Pool Table Space: Cheating Smaller-Sized Rooms

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Suggested room size requirements for a 4½-foot-by-9-foot regulation play pool table are a room of 14½ by 19 feet, and even a smallish-sized pool table of 3½-foot-by-7-foot typically needs a space of 13½ by 17 feet. But if you don’t have that kind of space, or the time and budget to enlarge the space or build a new one, you still have a few options to get a decent-sized table in your home without threatening the drywall. 

Even if you have a constricted space—say a garage with an open area of about 14×14 feet—you can still comfortably fit in a reasonably-sized pool table. Here’s how. 

Mini-Table or Bar-Sized


A mini-table is one solution for a tight space—English pool tables can be had that are as short as 6 foot long. But most home pool players will want an American-style pool table, that is at least an 8-footer or even a 9-footer (required for tournament play) if possible if they have adequate space.

Unfortunately, a 9-footer is ruled out, and placing even a 4×8-foot “bar” table in a 14×14-foot space will provide you with only three feet of room to maneuver past the long rails of the table. But not to worry: The problem isn’t your body but your cue stick. 

Cue Stick Solution


A standard cue stick is almost 6 feet in length and in a tight space when the stick comes back from the table on your backswing, things will be close and at best you’ll find your shots cramped and restricted. If the ball is on the rail most of the cue will have to be toward the wall to one side—or even poking through the wall! But the old days of using one cue have passed. Players now have regular playing cues along with all kinds of specialty cues for jump shots, break shots and others.

So, go ahead and buy that nice-sized 8-foot table, and while you’re at it, buy an extra cue to use that is a child’s cue or half-sized cue. You’ll be set with your regular cues for 95 percent or more of your shots—and should a ball be near a rail and also require extra vigorous cue movement, simply pick up the small cue for that shot only.

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