What Size of Pool Table Should I Buy?
When purchasing a new pool table, there are several things to consider with regards to size. Even if the table will fit comfortably inside the room, there must be adequate room around all sides of the tables for players to shoot. You should consider what size of cues you plan to use, and whether the table will be used by adults or children. You may also wants some room for a rack or cabinet to store additional cues and balls.
Generally speaking, 8’ tables (8’ x 4’) are considered ‘professional’ size, whereas 7’ tables (7’ x 3’6”) are considered ‘bar’ size. Most pool table buyers will opt for the larger size if they have the space available, as the larger table provides a better playing experience. A 7’ table is not only better suited for smaller rooms, but if you’re someone who regularly plays pool in a bar, you might want to play on the same size playing field when practicing at home. Using standard 58” pool cues, an ideal room size for an 8’ table would be 13’ 2” x 16’ 10”. For a 7’ table, the ideal room size would be 12’ 9" x 16’. Using smaller pool cues, such as those of 52” or 48” in length, is an option if your room has any ‘tight’ spots around it.
If the pool table will be in a basement, you’ll need to consider any poles or support beams that may obstruct play. The breaking end of the table should be positioned away from the support beam, in a manner where the beam disrupts play as little as possible. While not ideal, some pool table owners have their table positioned next to the middle of one of the side rails. If a shot is completely obstructed, a ‘house’ rule may be implemented, allowing the player to move the ball into a better position for shooting.
If you have the funds available, if you have adequate space (a room with dimensions around 13’ 8” x 17’ 10”), and if you are serious about developing your skills, you may want to consider a 9’ (9’ x 4’6”) table. This table is more challenging to play on. While the game might be more difficult at first, once you’ve grown accustomed to playing on a table of this size, standard 8’ tournament tables will seem easy by comparison.
- Ben Grant