Join me on Tuesday, July 10th at Table Steaks
East from 7:00pm to midnight for an Open House
Clinic & Party. Come anytime between 7:00 to midnight
and try out the latest training gadgets, win prizes and
giveaways, and play some pool.
Everyone is welcome!
Click on flier below for more details:
I got a call from my dear friend Kyu from San Antonion, TX today asking where the next posting was. Thanks for the kick in the butt, Kyu. This was from the May issue of Inside English that inspired the Considering Lessons??? poll.
If you have not already, there will come a time in your game when what you’re doing alone is just not enough. It’s then that you will consider checking out a pool class or taking some lessons. If you’re fortunate enough to live in a town where there are free clinics and instruction available, jump on it! That’s a great place to start. More often than not, those instructors also teach privately and you can get a good feel for their teaching style.
If you’re not so fortunate or if you feel you need some more personal attention, you may want to consider private lessons. As a fellow player who has worked with a variety of instructors, here’s a list I’ve compiled with some things to think about when considering your new coach. Decide which are most important to you.
1. What are your goals? What is your purpose for seeking instruction?
2. Level of commitment? Are you looking for a coach/mentor or just lessons?
3. Knowledge & Experience?
4. Reputation / Referrals?
5. Personality & Communication?
6. Their own playing ability?
7. Cost & Location?
What are your goals? Are you a beginner player, starting from scratch that needs help with the basic fundamentals? Are you an above average player that could just use some fine tuning? Or, are you an advanced player that would just like to work on patterns and strategy? If you don’t really know, a good instructor should be able to assess your game and prescribe the right medicine. To get the most out of your lessons, think about what you would like to achieve before you get in there. But remember to stay open-minded to learning new things.
Mentor vs. Instructor? What level of commitment do you expect from your instructor and from yourself? Depending on what your goals are with pool, you may feel you only need one lesson for now. You may just want to learn something fun and new every couple months. If you’re a more serious tournament player, perhaps you want someone to travel with you and work with you on a more regular, frequent basis. This obviously requires a bigger investment from both parties. Whatever the commitment level is, you and your instructor should both be working towards the same goal.
Knowledge & Experience? It may be tough to tell sometimes how much knowledge and experience an instructor has until you’re already working together. “Reputation / Referrals” can help in this area. A great coach does not need to have previous coaching experience in order to do a good job. They may never have given one lesson before, but if they have the knowledge and the heart to see you succeed, it will work.
Reputation / Referrals? In the meantime, you can always ask around. As with any relationship, a coach that worked for one player may not work for another and vice versa. Do the research. If it doesn’t work out, try someone else. It’s not like you married them.
Personality & Communication? This was important to me, personally, because I understand my learning style and I would not be able to work with someone that could not communicate well. The best players may not always be the best instructors because they may not be able to articulate what they’re trying to teach you. Consider how effective an instructor’s teaching style is.
Their own playing ability? Like I mentioned before, the best player may not be the best instructor. However, is it important to you that your instructor be a better player than you? Will you still be able to learn from someone who may not be able to execute the shot they are teaching you? These are all important things to consider before committing to a coaching relationship.
Cost & Location? Will these two words bear any weight for you when considering your new coach? Only you can decide.
Only you can know what you’re looking for. My current coach/mentor works full-time as an architect who just happens to love pool and plays it incredibly well. He has a ton of experience and after months of picking his brain and playing together, I asked him if he would consider taking me on. We’ve always been on the same page about strategy and the mental side of the game. He’s organized and is a great communicator. We’re in touch on a daily basis and I feel very fortunate that it’s a good match. If you’re not so lucky, keep looking. Knowing what’s important to you will help.
Click here to view and participate in the poll regarding points mentioned in this article.
I just wanted to share a powerful quote from an inspiring movie, Akeelah and the Bee.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
by Marianne Williamson
from A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles”
If you have yet to see the movie, you should definitely check it out. Despite the classic momentary cheesy scenes, it’s a terrific movie!
My favorite line of the quote, ”There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.” An occasional weakness of mine.
~ Thank you.
p.s. I’ll be in Vegas this week June 20 to 25 for the BCA Tradeshow. I will also be at Shooters in Olathe, Kansas for the Midwest 9 Ball Tour June 28 to July 2. Please come say “hello” if you see me. Have a sizzlin’ hot summer!
I just finished the movie and the non-fiction book, The Secret, by Rhonda Byrne. If you’ve heard anything about it, then you know that it’s all about the Law of Attraction. Without giving away too much of the movie, the law of attraction is all about getting what you think about; using your thoughts and feelings to determine your destiny. Whatever you focus on will be attracted to you. Far fetched? Decide for yourself. But, you can’t deny that there’s much truth to this theory.
Without getting too heavy on this topic, let’s think about how this applies to pool. We may not realize it, but we often create our lives by focusing on what don’t want. For instance, “I hope I don’t scratch,” “I don’t want to lose my next match,” “I’m not a bad player,” and “I hope I don’t miss this shot.” These are all ways that we allow the things we don’t want to creep into our subconscious.
Instead, choose the exact spot where you want the cue ball end up and think, “I’ll make this shot and the cue ball will go there,” and visualize it happening. Say, “I will win my next match,” and believe it. Say, “I’m a spectacular pool player!” and be proud of it. Think, “make it, make it, make it,” with each warm up stroke and see the ball going into the pocket. Visualize everything that you want to happen, making the shot, beating your opponent, and winning the tournament. Attract the positive outcomes with your positive thoughts.
Obviously, I can’t guarantee that just by doing this you will win more tournaments. However, I do believe that by adjusting the way we phrase our thoughts, not only in pool but also in life, we can proactively attract the things we want, not what we don’t want. A quote by Henry Ford: “Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, either way, you’re right.”
Shifting the way we think and feel to the things that we want takes practice. It’s natural to want to complain about bad things that happened, the bad rolls we got, the bad luck we had. But, if we can focus on the positive things, we create them for ourselves. Our destiny lies in the future, not in the past. If we constantly dwell on the negative things from our past, then we inevitably recreate them. Remove “I can’t and “I’m not” from your vocabulary.
Imagine yourself as a magnet that attracts things to you through the signals you emit, using your thoughts and feelings. Whether its money, relationships, health, or pool, be clear about what you want the ultimate outcome to be. Visualize it. Believe in it. And, make it happen for yourself. Focus on the things you want, not the things you don’t want.
If you have yet to see the movie, watch it or read the book with an open mind.
Where in the world?!??? Please forgive me for not writing sooner and more frequently recently. After my month-long stint in Vegas, I am still just barely recovering.
I promise I’ll be back with more soon. Thanks for your patience.
In the meantime, I will leave you with a few recent articles… Shoot ‘em up!
Sorry it’s been so long. I returned from Houston on Monday morning and my week has been filled with moderately little pool and much distraction. So far, today has been a productive one; spent on getting caught up and preparing for my departure tomorrow to viva Las Vegas for the BCA Nationals. I’ll be back on the 19th for five days before leaving again on the 24th for the VNEA Nationals. I’m so excited!!!
After returning from the last Hunter stop in Tulsa, I took most of April off for some personal time. I was still playing and competing but just not training as intensely with Bob. I was really excited for the Houston stop. I was looking forward to the competition again and to just get away and be around my other circle of friends.
Honestly, my focus this weekend was not so much on doing well in the tournament or playing my best (obviously doing both would be great). I was just really looking forward to having a fun time. This was the last stop before the Vegas nationals and I really wanted to enjoy my time there. I’m not really sure how many more stops I’ll be able to play in for the rest of the year.
My Saturday matches went pretty well overall. I won two matches, lost to Lisa Marr, and won two more matches on the loser’s side. Two of my wins were 7-zip’s. I felt pretty good about that. Especially since I’m notorious for getting a lead on someone and then winning on the hill or even losing the match.
I ended up losing my first match on Sunday. I had a hard time staying focused and the results reflected it.
I’m off for Vegas now. My bags are packed and I’m rushing to finish this post before I take off. If you’ll be in Vegas, please come say “hi.” I’ll be competing in the Scotch Doubles Masters, Womens Masters Singles, and the Womens Masters Teams for both the BCA and VNEA.
Until I blog again!…
In a few hours I’ll be leaving for the airport and taking off for Houston. This weekend is the fourth Hunter stop of the year. There’s actually no reason for me to be up this early except for the fact the I just woke up and couldn’t fall back asleep and figured it would help me get to bed earlier tonight so, “What the heck?!”
I won’t be taking my laptop with me but the Tournament Brackets will be available at AZBilliards.com.
Have a terrific weekend!
I met with my coach, Bob, at Table Steaks South this afternoon for a quick session before I leave on Friday for Houston for the next Hunter stop of the year. I’m really looking forward to getting away for the weekend.
There’s a big table 8 ball tournament every Wednesday night at South and the players started rolling in. Each person asked if I was staying for the tournament as they passed our table and I had decided to against it. I played some 9 ball with Bob and wasn’t feeling super hot. My nose has been a little runny and my throat a little tickly. I didn’t feel like I would be 100% there so I chose not to play.
I did, however, decide to hang out for a little while to watch and visit with Chris, who stopped by to see me. Later, my friend Jay came to ask me again to play. They didn’t have enough people for the added money and they really wanted me to play.
After some convincing, I went ahead and agreed to play. I was a bit reluctant because I had just ordered some food, but I ended up winning my first two matches and winning the 5th-6th playoff for 25 bucks. I’m glad I played.
I didn’t play super great but I did make some strong, memorable outs. I will reflect on those.
Saturday was a LOOOOOOOOOONG day of pool.
There was a $1,000 added Colorado Team 8 Ball Championship tournament at the Colorado Cue Club. Nine teams showed up for this event. Since players did not have to play league or qualify in anyway to compete in this tournament, you could imagine the caliber of the teams that were formed.
They decided to do a round-robin format. We arrived by noon but didn’t get started until about 1 o’clock. 15 hours and 8 matches later, around 4a.m. we left finishing just out of the money. They paid down to third place and I didn’t see the final game count to tell you exactly where we ended up, but if we would’ve won our last match, I think we would’ve had another one to play off for third.
It was definitely a long day but a great one for pool! I played with my vegas BCA women’s masters team of Bonnie Plowman and Julie Schultz (from last year’s team), Deb Winter (who I’m also playing with for VNEA), and Caela Henley (one of my favorite players and former teammate). This team just sort of formed at the last minute so we hadn’t been playing league together. This was a great opportunity for us to play together.
We were the only women in the tournament and we were all on one team, with one mission, to kick some stinkin’ boy booty.
If it weren’t such a long day, and if I were a little more organized, I could give you the play-by-play of matches in the order they happened, but I can’t remember all the details and I was enjoying the day with my teammates too much to log anything.
The bottom line was, Danny Medina showed up with a stacked team that included Colorado’s own “Black Rattlesnake,” Melvin Sharp and three other very strong players. We ended up losing to them but only by 13-12 and we finished further than them in the overall.
There were nine VERY strong teams and we gave them all a run for their money. We all collectively played great and I felt very proud to be a part of it all.
Check it out: Cued Up
The Spotlight section of the Rocky Mountain News.
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