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

The Equalizer Handicap System is the handicap system developed by the American Poolplayers Association. It makes it feasible for a beginner to have a nearly equal chance in a match against a more highly skilled player.
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.
The wrap is situated over the handle of the cue, below the forearm and above the butt. Common materials used are Irish linen, leather, or cork. These materials make sense, because they provide a sure grip, long life, and help to absorb moisture from the hand when you are sweating through a difficult rack. In addition, wraps are used to compliment the color or style of the cue stick and to elegantly complete the look.
Also (chiefly British) programme. Short for shot program. The enumerated trick shots that must be performed in the fields of artistic billiards (70 pre-determined shots) and artistic pool (56 tricks in 8 "disciplines").
To sink a ball into a pocket.
A British term (especially in snooker) for the splitting of a group of balls when another ball is sent into them, typically with the intent of deliberately moving them with the cue ball to develop them.
The object ball involved in a key shot.
Random method for pairing of opponents when setting up a bracket system for a tournament.
Billiard Congress of America. The official governing body for pocket billiards in the United States.
This is an attempt where one player answers the other players successful shot or run with a successful shot or run.
Same as feather (US) or snick (UK)
Slang for the cue ball.
This refers to a shot that travels on a shallower path due to the english placed on it. This is to come up on the near side of a pocket on a bank shot.
Common slang in the US for a cheap, poorly made cue. Compare wood.
Feel generally refers to that elusive quality that makes one cue feel special or superior to another. In essence, it is the cumulative effect of all of a cues characteristics, including weight, shaft diameter, balance, grip material, length, etc. It can vary greatly from one player to another. A cue that feels great to one player does not necessarily fell good to another.
When the tip of the cue begins to hang over the sides of the ferrule from constant use. This is the action of mushrooming, and it is important to use a tip tool to reshape the tip to fit the ferrule.
Same as gutter table. A table with a ball return system, as opposed to a drop pocket table.
This is missing the fact that you owe a ball in a game of one pocket after a scratch.
This is a slang term created by Freddy Bentivegna to refer to a cluster of balls on your side of the table that do not lend to easy pocketing in a game of one pocket.
This is a game played with the same balls and similar scoring methods of carom, but with pockets on the table, and more scoring opportunities awarded when certain balls are sunk in combination.
The ease with which a player is generating cue power, due to well-timed acceleration of the cue at the appropriate point in a shot.
The World Confederation of Billiard Sports (WCBS, sometimes called the World Confederation of Billiards Sports) is the international umbrella organization encompassing the major cue sports (billiards-type games), including carom billiards, pool games of several varieties, and snooker. The primary aim of WCBS is to establish billiard-type sports as medal events in as many multiple-sports competitions as possible, on both regional and world levels. The ultimate goal of WCBS is to have billiard sports included in the Olympic Games.
Two or more object balls that are touching or are close together.
Displacement of the cue ball's path away from the parallel line formed by the cue stick's direction of travel; occurs every time english is employed. The degree of deflection increases as the amount of english applied increases. It is also called squirt, typically in the United States.