The Stop Shot – The Most Important Shot in Pool

Almost every average or above average league player can make the cue ball stop on a straight in Many good players can stop the cue ball perfect on any straight in shot, but don’t actually know why it stops, and if you don’t know exactly why the cue ball stops on a straight in shot, you’re missing out on a vast amount of pool knowledge.

The only way the cue ball can stop when striking an object ball is that the cue ball arrives at the object ball sliding on the cloth with no backspin or overspin. To do this, you must overcome the friction of the cloth between the cue ball and the object ball.

To learn what’s really happening on a stop or draw shot, place a striped ball on the head spot and turn the ball so the stripe goes around the equator of the ball and the white part of the ball is facing up and down, so you can easily see the backspin you are putting on the ball. Now strike the cue ball one tip below center with a slightly firm stroke and notice where the backspin stops and the overspin begins. You will notice that there is a 4 to 6 inch area where the cue ball would stop dead if it struck an object ball. Now strike the cue ball as low as possible the same speed and notice how the backspin lasts much further down the table before it gets to that “no spin” area and the overspin begins. Practice this several times using different speeds to start memorizing how low and how much speed is required to make the cue ball run out of backspin at any point between the spot and the corner pocket.

You will have better results if you shoot stop shots a little lower on the cue ball, which requires less speed and therefore gives you more control.

Remember — the stroke and follow through on a stop or draw shot is exactly the same as a follow shot, just a different place on the cue ball.

Good luck — Jerry