A List Of Super Stance Techniques

Put The Pool In Pool With These Moves

Get ready to make every shot as you set your body right for the aim and shot making that follows.

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The Secret Stance Of The Pros

pool in pool
The eyes have it. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Most players think their chin ought to go neatly atop the cue. Not so! This article explains how I run racks and how top players grab the cash by doing two different things with their head and cue stick.

If you can manage your stick along the aim line with your head elsewhere, you are on your way to becoming a cut shot artiste.

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The "Classic 45 Degree" Stance

45 degree shot
Stroke like it's no joke using this method. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

It's not enough to tell a student to stand with their feet at approximately 45 degrees to the line of the shot. This article explains where exactly to post your feet and legs and why the correct stance enhances proper shot and stroke mechanics.

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Hot Tips For Aiming Shots

standing low or high
There are many instructional pool tips at this About.com GuideSite. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

When to stand low or high, why some top players opt for a narrow stance, and more. The relationship between aim and stance is direct. If you stand improperly at the table your eyes have a parallax view of the object ball and all shot making will be off.

There are times to be high up on the balls and times to have your face near the cloth. This is more is what the article is about.

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When To Change Your Stance Style

stance south and north
When your stance goes south, perhaps point north. Photo courtesy of Allen Simon/Getty Images

How would you know when your game is gone sour and it's time to alter your stance? Follow this simple guide to changing your stance in ways that are appropriate for your current skill level. Gain confidence and "put the pool in pool" again.

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The Holy Grail Stance

holy grail
Searching for the Holy Grail of pool. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

It's intriguing, isn't it, the notion that there is one perfect stance at the table that will solve all your problems? The truth is that the pro has found the best way to stand for them and will do so forever.

The function of a great stance is to post your body in the optimum position to deliver the stroke precisely on the shot line, which is what all the links in this article are about.

Dip in if you want to read about the quest for the Holy Grail of the perfect billiards stance or of a perfect aim system.

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Work Your Hand Around The Shoulder

billiards shoulder pool
The right shoulder can be to one side as I explain. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

A lot of players write me to ask about their shoulder alignment. How can their elbow be on line if their shoulder is off to one side of the shot?

I remind them that no one hits the cue ball with their shoulder but with a cue stick guided by their stroking hand. In other words, the shoulder position matters little.

More details follow in this piece including helping you through specific alignment issues.

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The Chin Lock Lesson

aiming balls in pool
The chin serves two functions in pool--do you know them both?. Photo courtesy of Jonathan Digital Vision/Getty Images

A fantastic device for straightening your head and eyes to better see the shots is your chin. Body awareness dictates that you can level yourself simply by focusing on the position of your chin in space.

You can also use your chin as part of a marvelous move to lock your stance and aim onto the object ball.

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Building Power From The Legs Up

knees pool billiards
Strengthen your legs and back even as you play this marvelous game. Photo courtesy Daniel Allan/Getty Images

Here's how to use the knees right for more oomph in your shots and better alignment overall.

This stance will also help your back and legs at the table. A lovely side benefit of pool is the walking about is fine exercise (up to miles are walked around the table in a day's worth of competitive play). The game is also superlative mental exercise.

Playing billiards should never tax the muscles of your back, however. All the stance techniques I teach on this site strengthen, not weaken, back and neck muscles. Bring your knees in as a I suggest while sitting down into the stance, which lengthens and strengthen the spine and muscles of your lower back.

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One Not So Giant Step For Man

step this way for snooker or pool and billiards
Step with me to great pool, billiards and snooker. Photo (c) Matt Sherman, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Almost all players know instinctively to step forward to one side to lower their arms and trunk to the shot. For most players it is a regular length step to take, same as walking down the street, and not a baby step or lunge. Here's why.

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Angle Of The Head

head pocket billiards pool
It's the head and not the legs that ensures the finest accuracy in aim. Photo courtesy of Sami Sarkis/Getty Images

This one may startle you but I often place my head into position before I finish the placing of the rest of my body into the full, sighted stance.