Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Table Tennis Training Camp

Are you serious about playing table tennis sport? If you do then you might want to consider enrolling at a training camp because it's the best place to develop and improve your playing skills. You have to know that there are a lot of things that you can really learn from a training camp rather than relying on your own.

Training on your own does offers you the comfort of staying at your home. However, there is a very high tendency that your attention will be distracted or diverted into other forms of activities around your house. One common example of such diversion is when you close friend or friendly neighbor suddenly pays you a surprising visit. So instead of being able to practice, you end up chatting with your friends.

At the training camp, there are trainers who are supervising the members of players on their practice. They ensure that their concentration are never to be distraction. The trainers are also professional coaches who can teach their members the basics and proper way of playing table tennis.

What do Training Camps Offer?

All training camps has only one goal. This is to help the members develop their skills at the top level of their performances. Thus, it is actually where all players begin their journey towards becoming a pro.

Here are the following features that a good training camp offers to their members:

1. Stretching

Table tennis is a fast paced type of sport which requires speedy movements. Due to this reason, it is important for players to have good flexibility. Why? It is to reduce possible injuries into your joints such as spraining your ankles. All training camps actually requires players to perform physical "stretches" to Warm-Up (or Cool-Down) before starting their proper training.

2. Physical Condition

"Physical Condition" has something to do with stamina and endurance. You have to know that no matter how good you are at playing table tennis but you lack the required stamina and endurance, you end up being defeated in the long run. In fact, this is a very common issue to all new players.

At first, a certain player may perform quite well on his match from the start. But assuming that he lacks the necessary stamina and endurance, his performance will start to degrade reducing down his speed which affects body movement and footwork.

Through training camps, couches ensures proper physical training that can greatly improve both stamina and endurance. Some of these training includes jogging, swimming, bicycling, country skiing and etc...

3. Training Schedule

Everyone has their own other important activities that they need to attend aside from playing table tennis. It's for this reason why training camps will help you establish a weekly schedule of your training. You have to know that it is important for you to follow your schedule while keeping a monthly or weekly logs about the improvement of your training.

4. Drills

The main purpose of a "drill" is to help you improve your footwork and placement. Footwork refers to your steps on how you move around the corner (or court) of your table. As for placement, it refers to how you carry and position yourself at the proper spot.

Beginners will be taught by trainers the drills but they have to start by doing it slow. As they progress, they have to perform the drills at a faster rate until to their limits.

5. Multi-Balls

Most training camps offers "Multi-balls". This is a type of training where you get to deal with multiple set of balls. According to the experts, this method of training can greatly improve multiple skills such as service return, speed and control.

Robots as Multi-Ball Partners

The traditional way of multi-ball training is that you need a partner who will be serving the balls. Thanks to our technology today that robots has been invented in which they serve as an excellent multi-ball training partner. Most training camps already do have these kinds of robots.

Table Tennis Training Camp

Overall, training camp is a good stepping-stone towards becoming a professional table tennis player.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Basic Rules of Serving the Ping Pong Ball

The official rules of ping pong has already been altered so many times in the past recent years to accommodate fair game-play and to make it a lot more entertaining to the audience. But for ordinary or casual players, the rules still remains very simple.

If you want to learn the basic rules, then you should read the post entitled, "Ping Pong Rules for Beginners".

So how exactly are you going to properly serve the ball?

The ball must always be above the level of the playing surface of the table which must be clearly visible to the opposing player. It must also be served behind the server's end line. Some players call the end line as the "imaginary extension". This is exactly behind the end of the table.

Once in the proper spot, the free-hand should hold the ball tossing it in an upward direction. As the ball starts to fall, the player should immediately hit it with his paddle (some people also call it "racket" or "bat").

The Number of Serves

When a new set of rules issued by the ITTF took place back in 2001, it has affected the number of serves allowed for each player. This rule was the "Official Scoring-point System" where the old 21 points system was reduced down to only 11 points.

In the old 21 points system, each player were given "five serves" each. While on the new system, each player has only "two serves" each.

Once the ball has been served into the opponent's side, the opposing player should hit it back over the net. Upon hitting it, the ball should bounce at least "once" on the server's side of the table. If the ball bounces twice or more then the server losses the point.

Double Team

Ping pong can be played by a maximum of four players. They will be competing against each other by teams consisting of 2 players on each side. In short, it's a 2-on-2 match. With the current 11 point system, the rule of serving the ball remains the same but this time, each pair of players are only given two serves.

Just like on a Single Match, the serving of the ball will alternate between the two competing teams for every two points. Another difference when playing and serving the ball on a Double Match is that, the ball must bounce only on the half portion of the table on both sides.

If it happens that the server has gained two score points, the receiver will take the place of the server and the previous server becomes the receiver.

Game Play

When the receiving side managed to hit the served ball back, the server's partner must be the one to take the counter-shot. If the shot has been successfully returned then the receiver's partner (the other player who didn't hit the served ball) own turn to hit the ball. The sequence of hitting the ball goes alternate between the two partners.

Ping Pong Serving

If you have some questions regarding about the rule of serving the ball that has not been covered on this post, use the Comment Form below.

Friday, January 23, 2015

How to Build your Own Ping Pong Table?

Learn how to build your own ping pong table with the following detailed set of instructions.

But first,

Prepare the following materials

- 2 pieces of 2 x 2 lumbers. Take note that there are soft and hard type of lumber. You must choose somewhere in between which is not too soft and not too hard.

- A plywood with at least 5 x 5 feet of measurements. Recommended thickness is quarter of an inch or half. Actually, the thicker the better.

- Wood saw for cutting the wooden materials.

- Screws for wood. It is not advisable to use nails.

- A net with a length of at least 6 ft and a height of 6 inches.

- Other materials that you will be needing are masking tape, wood glue, enamel paint, paint brush and clamps.
And here are the following steps:

Form the rectangular frame

The very first step on making your ping pong table is to construct the rectangle frame by using the 2 x 2 lumbers. We will be following the official ping pong table dimensions stated by the ITTF which is 9 ft long and 5 ft wide. So cut two pieces of lumbers with 9 ft lengths then cut another two pieces of lumbers but this time with 5 ft lengths.

ping pong frame

Form a rectangular frame by attaching each ends of the lumbers using some wooden screws.

The table surface

Now that you have completed the frame, the next step is to make the table surface. If you are able to buy a plywood with 5 ft wide and 9 ft long or longer, all you have to do is to cut the excess of the length if it is longer than 9 ft then attach it on the frame. However, if the size of the plywood you bought is 5 x 5 feet then you need to cut one of the side to make it 5 x 4 feet. You will need two pairs of 5 x 4 feet plywood.

ping pong table surface

Lay the 5 x 4 feet plywood on the frame to complete the table surface. Make sure that the seam is exactly aligned at the middle. When you are sure about the alignment, you may now secure the plywood with the clamps and wood glue.

Perhaps take a minute break to allow the glue to dry completely.

Your ping pong table legs

You will need again four to six pieces of 2 x 2 lumber for the legs of your ping pong tables. Based from the ITTF, the standard height of a ping pong table must be 30 inches. This doesn't mean that you are going to cut four or six pieces 30 inches lengths of lumbers. You have to know that the thickness of the table top is included on the height. So if the table top has a thickness of 2.5 inches, you will have to deduct it to the standard height which is 30 inches. This gives you 27 and a half inches.

ping pong table legs

After cutting the legs, attach them to the table tops using the screws.

Painting the table

Commonly used color of a ping pong table are green and blue. Anyway, it actually depends on your own choice. After painting the table, you may need to take a longer break to wait for the paint to dry up.

ping pong green table

Assuming that the paint already dried up, it's time to paint the white lines at the edges of the table including the center. The thickness of the white lines must be 3/4 inches. Use the masking tape in painting these lines.

Attach the net

Grab the net and attach it at the center of the table by using clamps. It must be 6 feet high.

play ping pong

Congratulations, your ping pong table is now complete. All the rest you need are your ping pong paddle, a ball and a partner to play the game.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Best Table Tennis Players of the World

Did you know that according to the latest survey that has been conducted regarding about the number of people playing table tennis sport reaches around 300 million? With this number, there is a very high probability that you also play table tennis, played it once (on your PE Subject) or simply watched a competition. But with such number of players (including those in the past), there is always the best among the rest.

Table tennis sport started way back in the early 1900s and it has undergone several changes into its rule. Due to the changes made, table tennis today has some slight differences from the past. It's really hard to determine the best player of the world from the past up to this present period of our time because of those changes to the rules. So let's just settle with a group of two best players of the world which are from the "past" and our current "modern" generation.

Trophy Award

Best Table Tennis Players of the World in the Past

In 1930 to 1940, there were two best and legendary table tennis players of the world and they are the following:

1. Viktor Gyozo Barna

According to Sir Ivor Montagu, president of the International Table Tennis Federation (1926 to 1967), had claimed that "Viktor Gyozo Barna" was the "Greatest table tennis player who ever lived." It was because of his legendary record where he won a total of 32 World Championship medals. Those medals consisted of 23 gold, 6 silver and 3 bronze. Barna had earned those medals when he conquered several league of championships which include 5 Singles events, 8 Doubles, 3 Mixed-Doubles and 7 Team titles.

Barna's career as a table tennis player started in 1929 where he was a member of the "Hungarian National Team" that won the "Swaythling Cup" (an award presented as a recognition to the Men's World Team Table Tennis Championship). Just after a year, he surprisingly won the first of his 5 World Singles Championships.

In 1935, Barna had displayed his greatest performance that made a record in the history of table tennis sport. The World Championships was held in Wembley, England where he was able to capture the World Singles, Doubles (with his partner Miklos Szabados) and Mixed-Doubles (with Anna Sipos). Following that year, Barna's Hungarian Team gained the Swaythling Cup award once again.

Unfortunately, Barna's success as the best table tennis of his generation came to an end when he got severely injured from a car accident. His right playing arm was broken which greatly affected his performance. According to his clinical doctors, a platinum plate was inserted into his forearm.

Barna had lost his Championship on the Singles Division but despite of his broken arm, he was able to win the World Doubles title along with his partner, Richard Bergmann from England. All Double titles won by Barna from 1929 to 1925 were with his longtime playing partner, Miklos Szabados. But with the exception of Sandor Glanz (1933) and his last playing partner, Bergmann (1939).

2. Richard Bergmann

"Richard Bergmann" was the winner of the seven World Championships which include four Singles, one Men's Doubles and two Team's titles. Overall, he claimed a total of 22 medals. He was even regarded as the "Greatest Defensive Player" in table tennis history.

Bergmann's success as a table tennis player started in 1936 when he won his first World title as a member of the Austrian Swaythling Cup. One year later, he amazingly won his first World Singles Championships. And at the same, he became the "youngest player" who won the title.

In 1938, the Nazis had invaded Bergmann's home country where he fled to England. There, he was able to continue with his passion of playing table tennis.

The next following year (1939), Bergmann was able to grab his second World Singles and World Doubles (along with his partner Viktor Barna).

After the World War II, Bergmann was able to win the World Singles Championship for the third time on 1948. His fourth time was on 1950. And his fifth was on 1953 (as a member of the English Swaythling Cup Team).

Modern Age Best Table Tennis Player of the World

On this modern generation of our time, there are currently two best table tennis players of the world which were according to the latest survey that was released:

1. Jan-Ove Waldner

Did you know that "Jan-Ove Waldner" was more recognized by the people in China than Bill Clinton? You have to know that China is a country that really loves table tennis. Since is known as one of the best, he is quite very popular that they even referred him as the "evergreen tree" and "Old Wa". Whenever he comes, people tends to gather around him.

Waldner's greatest achievement in the history of table tennis sport was when he was able to achieve a career grand slam in 1992. He actually conquered the World Championships Singles, World Cup Singles and the Olympic Gold Medal (Singles Division). In fact, his name remained on the top scoreboard (from the Olympic Singles medals) even after the 2012 Olympics.

2. Zhan Jike

From the time of this post, "Zhang Jike" currently holds the World and Olympic championship titles in the Singles division. As one of his greatest achievements in the history of table tennis, he is the 4th male player who just achieved a career grand slam.

For the record, Zhang had won his first WTTC on 2011. His next record was on 2011 when he won the World Cup. And on the Olympics 2012 (London), he was able to grab the titles.

Zhang had actually took him only 445 days to achieve the grand slam of his career. Due to his amazing record, he was known as the "fastest player who won his grand slam awards".

Monday, January 19, 2015

Build your Own Ping Pong Ball Launcher

This topic really doesn't have anything to do with the actual ping pong table sport but it involves playing with the ping pong balls in an innovative and entertaining means. To be more specific, it is called "ping pong ball launcher".

A ping pong ball launcher is a mechanical device that launches or sends ping pong balls flying up and away at a certain distances. Many individuals actually find it very interesting and challenging especially the building part of the mechanical device. Some passionate and innovative people can even build complicated launchers that has the capability to send multiple sets of balls up on the air.

As a beginner, you should start building simple mechanical-launchers. You have to know that complicated ping pong ball launchers are quite hard to build and it requires some amount of money to be spent.

Here's a simple design and steps that you may want to consider building your own first ping pong ball launcher. But before you proceeded with the construction, you need to prepare these following materials:
Wood screws
Lumbers (2 x 2 inches)
Rubber band or spring
Plastic cup
Hand drill
The Steps:

1. Create the base

The base is the floor-support of the launcher. To start, cut four pieces of the 2 x 2 lumbers and create a rectangular frame. Suggested dimension is 25 inches (length) and 10 inches (width). You can actually make the necessary adjustments according to the size of the launcher that you would like to build.

Use wood-screws to tighten the connections between the lumbers. (Wood-screws is preferred over nails because they provide sturdier connections.)

2. Middle Support

Cut another two pieces of lumbers which is to be placed somewhere in the middle of the frame for an extra added support. Refer into the image below for the illustration.

3. First (1st) Bar

You will need to cut two pairs of lumbers with length measurements of exactly 12 inches. Then on the 1st bar, you need to screw them up vertically at the middle. Take note that there should be 2 inches gap in between them.

On the figure above, you will notice short black horizontal line. This means that you need to drill holes into the center of those two ends. Make sure that the holes are good enough for a "long nail" to be inserted "freely" (and can be easily pulled out by hand with less effort).

4. Second (2nd) Bar

Do the same procedure as the step above (3) on the second bar. But this time, the height of the two 2 x 2 lumbers should only be 4 inches.

5. Front Panel

At the front panel, you need to cut one piece of 12 inches length of lumber and attach it in the middle. The tiny black vertical line on top (from the figure below) is a half buried screw.

6. The Launcher Bar

The launcher is also made of one piece of 2 x 2 lumber with a length of 15 inches. On one of its end, connect the plastic cup where the ping pong ball is to be set. When it's done, insert the other end of the launcher in-between the short 4 inches size-wood of the 2nd bar. Use a hand-drill to penetrate a hole then insert one long nail. This will act as the lever portion.

Pull the top end of the launcher until it get inserted in-between the two pairs of wood of the first bar. Do the same drilling procedure and insert the nail which will serve as the trigger. You can activate the trigger of the launcher by simply pulling out this nail.

7. Rubber band or Spring

Embed another screw with just half of its body below the plastic cup of a launcher. When it's done, attach the rubber band or spring into this screw and stretch the other end attaching it onto the other screw which is on the top of the front panel.

ping pong ball launcher

Once everything's complete, you are now ready to test your ping pong ball launcher. All you need to do now is to place the ball into the plastic cup and at the count of three, pull the nail out and watch the ball flying. To send out more than one set of balls, you can actually improvise by adding additional launchers.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

How to Choose or Buy the Best Ping Pong Table?

Training or playing on the best ping pong table gives you the advantage of improving your skills over those poorly designed tables. Other than being able to enhance your skills, good tables also offers you the best experience of enjoying the sport. It is due to this reason why it is important to choose the best ping pong table for you to play.

There are actually two ways for you to own a ping pong table. First is to buy a readymade or premade ping pong table in the market. And second, you can either build it yourself or hire a professional carpenter to do it for you.

Build your own Ping Pong Table

If you have the time, tools, skills and materials (for the construction which can be purchased) then you can build your own ping pong table. Otherwise, you can hire a professional carpenter to build the table for you. You just have to provide him the needed materials and the design (with the dimensions) of your preferred ping pong table. If you are a serious player (who wants to join competitions someday) then it is important for you to follow the standard table dimensions recognized by the ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation).

Buy a Readymade or Premade Ping Pong Table

When you do have enough extra money that you are willing to spend then you may choose to buy your own readymade or premade ping pong table. Unlike building it, there's no need to wait for your table to be fully constructed. Once you buy it, take it home then set it up and you can play right away. Although, it is not a good idea to just randomly choose any available ping pong tables on sale.

There are actually some important factors that needs to be considered when buying a ping pong table. And, they are the following:

1. Playing Area or Room

The official standard dimension of a ping pong table (ITTF Standard) must be 5 x 9 feet. Such size of table can take too much space. So if you intended of setting up your table inside a certain room, make sure that there is enough extra-space for the players to move around.

If it happens that the room is also being used for some other type of activities (such as a family gathering), you should choose the "portable type" which allows you to assemble and disassemble it. One good advantage of a portable ping pong table is that, you can set it up outside your house (perhaps in your empty backyard). And when you are done playing, you can simply disassemble it for safe storage.

What is a portable ping pong table?

A portable ping pong table is a type of table that can be easily folded. With its foldable feature, you can set it up anywhere. In fact, you can even pack it up and bring it along with you on your vacation trip.

Just to let you know, most portable ping pong tables does not follow the standard dimensions issued by the ITTF. Most of them are actually smaller in size.

Anyway, here are the following qualities that you need to check when buying your own portable ping pong table:

a. Portability

- You should choose a table that can be folded in a well-compact form where it does not take too much space or room.

b. Lightweight

- Make sure that the frame support are made of light but durable materials (such as aluminum). An average weight of a good portable ping pong table is around 18 lbs.

The advantage of a lightweight table is that, you can easily carry it around.

c. Handling

- After folding the table on its compact form, there should be a handle for easy-carrying. The handle should be made out of aluminum tubing and not just some piece of fabric or plastic that has been strapped around.

d. Height Adjustment

- Anyone should be able to play and enjoy. This is the reason why you must choose to buy the type of portable table where you can adjust the height of the table's surface. Considering that you have kids, you can adjust the height of the table's surface at their preferred playing level.

e. Accessories

- It is actually a part of our human nature that we tend to forget things. As an example, there might be some cases where you brought your portable table to a certain distant vacation place but you forgot to bring the paddles, net and the balls. Thus, you may want to choose a portable ping pong table with compartment that allows you to store the accessories.

2. Table Surface must be at least 1 inch thick

The thickness of the table must be at least 1 inch thick. It's due to the reason that table boards with less than 1 inch thickness tends to bend naturally in due time. You have to know that when the board suffered even just a slight bend, this can really affect the way how the ball bounces off.

Playing outdoors can actually contribute to the damage of the table surface of your ping pong table. The damage are often caused by natural elements such as extreme heat, cold or moisture which are common to most environments.

If you really intend to play outdoors, it is highly suggested that you should choose the type of table that is equipped with the so called "protective aluminum coating". But even though, it is still suggested that once you are done playing, you should keep it indoors.

3. Table Support

It is very important that your ping pong table remains stable right on its spot. An unstable table that is even slightly moving (which can be due to natural causes such as winds or vibration) can affect the ball to bounce at some random directions. Thus, you should choose a table with sturdy leg support.

4. Net Setup

The Net of a ping pong table can be setup either by a "permanent bracket" or "removable post". If the table you bought has the permanent bracket then you get to tie the ends of the net on it. As for the removable post, you have to attach them first on the sides of the table before you can tie the net. And most importantly, you should be able to setup the net at a height of exactly 6 inches.

5. Avoid Cheap Ping Pong Tables

If you are going to search the web, you can find several cheap ping pong tables with interesting features (as compared to the top brands) on their product description page. But based on experience, most of them are unexpectedly bad tables that you need to avoid at all possible cost.

You are probably thinking that by buying a cheap table, it can save you money. This is a complete "wrong notion" common to all individuals. In fact, you are actually wasting your money.

A cheap ping pong table may have the required ITTF standards but the quality of the materials used for the construction are surely of low qualities. In short, it won't last long enough. And as a result, you will end up spending for the repairs or worse, you need to by a new replacement.

What if you just want to have some fun?

If your main purpose of buying a cheap ping pong table is just to have some fun or to check if you have the interest in playing this particular sport then you may do so. But as a suggestion, you should choose the table that follows the ITTF standards. Take note, there are many tables out there that does not follow the official standards.

How much does a Ping Pong Table Cost?

There are so many places to check around for ping pong tables that are being sold at affordable prices. One among them is to search the internet. You can really find a lot of table products online with positive and negative feedbacks from the previous buyers or customers. However, buying a ping pong table online is highly not recommended because you won't be able to inspect if it really passes the quality requirements.

The best advice to buy a good ping pong table is to go out and visit the actual market place or shop.

Sport Shops

- A sport shop should always be your first option because they display their available ping pong tables for their customers to test and inspect.

Prices from Sport Shops ranges from $100 to $700.

Classified Ads

- You can check the classified ads and contact the nearest seller from your place. Do not agree to buy the table yet (on the phone) where you have to visit the place of the seller to conduct your inspection. Once the table passed the quality requirements then that will be the time for you to buy it.

Prices from Classified Ads ranges between $100 to $500.

Garage Sale

- If you do not have enough extra money then your best option is to check garage sales. Although, you will have a hard time in finding the a good table unless you are lucky.

Prices from Garage Sales ranges from $100 to $300.

How Much does it Cost to Build A Ping Pong Table?

Some people think that they can save more money if they are going to construct their own ping pong table. If you do then you will be surprised to know that the materials will costs more than buying a premade table from the market. Assuming that you choose high quality materials, it will surely cost you around $1000. In addition to the expensive construction materials are your time to be spend on building your table.

Money And Time

Moreover, owning the best ping pong table can actually save you both money and time. There are actually many cheap table products out there but most of them do not meet the qualities of a good table as discussed on this post. Overall, choose your ping pong table wisely.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Choosing the Best Paddle that Suits your Needs?

Choosing the best and appropriate ping pong paddle that suit your needs or playing style can lead into a huge improvement and a more enjoyable game. Although, ordinary players may not be choosy when it comes to their paddles but for serious players, it is important for them to use the most fitting paddle for their style.

Regardless of which type of players you belong (casual or regular), you actually have the edge of winning a match with the right paddle on your hand.

Before we proceed with the tips, what are the components of a ping pong paddle?

a. Blade - This is the wooden-slightly rounded part of the paddle.

b. Rubber - This is the piece of rubber surface that covers the wooden-blade either on one side or both opposite sides.

c. Handle - It's the grip.

Here are the following tips on how you should choose the best paddle that suits your need:

1. Do Not Buy Ready-made (Premade) Paddles

You should avoid purchasing a ready-made paddle it's because such products won't last long enough. In return, you will end up discarding it to buy another new replacement which is just a complete waste of money.

The best suggestion is to buy a "blade" and "rubber" separately because you can make the necessary adjustments into your paddle to suit the requirements of your playing style.

2. Hold the Blade for a Test

Searching the web for the best ping pong paddle to buy will provide you an endless list of Online Stores offering you various products to choose from. Some of them have good positive reviews but they aren't still convincing enough to be the right paddle for you. In short, there is really no possible way to confirm the suitability of the paddle that you wanted to buy if you intend of buying it online.

Thus, it is highly recommended that you should only buy your paddle from a real store which allow you to test it with your own hand. According to some professionals, not all handles are exactly the same even if the paddle have the same type of grips.

3. Type of Blade that Suits your Style

Aside from the handle, paddles also differ in terms of their blades which is due to their number of "plies". Some professional players claims that, a blade with few plies will have a slower speed but offers more control with the ball.

There are actually two different types of blades which is the "single-sided blade" and "double-sided blade". A single-sided blade is a type of paddle with only one of the blade's surface equipped with rubber. Double-sided paddle has both opposite sides of the blade equipped with rubber surfaces. Professional players prefers to use double-sided blades because it gives them the advantage of being able to shift their styles on different situations.

4. Choose the Right Rubber Sponges

The surface of a paddle's blade which is used by players to hit the ball is made out of spongy rubber material. One of its purpose is to protect the wooden-blade from any possible damages. But, the main purpose of the rubber is actually to offer the player the capability to control the speed of the ball.

A thick spongy rubber actually offer more speed but harder to control. As for the thin spongy rubbers, it offers ease of control but less speed. Offensive-style of players prefer to use thick sponges while defensive-styles chose to use thin sponges.

Advantages of Custom-made and Premade Paddles

Custom and premade paddles actually have their own differences in terms of their advantages. Let's find out about them:

Advantages of a Premade Paddle

1. Offer a much cheaper price.

2. You don't have to trouble yourself trying to assemble the paddle. Upon purchase, you can immediately use it right away.

3. There is no need for you to buy those additional accessories (such as glue and edge tape) for assembling the blade.

4. Save your time with less choices or options about choosing your preferred bat.

Advantages of a Custom-made Paddle

1. Since you have the option to choose the type of rubbers and blades that suits your style, it gives you the benefit of performing at your best strikes.

2. The blades are well characterized with descriptions which allows you to choose the perfect fit for your playing style.

3. You can easily change the rubber of your paddle if it happens that you want to make changes to your style.

4. You can use "Speed Glue". (Although, ITTF had already banned the use of speed glue in January 1, 2009.)

5. The blades, handles and rubbers offer much better qualities.

(Any ping pong paddle can naturally break even if you haven't used it for a long time. This can be avoided by properly storing it on a proper holder.)

6. It's easy to replace the rubber of the blade when worn out.

Ping Pong Paddle

Moreover, beginners are advised to use premade paddles until they are able to define their own preferred style. Once defined, they can now upgrade their bats into a more suitable custom-made ping pong paddles.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Paralympic Table Tennis | Disabled Players

Table tennis sport is not only for ordinary people around but also for those individuals with physical disabilities. The ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) categorized it as the "Paralympic Table Tennis".

Recently, one paralympic player have become well-known especially when his YouTube video went viral around the internet. His name is "Ibrahim Hamato" claiming that he had achieve his amazing skill by spending countless period of time practicing and honing his skills. As a result, he had developed what most professional players call as the "feeling" for the spin and "speed" of playing the game.

Feeling is the term for the skill of being able to hit the ball without looking at either the ball or the paddle. It's for this reason why it can only be developed through a lot of constant practice that also takes a lot of time.

On Ibrahim's case, he doesn't actually have a pair of arms. He handle his paddle with his own mouth. It isn't really easy to develop a "feeling" with your playing-hands but how much more when it comes to your mouth?

One of Ibrahim's video that went viral was him playing in Cairo back in January 2013.

It is a very short video clip that features Ibharim making an impressive display of hitting the ball back and forth over the net against an opponent (normal player) that was going easy on him.

At the 2014 World Team Championships held in Japan, ITTF had invited Ibharim as a guest for short matches against some of the best table tennis players in the world. Based from his performances that was witnessed by many professionals, they found out that he was playing proper strokes and applying spins that seems quite impossible to achieve.

There is actually no limit to what Ibharim can do as a table tennis player. He can block the ball pretty well, he can drive, apply spin and properly serve using his foot. But the most impressive skill that he has is that, he can tilt his head to launch an aggressive shot. It's not just an ordinary shot where there's a considerable amount of speed involved with some added spin.

Ibrahim Hamato's Early Background

At the young age, Mr. Ibrahim do actually had his two complete arms and he already has the passion of playing table tennis. Unfortunately, he suffered a serious accident at the age of 10 where he had no choice but to lose both of his arms. Since his favorite sport requires his hands to play, this reason alone didn't stopped him in pursuing his passion to continue playing table tennis.

Ibrahim tried a few experiments to himself on how to hold the paddle. At first, he tried to hold it under his arms but it didn't worked well. But after a lot of trials, he finally settled on using his mouth as the best part of his body in holding his paddle which really works amazingly great.

The story of Ibharim as a paralympic table tennis player is a great inspiration to all other disabled individuals out there. He has successfully sent a message that there is no one that can stop you from trying to achieve what you really want to accomplish.

Rules of Para Table Tennis

The official rules of paralympic (or "para") table tennis is being managed and regulated by the ITTF organization. They have actually classified disabled players on three different groups. The entire classifications is between 1 to 11.

Players classified under Class 1 to 5 are disabled players with wheelchairs. For Class 6 to 10, they are the disabled players who can stand like Ibharim. And for Class 11, they are players with intellectual disability.

Class 6 to 10

Unfortunately, disabled players who can managed to stand on their own has no exceptions to the official rules of table tennis. They follow the same rules applied to all normal players. But if the disabled player seems to have difficulties due to its physical disability, the umpire can make slight adjustments to the requirements.

Class 1 to 5

Disabled players on their wheelchair have their own laws of playing table tennis.

Serving and Receiving the Ball

- If the ball has been successfully served, the ball need to touch the receiver's court. Otherwise, the player who served the ball loses the point.

- A score point is earned by the serving player if the ball bounces for more than twice or if it comes to rest on the receiver's court.

- During a rally, any of the disabled player can place their hand on the table's surface specifically after a shot. This is to allow them to recover their position.

Playing Doubles

Disabled players on their wheelchairs can also play Doubles. The serving procedure remains the same so as for the receivers or opposing team. But the difference (from the official rules) is that, either of the disabled pair of players can hit and return the ball. (*Official rules for normal players requires the pair of players to alternately receive the ball.)

In addition to receiving or returning the ball, it is important that the players' wheelchairs should not go beyond the imaginary extension of the table's center line. If this happens, the umpire will automatically award the point to the opposing team.

Body Positions on the Wheelchair

Disabled players on their wheelchair doesn't just have to pay attention to the other rules mentioned above. They also need to observe their body positions as they play because improper positions could get them penalized causing them to lose a score point. Here are the following positions that the players must avoid while at play:

- When striking the ball, the back of the player's thigh must be resting or at least maintain minimum contact on the seat or cushion.

- The player must avoid touching the table's surface before striking the ball. Although, the player is free to touch the table but "after" hitting the ball out from his or her court.

- It is important that the player should avoid resting or touching the floor with his or her foot during the match.

Approved Wheelchairs

ITTF have issued an official requirements that is approved for the competition. First of these requirements is that, the wheelchair must have at least two large wheels and one small wheel consisting of three total wheels. If it happens that one of the wheels got dislodged or malfunctioned, the match will be immediately stopped by the umpire awarding the point to the opposing player.

The second requirement is about the height of the cushion. It is required that one or maximum of two cushions must have a limited height of up to 15 cm.

And third, no part of the body which is above the knee can be attached to the chair. It is because according to some experts, this can improve the balance of the player which seems to be unfair.

Wheelchair Sport

Moreover, if you are one among the disabled table tennis player especially a beginner, then you may want to consider joining Disability Awareness Training programs. These programs involve workshops and practical courses tutored by some professional paralympians.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Table Tennis Shoes | Buying Tips

Players wearing appropriate table tennis shoes gets to show their top or best performances on their matches. You have to know that this athletic sport type of game do involve a lot of sudden fast-pace movements. It is for this reason why shoe manufacturers had genuinely designed perfect table tennis shoes especially for the serious players of the game.

So if you think that you are getting good at playing table tennis and you are becoming serious about it, you should consider buying your own special table tennis shoes.

Although, a table tennis shoe is actually optional to a player. It's because there are some people who already find themselves at the best comfort of their own ordinary sneakers. But even though, it is highly suggestible that you should at least own one pair of real table-tennis shoes. This is for you to allow yourself to experience playing on a real ping-pong shoes which lets you determine if you still want to stick with your old pair of shoes.

If you also play other sports such as tennis, badminton, basketball or volleyball and it happens that you own a shoe designed for any of these sports, then they are also suitable to be used for playing table tennis or ping-pong. But above all, a suitable shoe should meet your requirements.

Why Are Ordinary Rubber Shoes Not Good Enough?

Ordinary rubbers shoes are most likely designed with flashy style because they are intended to be worn as ordinary footwear and not really for any sport activities. Due to this reason, the majority of ordinary rubber shoes most likely results into injuries.

Here are the following possible injuries that you may suffer from wearing an ordinary rubber shoes from playing table tennis:

1. Accidentally Slide or Slip

When playing table tennis or ping pong table, being able to move fast is a very important factor to win the match. But, if you are wearing a shoe that doesn't properly stick on the floor, chances are, you will accidentally slide or slip around the court. The worst thing that could happen is when you slip and hit your head on the floor or on the table.

2. Heavy Shoe

Most ordinary rubber shoes are made of durable and heavy materials. As a result, wearing such shoe for just an hour of playing will make you start to feel that your shoe is getting heavier. This affects your performance particularly slowing your movements down.

3. Suffer an Aching Foot

Since ordinary rubber shoes are not really designed for fast and continuous movement, playing table tennis for a couple of hours could lead into an aching foot.

4. Spraining your Ankle

There were already several reported incidents about players spraining their ankles while playing table tennis especially for a long duration period of time. And the most common reason was that, they were wearing some random ordinary rubber shoes.

You have to know that special table tennis shoes are well designed to prevent every possible issues such as those mentioned above. Those issues can really hinder the performance of the player.

Important Qualities of a Table Tennis Shoe

There are a lot of competing table tennis shoe products out in the market today. However, it doesn't mean that they are all good products that you can just randomly grab and buy one of them. Still, there are qualities that you need to consider.

Here are the following tips about the qualities of a table tennis shoe that you should importantly consider before buying:

A Comfortable Shoe

As already stated above, table tennis or ping pong table involves a lot of fast-paced movement where you will be chasing the ball and hitting it with your paddle most of the time. It is for this reason why it is very important that you should always feel comfortable wearing your shoe.

To test a suitable and comfortable shoe that fits your foot, you have to wear it. Thus, it is suggested not to buy your table tennis shoe from an online store. It is still actually best to make an effort visiting an actual shop so that you can wear it allowing you to choose the right size for your feet.

Aside from the size, you also have to inspect the shoe's fabric material that it can provide the adequate ventilation for your feet to breath allowing the heat out.

Foot Support

Table tennis shoes comes in different designs especially when it comes to foot support. If you are the type of player that needs support on your ankle then you may choose a shoe with a low-cut design.

Shock Absorber

Most sport manufacturers focused in designing their shoe product to be as light as possible. Due to this reason, they disregard adding shock absorber. Anyway, a shock absorber isn't really important if you are playing on a nice wooden sprung floor. According to some experts, a shoe with a shock absorber is best recommended when you intend to play on a concrete ground-floor for a long duration period of time.

Playing on a hard surface-floor on a shoe with no shock absorber can result into a painful joint injury.

Unfortunately, all shoes with shock absorbing qualities do degrade in time. So if you do play a lot or regularly, you should consider replacing your shoe for at least every six months period. For occasional players, you can replace your shoes on a yearly basis.


Table tennis or ping pong also involves endurance and stamina. In order to prolong your endurance and stamina, you need to wear the lightest table tennis shoe as much as possible. But as stated above, most lightweight shoes does not offer any shock absorption.


Avoid buying those cheap imitations because they are most likely made of none durable materials. They won't last long enough where you will end up buying another shoe for replacement. Thus, only buy original products with recognized brand.


Nobody wants to get accidentally slip down on the floor because it could result into an injury. But, this usually happens especially when you play on a slippery floor. So when choosing a shoe, you should choose those with rubber soles to get a good grip on the floor.

Flashy Style

Anyone wants to wear a flashy shoe but always consider this as your last option. Don't ever sacrifice comfort or any of the other tips mentioned above just to wear a flashy table tennis shoe to impress the audience or anyone around as you play.

Table Tennis Shoe

Overall, if you keep those tips in mind as you go around the store to buy your own table tennis shoe, it is for sure that you will be able to find the right and suitable shoe for you to wear.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Girls of Table Tennis Sport

It's not just boys but also girls are making a record of their names in the history of table tennis sport. In fact the ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) wants to improve the image of table tennis for women by asking all sport product manufacturers to produce sexier feminine outfit.

In the past, female players do actually wear the same outfit as the male. They also wear shorts that some of them were unfortunately mistaken as male players. Now, the ITTF wants to see girls playing in their skirts. As a result, a lot of table tennis outfit for women with different varieties, colors and designs (to give them a lot of choices to wear) are now made available on the market.

Top Three Most Attractive Girl-Player in Table Tennis Sport

Some fans aren't a part of the big audience to watch the competition. They are actually there just to be able to see their favorite player in action. It really doesn't matter to them if their favorite player had lost or won the match as long as they get to see them. Most of these players are actually women.

Here are the top three girls of table tennis sport that gathered high demands of audiences or fans due to their very attractive looks or appearances:

1. Biljana Golic

Most people refer to her as "Biba Golic" and what really made her famous is her film-star looks especially when she wears her sexy table tennis outfits. But, sad to say that being beautiful and sexy does not have anything to do with being good at playing table tennis. Regardless of her performance, the majority of Biba's audience are her fans. This makes her the number one or most in-demand female table tennis player in the US.

Anyway, Biba's last World Ranking was at number 329 and that was way back in June 2012. On this date onwards, she stopped playing in which she ended up losing her rank.

2. Daniel Dodean-Monteiro

Daniela is another female player that is an attraction to a lot of audience. Unlike Biba, she has a better performance because of her current rank which is at number 40 (May 2014) in the list of Women's World Ranking division.

Her latest achievement was when she and her partner Elizabeta Samara had competed in the European Championships Women's Double in 2012 where they had won the title.

3. Svetlana Ganina

World Rankings in the women's division are actually being dominated by Asian players. But in terms of attractions or number of audiences, Svetlana Ganina from Russia has the highest number of attentions.

In terms of performance, Svetlana used to be at the World Ranking listed at number 34 in June 2007. However, her ranking went drastically down to number 133 in March 2013. From this point onward (just like Biba), she stopped playing which made her rank lapsed.

Female Athlete

Moreover, there is a growing number of girls engaging themselves in table tennis sport today. Thus, I won't be surprised when female players with fashion model looks or appearances joins the sport.

How about you? Who is your favorite female table tennis player?

Friday, January 9, 2015

Ping Pong Paddle Importance

Choosing the right ping pong paddle is basically important because it greatly improves your playing performance. If you are a complete beginner then you might probably won't be able to notice the difference of handling different ping pong paddles. But for the professional players, they cannot afford to use just some randomly chosen ping pong paddle either for practice or competition.

So what is the importance of a ping pong paddle?

The main importance of a good ping pong paddle is that, it offers the player a better performance allowing him to strike the ball at his own preferred style. With the right paddle, both competing player will enjoy themselves playing against one another and so as the audience watching the match.

Upon knowing the great importance of a ping pong paddle, don't immediately go out to the store to buy any one of those very expensive paddles similar to those being used by the top professional players. You have to know that the market price value of a certain paddle does not determine its compatibility to your playing style.

As a beginner, you really have to spend your time playing with the basics trying to define your moves. And as for the mean time, you may choose to use any ordinary paddle. Once that you have defined your playing style and have developed your own skill, this will be the right time to buy the suitable paddle for you to use.

What do you Need to Look for a Ping Pong Paddle?

If your friend is a better table tennis player than you are then you should not base your decision to buy the same type of ping pong paddle that he use. This is the most common wrong notion to every new player of this table sport. Your friend is most likely a better player not because of his paddle but due to his skill. Although, a good paddle does have a slight effect to the performance of a player.

Another important thing that you need to know about is that, your friend's paddle might not be suitable to your playing style.

Anyway, here are the following criteria that you need to look for a suitable paddle for you to buy:

1. Improve Strokes

- It is important that when you are going to buy your own ping pong paddle, you need to hold it with your hand and perform a series of your best strokes. Try to feel it if it delivers the right amount of power and if it is comfortable to your handling.

Buying a ping pong paddle online and simply relying on the customer's feedback is not such a good idea because you won't be able to perform your tests. Thus, it is always best advised to buy your paddle to an actual sport shop.

2. Rapid Movements

- Table tennis is a very fast pace or rapid sport type of game. It is for this reason why you need to carefully choose the right paddle with the quality that allows you to perform rapid movements. There are actually a lot of incidents where the paddle can break apart. Most breaking point is in between the blade and the handle. Such incident usually happens when you are putting a lot of effort in your rapid movements and delivering powerful strikes.

3. Progress

- By using a good paddle for practice, it should not hold your progress back but to improve it further. As mentioned above (2), a bad paddle cannot withstand rapid movements which has the tendency to break apart. Assuming that you are aware about this bad quality of your paddle, this makes you worried to perform fast movement in which holds or prevents your progress for improvement.

4. Offers Value for your Money

- There is a very high competition of ping pong paddle as products out in the market today. It really does takes an effort to choose the right one that works best for you. Don't just settle to those expensive ping pong paddles just because they are the top or the most popular brand.

Ping Pong Paddle

Overall, the secret to winning on a match or competition is not due to the player's ping pong paddle. In fact, there isn't actually any secret at all because winning on a match or competition is more about skill which can only be achieved through constant training and practice.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

What is ITTF? | International Table Tennis Federation

ITTF stands for "International Table Tennis Federation". They are actually the organization that are making changes and implementing new rules of table tennis sport. Their purpose is to promote proper rules and regulations especially to all international competitions. Other than the rules and regulations, they also seek technological improvements that could make players attain more fun and enjoyment from this type of sport.

Short History about ITTF

It was on 1926 when ITTF was founded which consists of only nine members which are the following:

1. Austria
2. Czechoslovakia
3. Denmark
4. England
5. Germany
6. Hungary
7. India
8. Sweden
9. Wales

The first record in the history of a conducted international tournament was on January 1926 held in Berlin. And in the same year (on the month of December), the first World Table Tennis Championships was held in London.


Throughout the years, several changes had been made by the ITTF. One changes was the replacement of the 38 mm balls into 40 mm sized balls.

Process of Implementing Changes to the Rules

Changing or implementing new rules into the game is not decided by just one individual alone. The ITTF organization composes of several organizational structures where the process of implementing a certain rule will have to undergo voting procedures. There are actually many of them that counts for their decisions which include the ITTF President, 8 executive vice-presidents, 32 or less continental representatives and other more...

The New Rules

You have to check the ITTF official website for the new updated rules. But from the time of this post, here are the following criteria that a player must closely observe:

1. Association

- If you are going to participate from an ITTF World Title events, you are only eligible to play for your association by registering with the ITTF. If it happens that you want to play with a new association then you have to register with the ITTF with that new association. Though, there are some restrictions involve.

2. 11 Point Scoring System

- Back in 2001, ITTF has now reduced the original 21 score point system down to 11 points only.

3. Speed Glue is Now Prohibited

- ITTF had issued in January 1, 2009 about the banning of the use of speed glue.

4. Table Dimensions

- Check this post for the Official Ping Pong Table Dimensions that is recognized by the ITTF.

The ITTF World Ranking for the Top Table Tennis Players

If you are going to visit the official website of ITTF, they are constantly updating the World rankings of their best and top players on their list. Currently, China had dominated most of the top rankings in both men and women divisions.

For more information about ITTF, you can visit their official website on the link provided below: