Why should we make sure our pool stroke contains a proper follow-through on contact with the cue ball?
When beginning my pool skills I never understood the exact science of what happens when the cue tip strikes the cue ball. It always seemed that once the tip touched the cue ball that sent the ball on it’s way, never knowing whether the stroke contained a follow-through or stopped at the moment of impact.
Any stroke that stops at the moment of impact/contact is called a jab stroke, a jab stroke should never be used. The reason a jab stroke is ineffective is that it lends itself to inconsistency in control of accuracy and speed. The sudden stop of the tip at the cue ball contact is caused by muscles tightened to decelerate the tip to a stop, giving the cue ball varied messages.
When we complete the back-swing and begin to smoothly accelerate the tip toward the cue ball, building speed through and past the cue ball, we more consistently contact the cue ball with greater accuracy.
The tip actually remains in contact with the cue ball for some minor distance of it’s way down the table, due to the fact that the tip and ball do not seperate at contact point until the resting cue ball reaches a speed greater than the accelerating tip. The tip remaining in contact with the cue ball for that momentary amount of time lends itself to accuracy and spin. Thus, the name follow-through.
“We should always smoothly accelerate the cue tip through the cue ball, never to the cue ball.”
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Mentally this is quite a challenge. The challenge comes from being surrounded by people who are only able to judge results of the object ball finding the pocket or not.