Last updated 8 years ago
Well I had an interesting couple days of table tennis lately. First off, I got struck in the eye with a powerful backhand topspin loop. The opponent was the hardest hitting player I'd ever rallied with. It wasn't so much the velocity (I'll admit it was a bit scary...) but rather the higher bounce that caught me off-guard. I had the blade parallel to the table for my own backhand loop reply, but the ball bounced right over my blade and into my eye. I didn't even have time to blink when I got hit. My eye is OK now, but I can tell you that it was not an experience that anyone should ever have again. If playing against a really heavy hitter, wear glasses or get a cheap pair of clear plastic safety glasses. I'm 6'3" and 240lbs. Never in a million years did I ever think I could get struck in the eye by a backhand loop, unless it was a Ma Lin or Timo Bol on the other side of the table.
As for my question: I won a first game, but then lost the next 3 games and scored very few points in them. What happened was that I could no longer get my service returns over the net, or when I did, they would be too high and he'd smash them with ease. Asked him what I was doing wrong. He told me that once he figured out that I could not read spin, he just varied the backspin/topspin.
He used a regular pendulum serve with a downward arm motion and from what i could tell, it was the same motion every time. He told me that it wasn't the same motion and that he was switching between topspin and backspin. How can I tell the difference?
Best Wishes for a successful and super fun trip to Thailand. Hope you post some stories about it.
The key is to watch the contact first. It takes a bit of time to get the understanding right but it will come. There has to be a difference in contact to get a different result. If he is coming slightly down on the actual contact then it will be backspin. For the topspin the bat will need to come up slightly.
The bounce of the ball will also be a little different. The topspin will bounce a little higher.
Unfortunately this will take time to develop the understanding fully. We do have a lot of videos on this area in our Receiving Secrets lessons.
Thanks for the advice on the glasses. Last year was the first time I was hit in the eye with a ball where I didn't have time to react. It was pretty powerful and hurt for a few seconds.
Thanks for your wishes for Thailand. Should be fun.
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