Thursday, April 15, 2010

PoolSynergy - That One Thing

This month's topic for PoolSynergy is hosted by Fast Mikie and his topic is: “The Most Important Thing about Pool.” If there was only one thing to share, what would it be?

Well... this is actually a tough question, not because I can't think of anything, but because I want to share more than one!! Fast Mikie is making me struggle this month. So, I'm going to kick his butt on the pool table to punish him for my stress!

Okay, here goes:

Take lessons.

What? That's it?.... Yes, if I had one thing to share, it would be to take lessons to save yourself time and stress.

Let's put this in perspective. If you wanted to learn how to play the violin, would you be in the band without lessons? If you wanted to drive a car, you can "practice" with your Dad but in reality, he was giving you lessons. Even Rihanna is taking lessons from the Blink 182 drummer. If you wanted to sing, you would take lessons. Yes, a few naturally talented people can be the Susan Boyle's of our generation or that one guy that can play guitar and beat out his classmates without training, but if you want to excel, be competitive, and/or be one of the top players, lessons are key.

Here is a funny aspect about lessons: When players finally take lessons, they don't want others to know! They feel (myself included many years ago) that taking lessons is a fault/flaw; something they couldn’t do on their own. They care more about what others think about us taking lessons than taking lessons. Yet all those people that took lessons are now laughing all the way to the bank and ceremony platforms.

Sometimes people feel that if they need lessons, it shows a weakness. Now I view it as strength! When my friends take lessons, I am proud of them. I know they will gain from the added knowledge and their pool game and successes will be greater.

Even pros take lessons later in their career; Tiger Woods goes back to his coach to tweak his swing.

Can you imagine learning how to read on your own? Or how about playing tennis for an upcoming event? You won’t be successful in that tennis tournament without lessons - and to be honest, who would even TRY that?!

Taking lessons means you want to improve your game to be more successful. Lessons will help you get there - and help you get there faster. I define "lessons" as learning from someone/something else about the mental, physical, strategic, and fundamentals of playing pool.

I have been playing pool for over 20 years and all the struggles I have been through would have been lessened if I would have taken some lessons. I would have been more successful in so many aspects of my pool game.

Think back to middle and high school. There are so many parts of our childhood that required lessons. Yet, many of us don't see lessons as a thing we should do for our pool game. We get stubborn and don't want people to know. Yet, share the news! When I am playing an opponent who has been taking lessons, I get a little intimidated knowing they now know more than I.

Taking lessons is truly the one piece of advice I want to stress today (even though I really, really want to share more!).

Read from the other bloggers of PoolSynergy to see what they are sharing about that one important thing.

(and get ready for that match, Fast Mikie!)


p00lriah. said...

i agree. if i had a formal teacher/coach i probably would've saved years of learning. my friend/informal mentor helped me quite a bit in that respect.

R.A. Dyer said...

Great advice! Thanks pOOlriah!

p00lriah. said...

glad i can be of help.

R Riley said...

I think some people don't want others to know they are taking lessons because of the opinions others will want to share and because they will worry that people will now judge them more severely knowing they are taking lessongs...