As you transition over from beginner to intermediate level pool player, you will begin to feel the need to use English to get to the next level.
English is when you apply side spin on the cue ball. English allows you to more options with regards to shotmaking and/or position that are otherwise not available when using only center ball hit on the cue ball. This section explains the advantages and disadvantages of using side spin.
Articles denoted by contains video demonstrations.
English or Sidespin is an advanced technique in billiards. I would advise newer players not to use english until they have a good understanding and enough experience with the basic (no side spin) shots like stop (center ball hit), draw (under spin), and follow (top spin).
English makes the process of aiming a little more difficult because of the effects of curve and throw. I will discuss these terms next. First, take a look at the different ways you can hit the cue ball to apply english or sidespin.
You may have heard other players use the terms “inside” and “outside” english. To help you understand these billiard terms, I will try to explain them with a couple of illustrations.
More on Inside and Outside Spin…
In the lesson about “Understanding English”, I have discussed briefly about throw. In this lesson, I will discuss this aspect in a little more detail.
More on the Throw Effect…
English can be used to control the speed of the cue ball after making contact with the object ball. You can control the position of the cue ball even without it bouncing off the cushion as illustrated above. This is more relevant to shots with smaller angles like the one shown above (although it is still applicable, to a lesser degree, to shots with more angle).
Read more Cue Ball Control…
In this article, I will discuss how english affects the direction of the cue ball after it hits the rail cushion. As illustrated in the picture below, when left english is applied on the cue ball, it will bounce to the left side after hitting the cushion. Similarly, when the cue ball is hit with right english, it will bounce to the right side after hitting the cushion.