An all-time popular game that surely impresses everyone who sets their eyes on the table, a game of snooker well played is an admirable skill set. With precision and accuracy followed by a strong sense of judgment and strategy, the game tells a lot about the player and their ability to strategise and execute accordingly.
It’s definitely one of those skills that would go a long way when discovered no matter what the audience is. Imagine going to the pub with some work mates and perhaps even your boss, then showing them your skills at the pool table by taking the win. Talk about impressive and a sure way to be the hot topic of the week.
Lucky for you, snooker skills can be improved upon with some tips and tactics to enhance your skill level. So without further ado, here are our hottest snooker tips for beginners that will have you playing one step closer like the pros.
1. Get your stance right
When it comes to hitting the ball, the technique boils down to your stance. You need to address the ball square on, so if you’re right handed, straighten your right leg and bend your left knee allowing a drop in your shoulders to get down low on the cue. This allows you to get close to the shot, ensuring maximum accuracy.
2. Get your balance levelled
When it comes to any ball sport, there is a need to have a good sense of balance. For beginners, the importance of balance lies in coordinating it with a natural shooting stance. A strong and balanced stance is necessary to resist a shove from the shooting side.
2. Get your cue grip correct
A relaxed but firm grip is needed to ensure that there isn’t any unwanted power behind the shot. If your cue grip is too loose, you stand the chance of losing control of the shot completely.
3. Perfect your bridge
The support created by your fingers for the cue is referred to as a bridge. And there is a need to perfect it to achieve a good shot. Given that the bridge is the foundation of your shot, it needs to be solid and stable, but loose enough for the cue to move smoothly. The most popular type of bridge is an open bridge, which is good for playing different shots with either bent or straight fingers.
4. Play the pause
When assessing whether your shot is going to be accurate and whether your bridge is smooth and secure enough for your shot, it is important to pause both at the front and back of your stroke. Pauses happen once before the cue is pulled backward, and again before taking the shot. Taking these pauses will help you optimize your chances of landing a pocket.
5. Getting your stroke right
Good strokes are smooth and rhythmic in motion with a well-defined beginning, middle, and ending. When getting the right stroke, you can’t rush it. If you’re looking for longer runs, you’ll need to position for angled shots and not straight ones.
6. Isolate your cue arm from everything else
When taking your shot, the only part of your body that should be moving is your cue arm. Nothing else should move. That includes your bridge, your head, your hips, your feet, and anything else you can think of should stay completely still for balance and stability. By doing so, you will propel all the energy and focus into your cue shot for success.
7. Strategy time
Pool (a.k.a. snooker) is all about strategising your moves. This means assessing the positions of your balls in the table and deciding which ones are easy shots and which ones will help you line up for the next shot. For example, a good strategy is leaving one of your balls that is blocking a pocket untouched as it blocks your opponent from being able to use that pocket and reduces their accessible pockets from 6 to 5.
It’s time to test your skills
Now that you’ve learned some tips and tricks to improve your pool game, it’s time to test your new skills at the table.
Drop by the Cooly Hotel on a Tuesday evening and take part in their Tuesday Pool Comp with sweet prizes. The event is for fun, with many locals embracing the game while adding to the excitement and enjoyment. Grab a drink and chill, as you socialise and mingle with a crowd of like-minded pool game lovers. Registration opens from 6.30pm.