Did you know that billiards was the first sport ever to have a world championship? Dating back to 1873, playing pool has been popular for centuries.
If you want to impress people at the billiards table, make sure to follow along for the best tips on how to play pool competitively.
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How To Play Pool
Pool is much like playing a game of chess. You will need to approach the game as calculated and intentionally as possible. There are 15 balls total.
Each player gets a group of balls, either solid or stripes. They must then hit their balls in a pocket with a cue ball and stick. The player that pockets their ball first must hit the black 8 ball into a specific pocket, once they do this the game is won.
1. Get Familiar With The Game
There are lots of places to play pool and they offer different pool cues and billiards tables that you should become familiar with if you plan on competing. There are three different types of tables and they are all different sizes. It can be hard to switch between them so make sure you know which table you are best on.
Picking a cue that is appropriate to your size is important because if it is too long or short you won’t get an accurate shot or break. Check out the best break cue that will fit you. Remember to chalk the end of the stick before you strike the ball
2. Practice Your Stroke
The thick end of the cue goes in your more dominant hand. While every player is different, it’s common to hold your other index finger on the top of the stick with your thumb on the bottom. Keep in mind that only your back hand should be moving and the hand at the tip of the stick should be very steady.
Think of hitting the balls into the pockets as a type of geometry. Your vision center should always be aligned properly to the cue and the pocket in order to hit it in.
A good tip to line up the ball is by using the cue stick to create a visual of the ball you are hitting in. This is called ghost ball aiming and it can be used as an imaginary position for the cue ball.
You and your cue should be perpendicular to the table for the most control over the ball. The stick should accelerate until you strike the ball because this will help you keep follow-through. Remember that not every shot needs to have power behind it, some can be slow or easy shots.
Your stance needs to be stable but your grip on the pool cue needs to be relaxed. Don’t drop your elbow during the shot to improve consistency and accuracy on the shot.
5. Have Confidence
A lot of people get in their heads and doubt themselves because there is an audience watching. Remember that everyone misses a shot and if you are able to focus, have confidence in your skills, and not rush you will be able to beat your opponent.
Watch Your Skills Improve
If you can follow these five tips on how to play pool and remain mentally focused you should see yourself become a competitive pool player in no time.
Check out some more of our articles on lifestyle and recreation if you want to gain more skills.