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Broke out the Camera Again!

Broke out the Camera Again!

I posted some time ago my intention to record my game or lack there of for the purpose of self diagnosis and using the video as a tool or stepping stone. I was told "Without the knowledge of what to look for, as well as the correct application to correct specific errors, self-analysis video is of limited value" by a Certified Instructor and he was right to a point. I did see several things wrong but not everything. It's been so long I only remember a few bad habits I caught; not as low in my stance as I envisioned, a poke in my stroke, lack of follow through and jumping up as opposed to staying down until the cue ball stops. My game did improve over time, ran some racks and a few runs in the low 20's and my shape or position play improved. Not solely due to viewing the recording. I also received a lot of coaching. I also read daily as much as I could to relearn straight pool, the game of my youth. A post on "Finding end Patterns" was a big eye opener, as was, "There is no Somewhere in Straight Pool." After my 2nd video session just days ago I stopped to talk to one of the top players in the house I frequent. Not to get advice but just to pay my respects. I didn't want to impose. He inquired what was up with the equipment. I mentioned I was in a slump and he had the same thoughts regarding the camera. You won't know what you're doing wrong if you don't know what to look for or if you don't know what you're seeing. I agreed. I should mention he spent some time as a pro and as a road player back in the day. He also gives lessons. He then mentioned he had been watching me for some time and knew what one of my problems was, is. He proceeded to show me several things I was not aware of so he was right. I would not have caught these flaws myself. When setting up my Cue tip was 3 inches away from the Cue ball was the big one. Not good! He also mentioned one needs to pay their dues and show commitment to advance in pool. Over 1,000 hours at the table in 9 months seems committed to me. Insert joke here! He also pointed out some good habits I have formed like a straight stroke and proper alignment. That night when I got home as fate would have it someone had sent me a early video of Allison Fisher playing Snooker. I watched it and her cue tip was within 1/8th inch of the Cue ball as near as I could tell. Today I was able to get to within 1/2 inch, that's 2 1/2 inches closer to the Cue ball and more balls were made with authority. More center pocket hits. Conformation! There were other things he pointed out but they may only apply to my game? I'd like to say I ran 50 that day but this new shot making method will take time. Back to drills to develop muscle memory. The other half is I did see and recognized other bad habits while reviewing the newest Video. Bridging too long IMO. standing too upright again, a giddy up double pump in my back stroke when applying force follow during break shots to name a few. So IMO you can learn from seeing yourself play if you have a keen eye and are a student of the game but you will still need help. It, the camera and a Coach together can be a value adding tool. Last, don't get discouraged. I'm only playing as well as when I was 13 or 14 taking my friends quarters but I have more knowledge of the game then ever before. I'd like to think as someone else said, " Inside me is a pool player waiting to run out."

Broke out the Camera Again!

Replies & Comments

  1. Fenwickquickshot on 5/26/2008 10:29:36 PM

    Run out of where? Sorry Fenwick I could not resist it. Enjoyed your dissertation and also picked up a couple of clues that I will look for in my own game. One in particular is about the tip placement you saw with Allision game. I will need all the help I can get as I am signing up for a 9 ball summer league. Having never played in a league before it should be an education.

  2. FenwickFenwick on 6/4/2008 10:20:54 PM

    You got me. Run out the door after seeing my mug on tape. So the tape proved useful but I still had a unsolvable problem, squirt . So I did what most men do and bought a new toy. A low deflection shaft. Received it in the mail this am and had to give it a try. I was so focused on the shaft I didn't know when or if I had run the table until marking score. It's hard to describe the difference but it is substantial. The old shaft is like a tuning fork and made 5 foot break shots 50/50 at best if hit hard. I know it's been said it's not the arrow it's the Indian but I say, "what if the arrow is bent?" Well I think I had a bent arrow! One shot stands out. I had about 1/16" clearance each side of the cue ball between two balls. I had to put left or outside English to make the object ball move right. This was a slow soft shot. Normally the cue ball would have gone right and hit the object ball on the right and missed the called ball completely. Could be the placebo affect but only time will tell. I managed to win 2 out of 3 today for the very first time against one of the better players I'm up against. He did not have his A game today but his B game is better then my A game almost any day. Now I can go back to working on proper form and tape again in a week or so.

    Good luck with your league play!

  3. Fenwickquickshot on 6/4/2008 10:57:24 PM

    Well I'm happy to hear that you solved one of the problems. I believe that a shaft can be bent or have an ever so slight warp to it that it is not easily recognized. Especially one that has been used for a long time and very often. We tend to become comfortable with familiar objects that has been a part of our history, or in my case longevity. I hope it works out for you. If I may inquire, what shaft and tip did you buy? I may be looking for a new shaft sometime in the future, and a low deflection would in all probability help me. Since I decided to go with a 9 ball league I have been practicing 9 ball quite a bit. Today I had my first break and run but unfortunately I scratched the nine ball. I was a little disappointed on one hand but happy that I made the run on the other hand. It means I'm improving. Good luck wiith the new shaft. Keep us posted.

  4. FenwickFenwick on 6/4/2008 11:47:36 PM

    I don't know if in fact the shaft was warped but it did have a lot of whip or twang to it. The new shaft is a Z-2 Predator with a European taper and 11.75 mm. Not cheap; $235. New timber I would guess but not sure. It's 10 pieces construction shaft. If I would give it a thump, the old shaft, it would like a tuning fork vibrate about 2 1/2 inches for 2 to 3 seconds. The new shaft is for my G-8 Viking. I will order a new shaft for my 1984 D series McDermott in the near future also. Can't take the $ to the grave. I read a post about scratching on the 8 or 9 ball and it seems it happens because when on the game ball you forget to play shapes like every other shot. Think where you want to place the Cue ball just like any other shot and you might avoid the scratch the next time. It's worked for me the few times I play something other then straight pool. I'm glad you had fun win or lose! Sign of true sportsmanship!

  5. Fenwickquickshot on 6/5/2008 12:05:12 AM

    My friend bought the same shaft and he is in love with it. Although, he got a 12 mm tip. Think he paid about the same also. Good luck with it. And you're right, I did get a little excited about the shot and lost some focus. Next time will be better.

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Broke out the Camera Again!

  • Title: Broke out the Camera Again!
  • Author: (Ken Steinlee)
  • Published: 5/26/2008 1:52:04 PM