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Dear Jeanette
By Jeanette Lee
International billiard icon "The Black Widow" answers your questions about life, love, and everything else that happens in the poolhall.

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VIDEO: Pool Fundamentals

May: Get a Grip
May 2012
Q. My son and I play pool with half-sticks because our room isn't really big enough to use full-sized cues. Can this hurt our game?
Scott Yardley; Levittown, Pa.

A. First, know there are two types of half-sticks. One is a regular cue cut short, what makes the cue feel very, very light. If you play with that, the cues at a regular pool room will seem very heavy and take more adjustment. The other is a modified short cue that has additional weight added to the butt to make the cue feel and weigh similar to a normal cue. This kind is obviously preferable.

Q. I've noticed where I grip the cue really affects my stroke. Any quick advice?
David Adkins; Lamirada, Calif.

A. Here's an easy reference point: Once you get down on the shot and the cue tip is near the cue ball, your grip hand should be perpendicular to the ground, so your forearm is pointing directly toward the floor. Doing this little test on yourself ensures your hand is at the bottom of its swing when the cue strikes the object ball, which is what you want.