Table tennis, otherwise known as ping-pong, is an incredibly fun and addicting game that has survived the ages. Everyone, young and old, has at least heard of this sport. In a lot of countries, there are even professional teams, and table tennis is as popular a spectator sport to watch as football. However, you don’t have to be a professional to play table tennis. Table tennis is an easy game to learn and is truly fun for all ages.
Learn the basics. The basics of table tennis is to hit the ball back and forth between opponents with only allowing one bounce (or no bounce in some cases). You rally like this until the ball leaves the table, does not make it over the net, or bounces twice on the same side of the net.
Learn how to score. Scoring for table tennis is fairly simple. A point is scored if either opponent hits the ball more than once, hits the ball off the table, lets the ball bounce twice on their side, or is unable to make the ball over the net.
Learn who serves. The game usually starts out with a rally to see who serves first. The winner of the rally gets to serve first. That person will serve five times and then it is the opponent’s turn to serve. A server gets two chances to get the ball over the net. If they are unable to get the ball over the net on the second try, their opponent receives a point. The winner must win by two points.
Learn the technique. Once you have gotten good at getting the ball over the net, it’s time to learn technique. There are many different ways to hit the ball to gain an advantage over your opponent. Small things like hitting the ball with an upward motion can cause the ball to spin whichever direction you wish. When you can get spin on the ball, it affects how your opponent is able to return the ball. It can also affect the direction the ball goes when it hits the table. You can also learn a “slammer” in which the ball is high enough for you to direct the ball (much like a spike in volleyball) down at a high speed to your opponent’s side of the net. Backhand and forehand also will play a part in how your ball will land on your opponent’s side. Changing your technique constantly will keep your opponent guessing and give you a greater chance of winning.
Learn advanced tactics. Once you have learned all the different ways to hit the ball, it’s time to direct the ball to specific quadrants of your opponent’s side of the net. Much like tennis, you want to watch where your opponent is relative to the table, and hit the ball to the opposite corner. Or if your opponent is far back from the table, it’s a perfect opportunity to hit short. This forces your opponent to have to move his position constantly to reach and return the ball.