Also playing surface . The area of the table on which the balls roll , i.e. the table surface exclusive of the rails and the tops of the cushions. The playing surface is defined by the measurements lengthwise and widthwise between the cushion noses (though specifications may simply refer to the cushion faces for short in that context). Artistic pool and other forms of trick shots sometimes call for shots to go beyond the bounds of the playing surface , e.g. a jump shot off the table into a boot on the floor, in Mike Massey's classic "boot shot ". The playing surface is what is used, not the entire table, when describing the approximate size of billiard tables of all kinds (e.g. "a 8 4 foot pool table").