Playing like Jan Ove Waldner

Table Tennis Discussion

Last updated 8 years ago

Jamie Milroy

Jamie Milroy Asked 9 years ago

I have been studying Jan's playing style for a while now and I still don't know how he does what he does. How can I teach myself to go from the defensive to the offence so quickly?

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 9 years ago

Hi Jamie,

Players have been studying his style for a long time and I think more players get themselves into difficulties trying to copy Waldner than get help from it.

He is so unique and do so many things with each ball that trying to copy him leads to many errors.  I know, I went through it myself.

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Jamie Milroy

Jamie Milroy Posted 9 years ago

Thanks, I'll keep working on my own style, besides, who wants to copy when you have your own unique style

jan ancheta

jan ancheta Posted 8 years ago

i think jan ove waldner's style is old school


Arnab Ghosh

Arnab Ghosh Posted 8 years ago

The person in discussion is the most famous and talked about athlete in the sport of table tennis. He was not alone who bloomed at table tennis from an early age, many of his team mates were also good players and gave the Chinese a run for their money. Yet, while the other names gradually faded, his name never did. He continued to impress 3 whole generations of table tennis athletes. So I don't know if he is old school or not, but whatever he is, there can be none other like him.

We can try to copy his techniques, but we will never know what went on inside his head, what thought processes took place before he executed each single shot in every single rally. With JO Waldner, the mind and the techniques were inter-dependent. So if we copy only one part we'll be unsuccessful. He was extremely observant of his opponents, he was an excellent and patient blocker and most importantly, he had unbelievable control of the ball. He could hit returns off shots which a normal player couldn't think of. 

I remember watching this video of him playing against Timo Boll. He pushed Boll to his left corner and hit an amazing block to Boll's extreme right. Amazingly, Boll made it and looped the ball around the side of the net. Waldner started walking away as Timo was making this shot. And while walking, Waldner blocked the oncoming ball into the open table for a winner. No technique...just control and anticipation of the ball. One can't copy it, one has to be born with it. Sorry, but its a fact.


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