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bluewolf
11-08-2002, 09:03 AM
When I first started playing, I was told I could safety better than most 4's and shot better than a lot of threes and some fours,and people in my pool hall kept telling me how fast I was going to move up. I guess it went to my head.

And I could make these really hard shots on my home table,but at a match, the pressure and the perceived expectations of those around me really got to me and I played like the two I am rated at.

It took awhile to sink in that I have a long way to go and it is going to take a long time, that I am not going to be good at pool in a year. And in the two months I have played apa, I have been constantly changing many things.

But anyway all of the blinders are off.I shoulda listed to people like Fran instead of getting all upset.

Back to the table to practice easy cut shots....

bw

Eric.
11-08-2002, 09:36 AM
BW,

Just a couple of thought's, take it with a grain of salt.

When practicing or playing in league, try setting some performance goals for yourself. For ex- your make to miss ratio, how many safeties played and how many were "good" i.e. safeties that normally would result in BIH to you, breaking without scratching, balls made on the break. You might want to keep a running log book to chart your progress.

Don't worry if you win or lose. Focus on your individual performance and if you shoot well and lose, that's o.k. because your game is improving. There will be times when you shoot near perfect but lose anyway. It doesn't mean you suck, it may mean that your opponent got a few rolls or shot well also, etc. Don't compare you game to APA players as the only benchmark. IN MY OPINION, most APA players aren't "higher level" players. I know you'll get a low rated new player once in awhile or a strong 7 (most 7 think they are strong, only a small handful are), but most 7's would only play at a C+/B level. Which brings me to my next point: once in awhile, go play in an Open tourney. It will give you an idea how higher level play is. Who knows, you might pick up something.

Eric >no reply necessary

Kato
11-08-2002, 10:14 AM
Bluewolf, here's the skinny, most 3's and 4's don't know how to play safe. You talk about it an awful lot so I'm assuming you're already ahead of the game. Forget about what 3's and 4's can do or even a 7 like Whitewolf can do. Concentrate on what you can do to improve and NEVER benchmark your game like that. Do you wanna be a 3? Sure you do but why stop there? Some APA rating number does not quantify you as a pool player. You quantify yourself as a pool player and your improvement.

The smartest thing you've said since you've been here is "back to the table to practice easy cut shots". Good luck.

Kato

bluewolf
11-08-2002, 01:07 PM
thanks eric. i like the idea of a running log of what i do in the match. and yeah, I have seen people who I dont know how they got the number they got. they seem to promote men real fast and hold women back. i have seen several 3 women who seem better than a lot of 4 men.

i have been thinking about local tournaments too. once i am a little more comfortable. there is a small one every sunday afternoon.

bw

bluewolf
11-08-2002, 01:18 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Kato:</font><hr> Bluewolf, here's the skinny, most 3's and 4's don't know how to play safe. You talk about it an awful lot so I'm assuming you're already ahead of the game. Forget about what 3's and 4's can do or even a 7 like Whitewolf can do. Concentrate on what you can do to improve and NEVER benchmark your game like that. Do you wanna be a 3? Sure you do but why stop there? Some APA rating number does not quantify you as a pool player. You quantify yourself as a pool player and your improvement.

The smartest thing you've said since you've been here is "back to the table to practice easy cut shots". Good luck.

Kato <hr></blockquote>

thanks. i dont know what it is about safety that i caught on so fast to it, but then i was hiding behind it and not taking any chances. and in typical defeatest style, i could say well at least it came down to the last ball...after i stretched the game to 20-23 innings with my safety. essentially kept hiding until my opponent gave me real easy shots so i could get most of my balls off the table...but when there was nowhere else to hide ie only 2-3 balls on the whole table, i got beat because the other person was a better shot maker...

so going and practicing short, easy cut shots that i can get in at 100%, that gets me relaxed and then i am not beating myself up on every more difficult shot i miss.

thanks for you insight. yeah and i think having a number on me like 2 or 3 or whatever is not good...you are right,it results in me thinking in limiting terms...

bw

Ludba
11-08-2002, 10:30 PM
"Some APA rating number does not quantify you as a pool player. You quantify yourself as a pool player and your improvement."

This is such good advice.

Bluewolf, I think the point (though i probably don't need to reiterate it) is that the focus should be on what you can do to improve, not on what you're doing wrong.

The log idea is great. I've been doing it for a while. I've got this excel sheet that has my BCA leagues results, and info from my practice sessions (e.g. type of shot, number/percentage of balls pocketed, number/percentage of fouls, etc.). I've also been putting in numerical information on position practice (Kinister's tapes have helped me with this). I've noticed that there is a very close correlation between my pocket percentage and win percentage, so I know what shots I need to work on. I'm still trying to figure out a better way to set up an excel sheet for my APA leagues, but I need to rethink how I'm doing this, to see if I can simplify and get more meaningful information to use in improving my game.

Although the plateaus are excruciatingly hard on your ego, the improvements will come and kick you in the ass when you least expect it; and the things that actually cause those light-year improvements are so simple or miniscule that it's absurd.

For example, the biggest improvements I've made in my game in the last six months are: 1) simply believing that I am going to make the shot; and 2) limiting the amount of my pre-strokes. Those two are interrelated for me because the more strokes in my preshot routine, the more time I had to tell myself I wasn't going to make the shot, and the greater likelihood of actually missing the shot.

And before that, the thing that stepped my game up was eliminating the use of english. I had been using english so often or extreme english when it wasn't even necessary, that it seemed like I was getting worse instead of better. I went back to center-ball and, when absolutely necessary, draw or follow. This was after about 4 months of pathetic games and numerous embarassing shots. After a short while, I had warped ahead. So I started putting english back in, and I was playing just as well.

Pool is such an emotionally- and mentally-involved game, but I have found that the more I let it get to me, the longer my plateaus last. So, the rules of thumb I have established for myself are: 1) make a decision; 2) go through my pre-shot routine; 3) believe I will make it; 4) accept the consequences (even if I don't make it); and 5) have faith that I'll make my next shot.

bluewolf
11-09-2002, 12:26 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote: Ludba:</font><hr>
The log idea is great. I've been doing it for a while. I've got this excel sheet that has my BCA leagues results, and info from my practice sessions (e.g. type of shot, number/percentage of balls pocketed, number/percentage of fouls, etc.). I've also been putting in numerical information on position practice (Kinister's tapes have helped me with this). I've noticed that there is a very close correlation between my pocket percentage and win percentage, so I know what shots I need to work on. Although the plateaus are excruciatingly hard on your ego, the improvements will come and kick you in the ass when you least expect it; and the things that actually cause those light-year improvements are so simple or miniscule that it's absurd.

Pool is such an emotionally- and mentally-involved game, but I have found that the more I let it get to me, the longer my plateaus last. So, the rules of thumb I have established for myself are: 1) make a decision; 2) go through my pre-shot routine; 3) believe I will make it; 4) accept the consequences (even if I don't make it); and 5) have faith that I'll make my next shot. &lt;some portions snipped&gt; <hr></blockquote>

Lubda,

Thanks for the great advice. I will try the log idea for the positive aspect. i may actually be getting a little better and miss it if I dont write it down.

I sometimes have bad hand tremors, unrelated to anything, but they are not consistent, so I had to come up with a stroke that would work regardless, which is a very light grip. Also if I line up the shot and strike the ob with the cb where my eyes are telling my brain to do it, I was missing even the easiest shots. So I have been trying out hitting the ob about 1/2 tip fatter than my brain was telling me, and it seems to be working better. I guess outside english might do the same thing, but i am trying to stay away from english, to keep things simple for now.

And i guess confidence is a big gremlin on my game too. It seems that the longer I pause, either at the cb before going into the last backswing,or at the last backswing, gives my brain more of a chance to screw things up, so there is hardly any pause right now, which is opposite of what scott and randy say to do. maybe oncy i get my confidence built up a little,i can add that part back in.

I do think my brain is my worst enemy.

bw