One of my latest clients to join the underground got me thinking about the reasons we play pool. He came to me after moving to a new area. Looking for a great way to meet some new friends, he went for a pint in his new local pub. Above the bar he saw a sign “Pool Players Wanted”. He’d stumbled across the perfect opportunity to meet people in his new home town. He’s a great guy and he’s enjoying his new experience so far. “The only problem is I’m constantly getting spanked by the more experienced players in the side”. So we planned out a strategy to get him on the path to winning ways. I could immediately tell from his positive attitude that we’ll have his skills immeasurably increased in quick time.
Let’s take a look at the most popular reasons why we Play Pool?
- Social Fun – As mentioned above, it’s the perfect opportunity to meet new people that also love to play. Pool Players all instantly have common ground, something they all enjoy and can play together. Something they can discuss, compete and share laughs over. Having played the sport for over 20 years I have met so many great people. Close friends, all of varied ages and backgrounds, with one thing in common. We all love a game of 8-Ball.
- Bonding – As well as a way to meet new people, the game is also great for bringing existing friends and family members closer together. Groups of friends will often go to the pub or club for a few frames. Recently, whilst having a knock in a Manchester, I saw a large group of work colleagues who were all there to take part in their work’s annual Pool tournament. Family bonding? There are a large number of Fathers and Sons (Lads and Dads) who play for the same teams because the fathers have passed on their passion for the sport. 👨👦
- Competition – Another of the reasons to play pool is competition. Most of us are competitive by nature. Males in particular use competition as a way to prove their dominance over an opponent. Any opportunity to inflate the ego and prove their worth isn’t often one to be passed up! Competition can be either in a team format or individual leagues and tournaments, local or national.
- Escapism – Lots of Players use Pool as a way to escape their family routines and have some much needed “me” time. Most blokes are happy to get out of the house for a few hours and dare I say it “away from the missus”! Also a great hobby for the older generation, possibly widowers to give them extra purpose and something to look forward to each week. Reasons to get out of the house are always a winner in my eyes. 🔒
- A New Hobby – We all have our own hobbies and interests, often we might be looking to take up a new hobby for one of more of the reasons outlined in this post. My interest sparked whilst spending time in pubs as a kid, and then getting involved in Snooker too. I’ve had an affinity with it ever since!
- Mindfulness – This is one I’ve used myself. During testing times I’ve used the game to help me relax and focus my mind amidst the chaos. Similar to Golf, cue sports can be almost hypnotic with repetition. As Mental Health Awareness is on the rise, people now know more than ever – the importance of looking after and maintaining your mental health. 🧠
- Discipline – In order to reach the pinnacle of any sport, an unwavering amount of effort and discipline is required – 8-Ball is no exception. As highlighted in “A Pool Player’s Etiquette”, cue sports are perfect for instilling manners, respect and good values into the younger generation. That’s not to say us adults shouldn’t be constantly scaling up our skills.
- Gambling – The last of the list of reasons to play pool is Gambling. It’s undeniable that gambling it addictive and any addictive element is likely to drive big numbers. From April 2017 – March 2018 the British Gambling Commission published their Total Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) of the Great Britain Gambling Industry as £14.4 Billion. Us Brits are fond of a wager and Pool often lends itself to this activity. Big Money-matches are becoming more and more popular throughout the country. They are easily accessible to the masses when streamed on Social Media or YouTube etc. I remember playing for £150 a frame in 1998 thinking it was a lot of money. Some of the guys on the circuit today are playing for pots worth tens of thousands of pounds. As well as this you still get your pub players playing killer for £2 a man or playing “pint for the winner”. There’s no denying it – putting a wager (big or small) on a frame always makes things more interesting. 💸
If you feel like there are any reasons to play pool I’ve missed. send them to me and I’ll gladly add them in!
I hope this post has helped you decide on your plans for the coming weekend. What are you waiting for?
Let’s Play Pool! 🎱