6 Tips for Teaching Your Kids how to Play Pool
Part of the allure of having a pool table in your home is sharing your love of the game with your family. As soon as your kids can hold a pool cue and see over the table you can start showing them the basics. Starting young is a great way to increase hand eye coordination and motor skills.
We’re not joking! Pool is an easy game to teach children that is safe for them to play on their own. Plus, showing them the ropes early helps them develop their game quicker.
Now they may not ever come close to the pro circuit, but even if they did, it wouldn’t compare to the hours spent bonding and sharing a love for pool. If nothing else, you’ll always have someone around to shoot a round with! Passing on the traditions of billiards has always relied on the older generations guiding the younger. Now it’s your turn.
Sure, they might not understand all the rules at first, but you can start slowly and introduce the nuances as they come along with the basics.
If you’re still apprehensive, here are some pointers on introducing pool to your kids so you can get started.
What Age Should Children Learn Billiards?
The appropriate age to learn how to play billiards depends on the maturity of the child and their ability to handle a cue stick. Most children can start playing billiards around the age of five or six.
Here are 6 tips on how to play billiards with kids:
1. Choose the Right Table
Obviously, your children will grow up over the years, so a child size table may not be the way to go if you plan to play with friends and family as well. That said, bear in mind your children’s height to the table’s. It’s tough to teach them to play if they’re still struggling to see over the top.
2. Choose the Right Cue
An easy way to help your child get started playing is to pick up a child's cue. This will be easier for them to handle than a full size cue stick, helping their confidence as they learn the fundamentals.
3. Teach the Rules
This part is going to take a little patience but it is important that they understand the rules correctly as they learn the mechanics. There’s no shame in suspending a rule or two if it helps everyone have fun, but knowing that they exist will help kids get comfortable as they get better at the game. Once they’re comfortable, then they’re ready to play by the book.
4. Teach the Shots
There is a drastic difference in the touch required for the many different shots one needs to master to be a great pool player. A break calls for a smooth, powerful shot while banking off the rails or the slight nudges needed in the corner pockets require more finesse than force. Teaching your kids the differences will help them fall in love with the game the same as you did.
5. Teach the Strategy
After a child has learned how to make different shots, it is important to teach them the game's strategy. Seeing opportunities on the table and setting themselves up to stay shots ahead will only improve their gameplay faster.
6. Have Fun!
The most important thing is to have fun! Keep it light and relaxed while you show them the ins and outs of the game. Doing so will help them get into it and not be discouraged as they learn.
Billiards can be a fun and rewarding activity for kids, but getting started can be a little intimidating. The nuances are hard to pick up at first and need practice to master. However, if you keep the focus on fun, you’ll have a shiver of pool sharks on your hands in no time.
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