Master the Fundamentals of a Pool Stroke

Part of the Pool & Billiards For Dummies Cheat Sheet

You need to check your pool stroke to make sure you’re on the path to becoming a fundamentally sound pool player. When you do check your stroke, ask yourself the following questions. (Hint: If you don’t answer all the questions with a yes, you should!)

  • Back arm: Are you stroking the cue moving only your back arm from the forearm down? Are you keeping your rear shoulder and elbow still and on the shot line for the entirety of your stroke?

  • Balanced stance: Are your feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart? Are your feet aligned at an angle (45 degrees is a good start) from your cue (and the line of your shot)?

  • Bridge: Do you have a strong, sturdy bridge that will not move immediately before, during, and after you stroke the cue? Do you have a bit of body weight on your bridge hand to help plant it on the table?

  • Eyes: During your practice strokes, are you moving your eyes from the contact point on the cue ball to the spot you’re aiming at on the object ball? When you take your final swing, are you locked in to the aiming point on the object ball?

  • Follow-through: Are you following through the cue ball by at least 6 inches? Are you gradually slowing the cue to a stop?

  • Grip hand: Is the back end of the cue resting gently on your fingers? Are you stroking the cue without tensing up and gripping the cue tightly?

  • Stroke: Are you using a controlled, slow backswing? Is the cue accelerating toward the cue ball?

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