Monday, December 29, 2014
Do you have what it takes to rise to the occasion?
If not, practice wont get you there.
I'm just going to be honest. It wont.
The more tournaments you play in, the more you learn. Not about POOL, silly! About competition. About yourself. About how to handle pressure. Adversity.
You learn all sorts of things that will carry over into your NEXT performance at the pool table.
You learn how to stay down under pressure.
How to breathe under pressure.
How to not let distractions distract you.
How to not think ahead.
How to focus on your fundamentals ONLY.
How to make the winning shot.
This doesn't come from practicing by yourself or practicing with your friends. This comes from the many tournaments you play in. Or maybe the many gambling matches you play.
Think about it. Practice only gets you so far. COMPETITION gets you SO much further.
I'm living proof.
Once you master the fundamentals (which comes from competing!), once you figure out 3-ball shape and which side of the ball you should be on, and the better choices to make at the table - you still have your mind and breathing and pressure and distractions and missing balls to deal with. Taming those only comes from experience after experience after experience in competition.
You can master your fundamentals (you think) but then put yourself in a pressure situation and see what happens. Yep, you dog it. Yep, we have ALL dogged it. A LOT. Do you know why some people don't dog it anymore? Yep, EXPERIENCE. They/we/I have dogged it enough not to do that any more. They figured out from pressure situations to STAY down and stroke more. Not stroke fast b/c you are nervous.
Only lots of competition can help with that.
My single best advice has always been: Play more tournaments. Compete more.
You will thank me, I promise!
(see my top ten tips from 2011 here.)