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Table Tennis - Far More Than Ping Pong
A game of skill, reactions and quick thinking
Posted Apr 03, 2012 by Jeff Dawson
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When people think about the game of table tennis, they immediately think it’s a game of hitting a ball back and forth across a table, like outdoor tennis but for less skilled people who don’t like going outside. How wrong can you be? Table tennis, or ping pong, whichever you prefer to call it, is a game of skill, reactions and quick thinking where players are constantly involved and trying to beat their opponent both literally and psychologically.
It is a game that requires very little equipment, and once you’ve made the initial investment in table tennis tables, bats and balls, you won’t need anything more. There is no need to invest in proper kit, additional equipment or even referees, and you can play literally anywhere in any weather conditions.
The tables themselves usually fold in two, making them easy to store - something that is extremely important for people playing at home. Obviously playing in a sports centre has the advantage of store rooms, but the folding mechanism makes it simple to store the table in a garage or shed for home players. One advantage it has over a proper tennis court is that there are no “out” lines or “beds.” This means that, provided the ball bounces on the other side, it is always in play until a player hits the net or sends it long.
Predominately in an indoor game, table tennis is a great way of building up your hand-eye coordination and also your reactions. Being so close together, the ball comes back at you almost as soon as you’ve hit it so you need to be in position ready to receive the ball and send it back across the table all within a second.
Most of the time, table tennis is played by two players who play to earn the serve off the first go, and then once they have “possession”, they can then start scoring points. However, it can be a game you can play in doubles making it a game for the whole family, with “girls versus boys” a common match up - just make sure the family dog doesn’t run off with the ball!