Table Tennis Tip: Quick and Variable Blocks

Someone recently asked me why it was important to block loops quick off the bounce. He thought that taking the ball quick off the bounce made it harder for the blocker to react, and made the shot more predictable for the opponent. However, it’s actually easier and more consistent to block a loop off the bounce, and the lack of variation from this only happens if the blocker doesn’t vary his block.

You do want to block loops off the bounce. If you take it late, you have more ground to cover (often with little time to react, depending on the speed of the loop), as well as having to predict the ball’s fast and low bounce off the table. Even more important, blocking quick off the bounce allows you to both rush and angle an opponent. If you take the ball late, your opponent has time to react to your shot, and the block loses its effectiveness.

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Table Tennis Tip: Forcing an Opponent Out of Position

There are a number of ways to effectively force an opponent out of position. You can do this by either moving him side to side or in and out or some combination of this. In practical terms, here are ways to do so.

Corners – You play one ball wide to either the forehand or backhand. As the opponent moves wide to return the shot, he either leaves the other wide corner open, or he moves to cover that side so quickly that he leaves the other corner open. (This is really two tactics, since you can start by going wide to either the forehand or backhand.)

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NITTAKU Selected Again as Official Ball of USA Table Tennis

NITTAKU, PADDLE PALACE, and USATT are pleased to announce the selection of the NITTAKU 3-Star Premium Ball as the official ball of USA Table Tennis for 2012-2015. NITTAKU is the exclusive ball for the U.S. Open and the U.S. National Championships. NITTAKU 3-Star Premium ball has long been recognized by top players around the world as the highest quality ball. NITTAKU is the official ball for the 2012 Olympics in London.

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Table Tennis Tip: Why You MUST Attack the Deep Serve

Against a short serve, you can take the ball quick and rush the opponent, you can go for angles, and you can drop the ball short. So have a number of ways to mess up an opponent without actually attacking the serve. This is where you can get really creative.

Against a deep serve, you don’t have these options. You can’t rush the opponent with a quick shot, go for extreme angles, and you can’t return it short. If you return the deep serve passively, you are giving your opponent lots of time to set up his best shot. So don’t.

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