Glossary Of Terms
Robert Uyeyama , with Jim Waterman



Either of the two defensive bars, each with 2 men. The second rod away from the goal.
Either of the two "offensive" bars, each with three men. The third rod away from the goal.
The "goalie" rod, with three men. Some tables such as the Tornado lack ramps and instead have a third man on each side of the goalie rod to pick up what would otherwise be "dead" balls due to the flat backfield. The first rod away from the goal.
Either of the two "mid-line" bars, each with five men. The fourth rod away from the goal; the two rods at the center of the table.
5-bar pass:
A pass from the 5-bar to the 3-bar. See also "brush pass", "stick pass".
aerial shot:
A defensive shot where the ball is caught on an almost- horizontally oriented man, then flipped through the air over the rods toward the opposite goal. If the ball hits the top of the table, the shot is not valid. There are several ways to catch the ball, and several places to balance the ball on the man, depending on the table-type. Also "Rainbow Shot", "Goalie Field Goal".
Alien (shot), The:
A novelty shot in which the ball is moved on a rod intended for the right hand (2-bar or 3-bar, and in singles the 5-bar also), but upon being shot, is shot by cranking the rod with the left hand. Usually done with the 3-bar. See also "crank (shot)"
A specific ranking term indicating status above "Rookie" but below "Expert" and "Pro". USTSA 1000-1299 pts.
  1. To release the ball in a direction not parallel to the long axis of the table. See also "spray", "angle (shot)".
  2. To tilt the men at an angle. A front-angle is toes-forward, head-back, and a backward-angle is toes-backward, head-forward.
angle (shot):
  1. A shot which is shot at an angle, straight at the goal, from the ball's original and stationary position (i.e. no pulls, pushes, or kicks involved).
  2. A spray shot. See also, "straight shot", "cutback", "angle", "spray".
American Table Soccer Federation. The recent new tour organized by Johnny Lott and played on the Stryker Tables. The ATSF can be contacted at Johnny Lott's voice mail box at Dynamo at (817) 284-0114 ext 112, or at Dynamo's general and toll free no. (800) 527-6054.
"auto-catch angle":
When the 3-bar (sometimes 5-bar) is angled forward in order to more easily catch any passes originating from the rear, or when it is angled backward to catch any blocked shots originating from the front. The angle is just lower than the angle for a pinned ball; to catch harder passes, the angle can be lower with a looser grip on the handle, or the angle can be produced as the ball contacts a fairly upright man.
"auto-stuff angle":
When the 3-bar or 5-bar is angled forward so as to automatically stuff any ball shot from the opposing defense because of the speed of the bounce resulting from the block of any fast shot.
A ball-pin to the rear of the man, i.e. in the opposite direction as the man is facing. Also "back-pinch". See also "pin".
back-pin/back-toe (shot):
Any shot which begins from the back-pin position; sometimes characterized by frequent use of banks to either side, as well as simple reverses and kicks.
bad-boys doubles:
A doubles-play format where the offensive and defensive partners switch places if and only if they score.
bait defense:
Any defense which opens an enticing hole to the offense; the defender ideally predicts the offense's timing and closes the hole as the shot begins, or even before it begins. The bait defense may be moving or set. If the bait seems to be set and very obvious, this is also known as "fishing". See "moving defense", "set defense".
See "hardware" for information on purchasing balls and other parts.
When a player is very good at catching loose balls. Also, a goal can have a "ball-magnet".
To bounce the ball off of a wall (in rare cases a bank can refer to a bounce off of another man, a "Joe").
bank (shot):
A shot which involves a bounce off of the wall.
A rod from a foosball table.
bar player:
Someone who has a good 3-bar shot, but is not very good at passing with the 5-bar; in other words a good non-tournament player.
British Columbia Table Soccer Association. The major Canadian table-soccer organization, with its own set of player rankings.
The table component that is attached into the holes in the side of the cabinet and within which the rods actually rest and slide. baby foot: The term for table-soccer in the UK, also "table-football."
bebe-foot, baby-foot:
The French term for table-soccer. The term is also used in Quebec, Canada.
One of the facets of the handle, especially on a Tornado table, i.e. if the handle is not circular in cross section, it's probably a polygon or some approximation of one; the bevel would be any of the sides of the polygon. On a Tornado, due to the pin-fastened handles, the bevels are always in the same place relative to the men, and may be reliably used to reproducibly position the hand on the handle, for example for pass-catching.
The non-competitive version of the Tournament Soccer tables. ($500,000). See also "browntop".
Book, The:
The USTSA ranking listings book.
See "Lott, Johnny" for info on "The Complete Guide to Foosball". Also check out's FAQ files.; See "FAQ files." Also email for his recently published book on the push-kick shot.
Box, The:
The goal.
See "cabinet".
brick, to:
In defense, to be "Like Wall" rather than a "Sieve"; stopping all of an opponent's shots.
A competitive version of the TS table; a "$1,000,000" table. See "TS".
  1. To hit the ball so that it moves in an angle due to a pushing or pulling movement of the rod as the ball is struck; this motion is in essence a "brushing" of the ball and gives it the high (or low) spin required to angle the ball. In passing, the ball is often placed behind the rod, just less than where a tight back-pin would be. This maximizes the brush effect by "squeezing" the ball, but may erroneously cause a squibb pass. See also"squibb pass", "squeeze".
  2. A brush-pass. See "brush-pass".
A brush in the pull direction. See also "brush", ""brush-pass".
A 5-bar pass executed using a brush in either direction. this pass is usually executed with the closest man on the five-bar in the vicinity of the near wall; upon passing, the ball is slightly to the rear of the rod (just less than where a tight back-pin would be) and is often transferred to the closest man on the five bar from a tenuous (not tight) back-pin on the second-man. From here, the ball can basically be lane-passed or wall-passed from the same position, ideally in the center of this near man's field of movement. The brush gives the ball a high spin to angle the ball in either direction, and in the case of a wall pass from far off of the wall, the spin serves to keep the ball "hugging" the wall all the way down to the three bar. A slight squeeze will give the ball such a spin. Often, the left arm posture for the five bar is a palm-up underhand one with the elbow pointing directly to the left, to provide leverage for the brush motion. Other common options are an off-the-wall lane brush and a 2nd-man brush through the lane to the wall. In addition to the 5- to 3-bar pass, a 2- to 5-bar brush pass is common in singles play. See also "brush", "squeeze", "squibb pass", "stick pass". See FAQ2 for how to learn a brush pass.
A brush in the push direction. See also "brush", "brush-pass".
The rubber elements on the rods on the outside of the distal men which help shield the men and cabinet from impacts due to rod motion.
Bring Your Partner. See also "DYP".
The "box" of the foosball table; does not include, the rods, the elements on the rods, the bearings, nor the playfield.
Organized betting, usually on seeded teams in Open events. Often the right to a bet on a specific team goes to the highest bidder, and sometimes the payouts are percentages of the total amount wagered by all parties. Betting on yourself is allowed.
camping out:
For a defense to predict & arrive at a hole much sooner than the offense shoots at it-- usually even before the shot begins!
cashing in:
To "hit the bank". See "bank (shot)"
A solid or semi-solid food product made from the fermentation of dairy liquids.
To hit the ball on either the front or back corner area on the opposite side as the intended direction of ball-movement. The ball is either slightly forward or backward of the rod, and is often pinned outright. Used for front-banks (ball setup back), Texas-T shot (ball setup front). See also "front-bank", "Texas-T".
chocolate-chip, to:
See "double-dip".
Complete Guide to Foosball, The:
An out-of-print foosball book by Johnny Lott. See "Lott, Johnny" for complete information.
See "ramp".
count system offense:
A system described by Lott. Instead of trying to read the defense, choose a hole and a count beforehand. Then don't look at the defense, count to your number then shoot your hole. This may yield a higher percentage scoring when the defense is "out thinking" you.
crank (shot):
A shot usually with a left-hand rod which is like a spin executed by rolling the handle along the wrist and arm as one pushes the hand downward past the left edge of the handle. Usually shot with the goalie rod. See also "goalie crank", "Alien (shot)".
On some tables, the receptacle, shaped like a quarter slice of a sphere, on the outside surface of the table, leading to the hole through which the ball is served.
A shot or pass in which the ball's path curves due to extreme spin put on the ball, which originates from a very high-pressure (back) pin position, which then is released as the rod is moved to the left or right as the pressure on the pin is maintained, resulting in the spin. Most often seen as a 2- to 3-rod pass (back-pin ball on 2-rod 2 to 4 ball lengths from the wall, and curve the ball by moving the rod away from the wall; the ball curves _towards_ the wall to the waiting 3-man on the wall) or a trick 3-rod shot. See also "squeeze".
An angle shot in which the ball is moving in one lateral direction (left or right) before being shot, but is angled toward the goal in the opposite direction (right or left) upon being shot, often resulting in the defense to continue moving past the actual trajectory of the ball. May be combined with pull, push, or various kick shots. May also be used in passing, especially 2-bar to 3-bar passing.
A game for a total of three players. Play is two-on-one, with the doubles team always serving. If the singles players scores, he gets a point. If the doubles team scores, no points are scored and the players rotate counterclockwise (i.e. the singles player is now the doubles defender, and the doubles forward is now the singles player). The first player to five points wins. Another variation dictates that when the defensive doubles player scores, instead of rotating all the players, the defensive switches directly with the singles player; this is more fair, mixes up the matchups more, and rewards the goal scorer.
dead, or dead-bar:
  1. See "dead-man"
  2. A "dead" ball, unreachable by any of the playing figures. See also "gray zone".
An exercise device to strengthen the wrist; it's a palm-sized ball to be squeezed by the hand.
A term to describe a shot of the ultimate length. e.g. (using the _offense's_ perspective for push/pull & L/R): for a pull-direction shot, pull the defending 2-bar ALL THE WAY to the offense's near-side wall so that the right-hand side bumper (the offense's right) is touching the wall. The length of the long shot must therefore be long enough to, in this case, go AROUND the LEFT man on the two bar (the offense's left) and into the goal, i.e. the ball passes between the two men on the defending two-bar. At this position, the 2-bar is "dead" and cannot move any further to cover this long shot, hence the name. The dead-bar shot may not be as possible/practical on some tables with smaller goal widths than the Tornado's. However, on the Tornado, if the painted goal line is open, the "dead-man" shot is also open. Most shots (all shots?) can be shot dead-man (e.g. push/pull, push-/pull-kick, snake, tic-tac, pin-shot, five-bar kick shot). Also "dead-bar".
defensive area:
The playfield from the two-rod to the back wall. Some tables have corner ramps in the defensive area.
defensive bars/rods:
The goalie rod and the two-rod.
A convention in France which occurs on any goal from the 5-bar, the near 3-man, or on any "bizarre/random" event: The point is marked by moving a counter halfway between the scored and unscored points on BOTH teams. Whoever scores the next goal takes 2 points, i.e. takes the point and the "demi". If another demi is scored instead, another counter is added to the first demi, and the next "real" goal counts for 3 points. Hence, with "demi" rules, one must be careful not to score accidental or 5-bar shots, since it may actually count for the opponent.
designated event:
A doubles tournament format in which players of a certain ranking and above must play in goal (defense) as a handicap. The less experienced players get to be the stars, and the more experienced players develop a good defense, albeit grudgingly.
A type of table. A "old-time serviceman's table".
A light and fairly slow shot usually aimed at or around the near post, timed so that the defense vacates this post when expecting a power long-shot, e.g. a long pull-kick, or any other ball movement back to the far post.
On a Tornado table, the white circular markings along the three bar which represent different areas to shoot from, and also represent one ball-width from dot to dot. The outside dots usually are thought to represent a shot which will not go into the goal if shot straight.
To come out of (i.e. win) the loser's bracket in a doubles elimination tournament and beat the winner of the winner's bracket in two straight matches to win the entire tournament.
A tournament format in which to be eliminated from the tournament altogether, a team must lose two matches. See also "double-dip", "loser's bracket", "winner's bracket".
A shot which first strikes one post of a goal, immediately deflects to strike the other post of the goal, then is deflected away from the goal.
2-on-2 play. For variations see also: "Hawaiian Doubles", "Goalie Delight", "Bad Boys Doubles", "Super Doubles", "Cutthroats" (2 on 1)".
A maintenance tool, esp. on Tornado tables, used to push tension pins (to affix playing-figures) through the holes in the rods. It is a solid pin almost the diameter of a tension pin, but is more than twice as long and is tipped with a blunt nib which fits into the inside of a tension pin. See also "pin".
To serve the ball. Also "foos".
A type of table. It has corners which "curl" up gradually from the playing field. Also the company which produces this table and which now also produces the Striker tables. See also "Striker", "ATSF" Dynamo's number is (800) 527-6054, and may be called for parts and tournament information for Dynamos and Strykers.
A doubles tournament format where one is to "draw your partner".
European Table Soccer Union.
European pin:
see "pin" (shot).
A specific ranking term describing a rank below "pro" but above "Rookie" and "Amateur". USTSA 1300-1799 pts. Usually someone with a consistent tournament level shot and a very studied and effective 5-bar. Also: "Novice".
An open-hand shot. See "open-hand".
FAQ files:
(frequently asked questions files).'s FAQ files are available by anonymous FTP at in /pub/foosball, or by email from See the beginning of this file for a detailed listing. See also "book."
A bank (usually a shot) off of a wall, originating from a man on or near the outer edge of the rod, and bouncing off of the wall on the opposite (far) side. A 2-rod or 3-rod shot.
See "post".
See "primo."
finger grip:
A grip on the handle where the palm doesn't not touch the handle; the four curled fingers and the thumb hold the handle. This is not a palm-roll, or "open-hand" grip. Also known the as "golf grip".
finger width:
A term to describe the "length" of a shot such as a pull or a snake. e.g. for a pull-direction shot, pull (from the offense's point of view) the defending 2-bar almost all the way to the wall, specifically X fingers widths (e.g. 1 FW, 2 1/2 FW, etc.) separating the wall from the right-hand side bumper (The offense's right). The length of the shot must therefore be long enough to, in this case, go AROUND the LEFT man on the two bar (The offense's left) and into the goal, i.e. the ball must pass between the two men on the defending two-rod. Hence the smaller the finger width, the longer the shot. re: 0 FW see also "dead-man".
See "bait defense".
five-bar pass:
A pass from the 5-bar to the 3-bar. See also "brush pass".
  1. The serve where the ball is entered into play, hence the phrase, "Losers foosers" for the custom of the scored-upon team serving the next ball. The term is derived from the German word for "foot". In Germany, "fussball" is "football" which is "soccer" in the US. Foosball is known as "kicker" in Germany, "bebe-foot" in France.
  2. Also a stuffed shot. See "stuff".
foosball widow:
  1. A spouse/significant other who is left alone (widowed) while the player is out playing.
  2. A spouse/significant other who hasn't been exposed enough to become addicted to the game.
Somebody you should have looked up in the Book before you put money on the table, even though they looked drunk.
One of the vertically adjustable elements on the bottom end of each leg of a foosball table. See also "toe".
forward shootout:
A specialty event in which the opponents take turns shooting a single shot (technical/penalty shots) from the 3-rod. Also "FS" or "FSO". See the separate FAQ file, "USTSA-rules-of-play".
A bank shot executed from the 3-bar. If shot with the outer men, can be executed via an angle to the wall. If shot from the middle man from a pass from an outer man, can be executed by rod motion to the side of the intended bank. If shot from a stationary position by the middle man, can be executed from a back-pin chip.
front line:
The 3-bar.
A ball-pin to the front of the man, i.e. to the same side that the man is facing. Also "front-toe". See also "pin".
front-pin (shot):
Any shot which begins from the front-pin position.
See "front-pin".
front-toe (shot):
  1. See "snake shot";
  2. see front-pin (shot).
See "Forward Shootout"
Any table whose playing field is covered by a sheet of glass. Prevalent in pubs in England.
goal liner:
The table element of some tables which is shaped like an inverted "U", and lines the side and top edges of the goal.
Usually the center (or only) man on the goalie rod.
goalie crank:
A crank-shot executed with the goalie bar. See also "crank (shot)".
goalie delight:
A rule that every time the goalie (defensive player) scores, as a reward the next ball is dropped into play in their defensive zone instead of being served normally. The condition usually does not apply on the last point of a game, i.e. the first ball of the next game does not go to the goalie.
goalie rod:
The defensive bar closest to the goal; the 3-man goalie rod of a Tornado, the 1-man goalie rod of some other tables.
goalie wars:
A specialty event in which the 3- and 5-rods are lifted, and the players attempt to score on each other from their defensive regions. Also "GW".
Parts of the table where a ball is "dead" and unreachable by any of the playing figures.
  1. The exact positioning of the hand on the handle relative to the rod. See also "bevel";
  2. A tennis, or similar grip wrapped around the handle and usually fastened with a 1/4" band cut from an inner tube on the outside edge of the handle. See also "rubber".
The textured patterns in a man's toe which help grip the ball.
See "Goalie Wars"
To shoot the ball immediately as it comes within reach of the rod; does not preclude actually having an on-goal shot. Also used as a derogatory term to describe most 5-bar shots.
Hammer, The:
The pull shot. See "pull (shot)."
To slightly better the odds between teams of different skill levels (R/A/E/P), spotted points and/or first-serves are given to the lower-ranking team scaled to the difference in _total_ (add rankings of doubles partners) skill level between the teams.
For hardware & parts information, try calling the numbers listed for Tornado, Stryker, Dynamo, or Rene Pierre to locate a local vendor. These vendors will often carry parts for several types of tables, including T.S. Most promoters can also handle mail-orders. Also try calling local game-machine vending companies since if they vend foosball machines, they will likely sell parts. Almost any conceivable part can be purchased, from entire playing fields or cabinets to men, bumpers, pins, balls, corner ramps, drink racks, goal-liners, etc.
A match format that if one team wins a game by a shut-out (5-0), they automatically win the match. "Hawaii Five-Oh, Book'em Danno!"
hockey shot:
A shot which goes into the goal off of a deflection from a man on the same team as the shooter.
Where they make movies.
home-version table:
A _non_ coin-operated table. Also "time-play table."
hover snake (shot):
A snake shot which is preceded by the middle man "hovering" over the stationary ball and occasionally tapping/pinning it; the shot is executed immediately after on of these "taps". See "snake (shot)".
hear birds, to:
When a cheap shot has occurred. ("do I hear birds?... cheap, cheap...)
The touring tournament table before the TS tables.
Inside Foos:
A Californian-based player organization. They have a newsletter and currently make videos (w/excellent foos-commentators) of open USTSA Tour events and other meetings such as workshops and clinics. For subscription and video information, write to 7030 1/2 La Tijera Blvd.; Los Angeles, CA 90045; or call (310) 670-2408.
An embroidered foosball jacket, often awarded as a first-place bonus prize by the sponsor of a major tournament.
To (illegally) shake the table while banging the rods against the walls. If subtle or not called, is a good cheating way to mess up your opponent's pin or any shot depending on a pin
A shot which goes into the goal off of a deflection from a man from the opposing (i.e. defending) team.
Kentucky (shot):
See Texas-T (shot).
For spectators to advise/coach the players. In tournament play this is illegal.
A lateral pass from a man on the rod to usually the adjacent man, for the purpose of then shooting or passing it forward. A kick shot executed when the passing motion is begun with the ball away from the passing man can be VERY fast, hence its use in tic-tac shots, as well as adding it to pin--shots and other shots to quickly place the ball to shoot into the opposite post.
One term for foosball in the German language, derived from a popular Swiss table manufacture from Geneva of the same name. Another German term is "tischfoosball" for table-soccer.
A 5-bar pass to the three bar which is just off of the wall, very often angled and very often grazing just off the edge of the reach of the 2-man of an opposing dead-man 5-bar. See also "5-bar pass".
The white line on the playing field which traces the edge of the goal. If the line is visible, the dead-bar shot is open.
When the ball rolls slowly but surely into the goal, despite all of the defender's best efforts.
  1. To (illegally) lift the table by pulling up on the rods.
  2. To lift the men on a rod to allow a free ball path.
limited event:
Any event where the combined point totals of the two players on each team may not exceed a specified ceiling, e.g. a "Limited 3500" event has a 3500 point limit.
Far post. See "post".
"Long Shot":
The foosball movie. Johnny Lott was the shot double for the rainbow shot. See "Lott, Johnny".
losers' bracket:
The section of the tournament-tree in which all of the teams which have lost one match in a double-elimination ' tournament play each other (i.e. this bracket is single-elimination). "winners of the losers'" refers to the winner of this bracket, the team which goes on to play the "winners of the winners'" See also "double-elimination", "winners' bracket"
Lott, Johnny:
Old time world champion pro who currently is promoting the ATSF-Striker tour. Described as a mortal enemy of CE McCloud. Was a shot double in the movie Long Shot. Johnny Lott has written probably the only Foosball book, the out-of-print "_The Complete Guide to Foosball_ by Johnny Lott, with Kathy Brainard.; Chicago, Ill: Contemporary Books, 1980. xi, 176 p.: ill. : 24cm ISBN 0809259990 (hdbk. $9.95), 0809259982 (pbk. $5.95)" See also "ATSF", "Striker" for information on ATSF events.
The playing figures on the rods.
  1. A largely honorary ranking traditionally bestowed on perhaps a dozen players in the world; a rank technically above "pro".
  2. In the old Dynamo tour, a rank above pro;
  3. In the USTSA the twelve top-ranked players;
  4. In the USTSA the winner of the single-elimination Master's Singles event in the Masters Tour event, in which to qualify, one must place in the top twelve of Open Singles; a single green Master's Jacket and Master's Cup is also awarded.
McCloud, C.E.:
Inventor and President of Tornado Table Soccer. See also "Tornado", "USTSA".
Double game ball, as in 4 pts to 4 pts, sudden-death to 5pts. Also "sweat ball".
the 5-bar.
A tournament format in which money is added to the amount collected from player entry fees to increase the payback to the top finishers.
monkey shot:
A snake shot, named for the curled-wrist on the handle on the setup. See "snake shot".
Foosspeak for any very effective defense for the Snake shot. Often involves good coverage of the dead-bar shot by switching the utilized man on the 2-bar unpredictably.
See "Long Shot", "video".
moving defense:
A defense in which the men defending the goal constantly move both horizontally and back and forth (to cut off different angles) so as to hopefully open different holes in an unpredictable manner. Also known as "stochastic defense" or "random defense", although the defense, if done well, is usually not strictly random at all.
near post:
See "post".
New England Foosball Association. Call Mad Maggie's Billiards at (508) 774-5347 for more information. They publish the newsletter, The NEFA Fun Fax.
USTSA, Inside Foos, NEFA, and OFAP put out newsletters, as do Rene-Pierre aficionados. See appropriate listings.
no-man's land:
In defense, when 2/3 of the goal is open because the goalie is standing directly behind one of the men on the 2-bar.
See "Expert".
Oklahoma Foos Awareness Program, the newsletter of Tornado of Oklahoma-- 3315 N. Service Rd.; Moore, OK 73160; (405) 799-9797.
offensive bar/offensive line:
The 3-bar.
A shot trajectory which, if not altered or stopped, enters the goal.
open event:
A tournament event in which anybody may enter, i.e. even the best players (i.e. pros) with high point totals may enter.
A shooting technique where to attain high ball speeds upon shooting, the handle is allowed to roll slightly along a partially opened-hand so that the man is cocked back further than normal to shoot. Often used for bank shots, pull-kicks, and sometimes for push- and pull-shots. Also "fan".
Push direction. See "push".
See "hardware" for information on buying parts & hardware.
Peppard, Lee:
The creator of the Tournament Soccer table and promoter of its tour in the 1970's. Johnny Lott in his book calls Peppered the "founding father of professional foosball."
  1. The position when the ball is being squeezed between the playing field and the bottom of a man; this naturally must occur with the man tilted with its toe to the front or to the back, which are known as front-pin and back-pin, respectively. Sometimes, pin is used in the context of a ball being squeezed between a man and the wall. Also known as "pinch". A "walking pin" is when the ball is continuously moved horizontally from the pinned position, only to be pinned again on the same bar.
  2. The table element which affixes the men to the rods, taking the place of both nut and bolt of some tables. The advantage is that there is no thread (as on a screw) to be worn off to make the men loose.
pin (shot):
A shot beginning from a pin position; this usually means a front-pin shot that is known as the European Pin Shot, or a European Front-Pin Shot. Also "toe-shot".
see "pin"
In a tournament, a special area for important matches, usually equipped with spectator seating.
The entire surface of the table upon which the ball moves during play. Also refers to the actual table element of the playfield, which may be removed or replaced for maintenance.
  1. Points in a game.
  2. Personal USTSA ranking points.
  1. On some tables, the goal-liners. See "goal liner".
    1. A shot which actually strikes the edge of the goal and is deflected away at an angle (i.e. not a flat bounce off of the wall adjacent to the goal), but does not go in;
    2. to shoot such a shot;
    3. to strike the edge of the goal in this manner (e.g. "The shot posted.")
  2. On-goal at the very edge of the goal; this may refer to a shot's trajectory as well as the area of the goal which may be defended. The terms "near post" and "far post" are often used. "Near post" (also known as "short"), is the edge of the goal on the same side as the ball is placed as a shot is executed; the "far post" is the edge of the goal on the opposite side (i.e. a shot going "long"). See "on-goal" .
A European term (esp. Italy) used for a style of game-play in which it is legal to stop, pin, and maneuver the ball along a rod. Also known as "fermo." To be contrasted with "vola". Before a game it is agreed among the players whether the style will be "primo" or "vola". See also "vola."
A specific ranking term denoting the highest rank, one above "Rookie", "Amateur", and "Expert". USTSA 1800+ points. Pro-A and Pro-B currently exist in the USTSA ranking system, with Pro-A at (2200?) points. See also "USTSA."
The reversal of motion of the rod at the shooting of a shot, very often seen on tournament-level versions of shots on the competitive level. This whip-like recoil helps keep the ball motion straight or even causes it to cut back. Essential to hit most dead-man shots. See "dead-man", "cut-back".
A person who officially or semi-officially locally organizes tournaments, lobbies for more playing locations, and otherwise promotes the sport of table-soccer. The table-manufacturers often have available a list of promoters who will have information on local playing locations as well as any regular or special tournaments. Most promoters are also table-operators and may also be able to sell hardware. See also "table-operator", "USTSA", "ATSF".
  1. The act of literally pulling a rod (towards you).
  2. The horizontal vector (direction of movement) _towards_ the player initiating ball movement, also "down" as in "brush-down".
pull (shot):
A 3-bar shot executed entirely with the middle man, which pulls the ball laterally and very rapidly from its starting point then shoots it into the goal; The starting point is usually from a maximally pushed-rod position. See also "roll fake."
The mirror-image of a push-kick. Often shot using an "open-hand" style. See "push-kick", "open-hand".
  1. The act of literally pushing a rod (away from you).
  2. The horizontal vector (direction of movement) _away_ from the player initiating ball movement, also "up" as in "brush-up".
A 3-bar shot executed entirely with the middle man, which pushes the ball from its starting point then shoots it into the goal; The starting point is usually from a maximally pulled-rod position.
A 3-bar shot beginning with the ball on the closest (i.e. Right edge) man a few ball-widths from the wall. The ball is pushed so that it may be shot with the middle man. Usually executed open-hand in a single motion, and is often shot dead-bar long, or a fake by shooting an angle shot to the near post with the near man. Email Reid Abel, for information on his self-published push-kick book.
Any defense where the philosophy is that the defense will wait until the offense begins the shot after which the defense "races" the offense to the open hole.
rainbow (shot):
See "aerial shot".
In some tables, any of the four raised corners of the playfield. Some ramps are separate triangular elements, and some, like on the Dynamo and Stryker tables, are curved extensions of the actual playfield. To replace triangular ramps, it is often necessary to install a separate Styrofoam support under it to raise it to the desired pitch. Some tables, such as the Tornado, lack ramps altogether. Also: "corner", "corner-ramp."
razzle dazzle:
A flamboyant style of play intended to show off the talents of the players for the audience. Also "Saturday Night Foosball".
rebound (shot):
A novelty shot. On the 3-rod, the ball is setup on an outer man as if for a pullkick or pushkick. The shot begins normally but is shot into the wall short of the goal. The middle man shoots the rebound into the goal.
See "pro-recoil".
Renee Pierre:
A French-make table (from Chalon-sur-Saone) with unbalanced men with metal-weighted toes, telescoping rods, linoleum playfield, metal-scoop goal, egg-shaped cabinet, sawhorse-type legs, and soft white-covered cork balls. A 6-player variety ($1699) also is manufactured. In North America, it is popular in Virginia Beach (Virginia), North Carolina, and Quebec (Canada), and is currently distributed by Brady Distributing Co. of Charlotte, North Carolina at (704) 357 6284, Fax (704) 357-1243. Prices for new tables range from $699-$1499. See also "bebefoot".
A resetting of the time-limit on a rod, usually by a jar from the opposing side which results in any ball motion, or by having the ball briefly touch a man on an opposing rod. The time-limit may also be reset by calling a time-out.
The table element to which the men and handles are attached; bar.
roll fake:
A fake from the pull setup in which the ball actually rolls very slightly as the middle 3-man lifts and brushes the left side of the ball (rolling it mainly backwards a fraction of an inch), then shoots it straight in. This fake can fool an opponent wary of the purely-lift-fake in which the ball is not touched at all before being shot straight.
rollover (shot):
See "snake shot."
A specific ranking term for the lowest rank, below "Amateur", "Expert", and "Pro". USTSA 0-999 pts. All new players in tour events begin as rookies with 900 points, although for "limited" events, they are considered to have 1200 points. However, if the player has a record of beating Amateur-ranked players in tournaments, that player may begin as an Amateur; the same holds for a similar record against Experts or Pros.
rookie pass:
  1. A heavily discounted entry fee (usually about $100) to allow a Rookie to enter nearly all the events in a large tournament. "Amateur passes" are also often available for slightly more money. These passes encourage newer players to enter competition and also incidentally results in large tournament trees, 128 doubles or 256 singles at large events.
  2. A rookie-level 5-rod passing technique. :)
A handle grip fashioned out of a section of inner tube, usually slightly longer than, and fitted over the handle. Helps especially with the snake shot. See "grip".
saturday night foosball:
See "razzle dazzle".
  1. a 5-rod pass then 3-rod shot.
  2. a set of options from a shot set-up, e.g. a "back-pin series."
Similar to a race-defense; the defense is totally stationary in anticipation of the offensive shot.
Near post. See "post".
shot mark:
A small streak left on the table after a shot.
The best lubricant for the rods. It will not build up grime, nor will it damage the plastic components such as the bearings. Drip silicone (as opposed to spray silicone) is slightly preferable.
A game, match, or event in which each team has one player.
to shut out the opposite team in a game.
A brush, esp. on a stationary ball. Often used as an option from a pull setup. See "brush."
Illegally sliding the table horizontally, usually by pushing or pulling the rods after they are already against the wall.
snake (shot):
A 3-bar shot executed from a front pin and a grip on the inner wrist; the ball is moved horizontally then the arm executes a reverse-crank so that the rods spin backwards so the same man strikes the ball. Technically not a spin shot since the angle from point of last contact to point of shot is just under 360 degrees; the follow-through after point of shot must also be under 360 degrees, and contact w/the rod must not be broken. Usually started in the center with the middle man, although push-only or pull-only specialists exist. Also: "Monkey Shot", "Wrist Rocket", "Rollover".
specialty event:
Any one of the following: four-on-four, goalie-wars, roller-ball, or forward wars. Specialty events are usually open events.
See "stuff". Also applies to blocked 5-bar pass attempts, and may even be a shot on goal, esp a bank-shot.
A shot trajectory which goes between the two primary men defending the goal, each man being on each of the two defensive rods.
spray, spray (shot):
To angle a shot in the same direction that the ball was moving just as it was shot; i.e. a spray pull (shot) angles toward the right/pull-direction; spray-pushes from the push-kick position to the near-post are common.
When the ball is literally lightly squeezed in such a tenuous back pin position so that upon being pinned while being brushed, the ball is released with a very high spin (and therefore angle). The spin is less extreme that that of a "curve" ball. Sometimes used as a shot from the defensive region of players who back-pin the ball often. See also "brush", "brush pass", "pin", "curve".
squibb pass:
A pass which seems illegal but if begun legally is technically still a valid pass under USTSA rules: When a brush pass is accidentally momentarily pinned, then immediately shoots/squeezes out as a pass. A legal pass if the intended brush pass originally legal. Also "stubb-pass". "brush-pass".
straight shot:
A shot which is shot from the ball's original and stationary position straight into the goal on a trajectory parallel to the long axis of the table. See also "angle shot".
stick pass:
A pass which is passed straight and not in an angle. Ideally the ball is both brought into position (as with a kick or a series of kicks) and passed, extremely fast. The typical stick pass series is done after a rapid 2-1-2-1 man tic-tac, after which follows a 2-1 lane pass, a 2-1 wall pass, a 2-wallbounce-1 lane pass, or a 2 or 2-1-2 pass to the middle man in the lane between the opponent's 2 and 3 men. See also "brush pass".
The touring table of the ATSF. There is the old Striker, and there are prototypes for a new "Electronic Striker by Dynamo", with telescoping rods, digital displays, and a speedometer-equipped goal. Johnny Lott's table. For information on Striker tournaments you can contact Johnny Lott's voice mail at Dynamo at (817) 284-0114 ext. 112, or for a toll-free connection (ask the operator for box 112) and more information on hardware and parts (800) 527-6054. See also "ATSF", "Lott, Johnny".
stubb (pass):
See "Squibb pass".
When a defensive shot is blocked and immediately shot back at the defense from which it originated; this is usually done with the 3-bar, although stuffs from the opposing 2-bar are seen in goalie-wars.
A 2' X 4' table-soccer game with very little resemblance to "foosball"-table-soccer. The men are played by flicking them individually, the playing field is set at a pitch, and the game is generally more faithful to the rules of actual soccer. The game has a large following in Europe with large regional championships, including a "World Cup".,, and sometimes have Subbuteo threads.
super doubles:
In a tournament, the event in which the doubles championship teams from all categories play each other, single elimination, beginning from the lowest division champions to the final match with the Open Doubles champs.
switch(-up), to:
  1. For the offensive and defensive players to switch roles; this is possible only between balls or during time-outs.
  2. For the defense to switch the man on the 2-rod being used to block a shot; this is one technique in a moving defense, but if used too often the offense can "time the switch" and score.
table, a:
A foosball table.
One synonym for foosball in England.
Any person who organizes the placement of their table-soccer machines for commercial purposes. Most exclusively table-soccer-oriented operators are also promoters, and in general seem to maintain their hardware in better condition than other large general-purpose vending companies or businesses which own their own machines. See also "promoter."
Table Talk:
USTSA's newsletter. See "Tornado" for information.
A term indicating a ball out of play, after an airborne ball strikes the top surface or ashtrays of the table then falls back into the playing field; such a ball is considered out of play, as if ejected from the table.
For a player to reveal their intentions to the opponent.
tension pin:
See "pin".
Texas-T (shot):
A 2-bar or 3-bar shot beginning with the ball in a front pin, usually considerably to the left or right oft the field. The ball is moved to the next man over and shot; the move is executed by chipping the front edge of the ball on the opposite side as its intended direction of movement; The chip is in essence a very exaggerated bank, so much so that the ball moves from a front pin and is so nearly horizontal that the next man on the bar can come down and shoot it from slightly rear of the bar. Also "Kentucky shot".
See "book", "newsletter", and "FAQ" for more information on foosball-related text.
tic-tac (shot):
Onomatopoetically named for the sound that the shot produces during its execution. Basically either a 2-bar or 3-bar shot where the ball is passed continuously and hopefully misleadingly from man to man to man so that when the shot is executed, the defensive will be in the wrong place to block, especially if they are following the movement of the ball; most often shot to the far post or angled to the near post.
In many tables (esp. TS and its clones), the bolts on the outer sides of the table near the top connecting a metal rod through the table beneath the scoring counters. Tie rods must absolutely always be kept tight, otherwise the table may be quickly damaged permanently.
time-play table:
See "home-version table." So named because when used commercially, the balls are rented to players by the hour. Sometimes this term denotes a version of the table a notch higher than a "home-version" table.
When an offensive shooter or passer times a predictably moving "moving defense" so as to wait for the open hole then hit it.
The tip (i.e. bottom) of a man.
toe (shot):
A pin shot; named because of the use of the man's "toe" on the ball. See also "front pin (shot)", "back pin (shot)"
Tour, The:
Any of the professional table-soccer tournament tours. See "USTSA", "ATSF".
The touring table and parent company of the USTSA. For information on the table, their newsletter Table Talk, Tour events, and local tournaments in your area, you may call or write Tornado Table Soccer, Inc.; 4949 Rendon Rd; Fort Worth, TX 76140; (817) 483-6646 or their Tornado Hot-line at 817-561-0511. See also "USTSA", "CE_McCloud"
See "Tornado", "Stryker", and for more information on tournaments.
Someone who is experienced in competitive level play, i.e. not losing any loose balls, usually shooting only the tournament (i.e. best) shot from the 3-bar, having a good moving defense, knowing game strategy and psychology, using time-outs well, knowing the rules well, etc.
An elimination-bracket diagram for a tournament event.
Tournament Soccer brand table; the previously touring tournament table before the Tornado. Also known as "browntop" or "Million $" tables.
The material from which the Tornado balls are fashioned. Unlike older-type balls, these balls do not dent with use.
United States Table Soccer Association. The USTSA holds tournaments exclusively on Tornado brand tables, from Fort Worth, TX. They publish the newsletter Table Talk. See "Tornado" for address & phone numbers.
See also: "specialty events", "doubles", "cut-throats", "vola".
See "Inside Foos" for information on foosball videos.
A European term (esp. Italy) for a style of game-play in which the ball may not be stopped, pinned, or even maneuvered roller-ball style along a rod. Only one hit/touch is allowed per rod after which the ball must move to another rod, and the two defensive rods are considered different rods. These rules result in: 1) slower 5-rod to 3-rod passes with on-the-fly angle shots; 2) the 2-rod repeatedly bouncing the ball off of the back wall or passing it back and forth with the goalie rod; 3) a great variety and skill at 3-rod to 5-rod back pass offensive shots. To be contrasted with "primo". Before a game it is decided among the players whether the style will be "vola" or "primo". See also "primo."
walking pin (shot):
A pin shot which is preceded by numerous lateral adjustments of the [usually front-] pin. See also "pin (shot)."
wall pass:
Any pass along the wall from one bar to another. If properly executed, the opposing side must be completely against the wall, since the bumper on the rods pushes the edge man away from the wall nearly a ball length to begin with. Most commonly from 5-bar or 2-bar to 3-bar. See also "5-bar pass", "brush pass".
winners' bracket:
The section of the tournament tree in a double elimination tournament in which those teams which have not lost any matches play each other. Losing teams in the winner's bracket enter successively progressive berths in the loser's bracket. The winner of this bracket is referred to as "winners of the winners US. This team plays the "winner of the losers'" for the tournament title, which it wins if it wins a single match, and can lose only if it loses in two straight matches, because of the double-elimination format.
The USTSA World Championships held every year in Texas.
a weak execution of the Snake/Rollover shot. See "snake shot."
See "grip".
wrist rocket:
See snake shot.
World Table Soccer Association. The defunct touring organization existing before USTSA; based on the TS table. See also "Peppard, Lee".
A double-bank shot, from the 2-bar, although a 3-bar Z is not unheard of.
zone defense:
  1. A defense against a 2-bar shot, which involves the 3-bar and 5-bar covering part of the goal, and the goalie-bar and 2-bar covering the other part; frequently the 3-bar and 5-bar will cover "long", leaving the straight and near shots open but covered by the defensive bars. Usually the #3 and 4 men on the five bar, together with the middle man on the three bar cover long, while the center goalie covers the edge of the goal, and the #1 man on the two bar cover the remaining area of "short", while these two defensive men are slightly angled toward each other to guard the "split" between them; these numberings refer to counting the men from the edge of the rod, beginning on the side nearest to the side the ball is currently on (in the opposing side's defensive area).
  2. Also can refer to a defense against a 2-bar shot involving coordinated use of the 3-bar and 5-bar only.