Being a beginner table tennis player can be intimidating, especially if you’re playing against experienced opponents. But mastering ping pong and learning how to easily score on your opponent isn’t as hard as you think. Our table tennis tips will give you an edge over the competition during your next match, teaching you how to change up your game, how to deliver a killer serve, and what you can do to improve your techniques and wipe the floor with your next opponent.
Key Takeaway: In order to be a better player you need to practice at least thirty to sixty minutes a day, using the proper techniques. Practicing your spin serves will give you an edge over the competition, allowing you to easily score on any opponent.
The Basics of Table Tennis
Mastering the basics of ping pong will help you beat other table tennis beginners and can even improve your coordination, striking techniques, and serves. It’s also important to leave how to move and how to properly grip your paddle. It’s up to you to identify your weaknesses and focus on improving in these areas in order to score.
There are actually three killer spin serves you must master, but learning how to deliver a spin serve can be difficult. However, once you perfect your serve you can easily beat players of all skill levels.
When you’re serving, make sure you also closely watch your opponent’s paddle as they return your shot. This is because the ball typically bounces off in the same direction based on where it’s touched with the paddle.
If you’re watching your opponent closely and notice that their paddle is moving low to high this means they’re using a topspin serve. A side spin serve involves the paddle moving from left to right. You’re dealing with a backspin serve if the paddle moves high to low.
Click here to check out our article on how to spin ping pong balls using the top three spin serve techniques.
If you’ve recently fallen in love with table tennis and want to get better so you can finally win a match, then you have to commit to practicing once a day. Try to practice as much as possible and focus on overcoming any weaknesses you’ve been struggling with.
Practicing can involve brushing up on the basics, learning a new serve, or focusing on speed. If you have tables such as the STIGA Advantage Competition-Ready Indoor Table Tennis Table, then you can take advantage of the playback feature. This feature allows you to bring up half the table to form a backboard. You can use the backboard for practice to perfect your shots, improve your speed, and learn how to serve like a pro.
To learn more about table tennis tables with this popular feature, click here to read our table tennis table buyer’s guide.
Learn How to Return a Serve with Power
If you’ve ever played against an opponent that easily wiped the floor with you because you weren’t able to challenge their shots with a powerful return, then now is the time to focus on learning to hit a powerful return, one that can easily counter a variety of serves. When you deliver a powerful return it can make it almost impossible for an opponent to return it. If you’re returning each of their shots effortlessly, your opponent will start double guessing their techniques and whether they should return the ball high or low. Ultimately, this results in your opponent making a lot of net return shots, giving you some free points.
In order to improve your return shots, you should practice with another player, as opposed to hitting the balls with your table in the playback feature. Have your training partner hit some easy balls your way. During this time, make sure you’re using a solid stance. When the ball is in the air, angle your paddle forward slightly and lower your arm. Next, sweep your arm forward and up as you strike the ball. When you sweep your arm using both an upward and forward motion it will allow you to use more power to return a shot while also adding a little top spin at the same time.
Evaluate Your Opponent
If you’re confident that you have the basics of table tennis down, know how to use a variety of serves and you feel like you can easily shut down your opponent with your return shots, now is the time to put together your playing strategy. Every player has a weakness, including you. When you’re playing in a match, your opponent is hoping you’re not able to easily spot their weakness. But if you can, you can easily use their weakness against them to win a match. In order to do this, pay attention to your opponent when they’re warming up. This is the perfect time to watch how they serve, how they return a shot, and what their vulnerabilities are.
During a match, make sure you hit the balls in zones your opponent is weak in. However, make sure you also switch it up during the match and avoid hitting the ball in the same spot. Even if the spot is where your opponent is weak, they will quickly catch on and catch you off guard with a killer return shot. You should also make sure you’re using serves and shots you’re confident in. If you’re always playing on an opponent’s weaknesses you may find yourself attempting shots that you normally struggle with, leaving yourself vulnerable in the match. Only play a shot you know you’re able to easily land.
Our table tennis tips can help you master many of the aspects of table tennis, however, only by practicing regularly will you become a better player. The more you practice and the more matches you enter, the more you’ll realize what you need to do to improve in certain areas. One day you may feel confident in your serving skills, but if you go up against an opponent that obviously lives and breathes table tennis, you’ll quickly realize how much practice you really need.