It’s no secret that a pool table can transform any room into a hub of activity, for close friends, extended family or to relax on your own at the end of a busy day. But finding the right table for the room size and space you have is both an art and a science, and with so many options out there it’s no mean feat either. Get it slightly wrong and you’re forever tilting your cue up the side of a wall or denting your new table with the door.
To put your mind at ease, we’ve created a comprehensive guide to choosing the right pool table to match the space you have, complete with a size chart and room dimensions for UK and US pool tables. We cover all standard pool table sizes, typical pool cue lengths, and everything in between.
What are standard pool table sizes?
Let’s start with your options. Don’t let the words official, regulation, and tournament-size confuse you when exploring pool table sizes - it can be a minefield out there. But there are a few things you need to know…
All pool tables are measured in feet, and the range to consider is 6ft to 9ft (any smaller and we’re looking at kids tables, any bigger and it starts to get a little comical…). Importantly however, the actual length of the table will differ based on whether you’re in the US or the UK - a 7ft table in the US is a little bigger than a British 7ft one - and typically the set of options to choose from will be bigger in the States too due to open plan houses being commonplace.
Here are the most popular pool table sizes available, so get a feel for which one suits you best and then take a look at our size chart further below:
British 6ft pool table:
A small pool table and the typical size you’ll see in pubs and clubs around the UK, where making the most of space is key. A great option for home use if you’re tight on space and don’t want to compromise too much on playing quality.
British 7ft pool table:
A regulation size table for 8-ball pool, tournaments and leagues. The most common option on-line and it can come in many formats whether folding, for outdoor use, with a multi-games surface, or doubling up as a dining table.
American 7ft pool table:
Slightly longer than a UK 7ft table due to how pool tables are measured differently around the world. This is the smallest table you’ll see in the US at nearly 2 and a half metres in length.
American 8ft pool table:
Average-sized but a full size pool table nonetheless in the US, and a popular choice in the UK too for people with a little more space inside or outside the house coming in at just over 2 and a half metres in length.
American 9ft table:
The biggest option to consider and certainly more common in the US than in Britain due the playing space needed and the ease of installation. It spans nearly 3 metres in length and over a metre and a half in width.
What are standard pool cue lengths?
Next up, an important second step for calculating the amount of space you need in a room is to understand the pool cue options. This is because the amount of space you need to comfortably home a pool table depends on the size of table and the length of the cue you use. It really is as simple as that.
Whether you’re in the UK, the US or anywhere else for that matter, there are only really three sizes of pool cue to consider. These are 57 inch, 54 inch, and 48 inch, and as a general rule of thumb you should stick to a 48” cue if you’re relatively new to pool, go for a 54” one if you’re a bit more advanced but shorter than the average, and 57” if you’re a bit taller than average.
If you’re not quite sure what to go for, your best bet is an adjustable cue with attachments that are easily screwed on or screwed off to suit players of different heights and levels of experience. Take a look at our article on How To Choose a Pool Cue with Top Pool & Snooker Cues to Buy for inspiration and to find the best option for you and your table.
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Size charts: how much space do I need?
Now onto the most important part, you’ve got a good idea of the pool tables and pool cue sizes that suit you best, but do you have the space for what you want or will you have to make a compromise or two?...
As a rule of thumb, you want to take the length and width of the pool table (not the playing surface), and add the full length of your chosen cue to each side to determine the room dimensions required. To make it easy to calculate, we’ve taken the two most common pool table sizes, a British 7ft table and an American 8ft table, and have created diagrams to show you exactly how much space you’d need depending on what pool cue you go for with all the right pool table measurements.
If you’re considering buying a table that’s a different size to the examples we’ve given above, take a look at our comprehensive pool table size chart for all shapes and sizes below, in centimetres or in inches.
Pool Table Size Chart in Inches (Imperial)
Pool Table Size Chart in Centimetres (Metric)
What else should I think about?
You’re nearly there now, but before you buy your perfect pool table there are just a few more things to consider to make sure you’re getting the most out of the space you have and are well set up to create the best playing experience.
Create the right lighting
Whether it’s locating your table close enough to a plug socket for a stylish arched floor lamp, or putting it directly below a light fitting to replicate that engaging pub-style atmosphere, lighting can really elevate your playing experience. Don’t let yourself be bound by the sockets or fittings in your house of course, but make sure you’re not left playing in the dark.
Find an even surface
Easily overlooked but perhaps the single most important thing for achieving the best possible playing surface: make sure the space you plan to put your table in is even. It’s worth getting your spirit level out, or picking up a cheap one on-line like this Stanley Shock-Proof Level. Don’t worry though, nothing a little bit of chipboard under one leg can’t solve.
Choose a place for drinks
More of a nice-to-have than an essential, but it’s always nice to make space to rest your drink while you play. If you’ve ever been in a pub or bar where the pool table is that little bit too far from the nearest surface you’ll know what I mean. Find a side-table or home bar that’s just under waist height to not interfere with play, but if you have the space, why not check out our Top Home and Corner Bars for inspiration.
Make space for doors
And last but certainly not least, it’s an obvious one when you read it but something you really don’t want to overlook… Just run those measurements one last time to make sure you have enough space for any doors to open and close without coming into contact with your brand new pool table. The last thing you’ll want is a chip taken off your new favourite purchase.
What to do if you're short on space
If you don’t have room indoors but you’ve got a sizeable garden or patio area that you’re already using for entertaining, why not check out our reviews of the Top Outdoor Pool Tables.
It’s likely you have a dining table that’s already taking up a good amount of space in your house or apartment, so instead of making a choice between the two, pick up one of our stylish pool dining tables from our reviews of the Top Pool Dining Tables.
Perhaps you have the space for a table but it’s not practical for it to be a permanent fixture in your home. If so, foldable pool tables can offer a convenient solution so how about having a look at our review of the Top Foldable Pool Tables.
And with that, we’ve shared everything you need to know for finding the perfect pool table to match the room size and measurements in your home. While you’re here, why not explore our site or head over to the Pool & Snooker section to see more posts and recommended products!
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