Use The Safety Shot If Necessary

A safety shot in pool can save the game when it is done correctly and at the right time. The object is to basically tie up your opponent so he doesn't have an easy shot to shoot at and possibly run out the table on you.

Though not often used in friendly games, the safety comes in handy in league and tournament play. When you are playing shooters of high caliber, you want to avoid giving them any chance at all to make their balls.

A good safety will possibly hide the cue ball behind one or more of your balls, or at least put the cue ball way on the opposite end of the table from your opponent's remaining shots. The key is to not allow your opponent any type of fairly easy shot that he will have a good chance of sinking.

A safety is usually attempted because you may not have a shot that you feel that you can reliably sink in the pocket. If you attempt the shot and miss, the cue ball will often be in an ideal position for your opponent to make some balls against you.

Sometimes a safety will be part of a long-term strategy. You may have a shot now, but if you sink it, you will not be able to make the next one because of table conditions, such as some of the other guy's balls being in your way.

The theory is that if you can make your opponent take the tough shot, he may knock your balls into a better position for your next turn. Or, if your cue ball position is bad at the moment, you may wind up with a better position for your next shot, which could allow you to make your remaining balls and win the game.

Shooting a safety shot is part of the strategy of pool. Observe good shooters and see when they use the safety, and you will be that much closer to mastering this enjoyable and fascinating game.

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