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How to be Good at Foosball: Top 50 Foosball Tips to Win Every Game

Foosball is the ultimate test of competition between you and your friends if you love football and understand the game. It is one of the oldest forms of table sports and it relies on keen awareness and reactions. Knowing how to be good at foosball is a question we see often and many people like to be the best.

Winning at foosball
Winning at foosball – Source: Pixabay

One of the first ways you want to look at when improving your foosball game is the reactions you have and how long you will need to react. You need a general understanding of the game and there are a couple of rules that also need to be followed. Once you have these and some of the foosball tips we are going to provide, you could be the best player.

The reason for you being here is certainly to become a better foosball player. The fact is that you have come to the right place and we have compiled a list of top tips. These foosball tips will ensure that you become a more complete player. Your skills will be rounded much better and you should become the best player between you and your friends.

Top 50 Tips To Becoming The Best Foosball Player

Whether you are a beginner or intermediate player, these foosball tips will be beneficial to your needs. You can integrate them into your game and you should see some significant improvements to your style. These tips are in no particular order. However, some of them might be easier to follow than others depending on your skill level:

How to play foosball – Image by Daniel Kirsch from Pixabay

1.    Start With A Comfortable Grip

The first thing you will want to figure out is the comfort of your grip. Many people tense up when playing a game of foosball. Unfortunately, this is not the right way and you will make dumb decisions. Having a comfortable relaxed grip over the bars means you have far better control and you will be better when reacting.

2.     Calculated Moves

It is easy to slam the rods and rely on pure luck to score a goal. However, like real football, every move should be calculated, and determining when to strike or when passing the ball is important. The main idea is to let your opponent think you are controlling the game. This will force them into making hasty plays and open opportunities.

3.     Don’t Spin The Rods

Even though spinning the rods are technically illegal, many people still spin the rods to get an advantage. Yes, you might have a faster shot, but your game will all depend on luck. It is important that you play calculated shots and this means not spinning the rods. We would suggest that you forget about spinning the rods.

Foosball rod setup – Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay

4.      Make Sure The Rods Are Lubricated

Before starting the game, you have the right to check on all the rods. It is important to make sure that the rods are lubricated. Lubricated rods tend to spin more freely and should be easier to control. Dealing with stuck rods can be frustrating and you might need to stop in the middle of the game to adjust.

Lubricate foosball rods – Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay

5.     A Comfortable Starting Position

The start is always important and you need to make sure that you find a position that is comfortable for you. Your stance should be relaxed and you ideally want to be placed in the middle of the game. This will give you access to all the rods. Once you can control all the rods, it should be much easier to make better plays.

6.     Serving Cup Start

If you start the game, you should consider the serving cup start. It gives you a fair opportunity to get the ball when you get started. Once you have mastered delivering the ball into the game with this method, you should be the one that controls the ball. If you control the ball and make calculated decisions, you should be able to score.

7.     Play Against the Best

None of us likes losing. However, foosball is all about learning the basics and improving your game. The best way to do this is to play against the best. You might feel outdone. However, it will be a learning experience and you will learn new tips and tricks to improve your performance.

8.      The Single Shot Technique

It might take some practice, but if you can master the single-shot technique with precision, you will catch your opponents unaware. It is important that you train yourself to learn this technique and you will find that it helps in certain clutch situations.

9.     Backspin Serving

One of the handiest tricks is to serve the ball in a backspin method. The method involves placing the ball in the serving cup and having it spin backward. Once the ball hits the table, it should automatically spin back to start and this will catch some players off guard.

10. Open Handed Shot

The open-handed shot is all in the wrists and it involves spinning the rod gently, but with power. It will all come down to timing, but you should see the ball fly much faster. The technique works best when combined with accuracy.

11. Don’t Forget About The Goalie

The goalie is not just a player you place in a position and forget about them. They need to be controlled and you will need to make sure you keep one hand open for the goalie.

12. Look At Your Opponents Players

It is easy to get lost and forget about the players on your opponent’s side of the ball. However, the five-man rod is often great for blocking the ball. You will need to keep an eye on the positioning and try to find some gaps between the players.

13. Understanding the Goals

The goal on a foosball game is the size of five balls. You will need to make sure that you have this area covered and with a goalie, it is not that hard. Look at the positioning of your goalie and where your opponent is on the board to get an idea of how to protect the goal.

14. Strategy Is Key

Sometimes you might find yourself off balance and in an uncomfortable situation. It is better to let your opponent have a shot at goal and rely on your goalie skills instead of giving them a free goal. You need to pick your battles

15. There Is No Time Limit

One of the worst things you can do is to bind yourself to a time limit. Generally, casual foosball games don’t have a time limit and you can take your time to make decisions and plays.

16. Use The Walls

If you find that your opponent is great with positioning, you should use the walls. There is no “out of bounds” in foosball. This means that you can use every object and item of assistance on the field that you can find.

17. Avoid Ricochet Goals

Many players will use the defensive players to get the ball in the goal. By playing a spin shot, the ball can ricochet and hit one of your defenders. If you notice your opponent playing these shots, you can slightly tilt the defensive players to catch the ball.

18. The Dummy Shot

The dummy shot is one of the hardest to master. However, you can perform the dummy shot when you think your opponent is not concentrating. You simply fake the shot and when your opponent defends, you can play the real shot. These shots are often also called a bank shot. However, you need to master the push shot.

19. 70:30 Ratio

When you start playing, you might not know which rods to play with. As a rule of thumb, you will need to play 70% on offense and 30% on defense. This means that now and again, you should grab the defensive bar when your opponent has possession.

20. Fake Passing

Many people simply try to shoot. However, you can dummy your passes to keep your opponent guessing. You can aim for one wall and try to hit the other wall, or you can wait for your opponent to overextend themselves before making plays. Always remember that the wall pass is a great addition to your game. The wall pass can change the game.

21. Change Angles

Instead of getting into a habit of shooting with the same player, you might need to change the angles. This means that you might want to shoot from the midfield occasionally.

22. Find The Patterns Of Your Opponent

Most players play with patterns and they make the same decisions over and over. If you can determine any of these habits from your opponent, you can find a way to block all of their shots and force them into uncomfortable positions.

23. Inclined Defense

By tilting the defensive bar, you can have your players in an inclined position. The inclined position will enable you to stop the ball better. Additionally, it avoids the prospect of you running into a ricochet.

24. Push The Ball Around

You often want to push the ball around and pass it into the goal if you can. Instead of spinning the rod, you can slowly push the ball around in front of the goal until you see an opening. The technique is similar to creating a 2-on-1 in real football.

25. Be Unpredictable

It is easy to get lost in your ways and play the same game with the same shots. However, you might want to be unpredictable and make sure that your opponent never gets a hang of your habits. It will make the game much easier.

26. Keep On Moving

Much like real football, you always want to be on the move. Unfortunately, you cannot control all of the bars at once. You need to remain focused on the ball and continuously keep moving. The goalie bar is one that people often neglect, but when you keep moving, you can quickly react.

27. Train Your Arms

If you are only playing casually, you don’t need to put in some arm workouts. However, you can prepare for your games by improving your arm strength. It is great to have arms that don’t tire, which will ensure that you have the power and movement to make the game easier.

28. Find Patterns In Your Opponent

You can start looking for patterns in the game of your opponent. If you keep a close eye on them, you will notice that your opponent might favor certain shots and certain techniques. When on the defense, you can counter these and force them to play a game they might not be comfortable with.

29. Learn How To Pin The Ball

You might want to brush up on pinning the ball. It can be easy for many people when you understand the slight angles you need for your players. Once you have the ball pinned, you should have more ball control, which means you can control the game.

30. Control Two Rods With 1 Hand

If you look at some of the professional foosball players, they can control two rods with one hand. It will be great if you can learn to do this. You should focus on doing this with the defensive rods, which will make a big difference.

31. Consistency Is Key

The best thing you can do is to be consistent. You have to concentrate and be consistent when concentrating. You must focus on making systematic moves that will perplex your opponent. However, these moves should not be by accident. All your moves should be calculated.

32. Passing Into Gaps

You might find that your opponent is well versed in defending some of your plays. You will need to learn to pass the ball between players. Passing the ball between the defenders and the goalie is a great way to open up some gaps. You might even want to use the wall as well.

33. Finesse Shots

One thing that many people neglect is playing a couple of finesse shots. These shots are some of the hardest and require push & pull movement. However, the more confident you become with your rods, the more finesse you can add to some of the shots.

Foosball tip shot – Image by Martin Gauger from Pixabay

34. Frustrate Your Opponent

If you hold onto the ball long enough, you will find that your opponent will get irritated. While they might lash out, they will often forget about the game. This allows you to play these casual shots and even trick them. Patience is often the biggest virtue.

Foosball stop shot – Image by Daniel Kirsch from Pixabay

35. Train Your Wrists

The thing about foosball is that everything is on the wrist. You can train your wrists by working out or simply drinking enough omega-3 fatty acids. These will also lubricate your wrists to improve your game and reduce possible pain.

36. Use The Rebound To Your Advantage

The rebound can always be your friend just as much as it can be your enemy. If you perfect your shot, you can catch your enemy off-guard, which means you can use their goalie to your advantage. However, the ricochet shot is heavily dependent on luck as well.

37. Don’t Be Scared To Try Something New

The worst thing you can do in foosball is to be predictable. If you are not scared to try something new, you might catch your opponent off-guard. If the game reaches a stalemate and no one seems to be making any inroads, you should consider trying something new.

38. Study The Game

While this might seem redundant, but there should be plenty of content on the internet for you to study. You can even visit YouTube and watch some of the top players. This will give you an idea of the game and what you have to do.

39. Test Yourself Against The Best

The best players in foosball are often hard to come by. However, if you come to meet one, you should challenge to a game. Yes, you might lose the game. However, you will learn plenty of new skills and tips to take into new games.

40. Join Competitions

Aside from winning money when you join local competitions, you will also improve your game. Depending on the reasons you are playing, you might want to join some top competitions. Once again, you might not win, but you will certainly learn a lot.

41. Practice At Home

Buying your foosball table can be expensive. However, you might want to get one if you are serious about the game. You should consider practicing your game at home and this will enable you to be better each time you challenge someone.

42. Master The Attacking Rod

In many of the tips, we kept focusing on the defensive rod. However, the attacking rod will have a couple of players and if you learn to ball control behind enemy lines, it should be that much easier for you to score.

43. Don’t Rush To Win

Foosball is not won by the person who scores the first goal. If you have an opponent making specific plays, you can pick up on their habits. Often they don’t make the best decisions, which means you can slowly improve your chances of winning.

44. Don’t Be Afraid To Pass Back

Many people don’t pass the ball back due to the inability to control the ball and the risk of scoring an own goal. However, you might often need to pass the ball back and restart. Once you have found a different scoring opportunity, it should be much easier.

45. Patience Is A Virtue

This is another point we often mention, but patience is a virtue. Even if you take ten minutes to win the game, it is all about winning. Much like chess, you need to study your opponent and see where some of their weaknesses are.

46. Use Your Imagination

For many people, foosball becomes boring if they play too much. However, imagining that each team represents a real-world team will be great. You can host your own World Cup and you will notice how much fun you can have.

47. Be Passionate

The one way to get better at foosball is to be passionate about the game. The more passion you put into winning, the more it will mean. If you lose a game, it will also inspire you to become better and you will put more work into training.

48. Stay Calm Under Pressure

Even though you are excited about winning or distraught about losing, you want to always remain calm. Being calm means you make better decisions and you will notice that you can create better opportunities to win or even create a comeback.

49. Never Give Up

You should never give up when you are playing any competitive sport. Sometimes the ball might not bounce in your favor, but eventually, you will be creating plenty of opportunities and become better. Keep in mind that practice makes perfect and instead of giving up, you should continue to practice.

50. Always Have Fun

The goal of the game is for you to have as much fun as possible. If you are not having fun, you should not play. Always create games that offer your excitement and allow you to enjoy yourself. Foosball is a great way to improve hand-eye coordination as well.


If you ever wondered how to be better at foosball, you should now have all the tips and tricks to make it happen. Foosball can be a daunting game, especially when you are new. However, the game is easy to learn and with some time you can master it. Let us know in the comment section how you improved your foosball game and which foosball tips you found helpful.

I am Jean, a writer with a passion for outdoor life and sports. I have been playing indoor and outdoor sports for as long as I remember, being fortunate enough to play with some excellent equipment and learning from great tutors. Now, I have traded my equipment for a pen and paper, helping to encourage and educate your sports enthusiasts. I still play a few indoor sports games now and again, but my goal is to help bring more youngsters into the world of sports. More info on my LinkedIn profile -