Kick Shot in Pool

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Kick Shot Pool - The Kick Shot Properly Aimed In Pool

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Take kick shot pool to the "bank" with me. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

A kick shot in pool is the annoying little bugger where you need to drive the cue ball to a cushion before it rebounds to strike your target object ball.

The pool kick shot can be converted to a deadly weapon of pool skill—you'll look like a pool hustler--if only you have a simple way to aim them with precision.

I'm sharing two different ways to aim these shots with ease.

First, plan the cushion you will bounce from to kick the pool shot right atop the object ball, marked here with an "A".

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Plot The Spot

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Plot... the spot. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Next, plot the new spot for the ghost ball as "G", then measure the distance the target ghost lies from the rail. Your measurement will be from the imagined cue ball location straight to the nearest edge of the cushion you've chosen ("line B").

You can use your cue stick and a finger or two to make an assessment until your eyes are used to this kick shot method. For example, the spot to the rail may equal the tip of your cue stick to its joint.

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Pace The Distance

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Pace the distance... Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Now we'll pace off an equal distance from the cushion along the line ("line C"). On the previous page of this article, if you had measured cue tip to joint from ball to cushion, you'd move aside the same distance, about 3 feet, to one side of the table.

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Double The Distance

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Doubling the distance. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Simply look back to the cue ball from this "doubled distance spot" and where the line of sight crosses the cushion edge is the point of aim for the cue ball ("D"). This optimum point of aim may need to be adjusted for different spins or speeds off the rail, of course.

Next, we'll try to aim it with a different method...

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When The Room Owners Press

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When they press, press back. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Sometimes room owners press tables too close together or near a wall or other obstacle. Here's a second method for aiming a kick shot.

We'll leave the balls and lines from Kick Aim Method 1 for an example. "Line E" is a straight line between the cue ball and the ghost ball, the target area for the cue ball to strike the kicked object ball.

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Cue Ball Edge Does It

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Play the cue ball edge and not the center. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

A "Line F" which proceeds from halfway along this line to the point on the cushion opposite the object ball is parallel to "Line G", the line the cue ball needs to travel to kick at the object ball!

Remember to account for the fact that a cue ball's edge will touch any cushion in pool, but never the cue ball's center. Remember also, it's often easiest to preview the kick angle looking from the side of the table where ​the impact will be, not where the cue ball lies now.