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10 Billiard Trick Shots to WOW Your Friends

Updated on January 6, 2011

Impress Your Buddies at the Pool Hall

So you can play 9-ball, so you can play 8-ball, so you can play 1-pocket. So what? Can you make the pool balls defy the laws of physics with every stroke? Can you impress people with mind-boggling moves? Maybe it's time to pick up a few tricks and hustle that skeptic in the front row. These are ten billiard trick shots that are of easy to medium difficulty, but with a little practice, you'll soon have a smug smirk in front of all your friends.

All diagrams and photos on this lens are used with permission of Tim Chin. You can find more details, videos, and tutorials at his Trick Shot Tim website.

Possibly the most popular trick shot there is. This is a classic shot made popular by Steve Mizerak in a light beer commercial back in the 70's. Two balls end up going in the side pocket by the cluster, and then one each in the opposite side and two lower corner pockets. Meanwhile, the cue ball runs three rails around the table to get the last ball hanging in the upper left corner. Aim with left english and a half tip of top to catch just more than half of the outside object ball. Get the rest of the Just Showing Off tutorial.

This shot is all about the setup. As a classic setup shot, the objective is to pocket six balls in six pockets with one stroke of the cue. Hit 'em and watch the butterfly spread its wings and fly! Note that the balls are not aligned straight into the pocket because of an effect called "throw." Get the rest of the Butterfly tutorial.

This is a neat little prop shot where the cue ball starts by resting in the mouth of a shot glass. While shooting the cue ball down table to pocket a hanger, the shot glass rolls to make the ball hanging in the near corner. Use a level stroke and right english. Also, try not to start practicing this trick with the pool hall's shot glasses.... Lukasz Szywala shot this on Trick Shot Magic 2005. Get the rest of the Shot Glass Roller tutorial.

Charlie Darling pulled it out in Trick Shot Magic 2002. After pocketing the object ball the first time, as the cue ball goes around the table, pull the object ball back out of the pocket and set it up to get knocked in again. Charlie added a bit extra by drinking a shot before the object ball got hit a second time. Stroke it nice and easy with mostly right and a touch of top. Get the rest of the Double Shot tutorial.

This is a setup shot invented by Yoshikazu Kimura. It was named by Paul Gerni as Kyoto Freeway for the balls travelling in different directions at different speeds. Two balls split in the corner pockets near where you shoot. The cue ball goes down and splits the other combination into the corner pockets while the final two balls slowly trickle down, following them in. Hit straight through the cue ball and make it go straight down the table. Get the rest of the Kyoto Freeway tutorial.

The Best Trick Shot Book

Mike Massey's World of Trick Shots
Mike Massey's World of Trick Shots

This book is a fantastic resource written by perhaps the most famous face in trick shots. It diagrams and details around 170 shots, from the very easy to the very difficult, including finger pool, along with giving some fundamental instructions for understanding trick shots and tips on giving exhibitions. If you're serious about trick shots, you need to have this book!


The story goes, Willie Joplin came up with this shot in a dream. You pocket all four balls in one stroke, the end balls splitting in to the corner pockets, one of the middle balls forces its way through to the side pocket while the other one banks cross side. Place the cue ball along the long centerline of the table, about a half diamond away from the side pocket and just hit straight in to the ball. Get the rest of the Joplin's Dream Shot tutorial.

Okay, this might be a little tough with the jump at the beginning. Lined up along the table are combinations of two balls, one on the slate and the second on a piece of chalk. At the start of the line, the cue ball is close to a blocker ball. Dr. Cue Tom Rossman did this in Trick Shot Magic 2006. Once you got everything set up right, jump over the blocking ball and start the chain reaction. Get the rest of the Chain Reaction Jump tutorial.

Get More Trick Shot Templates

Artistic Pool Trick Shot Templates
Artistic Pool Trick Shot Templates

This is a useful disc to have to learn some of the setup shots that look very impressive. Seven shots are diagrammed and templates can be printed out so you can set them up on your own table. Each shot has a shooter's perspective and video too, along with tips on how to make adjustments for different tables. This will get you pocketing 7 balls with one shot with ease!


The cue ball splits the two balls frozen to it into the corner pockets. It hits the top ball in the cluster, forcing it through to the side pocket while the two middle balls each kick another ball in to the side while they kiss in to the corners. This is another shot Willie Joplin did. You can use draw, but a center hit can work as well. Get the rest of the Blooming Flower tutorial.

The three balls in the cluster are all frozen together, with two of them (the cue ball included) frozen to the rail. One of the object balls pockets in the near corner, one in the opposite corner, while the cue ball runs three rails to catch the hanger in the far corner. Stroke it well to load up the spin to get the cue ball to come off the first rail as close to the corner pocket as possible. Try it, you'll like it. Get the rest of the Tim's Twister tutorial.

Here's a prop masse shot created by Lukasz Szywala. Masse into a vodka bottle, knocking in two balls, one of which is balanced on a shot glass on top of the bottle. The cue ball masses back up the table, hugging the rail to pocket a ball in the far corner pocket. Hit the cue ball with 3:30 english to get it to come back and stay on the long rail. Get the rest of the Vodka Masse tutorial.

Have you gotten your smirk yet? Let us know how awesome you are and how your conquests went in the pool hall.

Any questions?

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    • profile image

      Lee Wangare 20 months ago

      Amazing trick shots... I also came across this one yesterday.

    • KathyBatesel profile image

      KathyBatesel 5 years ago

      I just learned the butterfly from Mike Massey yesterday and am planning on doing a writeup on another site. I'll link to your buddy's site, too.

    • kburns421 lm profile image

      kburns421 lm 5 years ago

      Awesome video. The diagrams are cool, but I'm nowhere near good enough to do any tricks! I do remember the first time I ever saw someone jump a ball in person though. Just that was super cool. This is a really good lens.

    • profile image

      cmontijo 6 years ago

      I think I'm going to try one of this... :)) and practice until i get them perfect at them

    • plrsource profile image

      plrsource 6 years ago

      Great lens.....

    • itsmuzza2011 profile image

      itsmuzza2011 7 years ago

      ive played snooker for years and i always swear by a 9mm blue diamond tip its never let me down and ive made over 50 century breaks, ive only ever used 3 cues in 30 years of playing the game, a good tip to finding a great cue is to find an old cue from years back its stood the test of time and wont warp like some modern day cues do... over the years you learn the odd trick shot but ive learned a few from you now ! good lens well done from a BIG snooker fan

    • profile image

      ohcaroline 7 years ago

      I can only hope that one day I will be able to show off my billiards prowess by doing these tricks. I will keep trying. Thanks for the information.

    • profile image

      Dish-Network-HD 7 years ago

      Amazing. thanks!

    • CCGAL profile image

      CCGAL 7 years ago

      Very interesting lens! Blessed by a Squid Angel.

    • TriviaChamp profile image

      TriviaChamp 7 years ago

      Some awesome diagrams. I will have to give a few these a try to see if I can baffle the husband. Well done!

    • profile image

      pool-shark 8 years ago

      I look tricks that involve diamond play. Diamond alignment can actually be used during game play, that's why I practice it a lot.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      excelant selection of true skill trick shots. I have a new one , last night i made it for the first time. tables are paralel at steinway cafe billiards. using a ramp made of H.O. toy train tracks i make a ball in the side 4 tables away , including the shooting table. the ball gooes airborn about 16 feet (no broken lights yet)comes down on the 3rd table bounces to the green>>>4th tablelike a 6-iron shot--no divvitt