What Is The Stun Shot?
The stun shot is a very exciting shot to learn. This shot gives another dimension to your position play. In its simplest form is just the same as a stop shot but on an angle. When a stop shot is played on an angled shot the white ball will follow the tangent line to the rail. Its path is very predictable and helps to play some precision position shots.
How Do I Play The Stun Shot?
Stun shots are played the same way as a stop shot, usually with a crisp punch type stroke. Distance between the balls will have an effect on the tip position on the cue ball. Stun shots are also sensitive to ball speed. The focus of the shot is to have no spin on the cueball at impact with the object ball. The cue ball needs to be skidding along the surface of the table at the collision.
The Skidding Cue Ball.
What is a skidding cue ball and why is this so important. If you strike the ball with backspin the cue ball will travel forward whilst spinning backward. As the backspin wears off due to friction the ball will start to skid along the cloth. After a certain distance the skid wears off and the ball will start to rotate in a forward direction. In order for the stun shot to work, the balls must collide during the skid phase.
What Path Will The White Ball Take?
If the white ball strikes the object ball during the skid phase, the white ball will leave along the tangent line. Which will be 90 degrees to the shot line. The ball stays on this line until it strikes a rail, another ball or its speed wears off. It is important to note that the skid will wear off eventually leading to a rolling cue ball.
Limitations Of This Shot.
The main things to remember when using the stun shot are that contact induced throw tends to thicken the shot angle. Stun shots work best on fuller shot angles. You will find that as the angle increases the effectiveness of the stun decreases. Beyond 25-30 degrees the cue ball has too much forward momentum to follow the tangent line. It is sometimes a balance between the shot angle and the speed of the cue ball.
How To Use The Stun Shot For Position.
It may help some people to know my thought process when assessing the path to my next shot. Can I get there using a rolling white ball either natural or top spin? Does a stun shot down the tangent line take me to the correct location. These are usually the easiest shot to predict so I consider them first. The great advantage of the stun shot is its track line or path.
How To Adjust The Tangent Line?
On all cut shots the cue ball will always follow the 90 degree line after making contact with the object ball. The length of time the white ball spends on the line will depend on angle, speed and spin.
If an angled stun shot follows the tangent line. A draw shot curves back below the tangent line. A follow-through shot curves up above the tangent line. Then how do we make the cue ball follow the angles in between? You can achieve these in-between track lines by varying your speed, tip position and stroke.
How To Practice Stun Shots?
The best way to practice stun shots is to shoot easy angle shots from the same known position over and over. Continue to shoot the balls whilst trying to predict the path of the cue ball. Staying with the same shot, vary your tip position and take note of the changes. Then vary the distance between the balls. Next make changes to your shot speed again notice the result. You can now vary the shot by using tip position, speed and distance.
Once you start to feel comfortable you can introduce small amounts of side spin. You will need to make adjustments to your aim to allow for deflection. You can get some amazing results with spin. There is not short cut to learning these skills, have fun practicing and see what you can do.