The benefit of disruptive shots

The benefit of disruptive shots

Disruptive shots unexpectedly change the speed, spin, length or direction of the ball. Examples of these shots are the chop block, forehand fade, around the net, snake / wiggly, a push with sidespin, a smash with backspin, taking the ball off the bounce, strawberry flick or even a slow and spinny topspin – all sorts of weird and wonderful shots. Are disruptive shots effective? Will they win you points? Should you use them? Keep reading

[Video] Tom in training #2 … Help me improve! (Nov 2020)

[Video] Tom in training #2 … Help me improve! (Nov 2020)

Here’s some footage of my last training session, filmed the day before the latest lockdown. In this session coach Ferenc Horvath is once again helping me to develop my attacking game. As always, I am happy to receive constructive feedback. Just leave a comment with your thoughts on what I need to do to improve. Keep reading

29 table tennis shadow training ideas + FREE workout sessions

29 table tennis shadow training ideas + FREE workout sessions

In this video I share 29 shadow practice exercises you can do in your home. Shadow practice is a great way of exercising and developing your technique. You don’t need any equipment – you just practice the movements of table tennis shots – drives, loops, chops, flicks, smashes. You can use the shadow practice ideas in this video to create your own exercise routine. Even 5-10 minutes a day can make a difference to your fitness and technique. I also share links to free 30-minute table tennis exercise sessions. Keep reading

Why I miss the stress of competition

Why I miss the stress of competition

My table tennis club has been open for six weeks. I have enjoyed the dedicated practice time. I’ve been trying to develop my attacking game – topspin rather than block, flick rather than push. This week I even hit a few backhand winners. This is a new experience for me! But whilst this extended period of practice is having some benefit on my game, I am really starting to miss competitive play – league matches and tournaments. I am a little surprised by this, as I actually find league matches and tournaments quite stressful. Keep reading

Guide to the best table tennis balls

Buying table tennis balls should be an easy task. But alas not! There are loads of different types of ball available – competition balls, training balls and cheap ‘just for fun’ balls. Some balls are made of celluloid. Other balls are made of non-flammable plastic. So which are the best balls to buy? In this blog post, I’ll give my views of a variety of different balls and give specific recommendations on the best competition and training balls you can buy. I also give recommendations on which balls to buy for casual play. Keep reading

Do your serves complement your playing style?

Do your serves complement your playing style?

I have a player I coach who has very strong drives. He can hit the ball hard and with good ball placement with both his forehand and his backhand. However, this player has a service problem. Yes, his serves are decent and spinny, and sometimes win him points outright. But in general his serves do not complement his playing style. He often gets stuck in pushing rallies and loses the point. In this blog post, I explain how you can use your serves to set up the type of rally you want and win more points. Keep reading

[Video] Tom in training…Help me improve! (Sep 2020)

[Video] Tom in training…Help me improve! (Sep 2020)

I’m back in training, trying to improve me game. When life returns to normal, I will be entering a few tournaments and see how far I can get. To help me improve, I have enlisted the help of coach Ferenc Horvath. In particular I have asked Ferenc to help me develop my attacking game and my footwork. I have a habit of being too cautious when I play, so Ferenc is encouraging me to get into my beast mode. Keep reading

Training in uncertain times

Training in uncertain times

In the UK, table tennis is slowly spluttering back to life. Some clubs and sport centres have reopened giving us some opportunities to practice. But competitive table tennis – leagues and tournaments – is still very limited. So what should our focus be during these uncertain times? Well if you do have the opportunity to play table tennis, I would suggest now is the ideal time to be focusing on improving your technique and sorting out any weak areas of your game. Keep reading

My new table tennis book

I am pleased to announce the publication of my debut book – SPIN: Tips and tactics to win at table tennis. I have always wanted to publish a book. I’m sure the 23-year-old Tom would have anticipated some world changing political masterpiece. But life takes us in some unexpected directions, and a career obsessing about table tennis is certainly a more unusual turn of events. But now that my life is full of the joys of balls pinging and ponging, I wouldn’t want it any of other way. Keep reading

Table tennis is back!

Table tennis is back!

The good news we have been waiting for … indoor sport in England can re-start at the end of July. Hooray! This is very welcome news, as it means I can start coaching again. I already have some sessions in my diary, although I expect demand will be a little less for a while. And … Keep reading