Is Pool A Sport? Is It Still Popular Today?

Whether you’re a professional player or not, pool or billiards is a game for all ages, gender and even life status. This game has been one of the favorite indoor sports by many even in the years back, and from this day forward.

Pool was described as one the safest sports not only in a particular country but worldwide. Although it does not require a rigorous activity, unlike other sports such as basketball, or tennis, playing pool or billiards needs some physical and mental skills. Now you might wonder, is a pool a sport or a game? Are you confused every time people have mixed up information about this? In this article, we will give you a brief background and even help you understand if Pool or Billiards is considered a sport or a game.

Is Pool or Billiard considered a Sport?

The short answer is YES! Do you want a longer answer? Read on. By definition, according to Oxford Dictionary, the term “sport” is an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or a team competes against another or others for entertainment.

On the other hand, Pool or also known as Cue sport requires physical strength and skills. It has several variations, including the snooker, 8-ball, 9-ball, and 10-ball.

And according to Meriam Webster, players of this sport do a particular activity depending on the rules and regulations when you incorporate this two, pool and sport. Also, they compete with one another and not just for recreational purposes. This alone makes pool a sport.

Is it Still Popular Today or a Dying Sport?

Since the pandemic and most people throughout the world just stayed inside their houses, some of the most recreational games that can be played are table tennis, chess, and even pool. These indoor games give people ways to enjoy and maximize their time while they are on a lockdown. A nice pool cue, set of pool balls, indoor pool table or outdoor pool table are actually great investments if you have the necessary space in your home.

Also, playing these games can improve their health and socialize with other people by doing strenuous activities.

But even before the pandemic, I can say that pool and billiards are not as popular as before. There are now fewer pubs and clubs, the decline in tables, removing them(the tables) and replacing them with slots. The competitive scene, however, is still strong and will likely be much alive after this crazy pandemic. So, all in all, it is not a dying sport but pool is not as popular as it used to be.

Even though the pool is initially played in America, there are still countries you have also known for playing this game, such as those Asian countries, even in Australia, Ireland, and Canada. Over the years, the pool has been known for being one of the most convenient games to played with your friends and family members.

Is Pool an Olympic sport?

Although Billiards has been recognized and declared a sport by the Olympic Committee, it has not yet been reported as an Olympic Sport. According to the World games, billiard sports have different categories: snooker, pool, and carom. 2016, when they added the cue sports category during the Asian Games.

Currently, there is various movement from committees that has a purpose to include billiards in an Official Olympic game for 2024 in Paris, France. They agree that it was never easy to push pool like an Olympic game before many things need to be considered. But with the history that pool has proven, it is most likely to be approved. Not only that because a lot of pool players and pool professionals have been eyeing for this very moment to come for them also to be recognized all over the world. Having a title for an Olympic game will surely be a proud moment not only for them but also for their family and the country they represent.

With the increasing number of pool/billiard around the world, there have been many claims and request to include them in the Olympics. They believe that it can also be one of the best Olympics sports. According to Eurosports, snooker or pool is one of the highest rating sports showed on television. It has a wide coverage for about 1.7 billion homes across the world and has a viewership of almost 500 million.

Does Pool and Billiards Have Governing Bodies?

All sports have its own governing bodies that manages how it must be operated. Just like other sports, there are different bodies that implements various rules and regulations on how to play the game appropriately.

According to its website, the World Pool Billiard Association (WPA) was the first international governing body for Pocket billiard followed by the Asian Pocket Billiard Union. After this, North America and Oceania consequently joined. The WPA was a member of the World Confederation of Billiards Sports that represents the discipline and regulations for snooker, pool and carom.

On the other hand, the WCBS is an international organization under the International Olympic Committee. It was on March 3, 1990, when the first General Assembly was held wherein the World Pool Billiard Association (WPBA) was declared as an international governing body for billiards or pool. Activities in the said sport began to be implemented, such as the World 8th Ball championship. 10th Ball Championship and many other World Championship events wherein a total of 3 million dollars were at stake.

Some interesting facts about Pool and Billiards

  • Did you know that billiards or pool became the first sport to have a world championship in the year 1873? Then the rest was history. Since then, the pool has been a part of the life of some people who don’t want to go out and play.
  • At first, pool sport was just a game: a recreational activity and pastime for people who do not want to play outside. But mind you, it takes a lot of time, effort, and practice to become a pro or professional in this kind of field. Every player must have a coordinated body, especially those requiring long hours of game session wherein you need to condition your whole body, legs, lower back, hands, and abdomen.
  • Also, the players must have a mental capacity to think clearly about what particular move they will make. It is one of the essential things to do if you do not want to lose a game, especially when competing for a tournament or championship.
  • One more good thing about pool is that they can improve a person’s physical and mental health.
  • The word cue, came from the French word “queue,” which means tail. Did you know that pool stick was not the first stick that was used? It is a curved metal or wooden head that has rail shots called “mace”. It was then played by presidents, lords, refined men, women, and even ordinary people. It is believed that according to historians and researchers, the first billiard table used was when the French King Louis XI reigned in the 15th century

Final Thoughts

Having been heard all the vital information that differentiates the sport from a game, do you agree now that pool is a sport? Although it is still on its way to becoming an Olympic sport, many have recognized pool from all parts of the world. From being a recreational activity to becoming a world-class sport wherein, world-class talents are discovered and idolized.

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