Safeties in Pool and Billiards

... how to plan and execute defensive safety shots in pool.

Dr. Dave's answers to frequently-asked questions (FAQs),
mostly from the BD CCB and AZB discussion forums

maintained for the book: The Illustrated Principles of Pool and Billiards,
the monthly Billiards Digest "Illustrated Principles" instructional articles, and the instructional video series:
Video Encyclopedia of Pool Shots (VEPS), Video Encyclopedia of Pool Practice (VEPP),
How to Aim Pool Shots (HAPS), and the Billiard University (BU)


for more information, see Chapter 5 (especially Section 5.06) in The Illustrated Principles of Pool and Billiards,
Disc III of the Video Encyclopedia of Pool Shots (VEPS) , and Disc III of the Video Encyclopedia of Pool Practice (VEPP)


30-degree rule examples

How can I use the 30-degree rule to help me plan safety and ball-in-hand shots?

This video from Disc III of the Video Encyclopedia of Pool Shots provides some examples:

For more information, see "VEPS GEMS - Part IV: Safety Play and Strategy" (BD, April, 2010).


"big ball" effect

Where should I leave the object ball when hiding the cue ball?

This video from Disc III of the Video Encyclopedia of Pool Shots addresses this question:

For more information, see "VEPS GEMS - Part IV: Safety Play and Strategy" (BD, April, 2010).


general advice

What should I consider when planning a safety shot?

Disc III of the Video Encyclopedia of Pool Shots and Disc III of the Video Encyclopedia of Pool Practice (VEPP) are dedicated to safety play and strategy.

Here's a useful safety challenge game and drill from VEPP-III:

For more information, see “VEPP - Part XIII: Safety and Carom Challenge Drills,” (BD, April, 2013).

Here's another useful drill for practicing safeties, from Disc III of the Billiard University (BU) Instructional DVD series:

from Neil:


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