Training Exercises

Getting out of easy snookers

Getting Out of Easy Snookers


Getting out of easy snookers should be as the title says…..easy, but things don;t always turn out that way do they?

When you are just starting out in the game of snooker unless you have access to a coach or some experienced players input, people mostly learn snooker through doing. Now there are great debates as to whether structured learning through a coach or just getting on with it is better, personally, I would be happy to be given lots tips and exercises from coaches rather than learn the painful way!

Beginners can often be seen missing easy snookers as their brain tries to work out where on the cushion to aim their cue ball at.

Many will just get down and just hit the ball roughly where they think without taking a plan view before they take their stance, you certainly have more clues whilst stood up so why not take stock of what you are up against when getting out of easy snookers?

The speed at which you strike the cue ball against the cushion can also dictate what angle the cue ball will come off the rubber but that’s another story. For the sake of this exercise we will keep things simple.

This exercise will help those just staring out to have a train of thought and give other players who are struggling under pressure and just cannot see the angles which happens to us all.   

Setting the exercise up

Getting out of easy snookers:

You can choose whatever balls you want to set this exercise up; for the sake of this exercise we will use the blue, pink and black.

  • Place the blue, pink and white in a straight line in an equal distance from the cushion (as above).
  • You can place the black on it’s spot as a penalty if you miss the blue!
  • For this exercise, make sure you can easily reach the white.

Initial exercise suggestions

Getting out of easy snookers:

Now before striking the cue ball, we need a set of rules that we can recall when we are in this position to ensure we have a train of thought when getting out of easy snookers.

So, what do we need to take note of before striking the cue ball?

  • Stand tall and take a plan view of the position of the three balls affected; the cue ball, object ball and the ball snookering you.
  • Take a look at the distance from the object ball to the start of the cushion above.
  • Now imagine a mirror image of the blue above the line line of the cushion edge.
  • Whilst stood up, imagine a straight line from the cue ball to the mirror image of the blue.
  • Where this line dissects the cushion is where we want to aim to hit the object ball.

Now in reality, this process probably only takes a few seconds and when you have been playing the game for a while you will learn most angles without having to think as it will become automatic. 

Other points to consider

Getting out of easy snookers:

  • Consider the pace at which you are going to strike the cue ball as this will determine the pace of the object ball when you hit it
  • Consider the pace of the cue ball as this will also dictate the final position of the cue ball if you miss the object ball i.e. leaving a free ball
  • When you get good at this, consider skimming the object ball as if you can hit it half ball or less you can then put some distance between the two after you have hit it. 

Further exercise suggestions

Getting out of easy snookers:

  • Try placing the balls further apart.
  • Try placing the different distances from the cushion but still snookered.
  • Try hitting the object ball full on.
  • Try skimming the object ball and putting some distance between them after escaping from the snooker.
  • Try escaping from snookers from places other than the side cushions.
  • Try using screw, stun and top to see what reaction you get on the cue ball after it strikes the object ball as these can be used to dictate the balls after escaping the snooker.

Hopefully this has given you food for thought if you didn’t have a method and will also give you something to fall back on when the pressures on and you just can’t see the angle.

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