Snooker Psychology: How to Tackle the Mental Side & Win…

By engaging in some useful exercises in Nic Barrow’s Cue Sports Snooker Psychology Ninja training…

Top snooker coach Nic Barrow has launched another training program that gives players of all abilities the tools to improve their mental performance – whether it be in matches or in practice.

Not only will Nic Barrow iron out your technical errors with his coaching and coaching products, but you’ll also have access to his practical psychology tips based on his decades of experience in the game.

His Cue Sports Psychology Ninja training includes a series of basic and advanced videos with Nic himself guiding you by the hand in his one-to-one videos on snooker psychology from his wealth of experience.

There are a range of topics in the package that cover everything from how to deal with pressure, how to focus 100% on your snooker, and concentrate with exercises that will enable you to boost your focus levels and help you begin to play in the “zone”. More details on what “zone” actually means and how easily players drop out of it in Nic’s training.

SnookerZone has had the pleasure of gaining access to the course via our Beat Your Highest Break membership and we can fully support this great course, as it is jam-packed with useful tidbits to help you increase your mental levels on the table.

There are not many coaches that deal with mind games and the mental side of the game, and it is nice to see a coach offering this type of package of training to players of all levels.


I couldn’t have put the need for players to explore and improve their mental side of the game any better than this sports psychologist in one of his blogs SnookerZone read recently.

Martin Perry, who’s coached the likes of pro winners Ricky Walden and Jimmy Robertson, said this in one of his blog posts on his website when it comes to receiving mind coaching:


A lot of players spend endless hours working on and grooving their techniques. But neglect the time spent on grooving that critical ingredient for success… the art of great concentration. As athletic great Edwin Moses once said, ‘My concentration level blocks out everything. Concentration is why some athletes are better than others. You develop that concentration in training’.#


He added: “But when you have a distracted mind, you can lose the line from ball to pocket. Lose the picture of where you want to leave the white. The table stops speaking to you. You are no longer making the cue ball dance. What should be effortless becomes a struggle.”

SnookerZone suspects that some players at next week’s QSchool would have not had enough (or any) training on the mental side of the game and that may well be one key aspect why some will not go further than say the second round.


Ronnie has had mind coaching for years and still works with Dr Steve Peters even now…

There are many professional players that have hired coaches for mind coaching training. None so more than Ronnie O’Sullivan, who hired and still works with Dr Steve Peters. If it’s good enough for Ronnie, then it’s good enough for you…

How long can you focus on a ball for? Nic Barrow’s exercises like this will focus your mind 100% on the table…

You can have the greatest technique and best cue action, but if your mind wanders and you can barely focus for less than 10 seconds, you will not get the results you need.

Nic Barrow deals with this in his new video training. SnookerZone particularly likes the way the videos are presented.

It is just Nic sitting in a chair in the SnookerGym in Milton Keynes – talking to you – as if you were having a conversation with a friend. He explains all aspects of the “psychology” in an easy-to-understand logic and pulls away from the jargon.

Snooker Psychology: Jedi mind tricks…

The exercises he gives you and the words of wisdom are invaluable.

Just one example, for example, using anecdotes from players who have experienced advice from Nic, a former head coach of the UAE before key matches – advice that has worked.

One player, for example, was advised to “lower his expectations” in an important match and ended up improving his points tally by 200 points more than he expected. The moral of this story was to set yourself as a player a modest target that is both attainable and also not too ambitious. When you can achieve more than what you set for yourself, then that is priceless progress.

There’s a lot more besides in this package of training.


Why get mind coaching training? …

SnookerZone can guarantee that every player has a mental weakness somewhere with some aspect of the game. You may have honed your cue action. You may have honed your setup on the shot. You may have made tons on line-ups. But, then, why do some players knock balls in for fun in practice, but cannot make a 20 in a match? Have you considered that it’s not your technique that’s the issue, but maybe your focus and power levels of mental stamina?

SnookerZone would say it’s the latter than the former.

Sorry seems to be the hardest word?…

Let’s ask another question: Do you get angry when your opponent gets lucky? If so, you need to understand the reason why you think it’s unfair that you should feel sorry for yourself when your opponent goes on to win the frame (or match) from a fluke. You should take responsibility for all your actions on the table.

Was Canadian Cliff Thorburn sorry when he made the first-ever 147 maximum at The Crucible from a fluke in 1983 against Terry Griffiths? Not for £10,000 he wasn’t. Cliff of course, lost the final against Steve Davis in 1983.

Everything inside the course, SnookerZone will be trying to implement on the table. But the great thing about this course is there are lots of things you can do off the table so even though you may not get to a table regularly, you will have honed the mental aspects more and be more prepared when you do get to the table.



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