Definition of cushion

This is the raised portion on the side of the table; the cushions are essentially rubber bumpers covered in the table cloth.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

When you hit the object ball you are aiming for (or the manditory next ball) without the cue ball hitting other object balls first.
This is a ball that is positioned near your pocket that can be used to kiss off of when sinking another object ball.
Hitting the object ball with not enough of a cut angle; hitting the object ball too full or "fat". It is a well-known maxim that overcutting is preferable to undercutting. See also professional side of the pocket.
North American Poolshooters Association. Mission: To provide a competitive and fun amateur pool league competition with cash and prizes awarded to the players at the local level.
A British term for a pot that requires very fine contact between cue ball and object ball. See also feather.
In snooker, the highest-value baulk colour, worth 4 points.
A pool table where two shims have been placed on the sides of each pocket (in the jaws beneath the cloth), making the pockets "tighter" (smaller). Such tables are "tougher" than unshimmed or single-shimmed tables.
The Union Mondiale de Billard (French for World Union of Billiards) is the world governing body for carom (carambole) billiard games. The organization was founded in Madrid, Spain on 1 June 1959, and is dedicated to promoting the modern carom billiards games. The UMB monitors and controls international carom competitions and tournaments, and organizes an annual World Three-cushion Billiards Championship.
A Baulk line is line drawn across the table 29 inches from the bottom cushion and parallel to that cushion.
This is to use running english or soft speed in order to open up the angle on a particular bank shot.
A break shot in which the rack (pack) is disturbed as little as possible within the bounds of a legal shot, in order to force the opponent to have to break it up further. A soft break is desirable in some games, such as straight pool, in which breaking is a disadvantage; and forbidden by the open break rules of other games such as nine-ball and eight-ball.
A player's turn at the table, also known as an inning.
Describes tightly woven and well-used (but clean) billiard table cloth (baize), upon which the balls move quickly and roll farther, as they experience less friction than with fuzzy or dirty cloth. May be used more extendedly, as in "this is a really fast table". Fast cloth makes draw (screw) shots somewhat less effective, as there is less purchase for the cue ball's back spin. By the same token, slide and stop shots are easier on fast cloth because it is so comparatively smooth.
This is a method of handicapping that designates a wild ball for a lesser player to be able to pocket at any point during a game in order to win.
To enter the loser bracket in a double elimination tournament, or otherwise slip in standing in other tournament formats (i.e., to lose a game/frame/round/match, but still remain in the competition).
"Pocket billiards," or a game in which balls are shot into pockets.
This is another name for One Pocket pool.
To intentionally miss a shot (that results in a foul) in order to create a position for the cue ball that makes it hard for the other player to execute their shot. Not to be confused with a "Safety", since a safety is a legal hit.
A description of play in carom billiards games in which the balls remain widely separated rather than gathered, requiring much more skill to score points and making nurse shots effectively impossible, and making for a more interesting game for onlookers. Most skilled players try to gather the balls as quickly as possible to increase their chances of continuing to score in a long run.
This is to win a game by pocketing enough balls before you opponent.
In the UK, a long-distance shot played to pot a ball close to a pocket with heavy top spin, so that when the cue ball hits the cushion it bounces off but then stops due to the counteraction of the spin. It is not common in competitive play, being more of an exhibition shot.
This is the apex ball in the triangle, racked on the foot spot in a normal game.
Also nurse shot, nursery shot. In carom games such as straight rail, balkline and cushion caroms, where all the balls are kept near each other and a cushion, and with very soft shots, can be "nursed" down a rail on multiple successful shots that effectively replicate the same ball setup so that the nurse shot can be repeated again (and again, etc.). Excessive use of nurse shots by players skilled enough to set them up and pull them off repeatedly at will is what led to the development of the balkline carom billiards game variations, and repetitive shot limitation rules in English billiards. A clear example of why: In 1907, Tom Reece scored a record break of 499,135 consecutive points over a period of five weeks, without a miss, using the cradle cannon nurse shot.
The imaginary line drawn perpendicular to the impact line between the cue ball and an object ball. The cue ball will travel along this line after impact with an object ball if it has no vertical spin on it (is sliding) at the moment of impact on a non-center-to-center collision. See also stun shot.