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BD House Pro
Tony Robles
A longtime teaching pro at Amsterdam Billiard Club in New York City, Tony has dozens of regional and national titles to his name, including the 2004 BCA Open Championships.


Instruction Articles:
• January 2017
Systems vs Feel


• December 2016
It Happens to the Best


• November 2016
Maintaining Focus


• October 2016
Riding the ĎLí


• September 2016
Tips on Tips


• August 2016
The Art of Deflection


• July 2016
Note To Self


• June 2016
Object of Safety Play


• May 2016
Speed Zone


• April 2016
Frozen Ball Shots


• March 2016
Hide and Go Seek


• February 2016
Two-Rail Kicks


• January 2016
Staying Down


• December 2015
One-Rail Kicks


• November 2015
Breaking Bad


• October 2015
Call Shot, Call Safety


• September 2015
Own the Shot


• August 2015
Patterns - Part II


• July 2015
I Notice A Pattern


• June 2015
Two-Way Prt. 2


• May 2015
Two-Way Shots


• April 2015
The Fine Line


• March 2015
Straight Break


• February 2015
The 'Walkaway'


• January 2015
Pushing Your Luck


• October 2014
Walk This Way


• August 2014
Attitude Adjustments


• May 2014
Adapt to the Equipment


• Mar 2014
Turn The Beat Around


• Feb 2014
Straight Is Great


• Sept 2013
Cover the Basics


• June 2013
Getting It Right


• May 2013
Strength Training


• April 2013
Rust Proof?


• March 2013
Not So Fast


• February 2013
Two-Step Jump


• January 2013
Open Your Eyes


• December 2012
Feeling Good?


• November 2012
Hang In There


• October 2012
Back on Track


• September 2012
Straighten Up


• August 2012
On the Rail


• July 2012
Mental Checklists


• June 2012
Respect & Fear


• May 2012
Chin Music


• April 2012
On the Line


• March 2012
Balancing Act


• February 2012
Creative Drilling


• January 2012
Power Outage


• December 2011
Jumping In Line


• November 2011
Soft on Soft Breaking


• October 2011
Find Your Stroke


• September 2011
The Path Off the Rail


• August 2011
Short Position


• July 2011
Inch Along


• June 2011
Into the Unknown


• May 2011
Sharpened Focus


• April 2011
Never Flatline


• March 2011
Stop For A Review


• February 2011
One To Watch


• January 2011
The Straight Answer


• December 2010
Shoot The Lights Out


• November 2010
Never Overmatched


• October 2010
Drawing Conclusions


• September 2010
Through & Through


• August 2010
Along the Rail


• July 2010
The Small Stuff


• June 2010
Three in One


• May 2010
One Ball At a Time


• April 2010
Going Thin to Win


• March 2010
Know Your Game


• February 2010
14.1 For 8-Ballers


• January 2010
Setting It Straight


• December 2009
Hanging Out, Part II


• November 2009
Hanging Out


• October 2009
Control Your Speed


• September 2009
Busting Out of a Slump


• August 2009
Easy Errors, Part III


• July 2009
Easy Errors, Part II


• June 2009
Easy Errors, Part I


• May 2009
Body Language & Breaking


• April 2009
The Break: Body Language


• March 2009
Must-Reads from Robles


• February 2009
Position: Four Square


• January 2009
Romancing the Stance


• October 2008
Look Out for Boingy Rails


• September 2008
Build a Better Break


• August 2008
Q&A: Ask the Pro


• July 2008
'Buzz' Kill: Stay Down


• June 2008
Stop Shots Safeties III


• May 2008
Stop Shots Part II


• April 2008
STOP-SHOT Safeties


• March 2008
How to Keep Winning


• February 2008
The Dreaded Straight-In Shot


• January 2008
Trying the Soft Break


• December 2007
The Hard Way Makes It Easier


• November 2007
How to Sight the Cue


• October 2007
Win from Your Chair


 
Adapting to New Rules
January 2017

I just got done playing in and watching the World Pool Series 8-ball event in New York City. What I noticed was that the thing that made the difference between some players still being in the tournament and some not was understanding and adjusting for the 8-ball break. Itís so important in 8-ball, particularly when the format is alternate breaks.

Generally, players break from just off the spot to try to make one of the second balls, or from the side cushion to make the 1 ball in the side. The World Pool Series, however, created a box at the head of the table, and players had to break from outside the box. A lot of people werenít prepared for that. It is a smart rule because it takes away that center break and creates the opportunity for more close matches. With the center break gone, many players reverted to breaking from the side rail. But as you get closer to the rail, the majority of the power from the cue ball is transferred to fewer balls in the rack. Because they were using a standard triangle and the balls werenít always frozen, the results were sporadic. You may get the 1 ball into the side pocket, but the spread of balls was not as wide. The players who enjoyed consistent success broke from the very edge of the box because it allowed for the best transfer of energy from the cue ball through the rack.

The diagram shows one break shot from the center of the table and one from the rail. Assuming you hit the 1 ball flush on the break, you can see that the majority of the power when breaking from the side runs directly through the 1, 14, 3, 9 and 5. There is very little energy transferred from the 1 to the 12, from the 14 to the 8, from the 3 to the 7 or from the 9 to the 4.

Conversely, when you break near the spot, energy is transferred almost equally through the entire rack. The 1 is going to catch more than 50 percent of the 12. Obviously, the more energy that is transferred through the mass of the rack, the better and more effective spread you are going to get on the rack. Thatís why most guys where breaking from the corner of the box (dotted cue ball). It gave them the most solid hit on the 1 and the best reaction through the rack.



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