As home showpieces go, a pool table in a domestic setting is right up there with the hot tub and a sports car in its own heated garage. A pool table is more than simply a means to play a game of billiards; it is a piece of furniture. As an addition to your home, a pool table can be a focal piece of design and is an excellent way to get the family together and entertain guests.
Pool tables come in a variety of sizes and finishes and range from traditional to contemporary in appearance. There is a pool table in existence to match or compliment any room or decorative tastes. The most important factor when considering a pool table for your home is the available space. UK spec pool tables are typically 6-7ft long with their American counterparts being larger at 7-8ft in size. However, to allow for safe and enjoyable play, a pool table requires a far greater area around it that is clear from obstructions. A full-length pool cue is 57″ (4.75ft) and there needs to be sufficient space to allow a player to address a ball at the very edge of the table while engaging in a cueing action. A shortage of space or the existence of obstructions will seriously hamper your enjoyment of the game.
One method of estimating the amount of space required for a pool table is to add twice the length of your longest cue stick to the length and width of the playable area. For example, the playing area of an 8-foot pool table is 44″ by 88″ and a standard pool cue is 57″ in length. Using the methodology above, the room required to house an 8-foot table is 158″ by 202″, which is approximately 13 feet by 17 feet. However, it is often recommended that you add an additional 12″ in each direction to guarantee a comfortable playing environment and to take account for the rails, which add to the overall dimensions of the pool table. As such, you would ideally situate an 8-foot American pool table in a room that is a minimum of 14 by 18 feet.
Due consideration should also be given to the fact that pool is a social game and not a game that is so readily enjoyed in a space barely large enough to accommodate the table. In all likelihood, you will want to arrange some chairs for observers and players awaiting their turn and perhaps add a cue rack to the wall. That being the case, the room size requirements would be considerably larger than the minimum standards recommended above.
Not all pool enthusiasts are blessed with large unobstructed open spaces in their home. Thankfully, there are ways and means of enjoying the game in a more confined environment. For example, a 7-foot table will require approximately 12″ less around each of its sides and it is possible to purchase shorter cues. Using a 42″ short cue on a 7′ table and forgoing the recommended 12-inches of additional space yields a room requirement of just 10’5″ by 14’5″. In addition, there is always the option of purchasing a 6-7 foot UK pool table or a smaller folding table.
Regardless of your taste or your budget and if you have some space to set aside for it, there is probably a suitable pool table for your home.