Jul GMT edu Rob answers soccer

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From: uyeyama@hawaii.edu (Rob Uyeyama)
Newsgroups: rec.sport.table-soccer,rec.answers,news.answers
Subject: rec.sport.table-soccer FAQ2 - Brush Passing Guide 
Followup-To: rec.sport.table-soccer
Reply-To: uyeyama@hawaii.edu (Rob Uyeyama)
Organization: University of Hawaii
Summary: Instructions on how to execute the 5-rod brush-pass & more
Keywords: foosball, table-soccer, table-football, bebefoot
Approved: news-answers-request@MIT.EDU
Originator: faqserv@penguin-lust.mit.edu
Date: 27 May 2006 04:19:34 GMT
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Archive-name: sports/table-soccer/brush-passing
Rec-sport-table-soccer-archive-name: brush-passing
Alt-sport-foosball-archive-name: brush-passing
Last-modified: 1994/04/15
URL: http//www2.hawaii.edu/~uyeyama/brush-passing.txt
Copyright: (c) 1994 Robert Uyeyama
Version: 2.4a

All of the latest rec.sport.table-soccer FAQs are available at Foosball 
Heaven's FAQ archive http://www2.hawaii.edu/~uyeyama/foosball.html

FAQ 2  Guide to Passing  v 2.4
(c) 1995 Rob Uyeyama (uyeyama@hawaii.edu)

The latest version of this file is available at Foosball Heaven

This FAQ is divided into three sections.
        I:   5-3 bar passing, advice for beginners 
        II:  5-3 bar passing, guide to brush-passing (for beginners and
                  intermediates); the most important chapter.
        III: 2-3 bar and 2-5 bar passing, preliminary guide.

Five bar in defense and in doubles play zone-defense will be covered in 
Guide to Defense FAQ-- for a quick review, see the "learning-foosball" 
(#4) as well as the definition of zone-defense in the glossary file 

       v2.2 Added a short paragraph on 2-5 bar passing options in Chapter 
       III, as well as a few minor corrections in Chapter II.
       v2.3 Added the paragraph "two more options" on the brush pass 
       and Chapter II was "cleaned up".
       v2.4 More clean-up

       This file is not intended to limit posts to alt.sport.foosball.  
       file is not a "complete answer" to passing, so if you have 
       please feel free to post directly to a.s.f. for added help.

       If anyone would like to write a chapter on the stick-pass series, 
       please let me know.

       The reason for this file's existence is its Chapter II, describing 
brush-passing.  You do not need to read Chapter I to learn the brush pass 
The brush-pass, however, is a very important technique for competitive 
occassional quick-to-learn trick.  Chapter III on 2-5 and 2-3 passing is 
only intended as a very general guideline.
       Regarding table brands, the brush-pass can be adapted to most 
of tables, although this file was written with the hard surfaces and 
toe-shapes of the Tornado table in mind.  If your table (for example a 
Dynamo) is much "stickier", you may find that the brush-pass attempt 
ends up in a pinned ball.  In this case adapt the technique, starting the 
ball not quite so far back, and it should work fairly well.  With the 
Tournament Soccer and similar tables (e.g. Premier Soccer), the men's 
ball slightly forward (from the recommended near-back-pin distance).  
almost all types of tables, the strategy of being able to shoot a quick 
_or_ lane pass from the _same_ position (and having the skill to catch 
a fast pass) is universal.  Note that the alternative stick-pass series 
not described here, and probably will be included in a later version of 

        At first, when seeing players much better than yourself for the 
first time, it seems most tempting to concentrate on learning their 
even this sort of knowledge will be insufficient, especially in any level 
competitive play; for even if you possess an unstoppable three bar shot 
your opponent a medicore shot, but if you cannot get the ball from the 
bar to your three bar, and your opponent can, you will lose the majority 
"good") shot on the three bar, passing it here will do little good.  So 
you've developed enough ball control to set the ball where you want on 
three bar, and once you've learned a pretty good shot, you should cease 

       The easiest pass, especially for use against other beginner 
opponents, is the "wall-pass."  This pass can be done either on the near 
far wall.  The near wall description follows:  Pull your three bar all 
travelling near the wall to the three bar, and if your three bar comes 
a hair off of the wall, the ball may roll past you between your near man 
the wall-- remember the bumper on the wall prevents your man from 
being in contact with the wall, so that "on the wall" actually means 
a full ball-length away from the wall!
        To facilitate catching a fast pass, angle your three bar forward, 
about at the angle at which you would be able to front-pin an imaginary 
ball, i.e. head backwards, toes forward.  This way the man absorbs more 
the impact of a fast moving ball, instead of causing the ideally fast 
to simply ricochet out of reach, probably to your opponent's five-bar 
   Note:  (For a more advanced catching technique, see part II "Guide to 
Brush Passing", which explains a wrist flick that is done with the 
bar at the same time as the pass, so that the maximum extension of the 
s at the forward angle I have just described in the previous paragraph.)
        To pass a wall pass, position the ball an inch or two away from 
s _not_ on the wall), and "shoot" it straight and hard to pass to the
man on your three bar.  Note a few points:  1)  this pass, if done 
correctly, deposits the ball squeezed in the space between the near man 
the 3-bar and the wall; 2) but even if passed directly onto the man's 
the pass is easily caught;  3)  However, if passed into the space 
n 1), it is possible to EASILY catch a pass that is as fast as your
five-bar shot! (although such a high-velocity pass may also be caught, 
more practice, directly on the toe of the man); 4) also note that this 
"wall" pass can be done with the ball's starting position even up to and 
level opponents you can wait until they flinch away from the wall, and if 
you can do the fast version of the pass, you can pass it through that 
fraction-of-a-second flinch.  7) Note than in a fast-paced game, you will 
eventually be able to immediately do a wall pass when you catch the ball 
your five bar, e.g. when your five-bar blocks a two-bar shot.  (However 
competitive play, all tournament level opponents would easily intercept 
an on-the-fly wall pass.)
        Two more things to think about:  1)  You DEFINITELY SHOULD start 
to make it a habit to keep your three bar in the front-angled position at 
all times, always ready to catch a moving ball, esp. from an on-the-fly 
angle shot may be open, and if so, you can shoot, or even try to pass 
through that hole.  This type of pass is called a LANE pass (i.e. passing 
through the space between the first and second men on the opposing five 
the ball at high speed, you have a tournament-competitive pass. This 
s described in the next part, II: 5-3 passing, Guide to Brush Passing.
for now, if you are only beginning, practice your ball control, your 
three-bar shot, and your fast wall pass.
        One other beginner pass:  Roll the ball down toward either wall.
At the FAR END of the 2nd man's reach (i.e. the closest the 2nd
man will reach toward the wall), pass the ball lightly with the 2nd man, 
angling it toward the wall (where your three bar resting).  This angle is 
easy, since it is in the same direction as the ball's original direction 
         Rationale:  Beginning opponents will tend to follow the 
ball, and as they also bang their rods against the wall, their 2nd man 
no longer guard the ANGLE-pass you just shot OUT OF its reach; only the 
man can guard it and he just banged into the wall as your opponent 
the motion of the ball!
   TWO TRICK PASSES that are good to know, but taken by themselves are 
useless to depend upon... i.e. if you're going to practice a pass, skip 
ball (slightly to the rear of the rod), between your first an second man 
the near side.  In one single fluid motion, pull the rod then flick your 
"kick" or lateral pass), which then immedietaly passes the ball along the 
the ball slightly toward the rear helps make a smaller lag time between 
kick and the wall pass, and in general is a good habit in passing.  2) 
bounce the ball rapidly between the 1st and 2nd man.  On one of the 
lift your man as the ball approaches the 1st man and pass it, either 
the wall, or along the lane.  Practice the wall pass version first, since 
t's similar to pass "1)".  This works because with every bounce you are
be the real pass.  Note that you can bounce it back and forth by mostly 
moving the men to meet the ball, rather than bouncing the ball the full 
the "stick-pass" series, which is not described here.
        PRACTICE TIPS FOR EVERYONE: Most beginners don't know the ranges 
each man's reach on the five bar, and don't know very well the _edges_ of 
the men's reach on the three bar.  So:  Lift the opposing five-bar, and 
The straight passes are easy to learn and intuitive, but intercepting an 
angling ball with the five bar is the part that is the hardest and needs 
before and find that their brain has figured it all out!
        For defending against passes, you can either angle your men
forward and attempt to "swat" at the passes, so that they bounce to
your three bar or back to your five bar... Or you can angle your men
backwards so that you will catch any blocked passes, so that now it
s your turn to pass-- you don't want your opponent to keep regaining
because you'll unknowingly be leaving the wall pass _always_ open!
The general motion is an unpredictable back-forth motion done very 
to swat away all slow- and medium-speed passes.  See the 
faq (#4) for more tips on 5-rod defense.

        I will begin with a disclaimer.  I am a rookie (i.e. beginning
competitive level) player, so my knowledge of brush passing may not
be entirely satisfactory to experts and pros but know the fundamentals 
enough to relate the technique and the conceptual reasons behind them; if 
you have any suggestions or corrections, please don't hesitate to email 
        As I mentioned briefly in part I, the essence of the brush pass 
that you can pass either a wall pass, or an off-the-wall pass (lane pass) 
from the SAME position; hence your opponent will not know _which_ pass 
are attempting until too late if the pass is fast enough.  The method I 
quickest results and knowledge enough to learn the other variations (e.g. 
far wall, off near-wall bounce, 2nd man brush-down, etc.)
   Once you feel you understand the concepts, SKIP to "HOW TO PRACTICE 
BRUSH PASS" at the end of this section; this will give the real meat of 
"getting better".  The beginning of this chapter will discuss the 
ntellectual how and why of the pass, as well as the practical (i.e.
s so detailed because I have observed many people who have tried to
the brush pass but had great difficulty because they didn't understand 
each element of the technique was really doing.  Once the player 
"why brush the ball", and "why place the ball so far back", and so on, it 
much easier to learn the pass.
        First, a commonly used hand/arm posture for the left arm is 
out to your left.  You should lean down slightly so that your upper arm 
almost directly above, and parallel to, your lower arm.  These techniques 
and put a spin on it.  Make sure that when you flick the rod with this 
that the men follow through to end up at least 45 degrees forward or even 
man backwards too much, you only need to lift it back enough to just 
clear the top of the ball-- any farther and you are revealing your 
ntentions to the opponent as well as compromising the power of your
to avoid rolling the handle along your fingers with an opened-palm when 
are passing.  It will feel strange at first, but keep at it.
        Rules:  Since passing from a stationary ball is illegal, you must 
the ball in motion.  Since passing IMMEDIATELY w/the same man you set 
the ball in motion with is also illegal (like a pull-shot-pass), you must 
     ***First position your 3-bar on the near wall; make this a constant 
t laterally and VERY SLOWLY toward your near man.  The near man will
   Notes:  1) The ball is placed to the rear of the rod because this 
   provides a better position to put spin on the ball once it is moved 
   laterally to the passing man. It is the spin which will result in the 
   angle in the ball's motion; 2) if the ball is rolled from a really 
   back pin (i.e. ball too far back) the near man will not be able to put 
   spin on (the back of) the ball, and will most likely only pin (the top 
   of) the ball again, or briefly pin then squeeze out the ball 
   unpredictably; we want to pass it, not pin it again.  3)  Make sure 
   the pass to your 1st man is perfectly lateral, so that it reaches the 
   man at near the same almost-back-pin distance it started from.  4)  
   slowness of the lateral motion is OK, because this is NOT the part of 
   motion which is intended to deceive your opponent; great care in 
   up the ball position with this motion, and the longer time-window to 
   choose among your impending passes are the two reasons for the slow 
   to your 1st man... keep it _slow_.
         Before I describe how to pass the ball with the 1st man, 
option of either wall-passing or lane-passing.  Ideally then, you want to 
out by watching the near man's range of motion as you push and pull the 
all the way.  The general center of this left-right distance is where you 
LARGEST distance guarded by only a single man on the entire five bar; 
s no 6th man beyond the wall to come to the rescue to block a wall
this is why passes are done near the wall; also the near wall is more 
visible, so we begin with this version, rather than the far wall.  The 
of the wall pass seems simple enough; angle the ball toward the wall, and 
there is enough spin the ball will hug the wall all the way down to your 
three-bar.  But where is the lane?  Pull the opponent's five-bar to your 
near wall.  See the opposing 2nd man?  He can't go any further!  The 
lane pass is just out of his reach; the only man who can block it is the 
man, who is also busy guarding the wall pass!
        Okay, now the hard part.  Remember approximately where you are 
to pass the ball from (between the wall and lane).  This is really only 
approximate, since you will wait for an opening, and then hit it, and the 
ball will be rolling slowly while you are deciding.  CENTER your near man 
the 2nd man's tenuous-pin, your near man should look like it is about to 
the ball; it should not be obviously far up in the air away from the 
Since the man is centered on the ball and following it, the opponent 
tell which pass you are preparing for, since at the center you are 
for both!  How so?  From here, you "brush" the ball, either in the push 
brush-up) or pull (aka brush-down) direction.  Usually a few fakes are 
thrown in for good measure, but let's practice without fakes for now.
         What does "brush" mean?  Try to "scrape", or "brush" the BACK or 
BACK-TOP very edge of the ball with your man as hard as you can, while 
applying the LEAST amount of pressure possible to the ball, but 
maintaining contact and DO THE BRUSH MOTION FAST.  Remember to 
follow-through after the brush; don't stop and let your 5-rod follow 
through all the way to the near (brush-down) or far (brush-up) wall.
n a
SPIN on the ball, which angles the ball in the direction of your brush 
a brush-down pulls it toward the wall, a brush-up pushes it toward the 
	Finally, the two most common mistakes:  1)  none of this will work 
unless at the time you brush the ball, the ball really is towards the 
of the rod, i.e. just forward of the line at which you could back-pin 
brush-down to a stationary ball, and begin with trying a pinned ball.  
Then progressively move the ball forward and try it again; the best 
brush often works where many beginners think it will actually be 
at the ball, as if to shoot it forward; the brush motion is mostly a 
brush), then adjust from there; the ball will move forward if you brush 
the _very end_ of the brush motion-- but at first, don't even try to 
as a followthrough and just try to isolate the fast brushing motion.
          Once you get the hang of it, it is VERY IMPORTANT to always be 
aware, especially with Tornado men (with subtly angled toes), of the 
area of the toe which is intended to brush the ball; it is usually along 
before did you?  If your pass doesn't seem to be working, concentrate on 
the bottom of the two surfaces of the toe on either side of this edge.  
bottom one is gridded with horizontal and vertical hatches, and the top 
one has only vertical hatches-- these vertical hatches on the top side 
        If done correctly, the brush will result in a significant spin 
(good), causing it to whizz away at an angle; in the case of a 
brush-down/wall pass, the ball will angle into the wall and _hug_ the 
all the way to your waiting three-bar.  Practice the pull-brush wall-pass 
first and note: the first time you do it right, YOU WILL KNOW; the ball 
move in a very counter-intuitive way, seemingly disobeying the laws of 
foosball Physics; it will seemingly be about to bounce off the wall, but 
nstead it will hug the wall as described all the way to your 3-bar.
this happens the first time, remember how it feels like--  and try to 
an entire ball-width.
         Notes on doing it wrong:  1) If the ball is too far back when 
unpredictable direction, or simply stay pinned.  2)  If the ball is too 
forward, your brush motion is a) too transparent to the opponent and b) 
mild resulting in a mild angle (perhaps missing the wall or lane and 
colliding with the opposing man) and little wall-hugging behavior.
        Practical notes:  1) at first, you may not find it easy to center 
your near man behind the rolling ball, so remember to roll the ball 
at first if you are intending a brush-up, you may be inadvertently 
away your intentions to the opponent, and the mirror image also applies 
the brush-down (pull-brush).  Once you are well-practiced, you will be 
to spin the ball w/your brush in both directions from directly behind the 
ball, or insert a series of fakes before you brush, for example fake 
up-down, up-down, in rapid succession, followed by "up", or "up-down" to 
Again, always be aware of the brushing surface of the toe at whatever 
you choose; 3)  To catch a wall pass, just leave your three-bar on the 
n the front-angled position described in part I.  5) To catch a lane
begin with your 3-bar ON THE WALL, then move it off of the wall AS you 
be able to just "swing" at it with only medium brush/spin and get away 
t if the opponent is adamantly guarding the wall; this is only a crutch,
and will not work in the higher levels of tournament play; still it'll 
you well at first.  7)  Experiment with a variety of fakes, especially 
an "up-down-up-down" motion behind the ball before you pass.  8)  Use 
brain; figure out which pass your opponent wants to guard, and shoot the 
OTHER pass!  9) Once you understand the concept by reading this, skip to 
"HOW TO PRACTICE THE BRUSH PASS" at the end of this section.
   NOTES ON CATCHING THE BALL: Catching the ball using the simple 
front-angled position of the three-bar (described in Part I) is 
as you catch the ball, and here's one good way to do this:
         1) for the three bar (right hand), find the correct position on 
that they 
are standing straight again; now you are ready to flick your men forward 
you catch a fast pass!  3) On a Tornado, forget 1) & 2), and just put 
your thumb 
along the _narrow_ part of the handle on the bevel one or two away 
counterclockwise from the top bevel (i.e. about 11 o'clock) when the men 
Your thumb here prevents your wrist from swinging the 3-bar too far 
This motion _greatly_ enhances your chances of catching a fast pass on 
table, so now make it a habit to assume this grip (relative to the rod's 
once you begin to practice faster and faster passes; don't ignore!

         The description above was about how to execute the pass in a 
you develop the "brush-up" and "brush-down" motions themselves.  The 
brushing exercises will all be upon a stationary ball (which in a real 
little to the rear as described.  The fakes included in these exercise 
an essential part of what you actually do in a real game.
         HOW TO PRACTICE THE BRUSH-DOWN (pull-brush) to the wall:  First 
the ball about three inches from the near wall (along your 5-bar, 
to the rear of the rod, not quite so far that you would pin it).  
fake-brushes, just barely behind, but not touching the ball: 
the wall.
         Hence, the entire motion will be: down-up-down-up-DOWN, the last 
"down" being the real brush-down pass.  The pace (of the d-u-d-u-d) 
be leisure-rapid-- in other words, not so fast that you are concentrating 
the rapidity, and definitely not slowly since these are supposed to be 
fakes.  Remember to concentrate on putting spin on the ball and being 
of that angled-surface of the toe which is actually in contact with the 
ball, since your fakes can distract you from your technique.  At first, 
bring it in closer and closer to your near wall as you practice your 
         HOW TO PRACTICE THE BRUSH-UP (push-brush) through the lane:  
your 3-bar on the wall as before, and place the ball in the same place 
your 5-bar also as before.  Now: 1) do the SAME four fake-brushes behind 
ball: down-up-down-up.  2)  Continue with down-UP, doing a real brush-up 
the final "up".  3) As you brush up, move your 3-bar off of the wall to 
catch the pass through the lane.
          Hence the motion will be down-up-down-up-down-UP, looking 
The difficult part is catching the ball, so you really have to practice 
cheat: _always_ begin with the 3-bar on the wall!
         So, practice about 100 of each version, or at least 25 if you're 
not used to practicing yet.  Once you have learned the techinque, you can 
completely catch each pass; don't get caught in the common mistake of 
at different distances from the wall; for example with the brush-up, if 
ball is very close to the wall, you will need more "brush" and less 
to angle the ball into the lane, while if the ball is farther from the 
and more directly in front of the lane, you will not need as much 
but more "swing" to execute a fast pass.  And the brush-down can be 
anywhere from near the wall to (eventually) the farthest reach of the 
man away from the wall.  So vary the position once you've learned the 
motion, and that way you'll have a larger "strike-zone" from which you 
be a threat to brush pass in either direction.
         PRACTICING THE SETUP:  This will be two similar exercises-- 
Execute a series of fakes, about six: down-up-down-up-down-up.  Then 
ntercept the ball before it hits the wall by moving the near man in the
begin again.  That's all.  The other exercise is similar except, after 
near man.  As it slowly bounces off, execute another series of fakes: 
a real game situation, a common technique is to bounce the ball off of 
are useful in a real game so as to allow you to bring the ball into 
         PRACTICING TWO MORE OPTIONS:  1)  Practice the steep brush-up 
mmediately after a bounce off of the near wall.  2) Practice the 2nd-man
brush-down through the lane to the wall.  One way to do this is a 
on the exercise of the previous paragraph: after you use your near man to 
bounce the ball back to the 2nd man, the 2nd man can then brush-down.  
ball should travel steeply through the lane (bring the opposing 5-rod to 
your near wall for practice) and end up on your 3-bar near-man on the 
The other option from the 2nd man is a brush-up to your _middle_ 3-bar 

   One final note:  there are many passing options with brush and stick 
learning the same series on the far-wall, learning tic-tac stick passes, 
learning a blindingly quick kickpass to the wall.  Hopefully, the 
s it for brush-passing!  Practicing will give you a knowledge of spin
tournament play on the hard surfaces of Tornado tables.
        Most importantly, you should master the essential skill of the 
to 3-bar brush pass described in Part II before practicing too much in 
the commonly slightly airborne passes and shots. The three bar should 
be placed along one wall; pick one, the far or near, and just LEAVE IT 
and practice passing to the three men in this position only for a while.  
underneath and past the three-bar.  Hence, for fast passes, hold the 
front-angle LOWER, even close to 45 degrees!  However this is not the 
the key is TO HOLD THE HANDLE LOOSELY.  If you are holding on too 
the pass will simply ricochet off of your man.  However, if the rod is 
loosely, and at a low forward angle, the ball will "muscle" the man's 
up, coming to rest in a front pin.  So 1) Hold it correctly for the 
Keep it on one wall, and don't move it, so the defense knows where to 
the men to be.
   The two-bar's easiest pass, of course, is the wall pass.  Make sure to 
bumper on the rod won't let your man get directly behind a ball that is 
actually on the wall.  You can pass to the 3-bar men which are not on the 
gnore the men and shoot your shot-- there is a mild chance that a missed
the opposing five bar is against the wall, guarding the wall pass), and 
angle right to your three man sitting on the wall.
        Two variations:  1)  when the ball on the 2-bar is set up for a 
or pull, the 3-bar should be placed _off_ of the wall so that the 1st man 
be held up "floating" ready to come down in case of a pass.  2)  Or, when 
(push/pull), and as the opponent flinches off of the wall, reverse your 
motion and brush a wall pass.
        For a singles game:  All of the above applies, and you can 
alternative pass from the 2-bar to the 5-bar.  Developing a good left 
on the two bar is fairly important.  Also, if you can actually shoot 
or push/pulls with your left hand, your opponent doesn't know whether to 
far 2-man, and pull the rod fast.  The opponent will flinch in your pull 
a pseudo-wall pass along the far wall.  Lifting all the rods, and 
angle passes back and forth between your 2 and 3 bar is worthwhile.  
       2-BAR TO 5-BAR PASSING:  This is often a more reliable way to get 
ball to your 3-bar, in other words by executing a _reliable_ 2-5 bar pass 
then another _reliable_ 5-3 bar pass, instead of a risk 2-3 bar pass 
       Set the 5-bar on the near (or far) wall, and catch passes the same 
_much_ riskier, so that you will in general always be watching for the 
the center of the field, you should briefly watch for the open stick pass 
the 3rd man.  
Happy Passing!