The One Rail Kick Shot, Part 1 By “The Drill Instructor”
There are several systems available for making a successful one rail kick shot. It’s not fair to say one is better than another. Also, you can know more than one system, but have your preferred way. I’m proficient at seven one rail kick systems and here’s what I have to say about that. The best one rail kick system is the one you work hardest at.
Don’t get caught up judging with which system is easier or harder. They all work perfectly fine, however that doesn’t mean they are all perfect for you. As an example, the simplest one rail kick system, meaning, it has the least amount of steps to executing it, is harder for beginner level players because of one particular movement that takes time to develop correctly, which comes from being a more experienced player. Let me show it to you.
One Rail Kick, System 1:
See Image For Steps:
1. Use your cue stick to find the mid-point between the ball being kicked or banked and the DTP (Diamond Target Point). The DTP in this case is the 8 Ball, which the cue ball will kick into the side pocket.
2. Pivot the cue stick and point it to the opposite side, directly across from the DTP (like it’s a mirror image). When you’re standing squarely between the two points, the ball being kicked or banked and the DTP, you most likely will have to move, pivoting the cue with you so that it points directly at the mirror side. In this case, no pivot was needed, however, most of the time it’s needed. If that were the case here, you would have pivoted to face the opposite side pocket, which is the mirror side across from the DTP, the 8 Ball.
3. Parallel shift until you are directly over the banking ball. Sounds easy right? It is. However, here’s what make this the hardest part of this simple system. If the parallel shift is off on the front or back end of the cue stick by as much as ½ inch, your aim spot will be off and you’ll most likely miss. For the more “beginner to mid level player,” learning to parallel shift accurately is no small thing. Often times, without another person across from you to see that your parallel shift is dead on, you can’t see for yourself that it’s off in the front or the back and by how much.
4. Now that that’s all settled, hit the Center of the cue ball. Don’t use any spinning English.
5. Apply a smooth medium speed stroke and if the parallel shift is correct, it should all go very nicely.
When you do get this neat little system down, you can use it to kick the cue ball or bank the object ball. Following step one is the key. Always keep in mind that the DTP (Diamond Target Point) can be a ball you’re kicking at or the pocket you’re banking into. Either way, the measurement process is still the same.
One other important point, when you’re measuring and shooting, is measure from the contact edge of the cushion and the exact spot on the object ball you’re kicking at, not to the diamond spots on the rails.