Coaching: How to put spin on the cue ball

By Snooker Jim •  Updated: 05/10/23 •  2 min read

How to put spin on the cue ball

To be an excellent snooker player, you need to know how to play different kinds of shots.

The straight shot won’t work all the time, sometimes you might need a bit of extra help and spin to get what you are looking for. We’ll take a closer look at how to put spin on the cue ball in snooker.

What to consider

There are two things to consider when playing a spin shot. The first is deflection, because you are pushing the cue ball away, you need to consider where it could end up landing.

The second is the curve the cue ball will take after hitting the shot, again thinking about where it could end up once you have hit the shot.

However, the important thing to remember is, the closer to the centre you hit the ball, the less it will deviate. But if you go further out towards one side, the more the ball will deviate towards the other side.

Equally, if you hit the ball harder, you will get even more of a deflection. So if you are only looking for a slight one, then don’t hit the ball too hard.

If you are aiming to put spin on the ball, then you need to ensure you compensate- especially if you are trying to pot a ball. Otherwise, your aim is going to be off, and it will not be the shot you were hoping to play.

Distance to the ball

Another thing to consider when deciding whether or not to put spin on the ball is the distance to the distance to the balls. If you are putting spin on the ball, then it is better for the ball to be further away.

If you try to put too much spin on the ball too close, you probably aren’t going to get much contact on the ball. All in all, it’s probably going to stay in the line of aim.

But if you were to do it further away, then the cue ball will head back towards the line of aim and get better contact on the ball.

Looking for more advice? Check out our post on coaching drills for perfecting the snooker break-off shot.

Snooker Jim

Gone from a 6ft table in my dad's garage as a kid to a 9ft table at the office, with the full-size snooker club visits in between. Hoping one day to get the playing technique right.