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Billiards: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
Tips For Buying a Pool Cue That's Best for You
Here are some helpful hints on buying your
What Are the Rules and Best Strategies for...
9-Ball's game rules and strategy are deceptively simple. But there is far more to the action than meets the eye.
How Much Space Do You Need for a Pool Table?
A big consideration in pool table dimensions is the endless question of how much space to leave around the table for free play. We have the answers for you.
9 Ball Break Tips & Strategy
Here are some fast tips to sharpen your 9 ball breaks instantly. Learn how to rack 9 ball then smash like the pros, with accuracy and power for optimal 9 ball strategy, in moments.
How To Choose the Right Pool Cue
Your guide to narrowing down choices and selecting the best possible custom pool cue.
Best Billiards Strategy: How To Break In 8 Ball
When discussing the best 8 ball breaks, including how to break in the 8 ball with this all-important stroke, it becomes necessary both to emphasize basic break strategy and specific 8 ball break technique. Victory in 8 ball pool at times requires (rules permitting) a commitment to sink the 8 ball on the break, and at other times, a mere shattering of the rack to spread the balls effectively to win the game.
What Are the Rules and Best Strategies in...
How to make 8-Ball rules made simple--and fair.
How To Replace A Cue Stick's Tip Yourself
How To Replace A Cue Stick's Tip Yourself
Pool Table Sizes And So-Called "Regulation...
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Learn to Aim Your Billiards Shots Like the Pros...
I'd love for all billiard players to know the truth regarding the real secrets of aiming in pool-the
4 x 9's Are The Best Table Size - Here's why
The 4' x 9' table size is the best, commonly used for top tournament play, and here's why.
8 Questions to Ask Before You Get a Pool Table
Price alone is not an indicator of table quality. There are questions requiring forethought before you purchase a pool table.
Stance: The Big Secret!
I've started with my head above the line of the shot. My shooting arm, however, is on the right of the trunk of my body. Bending over, head in the middle has made my cuestick point away from the shot. Page 2.
Which is Better, a Light or Heavy Pool Cue?
Use a billiard playing cue weight that is light or heavy? Do you know how to choose? We show you how.
How To Become A Professional Pool Player -...
How to become a professional pool player by skipping hours of tedious drills and doing my preferred billiards training methods, while having a lot of fun.
Challenges of Playing on Different Pool Table...
Pool Table Sizes: Tables measuring 4' x 8' have a key disadvantage (okay, challenge)...
8 Pool Strokes You Should Learn
Here are my 8 top pool strokes, there's more than one way to hit the cue ball to win. Here are some of the most important techniques for the beginner to learn.
How to Make Basic Bank Shots in Billiards
We're used to banking balls into the pocket all the time, so simply begin by dropping a line into the opposite corner pocket.
Rate Your Own Pool Play - 10-Ball Method
I'm a fan of this self-test to provide a playing ranking, as invented by pro and teacher Joe Tucker.
Pool Training - How Pros Really Aim In Billiards
Pool training you can take to the bank, hustler.
Ghost Ball Usage - Sectional Pool Aim and The...
Here's a nifty trick for sending a billiards ball to meet another at the optimum contact point.
A Classic Pool Stroke, Step by Step
Note the gentle, flowing motion that makes the classic pool stroke a THROW, not a stab or jab. There are other pool strokes, but this one from the field is a tossing motion... Page 2.
Billiards Instruction
You asked for it this billiards instruction! Ten of the obvious (to me, and soon to you) errors pool shooters make to lose games, throw off their rhythm, and ruin and otherwise good evening of pool.
How to Aim the Cue Ball and 'Ghost Ball' in Pool
How does the pool professional take aim at billiard balls, those sometimes difficult-to-discern spheres far away across the table. Review our step-by-step look at traditional and professional pool and billiards aim methods.
Following The Break - What To Do After The...
Here's what you should think about as soon as the balls are broken. What to following the break.
How To Play Pool Like The Pros
How to play pool like the pros, using my ultimate tips and techniques.
The Right And Wrong Ways To Draw the Cue Ball
Watch and laugh as I uncork a common error on draw shots.
10 Billiards Tips Your Opponents Don't Know
Ten pro pool tips your opponents don’t know, brought to you by About.com
Top 10 Mistakes Made Using Pool English
Pool english question of the day as a reader takes their object balls for a spin.
How To Straighten a Bent Shaft
Don't throw away a bent cuestick! A warped shaft can easily be straightened again and the cue made ready for play.
Pool Table Size - Know The Difference With The...
Overseas, people want to know whether they should use “American” or “English” for their base pool table size.
Pool Games - 7-Ball Rules & Strategy
7-ball billiards takes concentration, discipline and a knowledge of the rules. Page 2.
10 Tips for Brilliant Billiards Breaks
Pivot your shooting side foot as I recommend online to stand upright more than for a regular stroke. This frees and lengthens your arm motion and body to add power.
The Draw Cross Shot
The solution for crossing the table is more often draw than topspin, if you know how... Page 2.
Pool Shot Of Champions - This One Shot Retrains...
This is little known, but is perhaps the best pool shot to train your eyes in making other pool shots.
Should You Shoot Pool On A Bar Table Or Not?
Should bar pool tables be used at all by the serious pool player? Here's our debate showing both sides of the issue.
The Cue Sticks Of George Balabushka
Learn about the history of George Balabushka's cue sticks, difficult to find today, easy to locate knockoffs on auction sites, and never to be equaled.
How Do Top Pros Practice Pool?
How do top pros practice pool? Jump in for more of Donny and Matt's 8-Ball Debates...
Kick Shot Pool - The Kick Shot Properly Aimed...
Next, plot the new spot for the ghost ball as "G", then measure the distance the target ghost lies from
Jump Break Cue - Should You Buy (Or Not Buy) A...
I am answering a probing question today regarding that ultimate show stopper, the jump break cue. Do you need a jump break cue at all or should you separate tools?
Reader Questions Answered - Aiming, 8-Ball And...
I place a three card on the key billiards ball the audience chooses to shoot next to last, and so on...
How to Play Last Pocket Eight Ball
Take on 8-ball with a difference with this often money-saving game of Last Pocket Eights.
Eight Ball And Nine Ball Strategy
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Straight Shot - Drill It, Kill It! (How To Sink...
Drill Your Next Straight Shot - Bar none, beginning and intermediate pool shooters (and not a few experts) are stymied shooting a straight shot, one where the cue ball and the target object ball rest along a straight-in path to the pocket.
Choosing A Smart Pool Cue
Unless soft tips help you truly pocket every ball you look at, stay clear of them, in my opinion.
Turn a 9-Ball Rack To Powder!
Crushing a 9-ball rack like the pros is easy when you know how--and here it is outlined for you in stop action photos.
Minnesota Fats, aka "Rudolph Wanderone", "New...
Minnesota Fats was a legend of pool and remains so today. Here are all his fascinating details in one place.
English
Pool Definition -- English. Pool / Billiards.
9-Ball Break - Two Moves For An Improved 9-Ball...
I teach you a 9-Ball break with amazing results.
Buy A Pool Table - How To Buy A Pool Table Right
Buy your next pool table, new or used, the smart way.
Custom Cue - Brand Recommendations From An...
“Which brand or maker of custom cue should I try and buy, Matt?” is heard at many of my pool lessons. Here's what I say...
Play Pool Games - Or Are They Playing You? -...
Play pool games in your spare time? Are you more serious that that? What are the best possible pool games to play and why?
Bank Shot - Magic Spot Advice For A Multi-Rail...
Continuing our "magic" pool bank shots diagrams. Bear in mind how the cue ball need not rest on a mirror
Step-by-Step: How To Aim Any Bank Shot Or Kick...
how to make a bank shot or any kick shot using simple calculations. Page 4.
Cue Weight and Length - The Holy Grail Cue...
Seeking the Holy Grail of sticks by cue weight and cue length is a pastime for millions of players--but the real news is inside our story--how to find the true pool grail.
Technique In Aiming The Cue Ball - Aiming In...
One of my best techniques for aiming the cue ball is described including a helpful illustration.
A Proper Cue Stick Grip - Do It Right
It's time again to look at the proper cue stick grip--here it is in words and pictures along with pro secrets of grip.
How To Aim Cut Shots - Pool And Billiards
Continuing our multi-article aim primer, detailing every method top players use to play cut shots successfully in pool and billiards. Part of a multi-article series.
Ball-In-Hand
Pool Definition -- Ball-In-Hand. Pool / Billiards.
The Best Pool Aim Systems
There is an ever-growing family of aim methods that begin with the full line or some edge-to-edge or edge-to-center line followed with pivoting the cue stick or body from that line to determine the final shot line. Their complexity can be astounding and off-putting. Page 2.
Predator Cues - Deciding Between Other Cues And...
Choosing between Predator cues and other quality cues is like deciding between Peking Duck and Russian caviar. So here's how to decide.
Understand Cue Ball Angles - The Best Billiards...
Understand Cue Ball Angles, The Best Billiards Tips
8-Ball Or 9-Ball, And Why?
8-Ball Or 9-Ball Billiards, And Why?
List Of Existing Pool Leagues - And How To...
This list of established pool leagues comes with my recommendations for improving local and national billiards and pool leagues.
Demolish Your 9-Ball Pool Break
An interesting pool break question today from a devoted website reader. A fellow writes to ask if...
A Craze Worth Checking In On Called, "Three Ball"
Three Ball is a terrific little game that looks easier than it is and provides some interesting wrinkles. See more about gambling and playing this wondrous pool game.
Mini Tables
Far too small to offer a true test of skill, these are toys for young children mostly.
Aim Primer 7: Ghost Ball vs. Contact Point Aim
Contact point systems are simpler and more effective than ghost ball systems. As illustrated in the diagram, the player marks the contact point on the object ball with an early terminus to the aim line as shown. Page 2.
APA Pool Leagues - Trouble In Paradise?
The APA's pool leagues represent a powerful and influential body of players, people having a great time in billiards. But is there more to the story?
The Noble Game of Six Ball
6-ball provides a quick test on pool. Rack 'em, scatter 'em and run 'em--but will you find Six Ball easier or tougher than running a game of Nine Ball? Check it out.
Sneaky Petes & House Cues
House Cues: Any two-piece cue stick whether a sneaky pete or no, that costs more than seventy dollars
How To Shoot Pool - Competition Tips From Top...
Learn from my coaching of regional and national champs how to shoot pool better in competition and friendly play.
Draw: Level vs. Jab Stroke
Interestingly, there are two basic types of draw strokes that can be learned, and one may fit your pool skills better than the other.
Breaking an 8-Ball Rack With Power
Pulling back for the power break, I feel like I am drawing a bow with drag and weight on my arm. Page 2.
The 45 Degree Stance
Bent over funny is no way to shoot pool! Check out our instructional photos. Page 3.
A Weighty Word On Using Pool Cues
You shouldn't be using pool cues to break--if you value them highly. Break cues are meant to offer speed, not mass, to the pool shooter for the open break. Consider options carefully before making your purchase.
History Of Pool - Pool Ball Progression
John Wesley Hyatt saved elephants from pool extinction, by inventing modern plastic, as part of the legacy of the history of pool.
Pool Cue Tips - How To Choose Between Pool Cue...
A shameless request for info on pool cue tips becomes a pool cue tips compendium.
How To Choose a Tip Material
Pool cue tips range in hardness and widths besides material composition. Learn what pool professionals consider in this, their most important investment--the cue tip!
Top 3 Shaft Tapers
No two custom pool cues are the same. The taper of the shaft offers a range of control options in determining play.
Arm and Hand Motion in the Classic Stroke
The wrist may make six distinct movements. Is one or more of them required in a pool stroke? Page 4.
How To Sink Balls On The Break - Sink More...
How to sink more balls on the break? I'll tell you how the pros do it and how to straighten your break stroke at the same time.
How To Aim In Billiards - Tried And True Tips
How to aim in billiards using tried and true tips. Here's a quick rundown of some of the aim tips and techniques I share in pocket billiards clinics and individual lessons.
Billiards Shot - Over A Dozen Tips To Improve...
Over a dozen billiards shot tips in an article geared to improve your pool skills.
Pool Practice - Some Of My Best, Most Fun...
A day of practice for pool and billiards--everyone hates pool practice! I make it fun with a few simple routines.
Carabao Reasons - 2 Wrong Ways And 1 Right Way...
Shooting pool with english, you are likely to miss your target or miscue without using the methods I describe. Here are reasons to shoot with carabao english.
Pool Cues - Luther Lassiter Stick Weighs In
A Luther Lassiter Balabushka joins the ranks of fabulous pool cues hitting auctions this year.
Meet the Greatest Pool Hustler of All Time
Vernon Elliott was one of those pocket billiards legends who never played tournaments before the public but cashed against all the great. Here's his story.
How To Improve Fast
How to improve your billiards skills fast? Work the following routines daily or as often as you can.
Aim Primer 1: Introduction And Aim Techniques
Playing professsionals use a wide variety of aim methods; Fraction Aim, Edge to Edge Aim, Ghost Ball Aim, Contact Point Aim, Parallel Aim, Pivot Aim, and other aim systems. How to choose the correct methods are outlined within.
The Classic Pool Grip
Here is a great look at my pool grip as I begin to line up for the shot at hand. Page 3.
British Comedy - Snooker!
Watch a great British Comedy that features Snooker!
Where To Hold The Fingers, Billiards Player?...
Listen, billiards player! Here's where to hold the fingers (four hand designs/shapes).
Force Draw Shots
The force draw shot is exciting and wild, yet controlled. The beginner has something to dream for--the ability to place massive spin onto the cue ball.
Better Billiards Training - Split The Cue Ball...
Your billiards training towards excellence continues today. We'll talk soon about a straight aimed cue stick that is aimed at the wrong target.
Box Method of Aim
The box aim method helps draw the contact point on the object ball. Is it enough? Page 2.
Pool Hustling Legends - On The Road With Players
Read true stories about pool hustling legends at About.com.
Pool Stick High - Who Was The Best Ever With A...
Who is the best ever to wield a pool stick? Is there a clear way to determine the best at the sport?
Pool Sticks, Wood or Fiberglass, Perhaps?
A reader mentions the possible differences between wood cue sticks and fiberglass, which is making a splash. We take a quick and closer look.
Slop
Pool Definition -- Slop. Pool / Billiards.
How To Run A Rack - 8-Ball - Step-By-Step - The...
To pocket that 8-ball this turn, you'll need a correct sequence. Do you know how and what is the next shot? Page 2.
Don't Miss These Ideas For Eight Ball Play
These rules applies to all levels of play from pros to amateur.
The "Body Slip" Stroke
From the feet on up, I have begun to move forward with the cuestick. A great stop action photo taken near the point of impact! Page 2.
How To Play Better Straight Pool
How to play better Straight Pool? Wonder no longer as superb tips are here to help you master this most master-worthy of cue games.
Pool Movies! (The Ultimate, Definitive Pool...
We salute a pool movie--actually, a list of very hot pool movies to die for and dive into.
Exotic New Billiards Games (Free To Use/Distrib...
Here are new billiards games for you, courtesy of Andy Neiman.
14 Ways To Play A Safety Shot
Have You Considered These 14 Types Of Billiards Safety Shots?
20 Top Billiards Lies - Do Stop Believing These...
Sort fact from fiction (and cloth friction) with these 20 pieces of garbage that even some famous pros and teachers use in their lessons. Billiards on this GuideSite is like life, in that I enjoy sorting myths from truth.
Willie Mosconi, aka "The Mosc"
The All-Time Pool Legend lives on in the hearts of those who know Willie's Game.
How To Examine the Master Joint
The master joint on a custom cue stick is crucial to a dead solid hit. Made of steel, you can bash open a break shot or if wood-to-wood in make, stroke with confidence and maximum feel.
Slip Stroke Technique
The slip stroke is a technique that many players do on an subconscious basis. You may want to experiment to add it to your game.
Perfect Practice - 1 Ball Feel
1 Ball Feel -- Feedback, Shoot the 1-ball into the pocket at various speeds, setting up and shooting again many times. Ask yourself these important pool questions and gain knowledge:. Page 2.
Stick Length and Weight - Let's Get It Right...
Cue length and weight discussions must start with a discussion of skills. Page 2.
The Two Things Top Shooters Don't Do
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Rotation (a.k.a. Chicago) Rules, Odds & Strategy
With its potentially lengthy contest, Rotation was the darling of most pool shooters up through the Depression era and WWII. This classic game deserves a second look. My students enjoy it at our pool and billiards clinics...
Use Just 3 Speeds In Billiards Competition
How To Shoot Better In Billiards Competition: Choose from among three speeds only, believe it or not. I show you how, when and why. Page 2.
Pool Table Room Size - I Answer A Reader's...
A reader's question about a bargain pool table leads to a response on pool table room size.
Wood Pool Cues Are Where It's At
The best cues are wood pool cues, not graphite and other Space Age materials, and here's why.
Pool Balls - Weights And Pool Balls
Pool balls can vary, surprisingly even on the same table in a set.
Repairing Dents On Your Cue Stick's Shaft
Repairing Dents On Your Cue Stick's Shaft - how do to it on your own, step-by-step.
Ralph Greenleaf, aka "The Aristocrat"
Name: Ralph Greenleaf, aka "The Aristocrat" Claim to Fame: Widely considered the greatest pool player
Two Most Important Position Tools
The two concepts of aligning the object ball with the pocket’s center at its opening and [ ] are the two most important principles in playing position in pool and billiards. Page 4.
Cue Ball Control - The Most Important Move
Cue ball control mastery becomes yours with this one simple move.
More on Buying Pool Table Slate
A quality slate is key to a level, enjoyable playing surface.
APA Break - And For Other Players - 8-Ball...
The APA break rules can be a blessing or a curse as can other pool league and tournament rules. Here's why.
How To Avoid the Wrong Tips
The glossiest looking pool cue is worthless without a quality tip on its end. Here are the things to avoid in a cuestick tip.
4 Steps To Choosing The Perfect Pool Cue Price
The essential costs/pool cue price range hasn't changed much in 20 years so here's the 4 steps to picking the right stick.
Ferrules
The shock terminator of pool, the ferrule absorbs impact. Keep it clean and damage free and it will reward your pool game.
The Best Pool Cues May Not Be Straight Cue Sticks
The best pool cues may not even be straight. Here's why.
Call Shot
Pool Definition -- Call Shot. Pool / Billiards.
Learn To Perfect Your Pool Stroke With Stop Shots
Allison Fisher and other top pros hit outstanding stop shots every time. Why? Let's explore together, pool student...
Aim Primer 5: Contact Point And Half Ball Line
From the player’s perspective, if the cue ball were to be stroked along the full line it will impact the 2-ball as a “full hit”. With eyes watching from behind the cue ball in the stance, the cue ball will fully eclipse the sphere of the 2-ball at impact... Page 2.
Break Tips - Difference Between Table Sizes
Looking for break tips? Some of the best break tips are recorded in this unique article.
Reverse Slip Stroke
Here is where the reverse slip becomes astonishingly different than a classic pool stroke. Page 3.
Banking like the pros
Yes, the yellow line in the diagram is the correct bank shot plot. So why will the pro often pound the bank with inside (in this case, right hand) english applied? Page 2.
Simply The Best - Best Billiards Tables
Why skimp when the best billiards tables may be in use for decades, even a century, in your home or poolroom?
How To Shoot Pool - Iron Defense Made Easy For...
A mindset of iron defense means you will win at more pool strategies than you've dreamed. Let us show you how. Page 3.
Two Moves For An Outstanding Pool Break Shot
We just reviewed technique for break shots with the cue ball close to the rail. Let’s consider some of my keys to a better break from along the head string. Page 2.
Actually Hit The Cue Ball Where You Aim With...
It’s a frequent occurrence for me to spend 15 minutes to correct the player habit of fudging the address position. Here's how to fix it yourself.
How To Hold The Pool Cue - A Closer Look
How to hold your pool cue? Let's take a closer look, shall we?
Improve Play To The Corner Pocket With This Shot
Four factors make a given pool shot an added challenge, particularly to a corner pocket. This shot solves three of the problems.
Kitchen
Pool Definition -- Kitchen. Pool / Billiards.
Pool Hall Culture - This Is What Makes For A...
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The Force Follow Shot Made Simple
The force follow shot has thrilled many players. Beginners love this one at my pool clinics. And, it's so easy to shoot!
Pool Table Rails
Three little tricks you can use to test pool table rails on a new or used table you seek to purchase or play upon. Show them how cool you can be at the poolroom even before play begins.
Efren Reyes - A Stunning Straight Pool Bank Shot
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How To Rack Pool Balls Tightly
How to rack pool balls better is the question answered today with a a few secrets in this feature.
8 Ball Love And Lore - We Say Why We All Love 8...
Q. Why Do You Love 8 Ball? A. Your About.com Pool & Billiards Guide and his frequent collaborator, Donny Lutz, share why 8 Ball has meant so much to them through the years.
3 Pro Techniques For Your Choice Of Bank Shot
What makes a bank shot so difficult? You are not aiming at a typical target but an imagined rail point.
Open Break
Pool Definition -- Open Break. Pool / Billiards.

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