Article 6: Skill Vs. Knowledge ~ Dustin Crowe

By a show of hands, how many players reading this play in a pool league? Now, keep your hand up if you play outside of your weekly league area. I’m betting that a majority of you didn’t keep your hand up. Every day, players go into their local bars or pool rooms and compete against the local competition. Depending on the organization, some will go on to compete at a state, and national level.

As you read this, you will notice I’m going to focus on two pool leagues. The A.P.A. ( American Poolplayers Association ), and N.A.P.A. (  North American Poolplayers Association ). Many other leagues exist but these two are the most notable and recognized across the country right now, so I will use them to help this make a bit more since to everyone.

The next statement is going to shock, confuse, or put some players in denial. I have said this many times, and believe it 99% of the time. “Your skill level is based on the level of skill in your area.” What about the 1%? I do not think this statement applies to professional pool players. First, and most importantly, I am NOT talking about your skill as a pool player, more defined as your ability to play the game itself.

So let’s break this statement down and really see what it means, to you, the pool player.

  1. Your skill level- A number assigned to a given player to determine his or hers ability in a specific league organization. In the A.P.A it’s going to be between 2-7. With N.A.P.A, the range is a bit more being 20- 150+.

  2. Level of skill in your area- The average skill level as a whole given to players in your “home” location. This definition is my own, so searching it on a league site is probably just going to cause you to throw things at the screen in your attempt. Stick with me here, it will make more sense.

Number 2 is really what matters in my statement. In its simplest form, it’s the idea that will make all skill levels complain in any league organization. Complain about what though? The ability of the opposing player? Well, yes. Here is the kicker, this is when you take your skill level beyond your local area of play, your home location.