How to Aim – Contact Points and Ghost Ball

In another article about “The Stroke” I discussed the ground rules for a solid and reliable stroke. All the good players have a combination of a solid stroke and an exceptional sense of aim. Having learned the fundamentals of a superior stroke, you are now ready to learn the proper technique for aiming and you’ll be on your way to becoming a good pool player.

Point of Contact

The biggest question that a new player always asks is “Where do I hit the object ball to make it go into the pocket?”. The answer is simple… you need to find the “point of contact” on the object ball. In other words, figure out the area on the object ball that needs to be hit by the cue ball. In Figure 1 below, imagine a line of aim indicated by line “ab“. This is a line that goes thru the center of the object ball towards the pocket. The “point of contact” or “contact point” is indicated by “cp“. This is the spot on the object ball where the cueball needs to come in contact with to pocket the object ball.

Cue Ball Contact

Figure 2 below displays where the cue ball should be when it makes contact with the object ball. Notice how the cue ball makes contact with the object ball… this is the “point of contact” that I am talking about. Let’s say for example that you have a straight in shot at the one-ball, the “point of contact” will then be at the center of the “one” ball. For a straight in shot, you simply aim straight towards the center of the object ball to make the shot.

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