Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Observing Others

I mentioned about a year ago how I noticed a friend of mine had GREAT fundamentals, yet at certain times in a match, she would "whack at a ball."

I had a little practice session with her (one game) and pointed out she hits tough shots too hard, while she has a smooth stroke for all other shots.  And this little tipped improved her game immensely!

I don't seek out other peoples' games or what could help them, but I am a very observant person, in general.  So, because I have been playing pool for over 20 years and because I have learned a lot over the years, I see things in other peoples' games that maybe others don't recognize.

Like I said, I don't seek this out intentionally, I just see things.

Last year a good friend of mine and I were practicing and I got SOOOO frustrated with his game!  He played good, but wasn't even thinking about 3-ball shape (where you think three balls ahead to get on the correct side of the ball, for the next ball).

I was irritated so much, it affected my own game!

I finally threw my hands in the air with frustration and said something to him, because I couldn't stand it anymore.  Even though he might get mad at me, I just couldn't help it any more.

I explained how his game will increase ten-fold if he did this.  Walk around the table, see where you need to be, look 3 balls ahead.

Immediately his game improved.  (not ten-fold, but noticeably)

I just see things, because I have struggled with the game my whole life as well, and because others have helped me with mine.  I took a few lessons, absorbed tips from pros, read books, watch videos, watched SO many great matches in person, but mostly LISTENED to others when they would share tidbits or pointers.

I find it intriguing people want to practice with me; and learn from me.  I didn't realize how many people truly watch me play, like the way I play, and learn from my choices and decisions, and fundamentals.  So, lately a lot of people have said they want to practice with me.  They want little tips; some help.

I practiced with a friend of mine about 6 weeks ago and of course showing her a few things always  helps my game as well (bonus!!).  We talked about slowing down, 3-ball shape, taking your time, etc.  All of these are great reminders for myself (and I actually needed these reminders because I hadn't been playing all too well at that time).

Some people, I wont have any advice for - I usually can only help if someone already has some natural talent or ability.  If they are too rigid or aren't even a shot maker, I wont know how to even begin to help them, lol.

What I am best at (I have found out) is kinda perfecting certain aspects of others' games.  Do they have a little hiccup at the end of their stroke?  Do they whack at certain balls?  Do they shoot too fast?  Not walk around the table?  Go for breakouts too late?  Don't play safe when necessary?  Don't think 3 balls ahead?  Hit too hard, instead of a smoooth stroke on tough shots?

Things like that.

I LOVE helping people, but again, it feels weird people want to practice with me to improve their game.  But flattering nonetheless!

1 comment:

Courtney said...

I enjoyed our practice time! we need more of it!

Not only am I getting to practice with an awesome player, but I am also spending time with my teammate and friend :)