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Thread: Playing cold

  1. #1
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    Playing cold

    I regularly participate in a friday night 9 ball tournament. More often then not I can't make it soon enough to the poolhall to have some warmup strokes. I take my contactlenses in at work, run to my car and drive as fast as possible to make it to the ph in time. When I arrive I'm in no way prepared. I immediately assemble my cue (feels strange and uncomfortable), say hello to some friends and go to the table.
    Here is my point:
    I will win the lag and run out. Sometimes I run the second rack also, it depends on the time that I need to realize that I'm playing really good. After that I'm in serious trouble for 2 or three hours playing my sets even against weaker players. If I survive this timespan I can compete on a good level and possibly win the tournament. I don't know why it is like it is but it happenes to often and continuous to be without reasons.
    Does this sound familar to some of you? If so, what are the reasons and how do you handle these situations?

    I know from Raphael Martinez that he loves to play tournaments with scheduled matches because he plays his best pool when he is cold.
    Any suggestions?
    Help me out here.

    Torsten ....likes the new board and hopes that all the lost posters return soon.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Re: Playing cold

    Hi Torsten,
    I am going through the exact situation as you! I battle the traffic in Manhatten to get to a pool hall, by the time I arrive, Im totally stressed, put my cue together and shoot-a friend(cuechick) advised me to try and show up earlier to get a powerplay in-so I will try that route-it has to be the "adrenalin rush" of trying to get there on time and not having a chance to calm down-the anxiety is still there!I will try tomorrow and let you know!But Manhatten is brutal at rushhour!Hopefully, we will find the answer!
    I wish you luck and peace of mind!
    Carol

  3. #3
    Guest

    Re: Playing cold

    Good morning:

    In playing "cold" you are more on autopilot then when you are fully warmed up. On autopilot, you tend to think a little less of all the finite mechanics of any particular shot. Needless to say we all "overthink" too many shots on the table. For some interesting, as well as inspiring reading, I suggest "The Pleasure of Small Motions". Give it a shot, I am reading it for the 2nd time.

    Dr. D.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Feb 2002
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    429

    Re: Playing cold

    I have the same problem with warmups. In most of the tournaments that I've played, I lose the first match handily and then work my way up through the loser's bracket. I asked Buddy Hall about how to fix the problem and his answer was "shoot hard". I thought that he was ribbing me a bit saying to shoot hard and hope something falls. I laughed and said "no, really..." and he insisted that shooting hard at first would help. Not shooting hard and hoping, but shooting all the shots with nearly center english and hitting the ball rocket speed into the pocket. It worked for me. Now I still take a little while to get in stroke, but it comes a lot faster.

    Jay M

  5. #5
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    Re: Playing cold

    Hey Dr, D,
    I'll try it-and if you know any truckdrivers, tell them to STOP trying to get through the tunnels-my 20. min travelling time has turned into a 3 hour ordeal and Im singing "I believe I can Fly!" a little too much!ha ha ha-have you ever seen Chevy Chase in National Lampoons vacation movies? Well, I have labelled my Thurs. evening as "National Lampoons NY Vacation!" ha ha ha-See you in WALLY WORLD!
    Take care!
    Carol

  6. #6
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    Re: Playing cold

    Hey Jay,
    I'll take that as "When in doubt, knock'em out!"-thanks Jay!
    Carol

  7. #7
    Guest

    Re: Playing cold

    Dr. D

    I studied Zin and my favorite game is one pocket. Some times
    when my game is really working I'm totally out of my body
    watching from the chair. Economy of motion is a great
    reducer of mistakes but is a tough discipline for disorderly
    minds.

    Harry50



  8. #8
    Guest

    Re: Playing cold

    I've recommended Buddy's suggestion myself in my books, but more limitedly: when you're already into the match, and you've been in the chair for a while, make your first shot the easiest one you can find and really drill that sucker. I frankly don't know whether it works when initiating a match cold; shooting hard rarely works for me in any mode.

    I think Torsten should either re-arrange his schedule or ask his team captain to slot him later in the competition so he can hit some balls. Personally, I wouldn't match up for 50 cents a game without at least 30 or 40 balls' worth of warm-up, hopefully more. GF

  9. #9
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    "Zin"

    Harry, do you mean "Zen"? (I thought "Zin" might be an author's name.)
    You are what you do when it counts.--The Masao
    heater<span style="color: red">451</span>

  10. #10
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    An odd suggestion

    Torsten, another thing that might help--when you start "falling off the horse", try to tune into some favorite music (on the juke, on a walkman, whatever it takes).

    Hopefully, you can get part of a song that you like into your head, which will keep you from 'hearing' the extra thinking 'chatter' in your head. It also puts your body in a "rhythmic state" (kind of like a partial trance), which will somewhat translate to your "shooting rhythm".

    I think the trick is, if you're enjoying the music, you will be more relaxed, and that will help you shoot better, which will make you enjoy shooting, and you will continue that way.

    Also, judging by your post, you've already started seeing your problem as a 'condition'--so, somewhere in your head, you're expecting to do badly, and you do. Don't do that.

    Good luck.
    You are what you do when it counts.--The Masao
    heater<span style="color: red">451</span>

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