What Is Cue Ball Spin and How Do You Apply it?

cue ball spin

Some beginner pool players may not be aware of the amount of control they can have over the ball. Therefore, we’ve created tips to educate them on the basics of the game. Cue ball spin comes in three different varieties – top spin, bottom spin, and side spin. By knowing how to add a little spin in one of these directions to the ball, you can gain control of how you play and improve your game.

Top Cue Ball Spin

Top spin adds distance to the cue ball after it strikes another ball on the table. To create top spin, imagine a clock face on the cue ball. Strike the ball between the center and the 12 o’clock position. Doing so will create a little spin that causes the ball to travel farther and to deflect at a slightly larger angle from bumpers or other balls. In fact, these shots off the bumpers, called bank shots, derived from their early angled style resembling river banks. The term bank shot still exists today to refer to an angled shot off a bumper. 

Bottom Spin

Bottom spin creates the exact opposite effect to top spin. Instead of letting the cue ball continue to move down the table after hitting another ball, the bottom spin causes the ball to stop after transferring its energy to another ball. This shot will also shrink the angles of deflection for the ball off of bumpers. To create a bottom spin on a cue ball, hit the ball between the center and the 6 o’clock position.

Side Spin or English

Side spin is the most complicated form of cue ball spin. This form comes in left and right forms and can combine with the top and bottom spin. Some people refer to side spin as English. To create a left spin, hit the ball between the center and 9 o’clock. Right spin happens when you hit the ball between 3 o’clock and the center.

Unfortunately, several factors play into how the ball responds to side spin. Therefore, you may need to practice to see how your pool table, cue, and other factors influence the ball’s reaction to side spin. Watch the blog for a future posting on factors influencing side spin.

Find the Cues, Cue Balls, Pool Tables, and More at A&C Billiards and Barstools

Everyone from beginners to professionals needs pool playing equipment. You can find cues, balls, tables, and much more at A&C Billiards and Barstools. We have a storefront in Southern California. Stop by if you’re in the area to see many of our pool products for yourself. You can even talk to our expert team about the best pool table for your home. For those outside the Southern California area, shop our selection of billiards and more online. We can’t wait to help you to improve your pool game through better equipment and pool tips on our blog.










Contact Us

    Discover a remarkable collection of billiards, barstools, game room furniture, and more.Click HERE & Shop Online NOW