Pool and billards for dummies

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Practical, step-by-step tips for players of all levelsFrom Snooker to Carom to good-old-fashioned 8- or 9-Ball, Pool & Billiards For Dummies reveals the tips, tricks, and rules of play, covering the variety of the ever-popular games that make up pool and billiards. This hands-on guide discusses everything from the rules and strategies of the games to how to set up a pool room to choosing the right equipment, and is accompanied by dozens of photos and line drawings. See how hard to hit the cue ball and where to hit it, the angle to hold the cue stick and how much chalk to use, how to use a bridge, and how to put spin on the ball Includes advanced pool techniques and trick shots for the seasoned pool sharpWith Pool & Billiards For Dummies, even a novice can play like a champion! Nicholas LeiderManaging Editor, Billiards DigestLearn to:• Play by the rules and develop game-winning strategies for the most popular games• Hold the stick correctly and hit the cue ball properly• Play like a champion regardless of your experience• Perform trick shots to amaze your friendsPool & BilliardsMaking Everything Easier!™ Open the book and find:• The differences between pool and billiards• Game-winning strategies no matter what version of the game is played• Helpful diagrams and photos • Drills for all skills• Games to measure your progress• The etiquette of pool • Coverage of the Ghost Ball System• The secrets of creating a powerful break shot• Tips on finding the right cue for youNicholas Leider is Managing Editor of Billiards Digest magazine, for which he continues to write extensively on billiards play and game strategy.$19.99 US / $23.99 CN / £14.99 UKISBN 978-0-470-56553-7Sports & Recreation/Pool and BilliardsGo to Dummies.com®for videos, step-by-step photos, how-to articles, or to shop!Practical, step-by-step tips for players of all levelsFrom snooker to carom to good, old-fashioned 8- or 9-ball, Pool & Billiards For Dummies reveals the tips, tricks, and rules of play, covering the variety of the ever-popular games that make up pool and billiards. This hands-on guide discusses everything from the rules and strategies of the games to how to set up your very own poolroom.• Gearing up — find, buy, and maintain the cue that’s best for you and accessorize your game with chalk, racks, lights, and triangles• Get schooled on the fundamentals of pool — find out how to build a solid stance; get a feel for aiming; and create a depend-able, consistent stroke• Control the cue ball — discover how to control the movement of the cue ball to make stop shots and incorporate topspin, back-spin, and sidespin • Take your best shot — follow instructions on tackling common shots, eyeing combinations, and playing offensively and defensively• Oh, the games you’ll play — get the rules and strategies for play-ing 8-ball, 9-ball, multiplayer games, and professionals’ gamesPool & BilliardsLeiderspine=.76”Start with FREE Cheat SheetsCheat Sheets include • Checklists • Charts • Common Instructions • And Other Good Stuff!Get Smart at Dummies.com Dummies.com makes your life easier with 1,000s of answers on everything from removing wallpaper to using the latest version of Windows. Check out our • Videos • Illustrated Articles • Step-by-Step InstructionsPlus, each month you can win valuable prizes by entering our Dummies.com sweepstakes. *Want a weekly dose of Dummies? Sign up for Newsletters on • Digital Photography • Microsoft Windows & Office • Personal Finance & Investing • Health & Wellness • Computing, iPods & Cell Phones • eBay • Internet • Food, Home & GardenFind out “HOW” at Dummies.com*Sweepstakes not currently available in all countries; visit Dummies.com for official rules.Get More and Do More at Dummies.com®To access the Cheat Sheet created specifically for this book, go to www.dummies.com/cheatsheet/poolbilliardsspine=.76”by Nicholas LeiderPool & BilliardsFORDUMmIES‰01_565537-ffirs.indd i01_565537-ffirs.indd i 1/28/10 10:14 PM1/28/10 10:14 PMPool & Billiards For Dummies®Published byWiley Publishing, Inc.111 River St.Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774www.wiley.comCopyright © 2010 by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Indianapolis, IndianaPublished by Wiley Publishing, Inc., Indianapolis, IndianaPublished simultaneously in CanadaNo part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning or otherwise, except as permit-ted under Sections 107 or 108 of the 1976 United States Copyright Act, without either the prior written permission of the Publisher, or authorization through payment of the appropriate per-copy fee to the Copyright Clearance Center, 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923, (978) 750-8400, fax (978) 646-8600. Requests to the Publisher for permission should be addressed to the Permissions Department, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030, (201) 748-6011, fax (201) 748-6008, or online at http://www.wiley.com/go/permissions.Trademarks: Wiley, the Wiley Publishing logo, For Dummies, the Dummies Man logo, A Reference for the Rest of Us!, The Dummies Way, Dummies Daily, The Fun and Easy Way, Dummies.com, Making Everything Easier, and related trade dress are trademarks or registered trademarks of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. and/or its af liates in the United States and other countries, and may not be used without written permission. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Wiley Publishing, Inc., is not associated with any product or vendor mentioned in this book.LIMIT OF LIABILITY/DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTY: THE PUBLISHER AND THE AUTHOR MAKE NO REPRE-SENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES WITH RESPECT TO THE ACCURACY OR COMPLETENESS OF THE CONTENTS OF THIS WORK AND SPECIFICALLY DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION WAR-RANTIES OF FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. NO WARRANTY MAY BE CREATED OR EXTENDED BY SALES OR PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS. THE ADVICE AND STRATEGIES CONTAINED HEREIN MAY NOT BE SUITABLE FOR EVERY SITUATION. THIS WORK IS SOLD WITH THE UNDERSTANDING THAT THE PUB-LISHER IS NOT ENGAGED IN RENDERING LEGAL, ACCOUNTING, OR OTHER PROFESSIONAL SERVICES. IF PROFESSIONAL ASSISTANCE IS REQUIRED, THE SERVICES OF A COMPETENT PROFESSIONAL PERSON SHOULD BE SOUGHT. NEITHER THE PUBLISHER NOR THE AUTHOR SHALL BE LIABLE FOR DAMAGES ARISING HEREFROM. THE FACT THAT AN ORGANIZATION OR WEBSITE IS REFERRED TO IN THIS WORK AS A CITATION AND/OR A POTENTIAL SOURCE OF FURTHER INFORMATION DOES NOT MEAN THAT THE AUTHOR OR THE PUBLISHER ENDORSES THE INFORMATION THE ORGANIZATION OR WEBSITE MAY PRO-VIDE OR RECOMMENDATIONS IT MAY MAKE. FURTHER, READERS SHOULD BE AWARE THAT INTERNET WEBSITES LISTED IN THIS WORK MAY HAVE CHANGED OR DISAPPEARED BETWEEN WHEN THIS WORK WAS WRITTEN AND WHEN IT IS READ. SOME OF THE EXERCISES AND DIETARY SUGGESTIONS CONTAINED IN THIS WORK MAY NOT BE APPROPRIATE FOR ALL INDIVIDUALS, AND READERS SHOULD CONSULT WITH A PHYSICIAN BEFORE COMMENCING ANY EXERCISE OR DIETARY PROGRAM.For general information on our other products and services, please contact our Customer Care Department within the U.S. at 877-762-2974, outside the U.S. at 317-572-3993, or fax 317-572-4002.For technical support, please visit www.wiley.com/techsupport.Wiley also publishes its books in a variety of electronic formats. Some content that appears in print may not be available in electronic books.Library of Congress Control Number: 2010920660ISBN: 978-0-470-56553-7Manufactured in the United States of America10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 101_565537-ffirs.indd ii01_565537-ffirs.indd ii 1/28/10 10:14 PM1/28/10 10:14 PMAbout the AuthorNicholas Leider has been playing pool since he bought his father a pool table (with his mom’s money) for Father’s Day when he was 15 years old. But only since joining Billiards Digest as an editor in 2007 has he realized how much there is to learn about pool. With 7,000-plus hours spent reading, talking, and writing about the sport, Nicholas is prepared to answer the two Trivial Pursuit questions about pool. You can contact him at nleider12@hotmail.com.DedicationThis book is dedicated to my parents. To my dad, who provided me with  rst-hand proof that hard work pays off (even if I’m just making boxes). And to my mom, who has no idea what her strength and determination has meant to our entire family. (Well, I hope she has some idea now.)Author’s AcknowledgmentsI’d like to thank those people who learned that I’m only on deadline when it’s the third deadline I’ve been given — acquisitions editor Michael Lewis; project editor Kelly Ewing; art director Alicia South; photographer Brien Richmond; and last but not least, technical editor, “Dr. Dave” Alciatore. Thanks also to John Novi, Jr. for allowing us into his home for the photo shoot. And  nally, many thanks go to my agent, Marilyn Allen, who has been nothing but supportive.And a special thanks to those who have taught me so much about this game, especially Larry Schwartz, George Fels, Mike Panozzo, and the rest of the crew at Billiards Digest.Also, I’d like to thank my brother and sister for the constant support (and comic relief), my special ladyfriend, Jenny, for putting up with plenty of nights where I was a little less than sunny, and my friends for allowing me to drop out of society for a few months.01_565537-ffirs.indd iii01_565537-ffirs.indd iii 1/28/10 10:14 PM1/28/10 10:14 PMPublisher’s AcknowledgmentsWe’re proud of this book; please send us your comments at http://dummies.custhelp.com. For other comments, please contact our Customer Care Department within the U.S. at 877-762-2974, outside the U.S. at 317-572-3993, or fax 317-572-4002.Some of the people who helped bring this book to market include the following:Acquisitions, Editorial, and Media DevelopmentProject Editor: Kelly EwingAcquisitions Editor: Michael LewisAssistant Editor: Erin Calligan MooneyEditorial Program Coordinator: Joe NiesenGeneral Reviewer: Dave AlciatoreSenior Editorial Manager: Jennifer EhrlichEditorial Supervisor and Reprint Editor: Carmen KrikorianEditorial Assistant: Jennette ElNaggarArt Coordinator: Alicia B. SouthPhotographer: Brien RichmondCover Photos: © iStockCartoons: Rich Tennant (www.the5thwave.com)Composition ServicesProject Coordinator: Patrick RedmondLayout and Graphics: Ashley Chamberlain, Carl Byers, Ronald G. Terry, Christine WilliamsProofreaders: Laura L. Bowman, John GreenoughIndexer: Glassman Indexing ServicesPublishing and Editorial for Consumer DummiesDiane Graves Steele, Vice President and Publisher, Consumer DummiesKristin Ferguson-Wagstaffe, Product Development Director, Consumer DummiesEnsley Eikenburg, Associate Publisher, TravelKelly Regan, Editorial Director, TravelPublishing for Technology DummiesAndy Cummings, Vice President and Publisher, Dummies Technology/General UserComposition ServicesDebbie Stailey, Director of Composition Services01_565537-ffirs.indd iv01_565537-ffirs.indd iv 1/28/10 10:14 PM1/28/10 10:14 PMContents at a GlanceIntroduction 1Part I: Fundamentals of Pool 7Chapter 1: Arriving at the Pool Party 9Chapter 2: Getting Down: Building a Solid Stance 17Chapter 3: Handling the Cue 27Chapter 4: On Target: The Science and Feel of Aiming 45Chapter 5: Hit It: Creating a Solid Stroke 57Chapter 6: Playing Nice: The Etiquette of the Game 69Part II: Controlling the Cue Ball 77Chapter 7: Getting Control and Stopping the Cue Ball 79Chapter 8: Aim High: Incorporating Follow 93Chapter 9: Using Draw: Putting Backspin on the Cue Ball 105Chapter 10: The English Effect: Using Sidespin on the Cue Ball 117Part III: Taking Your Shots 133Chapter 11: Opening Shots: The Rack and the Break 135Chapter 12: Thinking Ahead: Position and Pattern Play 155Chapter 13: Shot-making: Tackling the Most Frequent Situations 169Chapter 14: Eying Combinations: Making Shots with Multiple Balls 183Chapter 15: Billiards and Caroms: Finding New Ways to Pocket Balls 199Chapter 16: Banks and Kicks: Making the Most of the Rails 217Chapter 17: Thinking Defensively: Playing Safe 235Part IV: The Games You’ll Play 245Chapter 18: The Magic of 8-Ball 247Chapter 19: 9-Ball: The Hustler’s Game 267Chapter 20: Pool’s Many Other Games 283Part V: Gearing Up 301Chapter 21: Equipment Check: Looking for Quality Tools 303Chapter 22: Pool Is Mental: Winning the Head Games 315Chapter 23: Drilling It Home: Practice Techniques 32502_565537-ftoc.indd v02_565537-ftoc.indd v 1/28/10 10:15 PM1/28/10 10:15 PMPart VI: The Part of Tens 337Chapter 24: Mastering Ten Trick Shots 339Chapter 25: Overcoming Ten or So Common Problems 349Index 35502_565537-ftoc.indd vi02_565537-ftoc.indd vi 1/28/10 10:15 PM1/28/10 10:15 PMTable of ContentsIntroduction 1About This Book 1Conventions Used in This Book 2What You’re Not to Read 2Making Assumptions 3How This Book Is Organized 3Part I: Fundamentals of Pool 3Part II: Controlling the Cue Ball 3Part III: Taking Your Shots 4Part IV: The Games You’ll Play 4Part V: Gearing Up 4Part VI: The Part of Tens 4Icons Used in This Book 5Where to Go from Here 5Part I: Fundamentals of Pool 7Chapter 1: Arriving at the Pool Party . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9Introducing Games You Can Play 9Getting in Position 10Aiming for Success 11Stroking the Cue 11Controlling the Cue Ball 12Seeing Shots 13Playing for Your Next Shot 14Playing Defense 14Gearing Up 15Playing Nicely 16Chapter 2: Getting Down: Building a Solid Stance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17Keeping Your Preshot Routine Consistent 17Approaching and stepping into the shot 18Lowering into your stance 20Keeping your eyes in line 22Eying a Shot 24Checking and rechecking your line 24Final focus? The object ball 2602_565537-ftoc.indd vii02_565537-ftoc.indd vii 1/28/10 10:15 PM1/28/10 10:15 PMPool & Billiards For Dummies viiiChapter 3: Handling the Cue. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .27Holding Back: The Grip Hand 27Forming a ring with two  ngers and a thumb 28(Still) no clenching 30Building Bridges 31Spread or palm down? 32Closing the bridge 35Bridge adjustments for special cases 38Grasping mechanical bridges 41Chapter 4: On Target: The Science and Feel of Aiming. . . . . . . . . . . . .45Staying Centered: The Line of Centers 45Ready, Aim, Shoot: The Contact and Aiming Points 47Did You See That? The Ghost Ball System 49With a Little Geometry: Aiming with Parallel Lines 51From Thin to Full: Aiming with the Fractional Ball System 53Chapter 5: Hit It: Creating a Solid Stroke. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57Practice Time: Warming Up 58Getting Comfortable: Rhythm and Routine 59Finding your rhythm 59Making it routine 60Starting the Stroke with the Backswing 60Staying still 61Keeping the cue level 62Making Contact: Swinging through the Ball 62Accelerating into the ball 63Keeping control 63Hitting the cue ball 64Grand Finale: Following Through 65Holding the elbow in place 66Staying down 68Chapter 6: Playing Nice: The Etiquette of the Game . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .69Competing Graciously 70Set the record straight 70Ask when you don’t know 70Get extra eyes for close calls 71Other little things . . . 72Sharking 73Respecting the Tools 74Part II: Controlling the Cue Ball 77Chapter 7: Getting Control and Stopping the Cue Ball . . . . . . . . . . . . .79Going Out from Center 8002_565537-ftoc.indd viii02_565537-ftoc.indd viii 1/28/10 10:15 PM1/28/10 10:15 PM[...]... of options when it comes to books on pool and billiards But I have a few reasons why this book is better than all the rest ✓ It’s in plain English This book isn’t a complex treatise on the geometry and physics involved in pool Instead, this book is a straightforward look at a game that anyone with a little determination and time can master In Pool & Billiards For Dummies, I have one simple goal: If... Digest, I spend my days reading and talking to the best minds in the game These two experiences allow me to cover the technical aspects of pool in an everyday way 2 Pool & Billiards For Dummies ✓ It’s a reference You can read this book cover to cover if you want But I’m guessing you’re not going to quit your job to take up pool for hours on end And because it may take awhile before you’re winning world... Billiards For Dummies Part I Fundamentals of Pool W In this part ithin this book, you have all the information necessary to develop into a pretty solid pool player But if you’re completely new to the sport of pool, this part is where you want to start In this part, I start with the fundamentals involved in pool I show you how to get into a comfortable stance, how to hold the cue, how to aim, and how... To be comfortable and balanced, you’ll need to be able to assume your stance for an extended period of time If you’re standing as you would for a shot and something feels out of line, it may be a hint that you’re not as comfortable as you need to be For example, if one of your legs begins to ache after 30 seconds or so, you’re putting too much weight on that foot Lowering into your stance Before I cover... Introduction W elcome to Pool & Billiards For Dummies, where you’ve got an in to the sometimes intimidating world of pool I’ve written this book to help you develop in all areas of the entertaining and challenging aspects of pool So whether you aren’t sure which end is which on a cue stick or you’re looking to pick up some tips after hours spent at a pool table, the skill-building and strategic principles... bar stools, chalk, and matching furniture Be sure you know what you’ll need before buying premade packages For more on purchasing equipment, see Chapter 21 Playing Nicely Pool comes with its own set of social conditions (see Chapter 6) Here are a few of the common no-nos on and around a pool table: ✓ Agree to any special rules before a match begins Clearing the air early keeps you and your opponent... should be 18 inches apart, and your knees should be bent at a 15-degree angle Considering the wide variety of people (and body types) that play pool, it’s no surprise that no two stances are exactly the same As you read this chapter, realize that finding a comfortable and effective stance is more about knowing what it should do — provide balance, comfort, and consistency — and incorporating your own... you: ✓ You like to play pool or are thinking about taking up pool as a hobby ✓ You either own a pool table or have easy access to one, whether it’s at a pool hall, bar, or friend’s house ✓ You have little or no experience in learning the proper techniques of a pool stroke ✓ You may be an experienced pool player who is looking for some additional tips on stroke fundamentals and the mental side of the... of 8-ball and 9-ball — by far the most popular disciplines But I also run through some other games that you may find fun to try No matter what your taste, you shouldn’t have any trouble finding a game for you Part V: Gearing Up In this part, I handle some of the peripheral aspects of the game Pool is full of accessories and tools and equipment Picking a cue out of the rack at your local pool hall seems... matter how you see pool fitting into your life, you’ll be playing with other people, which makes the game that much more enjoyable No matter your goals with pool, the game isn’t always easy But it’s nothing near impossible Some books cover the subject as if you’ve grown up with a cue in your hand But break down all the cool pool lingo and boil down some of the complex systems, and pool is a sport that . grown up with a cue in your hand. But break down all the cool pool lingo and boil down some of the complex systems, and pool is a sport that anyone can. handle some of the peripheral aspects of the game. Pool is full of accessories and tools and equipment. Picking a cue out of the rack at your local pool
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