The actual definition is a bit vague, and globally applicable. Although the pool usage may mean backspin, it actually can mean anything. It is comparable to the phrases "elbow grease" or "heat" from baseball, in the fact that it is a metaphor for a non-existent amplifier.
I had to put some english on my handgun to get it to fire.

I put some english on my car to get it the last mile.

I put some english on that punch, it knocked him cold.
by Chris Redfield July 28, 2005
When I went to San Francisco, I heard some guys were playing pool. They put backspin on the ball, and someone said 'Nice English'. I enquired, and found out that putting English on the ball means putting backspin on it.
"Sweet. You put so much English on that ball it went all the way back up your cue and in your mouth."
by Bonny lad November 17, 2004
to put a little english on it, referring to sports or other play involving a ball, means to give the said ball a curve in the air
you put a lotta english on that bro!

Yea, I put some english on it.

You put so much english on that that it went off the court.

shut up.
by one who acts October 25, 2009
stylizing with great pinash. a phrase commonly used by southern californian motocross racers after accomplishing a large "whip" and/or other stylish act.
"Daaang, DVO just put some ENGLISH on it over that triple"

"Jooci-J just put some ENGLISH on it at Racetown"
by DVO388 October 16, 2008