HomeAbout Billiards DigestContact UsArchiveAll About PoolEquipmentOur AdvertisersLinks
Hottest threads from the Cue Chalk Board
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:
• 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


• 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


 
Busting Out of a Slump
September 2009
Eventually, you are going to go into a slump. With a game as dependent on mental precision as pool, you will hit a rut. You can, however, prepare yourself for the inevitable rough patch, so your slump will be as short as possible. Here are three tips to get you back to your best:

1. Make a Fundamentals Checklist: I’ve said it before, but it is so important to have a strong grasp on the fundamentals of the game. By working on the basics of a proper stroke, you are limiting the possibility of incorrectly executing any particular shot. So, if find yourself in a bit of a slump, I suggest creating a fundamentals checklist — staying down on a shot, keeping a firm bridge, always following through, etc.

This list will give you a frame of reference, a way to figure out what is amiss with your game. Often times, a player will go into a slump as the result of the slightest tweak. Running down a checklist will help you identify anything that might be throwing your whole game out of whack. Even if you are playing well, this checklist will help you keep yourself in line as a reminder of all the little things it takes to play your best.

2. Keep a Journal: One thing I started when I joined the pro tour in 1996 was that I started keeping a little journal. I would keep notes from one match to the next, jotting down what I did well and where I struggled.

When I would look back at my notes, I would discover things I called “little gems.” When I reviewed at my notes from particular matches, I reminded myself what needed special attention. This journal gave me a history of my successes and failures, so I knew what was happening with my game over a period of time.

3. Remember Your Goals: Finally, you cannot sabotage yourself. You set yourself up for failure by approaching a shot saying you are going to miss or going into a match thinking you’re going to lose.

As a mental exercise, I ask myself two questions. First, do I want to win? If the answer is yes — which it always is — I then ask myself, do I want to win badly enough that I will make this shot?

I scream the answer in my head. I tell myself, “I am going to make this shot!” This is an amazing boost. Try to tell yourself that you are going to hit every shot with confidence, even if it feels uncomfortable at first.


MORE VIDEO...