To the 46 million people who play pool in around 9,000 facilities throughout North America, the answer is yes. This is according to the Billiards Congress of America.
Life, as it is, is beautiful when everything is in balance. While we often get tangled with the realities of life, we develop hobbies as we seek an escape. Though it tends to become a routine in itself, a hobby is done in leisure time. You don’t get paid to do it. Therefore, you do this with no pressure of an expectation.
One of the many hobbies people go for is playing billiards with friends over a drink. Most countries address it as a “shooting pool”. While it is defined as one of the classifications for cue sports played on a pool table with six pockets, many people argue whether it is a sports or a hobby. Regardless, it’s something that many people do to disconnect from anything stressful.
What makes it fun
You can play as is.
Like chess, playing billiards doesn’t require you to buy special shoes or doesn’t demand too much physical built or training to enjoy. It’s not strenuous, and for the most part, you won’t be losing any breath playing it. But it doesn’t mean you’re not burning calories at all. Playing billiards gives you that leeway to socialise as it uses your logic and skill in calculating and depth perception.
You don’t need to worry about money.
It is a cheap sport and cheaper when played as a hobby. Personal instructors may teach a group for US$6, while private lessons range from US$25 to US$40. Interested parties are gauged on their experience, reputation, and location from the instructor for price allocation. Jerry Briesath, a master pool instructor and an owner of a school for pool, he prices lessons between US$30 to $125/hour. Pubs, restaurants, and bars make billiard tables available for casual to corporate tournaments. Tables, balls, cue sticks, chalk, and the powder, considering the space may be rented between US$5 to US$10.
It’s competitively fun by nature.
According to a recent study done by the University of Copenhagen, drinking beer while playing pool with your friends keep you active. It gives way to healthy socialising, but with friendly competition; sort of a challenge that is a stress reliever at the same time. Also, this down-time with friends fights the aging process as aged pool players still need to utilise as many muscles as avoiding catatonia.
Some players advance into being professionals. They play in tournaments, which is not a walk in the park, or they could be instructors. Both allow them to earn money, but the most favourable for the long haul is being an instructor. Either way, the potential of that much time given to playing it may be used as an investment.
Allows developing soft skills that you may need later on.
Billiards, snooker, or pool share one thing in common. It enhances your focus. Critical thinking skills need a quiet atmosphere, and playing pool doesn’t require both players to talk. Perfect your break (the first slam to the triangle of billiard balls to allow them to play) or search for the perfect angle in banking your shot while indulging in absolute silence.
It’s got healthy benefits, and it sharpens your mind.
Besides keeping you driven and focused, playing pool has some physical skills you ought to earn too. The billiards table is popularly played on 10×5 feet, and some cue ball placements may require you to stretch in taking your turn. Also, your balancing power may be tested when complex shots need to be dealt with. You may need to stand on one foot while doing everything you need to get stabilised.