Read below to find out all of the bells and whistles of league play.
We have also provided an outline of some of the major leagues across the U.S., to educate you on the history of each league and to help you determine which type of league best fits you!
Now the question of the hour...Why consider playing pool in a league?
• The most obvious answer….You can drink beer and play this sport. (Billiards and beer is also known to slow the aging in men).
• It is a place to meet new people and have a social life (increasing your communication skills haha).
• Practice makes perfect...You can improve your game.
• You get to travel to play different teams (depending on what league you play for).
• You get to play in nationals championships and have the opportunity to win lots of money.
• It’s great time away from the house!
• You can increase your pool abilities by challenging yourself (mentally, emotionally and physically).
• If you are competitive, this is a great sport to compete.
• You can play pool at any age.
• Health reasons...burning calories, hand eye coordination etc.
• Pool helps with your decision making and thinking on your feet.
• It sharpens your mind and your math skills.
No matter what league you end up choosing to play in, just remember you will meet some great people, have tons of fun and improve your game!
APA (American Poolplayers Association)
- Terry Bell and Larry Hubbart founded the APA in 1979.
- World’s Largest Pool League with over 250,000 members (30% being women)
- They offer benefits and discounts if you are a member for: General, Billiards, Health, Hotels and Resorts, Gifts and Shopping and Travel and Leisure.
- They have three different championships where the winners can take up to $15,000- $25,000 home depending on which championship they are playing in! These include: The World Pool Championships, Poolplayer Championships, The U.S. Amateur Championship (flight and hotel reimbursed for the winners, no purse and advancement to a pro event) and for players 18 and younger, the Junior Championship (no money is awarded to the winners).
- The APA is recognized as one of the top small business and home based franchise opportunities in the world.
- One of the keys to the success is "The Equalizer", a unique handicapping and scoring system that makes it possible for players of different playing abilities to compete equally.
TAP (Pool’s Amateur Tour)
- Amateur League since 1989, founded by Loyd Schonter. This league is present in the U.S. and Canada
- Annual membership is only $20.00 and weekly league play is $8.00 a week.
- Some say we are the "Players League", some say we are the "Rolls Royce League". I say we are the league of sportsmanship, the league for the present and future generations. Not the biggest, but the best. The league with a vision for you "The Player"! -Loyd L. Schonter Founder & President
- At TAP we realize players love to show off their accomplishments through our pins and patch program. Exclusive to the TAP Members we have a numbered series so players can collect pins and patches of all types, and as each series is done, a new design is released.
BCA (Billiard Congress of America) & CSI (Cue Sports International)
BCAPL (Billiard Congress of America Pool League)
- The BCA Pool League (BCAPL) was started in 1978 by the Billiard Congress of America (BCA) as a means to unify independent leagues around the world.
- There are more than 500 BCAPL-sanctioned leagues in more than 8 countries with a total membership over 50,000.
- Mark Griffin, CEO of CueSports International (CSI), purchased the league from the Billiard Congress of America in 2004.
- The league has 450+ sanctioned leagues across North America and throughout the world.
- The BCAPL is known to be a league organized by players for players and attracts players of all experience levels, from beginner to advanced.
- Most notably the BCAPL hosts what has been called “The Greatest Pool Tournament in the World”, the BCAPL National 8-Ball Championships every May in Las Vegas, Nevada. The national event has over 22 divisions including singles, teams, and scotch doubles ranging from open to grand master levels.
USAPL (United States of America Pool League)
- CSI introduced a secondary league system in 2010, the USA Pool League, which is structured exclusively around eight ball match play. They have since added 9 and 10 ball.
- Membership is free
- USAPL is the only national league to have exclusive use of the "Fairplay" handicap system.
VNEA (Valley National 8-Ball League Association)
- Non-profit organization founded in 1979 and currently has 100,000 members and an additional 5,000 junior members in the U.S.
- The Mission of the Association is to encourage pool players to form leagues and play in weekly competition on pool tables owned by the operator members.
UPA (United States Professional Poolplayers Association)
- Founded in 2002 by professional pool players
- Motto: “The evolution of pool.”
- They have three different types of members: Touring Professional Membership ($165 annual) for those who would like to play at a professional level, Platinum Membership ($55 annual) for premiere amateur players and the Gold Membership ($25 annual) for the amateur league players.
- The following most known professionals are apart of the UPA: Shane Van Boening, Darren Appleton, Johnny Archer, Mike Duchaine, Thorsten Hohmann, Mika Immonen, Max Eberle, Efren Reyes and Tony Robles.
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