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Sid_Vicious
03-16-2003, 01:04 PM
I played in a tournament Saturday, don't ask how I did :-( and I saw that the generally top players were staying down undetermined amounts of time on their shots. I've been trying to personally adopt the "trust your shot" after pre-shot routine and make the effort to me semi mechanical in the average number of warm up strokes and time over the CB. Those tops players were still there, playing for the top spots when I left.

I played here at home this morning and began studying shots longer, letting the feeling of certainty adjust itself in it's own time, and I found two things. One, I center pocketed several of my first shots. Two, I was gratified in actually feeling that I was "making" the shot happen instead of the normal feeling of making the shot and then really not having any internalization of what I just did. I think I like that feeling much better than the 'blur' through the pack, putting in balls mind you...just not experiencing the game as much, and possibly missing those key balls by not studying longer.

Question here is, "Who here settles down over a shot and then lets time and the "sureness" take care of itself, never being self conscious that they are very inconsistent in shot-time execution?" I am considering moving over to that camp, pros and cons requested....sid

Tom_In_Cincy
03-16-2003, 01:33 PM
Sid,

Small adjustments in aim, can be made while down on the shot. Different players take various amounts of time.

Charlie Williams and Johnny Archer are two of the extremes of taking too much time. Then there are the players that just set up and poke.. like Allen Hopkins. All these players are sucessful.

Warmup strokes are a good feed back on how you feel about how much you 'trust' what you are about to do.

I'm still looking for the right amount of time for what you are asking about. IMO, the timing should be the same for all shots. Its part of the routine that becomes consistant and trustworthy.

It makes you 'pot' or 'pocket' balls easier.

wolfsburg2
03-16-2003, 01:36 PM
i find that when i make minor adjustments while down on a shot, i tend to make them a little more consistently.

Rip
03-16-2003, 03:04 PM
Sid,
You must have been reading my mind. Your post coincides with a little talk I had with myself this morning. There are too many times when I pull the trigger knowing that I'm not comfortable or 100% confident that I truly expect the best result from the shot. I'll make a slight correction while down on the shot rather than pulling up and re-committing myself to the best effort for that particular shot.

I spend a lot of time shooting by myself at home and attribute this bad habit to boredom which translates to lack of focus. It's similar to playing by memory and going through the motions rather than visualizing the present. Like yourself Sid, I'm going to work on slowing down and re-focusing on each shot.
Thanks for the timely post Sid.
Rip~~wish I could read minds like Sid! /ccboard/images/graemlins/shocked.gif

Rod
03-17-2003, 12:21 AM
Good observation Sid. Top players will vary there time depending on shot difficulty. Last night I had this shot,
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%AC0B0%BB8B6%CB4B4%DB6B3%EB6B2%FB4B2%GC1B2%HM2Z7%I r4P0%Pn5Z1
%eB4b4
)END

On my final set at the c/b I noticed my cue tip was aimed with a small amount of low left and my aim was off a fraction. I only wanted low so I stroked a couple of more times trying to adjust. Not being satisfied I had to get up from the shot and reset. I made the shot and drew back to the the c/b's original starting point. The point is if I had not spent the extra time on aim it was due to be a failure.

On another note I played Tony Ellin in a pro tournament. A friend happened to be there with his camcorder. He left the time counter on while taping. A couple of years ago I checked my shot time. It varied from just over 3 seconds to the longest at 5.5 seconds. I lost that match 13 to 10.
I'd have to say let the situation and time take care of itself, within limitations. For me 5.5 seconds is like an eternity, that's very borderline for me to stand up and regroup. It was a tough shot on a 9 ball that I made.

Rod

Predator314
03-17-2003, 01:19 PM
I don't do a lot of studying when I'm down on a shot. I start thinking about to many "mechanics" type things. If I'm down on a shot and need to think a little more, I back away. Also, the longer I'm down on the shot, the quicker I seem to want to get back up. This makes for a head coming up during mid-shot which is bad news.

NBC-BOB
03-17-2003, 01:53 PM
I think staying down on the shot is just a good part of the basic fundamentals. Look in any instruction book and they alway's talk about staying down until the ob is in the pocket.Not staying down will cause you to get up prematurely,and cause you to jerk your head and miss shots.

Predator314
03-17-2003, 01:58 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote NBC-BOB:</font><hr> I think staying down on the shot is just a good part of the basic fundamentals. Look in any instruction book and they alway's talk about staying down until the ob is in the pocket.Not staying down will cause you to get up prematurely,and cause you to jerk your head and miss shots. <hr /></blockquote>

I'm not talking about staying down during the shot. I'm talking about staying down and studying prior to the shot. My brain thinks that I've been down there so long, it's time to jump up. It's always good fundamentals to keep your head down during the shot.

Gayle in MD
03-18-2003, 09:24 AM
Hi Sid,
Boy, this subject is dear to my heart. I don't post much on the pool related section, because I feel there are so many here who know so much more than I, I usually leave all the technical question to them, and just try to learn something. But, on this subject, I have very strong opinions, (As usual, LOL)

I shoot a lot and I watch a lot, and not just people in real life, but tape and replay over and over all the women on TV. Even when I watch Alison and Karen shooting, when one of them misses, which isn't that often, it is because they made the shot too fast.

On league nights, I go in early, atleast two hours early, and for those two hours, I focus completely on the unrushed aiming process, and the fluid, follow through, and staying down elements of shot making.

I really concentrate on finding that slow, easy, confident combination of unrushed aim, rhythm and non impulsive shot making.

On evenings when I am in a rush, and don't have the time to get there early, and get myself settled into my normal routine, the difference is like night and day.

I swear I think some folks have this game mixed up with tennis, lol. They shoot like they think the ball is underweigh, and it's going to vanish if they don't get their shot off fast enough.

I think for many of us that while we are making that struggle to find the line of aim, suddenly we see it, and wham, gotta hit right now before it vanishes, LOL. I see this happen with shooter of all levels of expertise.

I truly do think, no matter how much experience one might have, that the ability to avoid those missed shots is in finding that rhythm, and using it as a firmly entrenched habit in all your shots.

There are several guys on my team, high ranked, good at aiming, years of experience, fast shooters, but when they miss, it's usually because they made the shot EVEN FASTER than usual, and they shot it too hard.

I am not going to shoot the shot until I am absolutely sure of the line up, no guessing allowed, no impulsiveness allowed. Once I settled myself into that dicipline, my game improved very quickly.

Rushing the shot, and not staying down till the ball is in the pocket, is IMVHO, the biggest reason for missed shots not onlly among novices like myself, but even among the pros. What I notice, even with the pros, is that if they have a fast shooting style, even their missed shots occur when they have made their shot EVEN FASTER, than their usual fast shot is made.

Gotta be something to it if you ask me...

Gayle in Md. Always say to myself, nice and slow and easy and confident....

cheesemouse
03-18-2003, 10:20 AM
Gayle,

[ QUOTE ]
I truly do think, no matter how much experience one might have, that the ability to avoid those missed shots is in finding that rhythm, and using it as a firmly entrenched habit in all your shots.
<hr /></blockquote>

I think your use of the word RHYTHM in your reply is the nuts of the matter. Almost all top players playing at the top of their respective games have a set time they spend over a shot; one could put a stop watch on them when they are running balls and you'd find that once they start to bend into the shooting postition that shot will be off within fractions of seconds of the timing or RHYTHM they have going for the day...IMHO if a player has made a true commitment to a shot in the UP(thinking) position then the time spent over the ball (shooting position) should be just a matter of getting lined up to pull the trigger and this time over the ball will become more and more consistant the better you are thinking and playing.....

bluewolf
03-18-2003, 01:55 PM
Sid, I thought I knew what you were talking about but after reading several of other posts, now I am unsure. Are you talking about players who are down over the shot for an extended period of time before they pull the trigger or players who stay down after the trigger?

I do my thinking standing up. If I think while I am down on the ball it really messes me up. I line up the shot get down over the shot,preshot, shoot and stay down till the ob goes into the pocket or a little longer if it is a short shot. If I miss, my cue is in the 'freeze' position per randy g so I can access what I did wrong.

Laura

Sid_Vicious
03-18-2003, 02:11 PM
I’m talking about staying down before pulling the trigger, for non standard times. I too, like you grew through the phase of thinking while standing(still for the most part) and then doing the “routine” of rhythmically doing a general amount of the same warm up strokes and the finish to check my form, ya-da ya-da ya-da. I am seeing though that the very strong finishers in tournaments are staying down(pre-trigger) and studying their shots very inconsistently, except for the results. Soooooo, I too have begun to slow way down and forget about the systematic rhythm seemingly taught by most if not all BCA instruction formats. Last two outings I found myself feeling more “into my own game" than before, and balls were moving around better(imo)…sid~~~bout to think that many of us should find that separation of being “the student” and becoming “the player” we really are, a little bit sooner

Mike H
03-19-2003, 09:31 AM
I think it's worth it to keep giving every shot the attention it deserves. I slowed my pace down a few years ago, and it brought my game up probably a full ball. At first, I didn't like it too much....although I was more conscious of what was happening/going to happen at the table, I was very quick and rhythmic and I lost the rhythm on connect-the-dots type runouts. It was uncomfortable. I stuck with it though, and it's been well worth it. Taking that little extra time does the following things:
1. Gives you that extra bit of consciousness and confidence before the shot.
2. Allows for time to think of added benefits you can play for (freebie on the 9, two-way shot).
3. Gives you that extra time to solve problems that may occur (plan a future safety or cluster breakout).
4. Keeps your opponent in their chair much longer than they need to be.

Hope this helps some, Sid, and good luck with it.

Mike

Gayle in MD
03-20-2003, 08:55 AM
Hi Mike,
Just wanted to add, you and I have had the same experience exactly, and I heartily agree with everything you are saying.

I recall someone posting an article several years ago about a study performed at some University here in the states, (Think it may have been Florida, but not sure) and I remember how amazed I was at the amount of time the article said that it takes, (took) for the eye to focus fully on the line of aim.

I can only speak for myself, but taking my aim, CB to OB to pocket to leave, may be thought about while standing, but the more important final aiming process for me is in those preshot strokes, down on the CB, and must not be rushed in order for me to finally make a confident shot and pocket the ball.

Slowing my game down has provided excellent results. I often wonder if there is an element of showboating going on when I see someone shoot so fast. I'd rather look like a novice while I'm aiming, and make the shot, than shoot fast and miss it altogether, LOL.

And BTW, I LOVE your last point, /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif LOL. Although I have read posts here that bemoan playing with slow shooters, keeping your oponent longer in the chair is an excellent by-product of taking your time, LOL, and certainly works to your advantage in the long run.

Enjoyed your post,

Gayle in Md., /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif Also take my time when crossing dangerous intersections while some idiot behind me curses and lays on the horn, lol.

Sid_Vicious
03-20-2003, 10:05 AM
I have a #5, stated in the original post I made.

#5. I find it much more gratifying to study and feel my way into completion of a successfull shot.

I've actually had days in the past where I was in a near no-miss zone, I had the mystical ability it seemed to invent difficult shot and they'd go, but the cadence was "no thinking", just drop and shoot. I was bored to some degree (yea I said bored with making everything I shot) and eventually lazy'd my way back to a dummy shot maker(besides, a serious do-or-die shot in head to head competition changed surity of the shot.) The satisfaction of seeing an object ball cleanly zip into the center of a pocket after the lengthy study period ADDS to my enjoyment of the game, which is something I have been missing out on in general,,,,I may just have burn-out or boredom, doesn't matter. There's an entire "click" across my person when I am sure after studying a shot till it says, perfect-shoot, and it goes.

Thanks all for your investment back to me from the original post I made...sid

Ludba
03-20-2003, 11:27 PM
When I started playing seriously about a year and a half ago, I spent A LOT of time in pre-shot, but after about 8 months, this came to be a hindrance, precisely because I would start to doubt the shot. The important thing as has been said before is the rhythm.

The good thing about BCA instruction on a set number of pre-strokes is that it trains your body and mind to get into a consistent rhythm. But there's a seesaw here: trust the shot on one end and make adjustments on the other. To readjust and readjust and readjust just causes frustration for me. It's good to practice that way, but it's bad to play that way. At a certain point, I have to accept that a percentage (hopefully small) of the balls won't go in the pocket. And part of that is due to inconsistent tables and balls. Part of it is a million little adjustments.

The important things are: 1) set a consistent rhythm; and 2) make the MINOR adjustments that you need for each shot. I can understand increasing the length of time you spend in your pre-shot, but not arbitrarily. You've got to be looking for specific things, asking yourself specific questions, not JUST spending more time.

In Capelle's book/dvd combo, he goes into how Archer and Reyes vary the number of strokes in their pre-shot based on the difficult of the shot. Reyes' preshot length had greater variety. Capelle said this indicated a rhythm playing style: not focused so much on time as on feel. Archer's routine was more rigid. As was pointed out, there are a variety of methods that work, but there are fundamental principles: 1) greater consistency = greater pocket percentage; 2) make small adjustments for shots of various difficulty.

Mike H
03-21-2003, 11:10 AM
I have to agree with you on your #5, Sid, the gratification and confidence you pick up after executing a shot (particularly a difficult one) exactly the way you envisioned it is incredible. It makes all the study and effort worth it. I think everyone has the "click" you described, although many don't even know it's there because they're not willing to wait for it. I'm glad to hear you found your "click," and I hope you keep on improving with it!
Mike

Sid_Vicious
03-21-2003, 11:53 AM
Thanks. It has rejuvinated my desire level, and I needed that. Anything, taken to an extreme can be distracting and I'm not about to totally ignore basic fundamentals, but today I'm enjoying the excecution via "the right feel" after an undeterminied time. I think it envolves me into the game more than repetitious, running around and sinking balls, even IF the latter method shows less effort at about the same results. Just maybe there a reward at the end of all of this new style, at least for me...sid

Rod
03-21-2003, 01:06 PM
I think your on the right track Sid. Some shots just take a little more time without interupting the flow. It becomes part of the flow. A couple of extra strokes at times to make you feel confident in aim and execution. When you add english into the equation it becomes even more critical especially on difficult shots. That little added touch I think will give you better results. Even if it helps you make two or 3 balls more in a hundred, that's a good improvement and it will pay off.

Rod

#### leonard
03-21-2003, 09:33 PM
Gayle here is what I know about playing pool. It is one,two, three and then rock. Four,five,six and then roll. It is learning to dance to your bodies rythymn. Watch Stephen Hendry shoot snooker, his head never moves, I did see him blink once though. ####

fast_eddie_B
03-22-2003, 06:25 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Tom_In_Cincy:</font><hr> Sid,

Small adjustments in aim, can be made while down on the shot. Different players take various amounts of time.

Charlie Williams and Johnny Archer are two of the extremes of taking too much time. Then there are the players that just set up and poke.. like Allen Hopkins. All these players are sucessful.

Warmup strokes are a good feed back on how you feel about how much you 'trust' what you are about to do.

I'm still looking for the right amount of time for what you are asking about. IMO, the timing should be the same for all shots. Its part of the routine that becomes consistant and trustworthy.
<hr /></blockquote>

Not to get of the subject, but who would you rather play? I prefer the faster players, and i never knew archer played slowed. He is not extremely slow is he? I have seen him, on tape, run a rack of one pocket in a tourney very quickly, against shannon daulton, and it wasn't one of those easy eight, if you know what i mean. I know a guy named Billy Emmitt who play with usually only one or two practice strokes and in his prime he was on the pro level.
Also, the most important stuff happens before you are down on the ball, if you are using proper fundamentals. When you are down, you should be thinking speed and focusing on your strokes to make sure they are proper. A lot of times ppl will subconsciously steer the cue ball when they are down making these so called minor adjustments because subconsciously there stance my be slightly off or they may not be gripping the cue in the right place for the shot at hand. I have found that the more thinking i do before i get down on a shot, the better off i am, cause if you are trying to make too many adjustments when you are down, you are more liable to miss. Routine is very important and you should always practice the same way you plan on playing.
Pat Mcnally has a very erradict stroke, i mean the guy is all over the place, yet he is extremely good and can do wonders with the ball. I guess it's just determination and focus. I don't know, I confuss myself sometimes, lol.

bluewolf
03-22-2003, 06:51 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote #### leonard:</font><hr> Gayle here is what I know about playing pool. It is one,two, three and then rock. Four,five,six and then roll. It is learning to dance to your bodies rythymn. Watch Stephen Hendry shoot snooker, his head never moves, I did see him blink once though. #### <hr /></blockquote>

Do you mean 6 practice strokes? I take three. If I take more, I am thinking while I am down on the ball,not good.

So just wondering. Sounds like you are a potting machine.

Laura

Gayle in MD
03-22-2003, 06:54 AM
Hello my friend,
I just can't wait to dance with you!

Gayle in Md, ....Knows she will dance with Dick someday /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

#### leonard
03-22-2003, 11:22 AM
Laura it is not the number of practice strokes. I will explain it this way. I have known Mike Sigel since he was 13 years old. Before he played in his first Worlds Tourney in Atlantic City here is what I told him. Watch when a player is running balls you will notice a smooth body rythymn now when someone is playing poorly you will notice that player is out of sync. The secret to running balls is to keep your body in rythymn. So when you have a tough shot to shoot and you know you're going to play the shot just walk around the table to get your rythymn then get down and shoot. What you don't want is to get down on the shot then start thinking about the difficulty that is what puts one out of sync.

Fast Larry wanted me to start a post on the natural high one gets when running balls. I had posted that the feeling I would get from running 100s was much higher than making love to a women. Given a choice of running balls or making love I would choose running balls. Most good straight poolplayers preferred to play pool by themselves because the high one receives becomes addictive just like a drug high.

In the late 60s a local who had just returned from a year in Haight/Ashbury,San Fransisco after watching me run balls for an hour or so said to me Butch you don't need drugs your high on pool. ####

Tom_In_Cincy
03-22-2003, 12:01 PM
Who would I rather play? good question!

The slower players allow me more time to study the table and think about what I would do if I get another opportunity at the table.

The faster players just allow less time for me to study the table.. that's about it.

Neither fast or slow players will affect my play. Maybe 20 years ago it would.. but not now.. I am just tickled to death to get the opportunity to play..

stick8
04-15-2003, 02:11 AM
pool=beautifui woman pool shot you look at shot go down and exacute. beautiful woman you for play get down and exacute. stay down on both!!!!!!!

stickman
04-15-2003, 03:38 AM
I tend to do my thinking standing up. It's not necessarily the only way, because, like you, I've seen successful players that spend considerable time down on the ball in the decision process. I feel that it works best for me to become certain of my shot prior to getting down on the ball. Once I'm down on the ball, I'm preparing to shoot. At that point, I don't want any doubt to enter my mind. Doubt during this process will often cause me to try steer the shot, resulting in a miss. The only site adjustment that I make is when using english. Some people perform this automatically, but it's a thought process for me. I site the shot without english and then make a slight adjustment for english. I trust my aiming, and except that most misses are due to execution errors resulting in my missing my aim point. I think that when you see an otherwise good shooter missing game balls (clutching), it is normally the doubt factor exhibiting itself during the final shot process. When I'm down on the shot and begin to have doubts, I usually do best to stand up and evaluate the shot again.

Sid_Vicious
04-15-2003, 07:09 AM
I play against both ends of this spectrum(2 main players I seem to run with) and maybe it's because I have played pool with the fast player more, I'd rather play the faster style. Now if somebody can give me advice on getting my slower guy into some 9-ball instead of eight, I could weather the slow game a bit better. Fifteen balls, BIH safeties and all that pondering time is shortening my Saturday fun. I know Vegas is next month, but 8-ball season is OVER here in Dallas, it's time to play 9-ball!!! ;-) sid