How To Break In Pool
Knowing how to break in pool properly can mean the difference between winning and never getting a change to shoot. It is not all about launching that white cue ball as fast as you can into that colorful triangle. Applying these tried and true techniques to your opening shot can give you your big break in your next billiards game.
To break in pool, you will need:
- Pool table
- 15 pool ball set
- Triangle-shaped rack
- Cue ball
- Pool stick
- Form is your friend. Take a narrow stance with your legs bent. Your torso and hips should propel forward on the break shot. Try to have more of an upright stance than you would during a regular shot at the pool table - gives you room to follow through on your stroke.
- No Long Distance Shots. Fight the temptation to rest your pool stick on the back rail during your break stroke. You will add unwanted distance to your shot and the rail may add resistance as well. Break from the closest allowable mark to the rack, known as the "head string", positioning your pool stick inside your pointer finger and thumb - shaped like an "OK" signal called a "closed bridge".
- The Aim Game. Hitting the "head ball", which is normally the 1 ball, with a powerful direct hit is recommended for a successful break in pool. Being that the 1 ball is in front of all the other balls, an accurate hit will send momentum into the other balls. Hitting the 1 ball dead center is more important that smacking it with all your might. Power and accuracy also equals less "scratches", which means sending the cue ball into a pocket.
- Speed vs. Power. A successful break in a pool game is not about how fast you thrust the pool stick. The power generated from a controlled back-swing will have a stronger impact. Pull your stick back as far as possible, then be sure to follow through with your break shot.
- Don't Get Fancy. Maybe your significant other is around, and you suddenly feel the impulse to show off a stylish break shot with some side-spin. Making the cue ball spin to the left or right on the break may lead to a scratch. It is definitely a lot less impressive - and way more embarrassing - to sink nothing on the break in a pool game.
Breaking in pool is truly a player's opportunity to take the advantage in the game from the very start. Why get into a compromising position, forcing yourself to have to play catch-up when your opponent makes the best of your bad break? Think about your next potential pool shot after the break as well. Make that cue ball land somewhere on the table that gives you plenty of clean shot opportunities.