I find myself looking at the cue ball when it is frozen to the rail and I am shooting straight away. Also if I am shooting over a ball and jacked up. People will know what they like best. I don't believe in a hard fast rule.

St Paul Gal
10-18-2002, 11:44 AM
Allison Fisher, Mike Massey, and Gerda Hofstatter all told me to look at the object ball last during lessons. I believe them.

I know I shoot better when I'm focussed on the spot on the OB and just concentrate on delivering my arm straight through. I also concur that looking at the CB last on jacked-up shots is correct because you shoot down through the center of the ball to the ground.

I think if I went CB last it would introduce a bunch of fundamentals breakdowns in my game, because I wouldn't be focussed on the straight line of the shot. It would be like driving down the road and looking at only 5 ft in front of you...

10-18-2002, 10:31 PM
<hr></blockquote>
Steve...I am one instructor who advocates looking at the CB last, although I never insist that my students adopt that technique. I merely explain it fully, demonstrate the effects, and allow the student to make their own assessment on the individual value. For "throwing" sports, including golf, tennis, baseball (batting), and pool...successful contact with the object ball (regardless of which sport mentioned above) depends on eye contact with the ball at impact. With pool it can work either way, but with the other three, it would be unlikely that you would make solid contact looking anywhere other than at the ball on contact.

IMO, pool is the same...but what works for some, doesn't work as well for others. Different strokes for different folks. BTW, I never claimed an immediate 2-ball improvement by switching to this method, although most students will acheive some measure of immediate improvement,
when they thoroughly understand the thought process behind looking at the CB last, vs the OB! Of course, without having a smooth stroke, with a pause and a slow backswing, it doesn't really matter WHERE you look last...you probably won't hit the ball like you expect to!

Scott Lee <hr></blockquote>


At the beginning of this thread, I said that I looked at the object ball last when they were close together, but actually, after paying more attention to how I'm shooting lately, I always look at the cueball last, but right after I hit the cueball, I follow it with my eyes towards the object ball, which helps me stay down and not jump up.

I think this sounds obvious, but in pool, the cueball and object ball don't move untill you hit them, and the object ball doesn't move untill you hit it with the cueball.. , so from that standpoint, it makes sense to pay most of your attention to how/where you hit the cueball.. especially since the slightest bit of (unintentional) english can change the shot enough to cause a miss.

bluewolf
10-19-2002, 08:03 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Scott Lee:</font><hr>
Scott Lee <hr></blockquote>

Out of Lurk for just one minute &lt;G&gt;.

I have had lots of work on my stroke but I was still missing shots.We finally figured it out and it is much better. The point I wish to make is that if the stroke isnt darned near perfect, a person imo will miss more balls by looking at the ob than the cb.

I think that what works for each person is okay. But I have a question with so many, including pros and randy g advocating looking at the ob last. I am wondering if looking at the cb or the object ball sublety affects the body spatially or the head position (even though you are not supposed to move the head). Or if the stroke is perfect, does it matter which one you look at last.

If anyone has ideas on this, I would like to hear them. I already heard a good explanation from steve so just wondered if choosing one over the other affects the body in some way.

10-19-2002, 08:15 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: bluewolf:</font><hr> &lt;blockquote&gt;&lt;font class="small"&gt;Quote: Scott Lee:&lt;/font&gt;&lt;hr&gt;
Scott Lee &lt;hr&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;

Out of Lurk for just one minute &lt;G&gt;.

I have had lots of work on my stroke but I was still missing shots.We finally figured it out and it is much better. The point I wish to make is that if the stroke isnt darned near perfect, a person imo will miss more balls by looking at the ob than the cb.

I think that what works for each person is okay. But I have a question with so many, including pros and randy g advocating looking at the ob last. I am wondering if looking at the cb or the object ball sublety affects the body spatially or the head position (even though you are not supposed to move the head). Or if the stroke is perfect, does it matter which one you look at last.

If anyone has ideas on this, I would like to hear them. I already heard a good explanation from steve so just wondered if choosing one over the other affects the body in some way. <hr></blockquote>

Even if your stroke is perfect, it doesn't mean you're going to hit the cueball where you want to, or where you think you are. You might stroke it with the finesse of a pro, but if you hit the cueball in the wrong spot because you were looking at the object ball, you may end up rattleing the ball or just plain missing it, because you weren't paying enough attention to the cueball and how you were hitting IT.

As far as physical ajustments go according to which ball you look at last.. I don't think it makes any difference.. whatever is comfortable is comfortable.. no matter what ball you are looking at.

socrates
10-19-2002, 08:50 AM
The road to continuous improvement is a journey and not a destination. Part of the enjoyment of the journey is examining beliefs, experimenting with and then developing a basis to draw your own conclusions.

To examine Joe Davis quote once again:
"In aiming, without repeatedly lining up the bridge, the centre of the cueball, and the chosen area of the object ball: is something parallel to the rifleman who concentrates on getting the target in line with the foresight only."

Again, in my humble opinion, when you look at the object ball last your bridge hand (sight), the cue ball (foresight) and the object ball target(target) are all within you line of view. I believe this helps one sense that the entire length of the cue is on the line of the shot.

Personally when I look at the cue ball last only my bridge hand and the cueball are in my line of vision and the target is not. I believe there is merit in having all three within your line of vision.

For me, with the exceptions of the situations in my original post looking at and locking down the object ball target produces the most consistent results.

Like Scott, I would not discourage anyone from experimenting with both methods. My personal experiments have resulted in the object ball last becoming part of my belief window.

While well beyond the scope or space of the CCB chalkboard I have written two articles dealing with pre-shot routine focus "The Eyes have it - The Bounce/Hit of Pool." and a follow up currently in progress "More on the Eyes Have It." which compares three players warm up stroke patterns. (Earl Strickland, Loree Jon Jones and Karen Corr.)

It appears to me that the cue ball last method or the object ball last method results might be impacted by the players warm up stroke patterns.

If anyone is interested in the articles I can e-mail them to you as an attachment.

10-19-2002, 08:53 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: socrates:</font><hr> "In aiming, without repeatedly lining up the bridge, the centre of the cueball, and the chosen area of the object ball: is something parallel to the rifleman who concentrates on getting the target in line with the foresight only." Joe Davis World Champion

While the above is silent on what to look at last I am of the strong opinion that it should be the object ball target. <hr></blockquote>


Hi Steve, Joe Davis says in his book " How I Play Snooker". I have always stoutly maintained (and do still) that at the moment of striking, the eyes should be on the object-ball. Further, they should be concentrated on that section of the object-ball giving the angle of the pot.

Joe also says. Central striking-real, dead-central striking- is in fact the professional's greatest advantage over you.This sounds simple, but the incredible fact is that only a professional, and a high-class one at that, does regularly hit the cue-ball where he means to hit it.

I've quoted the above from Joe's book. It seems that one ( looking at the OB correctly but not hitting the CB where you intend to ) is useless without the other. I've started playing by looking at the OB last, but I have in practice tried looking at the CB last and although i've not switched my way of shooting, I will look at the CB last at times. Terry

10-19-2002, 09:35 AM
I don't know about that. Hitting the cue ball is pretty forgiving. you hit it high, low, left right, one handed and still drive the cue ball pretty much in the right line. What is not forgiving is not hitting the spot on the object ball. Here is the difference. If you do look at the cue ball last. On that last stroke you have committed yourself to the line of fire you have chosen because you are no longer focusing on the object ball at all. It is easier to look intently at the object ball and use your peripheral vision to hit the cueball, after you have a focal point because it is always the same distance from your eyes and very close. It does not change and your feel for hitting the cueball becomes ingrained. A tiny error in stroke will probably cause no error in the flight of the cue ball and it will still go straight and not make you miss the shot. A tiny error in sighting an object ball, maybe seven feet away, could have you miss the ball all together. I don't think it is really debatable, but having said that though, both methods will provide positive results. If asked, I would have to say looking at the object ball is better based on fact and not just opinion. If the cueball required such a precise hit, players could not play as fast as they do. They would have to labor over every shot trying the get a perfect hit. I can knock balls in without hardly even looking at the cueball as long as I have my target and keep my eye on the ball and so can (and do), most of you. My eyes are on the object balls even when I am moving around the table. That is where my attention is. For an experienced player hitting the cueball where you want and making a good hit on the cueball is second nature and one of the easier parts of the game.

10-19-2002, 09:52 AM
If what you say were true, then you would have to make adjustments on every shot for every tiny bit of difference as to how you hit the cue ball. Every tip of english would require a different aiming point on the object ball. Except in extreme instantness where you are putting a lot of english on the cue ball, you just line up the shot and use the same aiming point as does everybody else. The cue ball is not effected that much based on small differences in the hit. If it where, you would miss constantly every time you tried to do anything with the cue ball because you would always the guessing as to the adjustment. As you know this is not true. The one thing that can't be varied is the point of contact on the object ball. Don't hit that and you will miss the ball. That is where your focus must be to play a consistent game.

TonyM
10-19-2002, 11:49 AM
"Personally when I look at the cue ball last only my bridge hand and the cueball are in my line of vision and the target is not."

Funny, but I find that regardless of whether I look at the cueball last, OR the object ball last, all three are "in' my vision. I think they have to be (unless you are jacked up on the ball).

With ob last, the ob is in your direct vision (in focus) and the cb,bridge hand and cue are in your peripheral vision (but not in focus).

With cb last, the cb, bridge and cue are in your direct vision, but the ob is in your peripheral vision.

If you get down on the ball and "allow; yourself to see the ob in your peripheral vision, you will see what I mean.

What I'm really saying is that your argument for ob last (because it gets more objects in "view") doesn't really hold up for me.

Btw, I personally agree with ob last.
But I can see why cb last might work for some people.

I think it depends more on how well you can "see" the entire shot, and get the cue stick correctly aligned to begin with.

Interestingly enough, I find that what my eyes are fixating at last, has a big influence on how straight my stroke will be. In fact, I'll go out on a limb and state that many supposedly poor strokes are actually caused by faulty eye patterns, not faulty arm movements!

For this reason I've found it of benefit to look BEYOND the desired target, along the target line (as well as keeping the target in sight). And to fixate on this "line" for a sifnificant amount of time before pulling the trigger (quiet eye). This helps me to keep my cue on line.

I have found that just like driving a car (where the car seems to follow where your eyes are looking) the cue stick itself seems to go where your eyes are pointed.

For example: On the up and down the table, center ball drill, when I look at the back rail last, I find it helps to have an actual target placed on the end rail (I use a piece of chalk turned "edge-on").

Without a target, my eyes are just looking at an "area" on the back rail. So the ball can acquire some random side spin because the cue will be pointed at what I was last looking at. With the target, I hit center ball far more often.

In fact, I can excecute this drill better by looking at the ob last (chalk cube target) than looking at the cb last!

But if I eliminate the target (chalk cube) then I'm better with cb last.

So the problem is a bit more complex than just cb or ob last imo.

"If anyone is interested in the articles I can e-mail them to you as an attachment."

Yes, send them to me please. I'd be interested in what you have to say!

Regards,

Tony Mathews

10-19-2002, 04:34 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Jim Price:</font><hr> If what you say were true, then you would have to make adjustments on every shot for every tiny bit of difference as to how you hit the cue ball. Every tip of english would require a different aiming point on the object ball. Except in extreme instantness where you are putting a lot of english on the cue ball, you just line up the shot and use the same aiming point as does everybody else. The cue ball is not effected that much based on small differences in the hit. If it where, you would miss constantly every time you tried to do anything with the cue ball because you would always the guessing as to the adjustment. As you know this is not true. The one thing that can't be varied is the point of contact on the object ball. Don't hit that and you will miss the ball. That is where your focus must be to play a consistent game. <hr></blockquote>

I see your point, however I see a shot much differently.

First off, I rarely use any more than a half-tip or so of running english.. I try to always use center ball and use speed to control my position rather than english.. (including using follow and draw, which aren't considered "english").

It's pretty easy to calculate how much you have to adjust, if you are going to use a bunch of english.. you either aim to hit the object ball to the right side or the left side of the pocket, depending on the english used.. but if I'm using extreme english, I usually only do it on shots that are very easy to make.. close to the pocket, or whatever.

My whole idea is that the ONLY thing you can control in a shot in the pool game, is the fraction of a second in which you are hitting the cueball with the cue. Depending on how and where you hit that cueball with your cue, is where the cueball will end up.. will it end up hitting the object ball in the right spot? It should, if you hit it right. Did you get the right english?

Truth be told, it really shouldn't matter where you look.. once you have your shot lined up, and your stroke grooved (as Mr. Byrne says) you should be able to close your eyes and make the shot. I did just that the other night to see how it worked, and I did great. so I guess it's just what is more comfortable for you.. and since it's easier to focus on the cueball since it is closer, I focus on that almost entirely. But either way, I line up my shot, adjust for whatever english if necessary, groove my stroke after I've looked at both balls, and hit it without jumping up. /ccboard/images/icons/smile.gif

Jay M
10-19-2002, 04:56 PM
Consistency is the key here. It really doesn't matter which one you look at last, AS LONG AS IT'S ALWAYS THE SAME ONE. (there are a few exceptions to this rule, but they depend on special circumstances).

Just for the record, I look at the OB last. Do I need to look at it to line up my shot? No, I've done that before I ever get in stance.

One of the things that they teach you in advanced marksmanship and sniper schools is the importance of body position. There is an exercise where you get into position, close your eyes, count to 10 and open your eyes to see if you are still on target or have drifted. If you've drifted, you move your body and start over again. It's called having the target in your natural point of aim when you successfully do this drill.

It's the same with pool. If you are putting the object ball in your natural point of aim, you should be able to close your eyes, wait a few seconds and then open them to find yourself still on target.

When you have your stance trained, it doesn't matter which ball you are looking at last, or even if your eyes are closed. The warmups have nothing to do with aiming, you've already done that.

The warmups are to feel the speed that you need to get the leave. Occasionally when I am hitting poorly, I'll go into my "one stroke" drill. I'll hit several shots without any aiming at all, just get down on the shot, pull back and fire em in. After I make a few, I will get back into my regular pre-shot and everything will work again.

Just a quick bit of information. Every touring pro quality player that I know looks at the object ball last. This includes Mika, Corey Deuel, Earl Strickland, Charlie Williams, Jeanette Lee (read her book, it's worth it for the mental side of the game), Sarah Ellerby, Karen Corr, Buddy Hall, Ray Martin, Richie Richeson, Bob Ogburn... and just about everyone else.

Jay M