Coaching Tip: Balance Throughout the Stroke

You should be able to smash or loop at near full power without going off balance. Top players can play great shots in rapid succession because they are always balanced, which leads to a rapid recover for the next shot. When you go off balance, even slightly, you cannot recover quickly for the next shot. There are two times when players tend to go off balance: either when moving to the ball or when following through.

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Coaching Tip: Distance from Table

How close should you stand to the table? Much of this depends on your playing style. Most new players tend to stand too close to the table. This leads to all sorts of problems if not fixed early on. A player who develops his game while standing too close is often jammed, which leads to short, jerky strokes that are rushed. Players like this may learn to block well, but the shorter, rushed strokes lead to a loss of both power and (when trying to hit harder) control. They also tend to stand in a backhand position, leading to a weak forehand. They also have trouble covering the wide forehand as they are unable to use the full forehand “pocket” since they are jammed at the table – instead, they can only hit the ball in the front of the hitting zone, rather than turn sideways and hit the ball at the top of the bounce with a more comfortable shot that uses the full forehand hitting zone.

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Coaching Tip: Body Movement During the Forehand Loop

Daniel from West Virginia emailed me the following question: “One of the things that I am struggling to understand is the relationship between rotation versus right-to-left leg weight transfer when looping. I saw in one of your earlier blog entries that you compare forehand looping with “rotating around a pole” that runs from the ceiling down to the floor. I’ve watched this video of Wang Liqin over and over and he seems to be generating most of his power with rotation rather than right-to-left leg weight transfer. Both of his feet stay pretty much rooted in the ground at all times during the stroke:”

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Pledge Your Support for Table Tennis on USA Network TV!

Reflex Sports and Alpha Productions, two well known names in US table tennis, are planning a series of action-packed, fast-paced 1-hour shows of World-Class Table Tennis for broadcast on U.S. Network TV! Including action from the WTTC, World Junior Championships, World Cup, Pro Tour, European Championships & more! Read about the shows and how your pledge can help make this happen!

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Coaching Tip: The Backhand Loop and Hit One-Two Punch

In a game dominated by forehand looping, many players forget there’s another side and other point-winning shots. One of the best is the backhand loop followed by a backhand hit – a devastatingly effective one-two punch. It doesn’t even have to be a backhand smash – quick, well-placed aggressive drive will usually win the point or set up an easy follow.

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The Physical Aspects of Your Table Tennis Game: Endurance; Speed; And Strength

To me being in great physical shape is a very important component to a successful table tennis game. There are many aspects to the physical game but today I am only going to cover the ones I believe are the most important for table tennis: Endurance; Speed; and Strength. My name is Seth Pech and I’m currently living in Rissen, Germany. I play at a club in Moorage and will soon play the 3rd spot in our club’s Hamburg 5th league team.

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