How to make major stroke changes? Most pool players are always looking for a way to improve their game and move to the next level.
It doesn’t matter how many years you have been playing it is a (delightful) lifetime struggle to get minor improvements in our game.
Its a Big Job.
Sometimes changes can be made which are easy but sometimes you will need to make a major change. This change may set your game back 4 months or so. Whether or not you decide to embark on these changes will be down to how determined you are to make the necessary improvements.
In order to explain this properly I am going to let you know what I personally had to do to improve. This was after playing pool and snooker for over 30 years.
Why I am Making Changes Now.
So why did I decide to make changes after all of this time. You have to understand that my stroke, my stance, my alignment and everything about my game has been ground into my muscle memory over the last 20 years. We as pool players do not respond well to making changes. In fact as human beings we avoid change like the plague. This is because we feel comfortable with our present actions and emotions. Ive always done it this way. Change is awkward without a tough, positive attitude and real determination.
To put it simply I had stopped playing pool for probably 13 years. When I came back to the game I was 62. after major practice and playing on the local circuit for 1 year, I was not getting the results that I thought I should have been getting.
Is The Change Worth the Effort?
It would have been easy for me at that point to give up and blame my sub par play on my age but because I don’t believe that age is really that big of an issue with the game of Pool, I decided to make some changes in order to make my game more consistent.
So there you have it, I think my game is inconsistent and I don’t trust my stroke under pressure. Those are two major reasons for rebuilding my game.
Last Years Results.
Over the last year while I was playing in competition I have found it extremely difficult to bring my A game to the table. I feel that I have been beaten on occasion by people who have absolutely no business standing at the same table. This is not said in a disrespectful way to other players but I have my own high expectations and I need to fulfill them.
During this time I have noticed that when I play subconsciously, in the zone, my game completely comes together. I don’t have to think about anything that I’m doing and everything works well and I usually win. However when playing under pressure I’ve noticed that my play can be really terrible. It’s almost like I have no conscious game to fall back up on!
So Whats The Problem?
This leads me to the conclusion that when I’m in the zone my subconscious can make minor adjustments to my stroke. These adjustments enable me to successfully make the balls. However these corrective adjustments are not made automatically when I am consciously thinking under pressure. That means that when I “try” to aim mechanically I do not make the same stroke. This leads to misses, frustration and that leads to trying even harder with similar results.
What I need, and what every player needs is a repeatable, reliable stroke. This stroke must hold up under pressure and not rely on subconscious adjustments. I also need to be able to look at the object ball without the need for me to constantly check cue alignment. It should be interesting to see what is going on. I wonder how different my cue action is in real life compared to my imagination.
What My Next Move Will Be.
So in order for me to learn how to make major stroke changes I’m going to need some video analysis or a coach. I seem to spend a lot of time home right now, I have a smart phone camera and I have my own table. So for me video will be the best way to go….