One of the most challenging aspects of learning to play pool is being able to choose the right kind of instructor to get you started on a pathway towards proficiency. Your mission should be to find a teacher that has a keen understanding of both the mental and mechanical aspects of the game. Your teacher should be a talented communicator, someone who can help you enhance your own physical and mental abilities.

The first thing to remember when looking for an effective pool instructor is that there are no miracle workers. The billiards industry is filled with instructors who advertise how their teachings will improve your game by two balls overnight. That’s not going to happen, believe it!

A proficient instructor will know how to assess your skills and recognize what areas you need to improve upon. They should be able to help you get the most out of your game without requiring you to practice for an unreasonable amount of time.

Coaching Skills: Your instructor should be able to coach you in a way that will help you build both a solid physical and mental game. They should have a positive outlook and be easy to work with. An instructor that is always focusing on how the pros “do it” without taking into consideration your own personal limitations will cause you problems over the long haul. Your instructor should be patient and have a road map of how they plan to get you started in the direction that you want to go.

Listening Abilities: You will also want to find a coach who is willing to listen to whatever you have to say. They should be willing to answer any questions that you might have. Even when you’re not involved in a lesson, your instructor should be easy to reach. Many students tend to be impatient and want answers to their questions right away. A good instructor always returns calls or emails in a timely fashion.

They Should be Great Players: There are many reputable instructors that can be found online through the American CueSports Association (ACS) or Professional Billiards Instructors Association (PBIA) websites. However, there are also many certified instructors that are more than willing to teach you both the physical and mental aspects of the game without having taken the time to master the skills themselves. You will want to find an instructor that has at least won a few tournaments. You will also want to find out if your prospective instructor has played on the national level and what his or her top finishes were. This will tell you if they have developed the skills necessary to teach. If they can’t defeat players on a national level, chances are they won’t be able to help you to improve your game beyond the local level.

They Must Be Serious: When you’re serious about the game of pool, you want to make sure that your instructor is just as serious about the game as you are. Make sure that you research several instructors to ensure that the one you choose has the background and skills necessary to improve your game.

21st Century Instruction: In the past, students were often limited to instruction from pool teachers living in their geographic area. However, Virtual Billiard Academy has revolutionized the way that students learn how to play the game by offering classes over the Internet. If you live several miles from a certified instructor or if you want to learn pool from the convenience of your home, you need to check out

No matter which direction you decide to go, the bottom line is a highly qualified instructor will teach you both basic and advanced skills that are both physical and mental in nature. A good instructor will also guide you in the direction that you need to be taken. Don’t be stuck with a negative outlook. Enroll with a quality certified instructor and begin developing a more positive and powerful game of pool.