Snooker practice drills for beginners

By Snooker Jim •  Updated: 10/31/19 •  2 min read

Playing to a reasonable standard of snooker takes more than luck; it takes practice. Here are a few snooker practice drills that can help you improve your skills on a snooker table…

Breaking off

The first shot is one that often sets the tone of the game. Start by practicing your break off, which is an important shot to be able to play.

A crucial aim of this shot is to leave the next one for your opponent a tricky one. A good play will slightly nudge the red balls and allow the white to move to the baulk cushion somewhere behind the green or yellow ball. This play will instantly make life harder for your opponent.

Practice breaking off in your own time, and become confident in it and you will notice the difference when playing opponents.

Straight shots

Another of the most important snooker practice drills. It is important to practice and improve your straight shots. This can be the difference in potting your balls or leaving a chance for your opponent. Straight cueing is the basic foundation for successful snooker.

This drill only requires your cue and your table, with no balls necessary. Simply practice straight shots up and down the table with your white ball and it should return to the starting position (or near enough – depending on strength of shot).


Disperse a few red balls on a snooker table with a couple of colours and practice scoring. This is the only way you’ll improve your shooting technique. Take your time, pot a red and then aim for the colour and repeat. The more you do, the better you’ll get. Improved ability will result in greater breaks and more points.

Cueing off the cushion

A tricky one to handle – cueing off the cushion requires practice and dedication. It is one of the most difficult disciplines to practice.

Try this one whilst on your own by placing the white ball next to the cushion – and when shooting, remember to bridge your hand firm and concentrate.

To help with aim, try potting the white ball which will improve accuracy when shooting during the real thing.

Snooker cues: 5 mid-range options under £100

Snooker balls: 4 great sets for under £100

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.