Trickshots aren't just for showing off to your friends, although that is always fun. With the right understanding and decisions, you can use trickshots in practical situations to win games. It takes a lot of practice to have the right control over these useful trickshots but once you've mastered them, you will be able to play smarter and surprise your opponent.

With the help of images and a video, today's article will go over 3 easy trickshots that you can use in your own game of billiard, using situations from game scenarios.

Hi my name is Florian Kohler, also known as Venom. Here with me is Jamillette. If you've been following this series, you're probably pretty good at pool right now, so it’s time to have some fun and to go over some practical trick shots.

The first one I have to show you, I don't really know what to call it, but it's basically an indirect jump. This happens quite often, I've seen it many times and I’ve used it a few times.

Indirect Jump Shot: Jumping an Object Ball

Jumping Object Ball Billiard Diagram
Jumping an object ball can be useful in a match but be sure you have a good amount of table space because the cue ball jumps too.

Let’s say you have a situation like that and you can't make the 8-ball in here. You can't really make it here, the corner is impossible, and the 13 is blocking you. You really have no shot. This is a very easy and simple trick shot that you can do, it’s what I call an indirect jump shot. What we're going to do is hit the cue ball into the 8 at a little bit of an angle and you're gonna make the 8-ball jump over the stripes into the corner. It's a very useful trick shot that applies in a real game. Try this 8-ball in the corner.

Indirect jump shot
Impacting the object ball above the center line with top spin forces it into the felt causing it to jump over the obstruction.

Just like that. You could do that from anywhere at the table. It's easier if you have more distance because the white ball has a tendency to jump, but it's a very, very useful shot.

Indirect Jump Shot: Off The Rail

Indirect jump shot
Jumping off the rail is a very useful shot when you don’t have other good options and it’s easier than you might think.

Now the next shot I have used before as a trick shot. I'm going to show you a jump off the rail. This comes up quite often too. Okay, so we're going to put the white ball here, and a bunch of balls there so that we can't really make anything. And let's say you have the 5 ball right here at the other end of the table. Again, you could try to go couple rails but it's very difficult when the ball is far away. You could do a direct jump shot, but you’re pretty close and it's too close to really make it. There's only one shot that goes really, which is an indirect jump shot.

Off The Rail
Hitting down at a slight angle, contact the cue ball with lots of top spin and drive it right into the rail.

I'm going to use the cue ball to jump into the rail, to jump over the balls here, along the rail here, and make the 5 in the corner. Again, it seems pretty difficult but it really is easier than it looks. So what I'm doing is making a solid bridge, raising my cue a little bit (about 30 degrees probably) and trying put a little bit top spin on the white ball. Top spin is going to make the ball climb into the rail, and then it's going to jump over. So I'm going to try to line it up, look at it. Just like that.

Off The Rail
When aiming this shot, imagine that the rail is a mirror and you are shooting straight at the object ball in that mirrored image.

Z-Bank Shot

One of the other shots that comes up very often in the game of pool, is what we call the Z-bank. Let’s say you have a ball that's blocking your pocket and a lot of problems for you that really limit your options. I can't make it here, and to bank it seems impossible. To cut it is really impossible here and to cut it there it's even crazier. Let's say it's even closed in that pocket here. So you're basically in trouble. What we can do here is another classic trick shot, it's what we call the Z-bank.

What I'm going to do is hit the cue ball into the 5, and the 5 is going to go one rail, two rails, three rails, and back in the middle. To do that you're going to use the mechanism spins that I was telling you about in a previous lesson. So you're going to play on that.

Z Bank Shot Diagram
The left spin from the cue ball gets transferred to the object ball initially spinning it right. Spin is reversed when it contacts the rails allowing the ball to come back to the side pocket.

I'm going to apply a lot of left spin to the cue ball, so that the 5 ball gets a lot of right spin. The right spin takes control and opens up in this way, towards the side pocket. To make this shot a little bit easier for you to understand we're going to just remove all the balls to simplify it. Get rid of everything. So, I will try to make the 5 ball. A lot of left spin, try to aim about right here so you barely miss the 15, and the spin should take it right into the side pocket.

PoolDawg Frank Frank Says:  "There are so many trickshots that can be effectively used in a game. For more ideas, check out Florian’s Venom Trickshots DVD!"

As you can see, it doesn't work great on this table because the felt is brand new and it slides a lot. The spin is going to grab a lot more once you play on an older felt. But, these are all the little tricky things that you have to learn by yourself, through practice.

Those were just a few very useful trick shots, and there are a million more. So I want you to just go ahead practice and find them by yourself. Thanks again for watching. Don't forget to subscribe right here.

Thank you for watching and make sure to check out, stay tuned.

* Video transcript has been modified for the reader