Definition of insurance ball

A ball that is easily made from many positions on the table but which is left untouched while the rack is played, so that in the event the player gets out of position, the shooter has an insurance shot. Typically an insurance ball will be in or near the jaws of a pocket.
This is a ball that is left in a position that allows an easy shot, while time is spent working with other balls to better your position in the game.

23 Random Essential Billiards Terms

A player who was playing very well but suddenly starts playing badly. e.g. "He was making everything on every shot, then lost his stroke and couldn't hit anything, costing him the match."
To play even; without a handicap. Also called heads up.
This is to miss your shot but either luckily or on purpose leave your opponent with nothing to shoot at.
Any shot that intentionally accounts for the elasticity of the cushions to allow a ball to bank past an otherwise blocking ball. The moving ball will sink in to the cushion very near the blocking ball giving it sufficient space to get past it or kiss off the back side of it.
The first shot in a game - aimed at a set of racked balls.
To execute the first shot in a new game.
In snooker this term can be use to indicate a series of successive shots completed by a single player.
Same as cheating the pocket. Principally used in snooker.
Term for object balls in the game of Chicago that are each assigned as having a set money value; typically the 5, 8, 10, 13 and 15. In games where multiple balls must be pocketed in succession to score a point, such as cribbage pool or thirty-ball, when the last ball necessary to score has been potted, the points given is referred to as a way.
This is a carom shot that utilizes english and only two rails to achieve three cushion contacts.
When the cue ball is tucked behind the corner of a pocket, therefore not allowing a direct shot at the object ball without it bouncing of the corner of the rail.
With draw, as in "I shot that low left", meaning "I shot that with draw and with left english". Derives from the fact that one must hit the cue ball below it's equator, i.e. "low" on the ball, to impart draw. Contrast high.
Also known as slop. To pocket a ball by luck; "he ratted in the 9 ball"; usually employed disapprovingly.
In snooker, a shot where a player fouls by missing the ball on altogether. The miss rule allows for his opponent to have the player play exactly the same shot again, or at least as accurately as the referee is able to reproduce the ball positions. A miss usually occurs when a player makes an unsuccessful attempt at escaping from a snooker. It is a controversial rule aimed at formally discouraging deliberate fouls. In professional snooker, a referee will almost always call a miss on any foul where the player misses the ball on altogether, regardless of how close the player comes to hitting it, however no miss can be called when either of the players requires snookers to win the frame. If a player is called for a miss three times in a single visit while not snookered, he forfeits the frame; to avoid this, players almost always play an easy hit on their third attempt, even if it is likely to leave a chance for the opponent.
Chiefly American: The cushion on the head rail. Compare bottom cushion; contrast foot cushion.
The International Pool Tour is a professional sports tour created in 2005 by Kevin Trudeau and hosted by Rebecca Grant. It aims to elevate pool (pocket billiards) to the level of other modern sports.
Confederation Panamerica of Billiards
A bridge formed by the hand where no finger loops over the shaft of the cue. Typically, the cue stick is channeled by a "v"-shaped groove formed by the thumb and the base of the index finger.
This is when, after playing an opponent for a while you both break even as far as money exchange, and the only person to get paid is the house for use of their table.
The collar is the portion of the joint that is attached to the top of the forearm. This is often stainless steel, wood, ivory, or molded phenolic resin, but in any case, made out of a solid material. This portion of the cue is glued on and threaded to reinforce the pin at the end of the shaft, and to offer a stabilized shot out of its solid construction.
A set practice routine.
In British terminology, a bank shot.
Also in the zone. Describes an extended period of functioning in dead stroke ("She's in the zone").
Failure to hit an object ball at all with the cue ball. In most sets of rules, this is a foul like any other. However, in some variants of bar pool a table scratch while shooting for the 8 ball is a loss of game where other more minor fouls might not be, as is scratching on the 8 ball (neither result in a loss of game in most professional rules).
By way of drift from the above definition, the term is also applied by many league players to the foul in more standardized rules of failing to drive a (any) ball to a cushion, or to pocket a legal object ball, after the cue ball's initial contact with an object ball.
By way of entirely different derivation ("scratch off the table"), it can also mean knocking the cue ball (or more loosely, any ball) completely off the table.
This refers to a ball that is positioned close to a rail, offering a shot where the cue must hit the rail and the ball almost simultaneously, this position can also offer a defensive shot where the cue ball can be hidden between that object ball and the rail.
Hitting the object ball with too large of a cut angle; hitting the object ball too thin. It is a well-known maxim that overcutting is preferable to undercutting in many situations, as is more often leaves the table in a disadvantageous position on the miss than does an undercut. See also professional side of the pocket.