Definition of zone

Also in the zone. Describes an extended period of functioning in dead stroke ("She's in the zone").

24 Random Essential Billiards Terms

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.
A misnomer for hand talc.
The angle from which a ball rebounds from a rail, as measured from the perpendicular to the rail.
A line, sometimes imaginary (especially in American pool), sometimes drawn on the cloth, that runs horizontally across the table from the second diamond (from the head rail) on one long rail to the corresponding second diamond on the other long rail. In most pool games, the opening break shot must be performed with the center (base) of the cue ball behind the head string (i.e. between the head string and head rail). The head string intersects the long string at the head spot, and delimits the kitchen (and, in European nine-ball, the outer boundary of the break box). The head string's position is always determined by the diamonds, in contrast to the similar but different baulk line, the position of which is determined by measurement from the bottom cushion (head cushion).
This is a location where a player can go inexpensively to refine their pool skills. These establishments began as horserace betting houses, and are still often filled with games involving money action. If you get thirsty, many pool halls offer cold refreshments, however, be careful you are not there just for the refreshments. In that case, you may as well be playing at a bar with a bent cue on a rain table.
The intersection of the head string and long string, which is usually not marked on a table with a spot decal, unlike the foot spot, though some pool halls mark both spots so that racking can be done at either end of the table, and wear on the cloth from racking and breaking is more evenly distributed.
USA Pool League. A pool league structured exclusively around eight-ball match play.
Same as side rail.
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.
The rules played in a particular venue not necessarily in comportment with official rules, or with common local bar pool custom.
A players skill level, ball advantage or match advantage when using a handicapping system.
This is when it is necessary to change a set handicap after play indicates it favors one player more than the other.
A shot, especially common in straight pool and in some variants of blackball (but not WEPF/EPA rules), in which a player intentionally commits a foul with the object in mind of either leaving the opponent with little chance of running out or simply to avoid shooting where no good shot is presented and to do anything else would give the opponent an advantage. It is often referred to in straight pool as a "back scratch."
The triangular device, generally plastic, used to group the balls in a pyramid form prior to the beginning of a game.
This is English that turns into reverse English after contact with the object ball. This will close up the angle on a bank.
A point bead on a scoring string.
(Chiefly U.S.) Side spin (english) placed on a same side of the cue ball as the direction in which the object ball is being cut (left-hand english when cutting a ball to the left, and vice versa). In addition to affecting cue ball position, inside english can increase throw.
This is a shot in one pocket pool where you simple aim at a cluster of balls near your opponents pocket to attempt to make something good happen out of desperation because other shots are not feasible.
This describes a shot where you bank the object ball off of a rail and then sink it in a side pocket.
Sandbagging, in any handicapped sport, is the unethical practice of deliberately playing below your ability in order to alter your handicap so it does not reflect your true ability.
This shot is a minimally calculated distressed shot which makes it evident to the opponent you no longer have any hope to winning the game.
Verb form: to shoot. The use of the cue to perform or attempt to perform a particular motion of balls on the table, such as to pocket (pot) an object ball, to achieve a successful carom (cannon), or to play a safety.
Any shot where the cue ball stops immediately after hitting an object ball. Generally requires a full hit.
In APA, once a player has received at least 10 scores in a format, they will have established their skill level. Their established skill level can go up or down depending on their perdformance and is clculated by the APA's Equalizer Handicap System.