Tag: billiards

Pool Table Etiquette

Playing pool at a bar or a billiard is a great opportunity to have fun with friends and show off your skills. Such a game can go from a friendly match to a competitive game depending on who you are playing with and their skill level. Whether you are new to the game, or have experience, you must know a few rules of etiquette to have an enjoyable game while showing your opponent some respect. Read along as we discuss a few of these rules!

Give Your Opponent Space

It is a common mistake to hover over your opponent or grab some chalk while it is their turn. This is bad pool etiquette. If it’s your opponents turn, sit back and watch. Staying in their point of view, or even grabbing chalk while their trying to focus can be very distracting, stay classy and give them their space as you’d like your space too.

No Drinks on the Table

Don’t do it! Do not put drinks or any food on the pool table, place them in their designated area. The last thing you want to do is spill your drink on the table, ruining everyone’s time, it’s considered a big party foul!

Do Not Distract Your Opponent On Purpose

It is against the official pool association rules to stand behind an opponent’s shot. If you are playing with friends, these rules are a lot more lenient, but when playing a serious match, be respectful and don’t stand in the direction they are aiming.

Conclusion Next time you go to a bar or billiard to play pool keep these rules in mind. If you are playing with a stranger spark up a conversation to understand their level of seriousness for the game. Proper pool etiquette is important for a fun and safe game. The more you play pool the better you’ll come to understand these rules. Enjoy a game of pool and delicious food here at Johnny’s Bar & Grill in Sterling, IL!

The Origins of Billiards

Billiards (or pool) dates all the way back to 15th century Europe and has been played by royals and commoners alike. Since then, it has evolved and become the game that we know and love today. When you go to a bar, you will usually find a couple of pool tables that have several people surrounding them. It’s a game that invites competition but encourages teamwork. Seeing pool tables isn’t a strange sight, but how many of us actually know the history? In this blog, we will outline billiards’s history, from its inception to today’s version.


Originally, billiards took place outside on the lawn as a game similar to croquet. It eventually moved inside where a wooden table with green cloth was set up to mimic grass. The balls were shoved with wooden sticks called “maces.” In the 1600s, the cue stick was invented after realizing how inconvenient the mace’s large head proved. Players had been using the mace’s handle, and so the cue stick was born.

The Industrial Revolution allowed for many improvements to billiards equipment. The use of chalk created more friction between the ball and cue stick, and leather cue tips were perfected to help players perform a side-spin to the ball. During the 1870s in America, billiards was played on a 11 or 12-foot, four-pocket table with four balls. American Fifteen-Ball Pool eventually grew from this and is the predecessor of modern billiards. Around the 1900s, Eight-Ball was invented, followed by Straight Pool.

The term “pool” came from poolrooms where betting for horse races occurred during the 19th century. Billiard tables were set up in the room so that people could pass the time in between races. After World War II, people were more interested in buying homes and building careers, and so playing billiards lost popularity. It wasn’t until 1961, with the release of the movie “The Hustler,” that the dying game began to see a revival.

Today’s Billiards (or Pool)

Ever since the success of “The Hustler” and its sequel, “The Color of Money” in 1986, poolrooms emerged, attracting men and women, as well as championship tournaments that gave players a more serious perspective to the game. The idea or image of pool had seemingly negative connotations as poolrooms were places where men often gambled, picked fights, smoked, and loitered. Women had trouble being accepted in these rooms, but the game itself has been played by all sorts of people – not just men.

Because of the gambling and smoking that occur in poolrooms, children are not allowed to play pool there. However, pool tables have been set up in more welcoming amusement centers such as bowling alleys and arcades. Passionate individuals can purchase their own table to play at home, but going to a public area to play invites a sense of community. Billiards has come a long way, but it’s a game that people won’t get bored of for some time to come.


Some may see pool as a competitive sport, but at the end of the day, it’s a game that can be enjoyed casually by all. You can play competitively or friendly – as long as you have a few people with you, the game will be fun for everyone. Bars, amusement centers, poolrooms, one’s home – pool tables can be found and played in these environments. Whether you’re new or a veteran to the game, there’s always satisfaction when you see the ball shoot straight into a hole with a clink.