Do you lean on the machine when you play?

Last night when I was playing some pinball in my basement, I walked up to TZ casually, started a game, and didn’t really care about playing at all. I was just flipping non-chalantly and being dazzled by the flashing lights. One thing I noticed is that it fealt physically different. There was no pressure being exterted into the machine. I thought, hmmm this is…different and maybe…better? When playing in competition and on location I am constantly leaning into the machine a bit so I can be ready. I want to make sure I can nudge quick, flip quick, etc, etc. I’m normally tense and tilt often. But, when playing loosely and not leaning into the machine I find that I can have the sme reaction times (maybe even quicker?) but without contsantly putting force into the cabinet with my body weight. I have decided that I am going to try to make a change in the way I play (in an attempt to improve) by not putting my body weight into the machine constantly.
Does anyone else here take this approach? I never really thought about it before last night…

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The moment you find out that standing at the game is a MUCH better approach than leaning on the game, is huge for your skill development.

When leaning on the game you’re nudging the game with every flip, whether you realize it or not. The tilt bob is constantly moving, even if just a little bit. So I’m not surprised you tilted often, as I did too.

Standing at the game keeps you alert and ready to make any nudge you need to make at any point in time. Also leaning on the game can really hurt your wrists/arms so a marathon game is that much more taxing.

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I’m not at all convinced that leaning on the machine makes it easier to nudge deliberately, nor that it leads to ‘accidental’ nudging per se. I can lean and still push the buttons softly, and I know some people that stand back and slap the buttons hard every time they flip. Leaning probably makes `body english’ correlate into nudges, though?

I personally find that when I catch myself leaning on the game it’s generally correlated with low scores and slow reactions times. My problem is that I’m tall (~190cm), so reaching the flipper buttons without leaning on the game is challenging. I wish I found the Cayle/Greg/Lyman stances more comfortable. . . .

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There has to be some benefit from taking some weight off of your feet though if you’re standing in front of a machine for an extended period of time. Especially if you’re someone with a desk job.

Definitely not in favor of this method, but if you’re a new player working on improving stamina then I’m sure you can get away with leaning from time to time without it affecting gameplay too much.

What is leaning on the machine? I am not joking - I don’t know what it looks like, and I don’t think I do it, but I don’t know.

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At this point I would love to be able to play a ball long enough to get fatigued! So I will cross that bridge when I get to it. =)

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Hey G_Money by leaning on the machine I mean actually supporting some small amount of your body weight with your palms on the lock down bar. I found myself doing this without even thinking. Now that I actually thought about it, I am consciously trying not to do it. I agree with Chuck that the tilt bob gets moving just from the forces being continuously transmitted from my body through my arms into the game. I have had it to the point where I start a multiball and then tilt without even touching the machine because that tilt bob must just be swinging around from my previous play. Some other times I will tilt without even nudging. Freaking cray cray. I will try this for a while to see…

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If the pinball machine disappeared into thin air, would you fall forward because you lost that support? That’s leaning.

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There’s an easy way to determine whether you lean on the machine or not. Play while sitting on a stool with no rungs for your feet to rest on. Legs just dangling. If you find yourself leaning to one side or another, or laying on the floor, you’re exerting pressure (leaning) on the game.

For someone who nudges regularly, it can put you on the floor. All the leverage changes when it’s just your arms. I’ve come close and won’t play on a stool without footholds any more. Someone should do a footloose side tourney. WOF (any title really) while playing sitting on a stool with legs dangling. That would be fun to watch.

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Be careful doing this. My boyfriend played on a couple round stools from Costco we had here… on both stools, the welds between the stool’s base and pole broke after a few months from all the lateral forces he exerted while playing. I saw one go down (literally) … he shoved a game and the stool bent back and kept going, fortunately he hopped off (and even saved the ball). I don’t think people realize how much forces are put into a pinball machine when nudging :slight_smile:

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I’ve been trying to fix my stance recently which used to involve a significant lean to the left. I never had a tilting issue, but the constant pressure on my hand, wrist, forearm, and elbow was giving me significant pain after playing. Thankfully after becoming aware of it and taking steps to play more neutral the pain has gone almost completely away.

So I can’t say if your scores will go up by not leaning on the machine, but you’ll almost definitely be doing less damage to your body.

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I lean on the machines as I play, but it’s a habit I’d like to get out of solely for the fact that my wrists have begun to hurt after long sessions.