Pool/Billiards/bridge rules

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Question
Hello, me and my family has a small question for you. We have a small pool table where the outer measurements are about an inch short each way of a 4ftx8ft. We would like to know about rules concerning the bridge. Our bridge is just a long wooden shaft with a bridge head of 3 possible cue positions. For us useing the bridge makes every shot super easy and we debate on how many times we are aloud to use the bridge and how far from the queball it may need to be and if people are using it at inappropriate times. Would you mind giving us some info on that please?

Answer
Hi David

You may use the bridge on every shot if you choose, without limit, and there is no restriction on how far it may or must be from the cue ball.

The fact you are asking this question leads me to the conclusion that you and your family need basic training in fundamentals of stance, (hand) bridging and stroke. Sorry. That is the only conclusion I can reach because using the mechanical bridge on shots where reach is not a problem is always a disadvantage; always makes the shot harder, not easier, once a person becomes proficient in play. Once passing the early stages of learning to shoot with solid fundamentals, you will avoid the bridge as much as possible as all players do. What I recommend is locking the bridge away for a few months and learning to shoot without it. If you gain a solid foundation in shooting you will eventually come to see the mechanical bridge as a necessary evil only wanted for the rare reach shot, and will shake your head at the idea that you once thought shooting with it made the game easier.

Best regards,

Pool Teacher

Pool/Billiards

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Pool_Teacher

Expertise

I have wide ranging knowledge of all the cue sports, with the exception of snooker. I can answer most questions related to playing any of the standard games such as straight pool (14.1 continuous) eight-ball, nine-ball, one-pocket and 3-cushion billiards and the variations on these games. Questions welcomed regarding technique, strategy and rules, history of the sport, trick shots, the mental game, practice, practice drills, pool/billiards publications, and so on. I DO NOT DO CUE OR TABLE APPRAISALS OR IDENTIFICATION. See below.

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I have been a dedicated player of pool and 3-cushion Billiards for many years. I have given lessons professionally and have run and participated in too many tournaments to name, including professional events such as the U.S. Open. I am also a cue collector and student of all aspects of the game. Note: I was starting to get far too many questions about pool cue (and pool table) valuation and identification and will no longer take these questions, sorry. I am a player and historian of the sport and the heart of my expertise is not product comparison or appraisal.

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