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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:
• 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


• 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


 
Through & Through
September 2010
ONE OF the most commonly misunderstood concepts of stroke fundamentals has to deal with the follow-through. Whenever a student asks me whether his follow-through is too short or too long, the first thing I tell them is always the same: Your cue stick should come to a natural stop after a certain amount of time.

What this means is that your follow-through should be a natural result of your stroke. It only makes sense, right? The longer, faster backswing needed for a powerful shot will result in the cue hitting the cue ball with more speed. As the cue begins to decelerate after contact, it will take more time and space when it’s moving at a higher speed.

So there is a relationship between the length of the backswing (before contact) and the follow-through (after contact). But it’s not as simple as a 1-to-1 ratio. For any shot with medium speed or more, I recommend using a full backswing. But remember, the harder you hit the cue ball, the farther your cue will travel after impact.

With developing players, though, a common problem arises when they have to hit a shot harder than what is comfortable. Instead of using a smooth, loose stroke, you might have a tendency to tense up when you have to hit the cue ball with power. If this occurs, your cue is likely to go off center.

When your cue strays from the shot line, you’ll run into problems with mishits and off-center hits. Basically, your cue ball will start to wander. But there’s an easy exercise to keep yourself in check. In Diagram 1, the cue ball is on the foot spot with the 10-ball halfway to the pocket.

Obviously, this shot isn’t tremendously challenging, but you’re only concerned with the cue stick before and after the shot. Hitting the cue ball in the direct center, pocket the 10-ball in the corner with a medium stroke. You should finish in a position like the one shown in Diagram 2, where your cue is directly over the foot spot.

As long as your cue remains over the foot spot, slowly increase the power of each shot. If you continue to finish your follow-through in a dead straight line, you’re right where you should be. If you are swaying, slow things down and check your fundamentals.


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