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Thread: whats the best way 2 remeber potting angles?

  1. #1
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    Default whats the best way 2 remeber potting angles?

    hi its Wez here
    i feel i have a good stance, good cue action, good bridge hand and pretty much the foundations of my game covered.
    However i struggle to find the best way of remembering potting angles i have strategies but none of them seem to work to a consistent level.
    So if anyone has any id appreciate it

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    It's not necessary to remember the potting angles conciously. With enough experience it will become automatic.

    Also, you should be able to determine the potting angle of any shot if you select the line of aim while standing up behind the shot and maintaining that line of aim when getting down onto the table by dropping the head straight down.

    Then all you have to do is deliver the cue straight. Sounds simple I know, but that's the most difficult part and why most pots are missed

    Terry

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    If you think your inconsistent potting results are from 'not seeing the potting angle' try using a set of billard cue balls in your practice. Use the dot cue ball as the object ball lined up with the dot marking the 'potting angle'. You should place the dot ball on each colour spot and try potting the ball into each of the normal pockets from straight in moving incrementally around to thiner, then from straight in around thiner on the other side. Make sure you place the cue ball so that you have a comfortable bridge and a medium distance pot. eg dot ball on blue spot starting from straight in to opposite the middle diamond top of table and then from straight in to opposite the middle diamond bottom of the table. Move the cue ball about 4" up or down the table for each subsequent pot. Try each angle until you make the pot atleast 2 times in a row.

    If you can consistently make the balls from each of the spots then you know your stroke is working and the issue was seeing the 'potting angle'. If not then you will know your stroke is not consistent.

    By regularly praticing this your brain will start to automatically 'remember' how to calculate or see various potting angles.

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    If you think your inconsistent potting results are from 'not seeing the potting angle' try using a set of billard cue balls in your practice. Use the dot cue ball as the object ball lined up with the dot marking the 'potting angle'. You should place the dot ball on each colour spot and try potting the ball into each of the normal pockets from straight in moving incrementally around to thiner, then from straight in around to thiner on the other side. Make sure you place the cue ball so that you have a comfortable bridge and a medium distance pot. eg dot ball on blue spot starting from straight in to opposite the middle diamond top of table and then from straight in to opposite the middle diamond bottom of the table. Move the cue ball about 4" up or down the table for each subsequent pot. Try each angle until you make the pot atleast 2 times in a row.

    If you can consistently make the balls from each of the spots then you know your stroke is working and the issue was seeing the 'potting angle'. If not then you will know your stroke is not consistent.

    By regularly praticing this your brain will start to automatically 'remember' how to calculate or see various potting angles.

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    As Terry says, most people have a cueing problem, not an aiming problem. I thought I had an aiming problem and went off on a crusade to learn how to aim using a 'system' only to later find I had a cueing problem instead.

    The easiest way to check if you have a cueing or aiming problem is to set up a shot where you can eliminate one of those and test the other. As you cannot eliminate cueing without some sort of robotic device you should instead eliminate the need to aim.

    So, set up a red on the blue spot, place the cue ball on the baulk line so that you have a perfectly straight shot into a black pocket (either side, whichever is more comfortable to you). The line of aim will be straight through the center of the white, the center of the red and will likely point directly at the edge of the pocket leather. That is, the edge of the leather on the top (black end) cushion, not the edge of the leather on the side cushion.

    Attempt to pot this 10 times, record/remember how many you pot, how many you miss and where/how you miss them. Play 5 shots softly (hard enough to avoid any drift on the cloth) and play 5 shots much firmer, as many cueing faults only appear when power is used. Compare the results from each set of 5, and look for any patterns i.e. always missing them pocket to the right, or left.

    If you can, record this test with a video camera mounted over the black pocket. You can use a mobile phone if you have some sort of mount like a Joby Gorrillapod for example. Post a link to the video here, and we'll take a look.

    My fault was my grip hand moving away from the body and back in on delivery, resulting in additional left hand side on the cue ball, sending it right of the line of aim, and missing the pot on the left. I think this fault is fairly common. In addition I have discovered I also twist the cue on delivery, rolling my hand in, and bending the wrist out.

    The solution for both faults was to loosen my grip, until I could easily slide my cue in my grip with my other hand and intentionally bend the wrist in, creating a kink in the back of the wrist/hand, then learning to feel when my hand is in that position, and keep it there on the stroke. Finishing every stroke with my hand on my chest, in that position, to verify I had not twisted on the stroke.

    Once you have figured out the cueing fault, and started to train yourself out of it, you can move on to practicing potting and improving your aim (getting more and more accurate). I have one routine which I like because it doesn't waste a lot of time in setup and collecting the ball etc.

    You place reds from the blue spot to the pink spot, as many as you feel like. Place the white near the side cushion, in line with the pink spot, but far enough from the cushion to get your hand comfortably on the table. Pot each ball into the middle, starting from the ball on the blue spot and moving down until you pot one straight or almost straight in. Now, move the white to be in line with the black, or slightly below and continue. Repeat this on both sides of the table. The good thing about this drill is that the white should naturally travel down the table and back up to us, so you don't have to go collecting it all the time. Each ball you pot has a different angle and you practice judging that and potting it. When I miss a pot I tend to replace the ball and repeat it until I get it.

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    Once you have your delivery sorted out and think you're delivering straight and have confirmed this with a video (sometimes it's hard to see in normal action and you need slow motion or frame-by-frame analysis) then here is an exercise to once and for all confirm your aiming ability.

    Take 3 red and place them tight on the top cushion so the centre red is directly behind the black spot. Now remove the centre red and move the 2 outside reds 1/8" out from where they were. Now with cueball on brown spot see if you can hit the cushion between the reds without disturbing them. This is a very difficult exercise and you must be delivering the cue straight.

    As nrage says, 99.9% of people who think they have an aiming problem and try and find some magic formula for aiming have in reality a crooked cue delivery which is usually caused by a crooked backswing because the grip is too tight and the backswing is too fast. To correct this they take the wrong step and shorten the backswing and tighten the grip and it will always get WORSE.

    Try what nrage has recommended. If I'm remembering correctly this is what I had him do during our coaching session at the Southwest Academy but perhaps I'm remembering another student

    Terry

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    Quote Originally Posted by Terry Davidson View Post
    Once you have your delivery sorted out and think you're delivering straight and have confirmed this with a video (sometimes it's hard to see in normal action and you need slow motion or frame-by-frame analysis) then here is an exercise to once and for all confirm your aiming ability.

    Take 3 red and place them tight on the top cushion so the centre red is directly behind the black spot. Now remove the centre red and move the 2 outside reds 1/8" out from where they were. Now with cueball on brown spot see if you can hit the cushion between the reds without disturbing them. This is a very difficult exercise and you must be delivering the cue straight.

    As nrage says, 99.9% of people who think they have an aiming problem and try and find some magic formula for aiming have in reality a crooked cue delivery which is usually caused by a crooked backswing because the grip is too tight and the backswing is too fast. To correct this they take the wrong step and shorten the backswing and tighten the grip and it will always get WORSE.

    Try what nrage has recommended. If I'm remembering correctly this is what I had him do during our coaching session at the Southwest Academy but perhaps I'm remembering another student
    It was me IIRC I wasn't too bad at hitting the cushion between the reds. The funniest thing was my first long blue with the 360 purecue tho.. not the result we were expecting .. oh, BTW my 360 purecue should arrive today sometime .. wooo!

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    Thanks very much 4 these comments as come 2 mention it it could easily be my cueing as i have noticed how some shots without realising my arm twitches and causes it go off line the line of aim and causing me to put unintentional side on.
    So next time i go to play i will expriment these certain drills you have mentioned.
    oh and by the way i may have asked this before i forget, but is there a certain way i should step into the shot to make sure im hitting the line of aim i was looking at while from behind the shot.

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    Thanks very much 4 these comments as come 2 mention it it could easily be my cueing as i have noticed how some shots without realising my arm twitches and causes it go off line the line of aim and causing me to put unintentional side on.
    So next time i go to play i will expriment these certain drills you have mentioned.
    oh and by the way i may have asked this before i forget, but is there a certain way i should step into the shot to make sure im hitting the line of aim i was looking at while from behind the shot.

  10. #10
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    wezza:

    Absolutely, there's a set way to approach the shot and it should be done the same way for every shot. Stand 1ft behind where you will be putting your feet when in your stance and assess the potting angle and also where you are going to hit the cueball to get the desired position.

    Now place your right foot (if you're right-handed) directly underneath where your grip hand is going to end up when you're in the address position. The laces of the right shoe (arch) should be directly underneath the grip hand position in the address position. Now place your left foot wherever it feels comfortable but at least 1 shoulder width between the heel. The left foot can be parallel with the right foot (called a square stance) or ahead of the right foot, (called open or partially open stance.

    Now while you are still standing up bend the left leg and swing the hips to the left until you re-acquire the correct line of aim (i.e. - your nose is pointed along the line of aim you selected). Now start from a cue position across your hips and form your FINAL grip on the cue and swing your cue over to behind the cueball, forming your bridge on the way. You MUST drop the head (nose) STRAIGHT DOWN in order to keep everything on the chosen line of aim and also keep your eyes on the object ball until your bridge hand is on the table behind the cuball and the bridge is formed.

    Leave the cue at rest for a second and check to make sure you are lined up on the correct line of aim and also that your tip is lined up on the cueball at the point where you decided to hit it. Start your 2-3 feathers (no more) then pause again at the cueball (called the front pause) for a second or so and then start slowly your final backswing, rear pause and delivery. Leave the cue extended on delivery with the back of your grip hand thumb up against the chest on every shot.

    Terry

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