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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

August: Women In Tourn.
August 2015

Q: I've been struggling lately and have become hesitant and unsure of my play. How do you get your confidence back after a stretch of poor play?

Tim Thonis, Ventura, Calif.

A: We all go through that. When I feel that way, I add time to my practice schedule to work strictly on smoothing out my stroke. I shoot simple shots with a perfect swing. I start with straight-in stop shots with a medium speed stroke. I do this with the cue ball on the spot. That will tell me where my accuracy is and will show me where my tip is at the end of the stroke. It should be lower and straight over the spot. As my success rate increases, I start adding a softer stroke, and then I shoot the same shots with a faster speed follow-through. I also work on my pre-shot routine: Make a decision, picture the shot, find my target on the object ball and step into the shot. It's also important to trust yourself before the final stroke. Seems simple, but I often find that when I'm struggling, I tend to miss one of these important steps. Find time for solo practice, instead of always competing against other players.