Definition of soft break

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.

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

A players skill level, ball advantage or match advantage when using a handicapping system.
This is any game of pool played with money on the line. You can "put some action" on the game.
(noun) An opening in a table, cut partly into the bed and partly into the rails and their cushions, into which balls are shot (pocketed or potted).
(verb) Send a ball into a pocket, usually intentionally.
The surface of the table used for play (often made with slate).
Chiefly British: The rail at the Top of the table. Compare foot rail; contrast Bottom rail.
The motion of the cue stick and the player's arm on a shot;
The strength, fluidity and finesse of a player's shooting technique; "she has a good stroke."
A combination of finesse, good judgement, accuracy and confidence.
The lamentable practice of not following through with the cue straight, but veering off in the direction of the shot's travel or the side english is applied, away from the proper aiming line; a common source of missed shots.
This is the raised portion on the side of the table; the cushions are essentially rubber bumpers covered in the table cloth.
During a set if the opponent does not win a single game, they are said to have been skunked.
Same as angle of reflection.
This is to step up to the table and successfully execute a difficult shot.
This is a series of angled rails present within some pool tables that directs pocketed balls to a central location on the table for retrieval after the game.
This is a bank in one pocket pool that is sitting at an angle that makes it unsafe to play.
An imaginary line dividing the table into two equal halves lengthwise. It intersects the head string, center string and foot string at the head spot, center spot and foot spot, respectively.
American CueSports Alliance. Their mission statement is "To heighten the interest and awareness of cue sports through the support and sanctioning of organized competition throughout the United States and North America."
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.
When the cue ball is tucked behind the corner of a pocket, therefore not allowing a direct shot at the object ball.

1- A tip tool with fine, sharp points used to roughen the cue tip to better hold chalk after it has become hardened and smooth from repeated impacts with the cue ball. Tappers are firmly tapped on or pressed against the tip. Scuffers serve the same purpose, but are used differently.

2- Describes a shot where one has a chance to miscue. Usually heard in reference to long draw shots. As in, "It's a tip-tapper!".

In blackball, a situation where the player cannot see any of the balls she/he wants to hit due to obstruction by other balls or the knuckle of a pocket. The player must call "total snooker" to the referee, which allows a dispensation to the player from having to hit a cushion after contacting the object ball, which is otherwise a foul.
In snooker, the highest-value baulk colour, worth 4 points.
A shot in which the cue ball is potted after caroming off another ball. In snooker and most pool games doing this would be a fault (foul), but the move will score points in many games in which hazards (as such) apply, such as English billiards, or in the final or game point in Cowboy pool. The term derives from this hazard costing the player points in early forms of billiards.
In three cushion billiards, the most standard shot where the third ball is advantageously placed in a corner.
Any ball that may be legally struck by the cue ball.
This is a type of shot that shows complete control over the object ball and the cue ball.