Back-Hand-English with CTE

When it comes to blending in english (spin) with CTE, Back-Hand-English (BHE) works extremely well. For those who do not know what BHE is, it is moving the back hand (hand gripping the cue) up/down/left/right, to apply spin on the cue ball after a center cue ball line-up. You are essentially pivoting the cue on the bridge hand, moving the tip of the cue around on the cue ball to apply the spin.

The reason this works so well is because spin created with BHE has very minimal effect on the cue ball path. For instance when you apply outside-spin, your cue stick is no longer on the line of aim but when the shot is executed, the ball squirt/swerve corrects itself right back on the line of aim. So now no matter how you apply spin, your shot line is almost unaffected. This may not seem logical at first, but watch this video from Dr. Dave to see it in action.

If you watch the video, you will see that bridge length plays a role in making the BHE work accurately. You will want to find the natural pivot-length of your particular cue. Note that there are cues on the market that minimize squirt/deflection and they will play havoc with BHE, so just be aware of that!

BHE has many advantages in general. For instance, most of you know that you can pocket a ball sitting straight ahead on a rail by aiming to just miss the ball with some inside spin. How often do you make that shot? You may encounter trouble when trying to add the spin: the ball squirts away and misses the OB completely. Then it is a guessing game how to add spin and adjust the aim. With BHE, you just aim center ball exactly to just miss the OB, then swivel the back hand to apply the spin. The ball will travel to the same spot, and the spin will kick into the OB. No more guessing!

Another example, you have an OB two diamonds up on a rail from the corner pocket, and the cue ball is a slight (say 20-30 degree) angle on the shot. Maybe you want to take the cue ball three rails around the table for position. But there is a problem: the moment you apply that spin and shoot, the cue ball squirts away and the OB may easily miss the pocket. In comes BHE: aim the shot as usual at center cue ball, then swivel the back hand to apply top-inside spin. Now the cue ball will travel the same path and make the OB, and the spin will zip the cue ball off the rail and around the table. You may not need to hit it harder, as the spin will make the cue ball pick up speed. It is quite impressive looking when you get the hang of it. And again, no more guessing the aim when adding the spin!

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