Serving Against a Strong Attacker, by Samson Dubina

OvtcharovYour opponent is attacking your short serve and you are frustrated that you can’t stop him from attacking your serve. What should you do? Well, you must realize that with modern equipment and modern strokes, he will likely be able to attack all of your serves, regardless of how spinny, how low, and how short you serve. The first key is to serve in such a way that he can’t tee-off hard on your serve.

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Ratings and Skills, by Samson Dubina

Samson Ready  croppedOften times, table tennis players will wrongly associate ratings with skills. Just because an opponent has a certain rating doesn’t necessarily mean that your opponent can or cannot do certain skills. For example… I asked my 1800-rated student why he wasn’t attacking his (2100-rated) opponent’s half-long serve. My student responded by saying that because his opponent was rated 2100, he assumed that all his serves were short.

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The New Plastic “Poly” Balls: Q & A

Nittaku Poly BallsThe introduction of the new plastic “Poly Ball” for table tennis has created a lot of excitement in the table tennis world. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions with answers direct from Paddle Palace

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Put the fire out by Samson Dubina

Samson Dubina

Rarely, will your opponent be “on fire” in every aspect of his game. Professional players realize this and are able to somewhat play away from the strength. Most players aren’t “on fire” with their serve, serve return, push, flip, block, loop, smash, counterloop, lob, and every other aspect all at once. If your opponent’s backhand flip is “on fire,” what should you do?

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Play Poorly…And Win! by Samson Dubina

Samson Dubina

In most tournaments, I play around 50-80% of my full potential. When I’m playing 100%, yes, I feel amazing. But there are other factors that hinder me from playing my best. Different playing conditions can hinder my performance – different balls, different lighting, different tables, different floor, slight wind currents, strange playing-style opponents, and thousands of other distractions. Also, my preparation can hinder my performance – uncomfortable bed, lack of sleep, fatigue from travel, damaged equipment, and many other elements.

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