How to aim in pool? Pool is played on a table that has six pockets into which the colored balls must be inserted. Pool is a difficult game, as it requires precision and concentration.
Your aiming ability is crucial for success in this game. The cue ball must hit specific balls into the pockets.
However, some people have trouble aiming, which invariably affects their ability to deposit balls in their pockets. If you know how to aim better, you can improve your skills and succeed at Pool.
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Basic advice on how to aim in Pool
1) Take your time. Find the exact spot where you should hit the ball before attempting a shot. Keep your eye exactly on that spot. Avoid feeling rushed so that you have a better aim.
2) Maintain a proper posture. Move your back smoothly and slowly, while keeping your hand free and relaxed. Avoid tension, as this will cause the ball not to travel in a straight line.
3) Focus on shooting straight and pay attention to your shot. Align the cue ball with the ball you are aiming at. Stay focused to avoid bad shots. Keep your attention on your shot until the balls have stopped moving.
4) Deal with the easy shots as you would the difficult ones. Avoid shooting too fast, not lining up the shot or not shooting in a straight line. Lack of concentration often leads to poor aim on easy shots.
5) Walk away from the table before the next shot. Walk around to find the best position for the cue ball on the next shot. Stand behind the cue ball with the cue stick and see where exactly you will shoot from.
6) Make mental corrections for missed shots. Avoid making the same mistakes repeatedly. Analyze what happened after each missed shot and how you could improve your aim on the next shot.
The ball spot
The most important thing for the beginner. And no doubt the most satisfying, is to see the object ball go into the pocket and disappear.
I always say that in Pool. The most important thing is to move the cue ball (and to know how to aim on the pool table). And that pocketing the ball is not the most important thing. But ‘simply’ an indispensable premise to continue in the game.
Anyway, everyone has their own way of understanding Pool. But no one will deny that if instead of a long and thin ball. We leave it closer to the object ball, and less cut, the ball spot will lose much importance.
We call the ball spot. The exact place where the object ball must be hit to drive it towards the center of the pocket. And it is the point of the ball farthest away from the pocket.
Unfortunately, if we simply aim at that exact spot with the cue ball. We will hit the object ball too full and it will not fall. Especially the sharper the shot you will get.
Problem & Solution
But what is going wrong? The problem is that since the cue ball has a mass around its center. And is not an arrow, with a well-defined tip, or simply a point. The result is that it will hit the target long before any part of it reaches the ball spot.
How can we solve this? Unfortunately, there is no concrete reference, at least visually, to aim at.
Perhaps the best method. Without being a cure-all (if there were such a thing, this game would be very easy), is the imaginary ball.
It consists of imagining a third ball attached to the object ball, touching it exactly at the cue ball spot. If we point the cue ball at the center of this imaginary ball, the object ball must fall.
We can place a real ball in the place of the imaginary one. Close to the object ball and aim at it. Trying to ‘feel’ the ball spot.
Then we will remove it and try to pull towards the place it occupied; it will be easier to imagine it if it has really been there.
Another option: ask a friend to help us and to move the ball away without moving the target. Just at the moment when we shoot.
I recommend the beginner to use this method but without becoming obsessed. Also (and above all) you should try to pocket a few balls without physically using the third ball at all.
Remember that you will never be able to use it in a real game. In addition, and why fool ourselves. The method to improve and trust our ball spot.
In the end, is none other than pocketing thousands and thousands of balls with all the cuts.
The Ghost Ball
I’m sure you’ve heard of “The Ghost Ball” many times. Actually, it is the name given to the most popular aiming system used by most pool players.
I remember when I was a kid for the first time in a pool hall. And I saw a player who used the tip of his cue to aim at the object ball. At a point where the cue ball would hit the object ball on its way to the cue ball.
What that player was doing is using one of the oldest methods of learning to aim, the ghost ball method.
The balls are obviously spherical. And the only way to know where to aim is to calculate the point of contact of the cue ball. When it comes to occupying that space.
Then, and here comes the difficulty. You have to abstract to think about the space that the cue ball will occupy.
Using This To Learn How To Aim In Pool
The most common way to learn this system. While practicing, place one more object ball next to the cue ball that we intend to hit.
Just at the opposite end of the table to the direction that the cue ball should follow. If we start from the previous ball spotting exercise.
The ball would be located right where we intended to pocket the cue ball.
The objective of this exercise is that when you visualize the object ball. You internalize the space that the object ball occupies.
So that you will be able to abstract it when it is not there while you are playing. This is the real difficulty of the exercise.
It is advisable to practice it and become familiar with this aiming system, it will not disappoint you. It is the system used by practically all the greats.
Except for some who have invented systems based on mathematical concepts or simply use their intuition.
So for the question of how to aim in pool. There are a few answers and most of them work well. But the best I’ve found is to go with your gut. It generally will not steer you wrong.