The History of Ping-Pong
All About Table Tennis
Like most other sports, table tennis had humble beginnings as a “parlor game,” open to anyone with access to a table, paddle, and ball. The game began in the 1880s, when lawn tennis players adapted their game to play indoors during the winter.
Ping-Pong is a trademark name for table tennis and associated equipment. The name “Ping-Pong” was invented by the English firm J. Jaques and Son at the end of the 1800s and later trademarked in the United States by Parker Brothers, the board game company.
The game quickly caught on, and as early as 1901, tournaments were being conducted with over 300 participants. The Ping-Pong Association was formed but was renamed The Table Tennis Association in 1922.
In 1902 a visiting Japanese university professor took the game back to Japan, where he introduced it to university students. Shortly after, a British salesman, Edward Shires, introduced it to the people of Vienna and Budapest, and the seeds were sown for a sport that now enjoys popularity all over the world. In Britain, table tennis had also begun to spread outside the distinctly middle-class confines of London, and leagues sprang up in provincial towns as far apart as Sunderland and Plymouth. In 1922, an All England Club was formed, which boasted such luminaries as Jack Hobbs the cricketer and other famous names of the time from the world of sport. The Daily Mirror organized and sponsored a nationwide tournament in which there were 40,000 competitors.
Table tennis was firmly on the map, and on April 24, 1927, the English Table Tennis Association was born, under the chairmanship and direction of Ivor Montague, son of Lord Ewatthling. He was not only to become the architect of modern-day table tennis, but he also achieved critical acclaim as both a director and film producer. At the time, The ETTA had a membership of 19 leagues but now has over 300, with around 75,000 registered players.
The first world championships were held in 1927 and were won by a Hungarian, Dr. Jacobi. Apart from the famous Fred Perry redressing the balance for England in 1929, this was to be the start of an unprecedented run of success for the Hungarians, who completely dominated the game throughout the thirties. Their team was led by the legendary Victor Barna, whose inspiration and skill did so much to elevate the game to sports status.
The 1950s saw the game turned upside down by the invention of the sponge or sandwich rubber, this new material for bats, which, up until now, had been a relatively simple affair with a universal thin covering of pimpled rubber.
Until this time, spin had played only a minor part in a game that had been dominated by the defensive style of play. But these new bats or paddles, introduced by the Japanese, had the capacity to move the ball around in an almost magical way. The ITTF, the game’s governing body, was quick to legislate in a bid to control this new development, seen in some quarters as equipping players with an unfair advantage. The thickness of the sponge and rubber sandwich was controlled and remains so to this day. But the nature of the game had been changed, establishing the fast attacking speed and spin style of the modern game.
Today, the sport both in England and abroad is very well established and is growing each year. The culmination of this has been its recognition as an Olympic Games sport, being featured for the first time in the 1988 games in Seoul. Television coverage of the men’s singles final attracted an incredible worldwide audience of 2 billion. In China, the game is played by literally millions at work, in school, and in community parks. Chinese top players are regarded as national heroes with pop star statuses.
Pac-12 Breakout Star Derek McCartney.
College Tennis Summer Camps
You are new in table tennis or you just want to come back and learn, from the beginning, the correct table tennis techniques. Table tennis techniques have changed a lot. However, people still using the old designed course, which is not adapted to the “new trends in table tennis”. Today, I will show you the new (re-designed) table tennis lessons for the beginner to learn the modern table tennis strokes. These are the 10 table tennis basics that every beginner should know.
What are the basic skills of table tennis?
Some coach has proposed the accelerated table tennis course (only in 10 days) to learn the fundamentals of table tennis. However, to master the correct techniques, a player should do the repetition several times. The proper mechanism needs the “muscle memory”. That’s why in a short amount of time (10 days), you can not master correctly the basic skills. Focus on basic skills during your first 2 years of training.
In your first 2 years of your career, you should master these basic techniques.
Based on the Chinese coaching, there are 10 fundamental skills in table tennis.
- Forehand drive technique
- Backhand topspin close to the table
- Forehand push and backhand push
- Forehand flick
- Backhand flick
- Backhand loop the underspin ball
- Forehand attack the semi-long ball
- Learn Forehand fast serve
- Forehand pendulum serve
- Backhand sidespin serve
1. Forehand Drive Technique
The first fundamental table tennis skill that you should learn is the feeling of the ball. Driving skills helps you quickly get this feeling. Unlike many basic table tennis lessons, who propose you to learn the “grip” or the “stance” first. You can start learning the forehand drive first. During these training drills, the coach and yourself can quickly modify the grip based on the “feeling” and the “timing”. I, myself, found this approach can help new players improve much faster.
You should know: Professional player change the grip during the rallies.
Furthermore, the player tends to change the grip for each type of stroke. By fixing a new player to learn a not-flexible grip, it’s not good for the further improvement later.
2. Backhand topspin close to the table
Backhand topspin is the basic skill that every player should master. The biggest mistake of the beginner is “I will learn the forehand first, and then I let learning the backhand technique in the intermediate stage”. This is totally wrong! You should learn the backhand stroke mechanism as soon as possible. Because by learning backhand technique, you will understand how to use your wrist in table tennis. You also learn how to relax, the right timing of acceleration, and the correct gip.
Remember: A bad habbit is very difficult to correct. Learn the table tennis basics slowly but correctly.
3. Forehand push and backhand push
After having a good foundation of feeling the ball and having a relaxed grip, you will start to learn the “timing”. Timing is when to hit the ball. The best exercise is to practice the forehand push and the backhand push.
4. Forehand flick
The flick (or flip) technique is previously considered as the “advanced skills in table tennis”. However, in this modern table tennis era, the Chinese coach has moved this skill to the fundamental skills. If you can not aggressive return the ball, you will quickly be dominated in this modern age of table tennis. “Aggressiveness” is the key.
5. Backhand flick
The backhand flick is nowadays considered as the standard technique. Using backhand flick to return all the topspin or sidespin short serve. Backhand push is rarely used in the real match today.
Did you know that? There are 2 types of backhand flick: Banana Flick, and Strawberry Flick.
6. Backhand loop the underspin ball
Chinese table tennis focuses a lot on the use of the lower part of your body. When you master all of the basic skills, you should quickly incorporate your body (hip, waist, legs, abdomen) into your stroke. Backhand loop the underspin ball is designed to learn this concept quickly.
7. Forehand attack the semi-long ball
Table tennis tactics, in fact, turn around the service and service-return. Why semi-long ball? Best players use the semi-long ball a lot nowadays. Short ball is weak, and the long ball is easily attacked. A semi-long ball will let you attack right after your serve. That’s the reason why Chinese coach has introduced the forehand attack the semi-long ball into the basics training.
8. Learn Forehand fast serve
Forehand fast serve is an indispensable tool to survive in this modern table tennis. Unlike several training courses which didn’t focus enough on the quality of a long and fast serve. Look at the new trends in table tennis: Tomokazu Harimoto and Miu Hirano’s playing style. They incorporate the fast serve efficiently in the new trending “Counter Attack Playing Style”.
9. Forehand pendulum serve
Forehand pendulum serve is one of the best serves in table tennis. Easy to learn but difficult to master. Learning this service will let you add many spin variation. You should learn this serve as soon as possible. Learn to add sidespin and improve the deceptive spin to this serve.
10. Backhand sidespin serve
And finally, the last fundamental skill is the backhand sidespin serve. It’s the lest important skill but sometimes it can change the outcome of the match. Watch how Ma Long comes back after losing 0-2 to Lee Sangsu. Ma Long used the backhand serve which has completely change the result of the match. Backhand sidespin serve gives you the control of the placement and reduce the pace of the game. Having several types of service always help you to deal with the critical situation. To become the better player, you should have several effective serves.
Learn the backhand serve will help you change the tactics during the match.
That’s is the most important basic skills that beginners should master. The best ways to Learn How to Play Table Tennis is practicing these 10 Basic Table Tennis Strokes, which are adapted to the modern table tennis.
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