How to change a table tennis habit (even if you’re 80)

I coach a player in his 80s (he wants to remain anonymous, so I’ll call him Harold). When he was younger Harold was a defensive player. But it’s not easy for Harold to play this way any more. So I have worked with him to change his playing style. This has not been easy. In fact it’s been very difficult. But Harold has made huge progress. And he has succeeded in changing many of of his defensive habits. In this blog post, I’ll explain how Harold has managed to change his habits and how you can change your table tennis habits too. Keep reading

(Video) Improving my backhand flick with Eli Baraty

(Video) Improving my backhand flick with Eli Baraty

I like to use a backhand flick to attack short serves. I have an ‘ok’ backhand flick, but I want it to be stronger. I want to get more speed and spin to really put my opponent’s under more pressure. To improve my backhand flick, I asked fellow coach Eli Baraty to help me. In this video, I’ll show you my existing backhand flick, Eli’s feedback on what I need to do better and my new improved backhand flick. Keep reading

(Video) How to smash high balls

(Video) How to smash high balls

Attacking high balls should be easy. The ball is way up in the air. You have a big margin to get the ball over the net. How can you possibly miss? Easy peasy. But then you smash the ball into the net or off the end of the table. Doh! We have all been there. We have all missed that easy high ball. In this video I show you a basic smashing technique, which will help you to smash high balls consistently. Keep reading

7 common beginner mistakes in table tennis (and how to fix them)

Last weekend I coached at a beginner training day in London. The purpose of the day was to teach some basic table tennis skills – drives, pushes, serve and receive. Throughout the day, I picked up on several mistakes the beginner players were making. They were making the same mistakes as the beginner players I coach in Cambridge. I’m sure they are the same mistakes any beginner player makes in any part of the world. So I thought it would be useful to share some of these mistakes, why they need fixing and what you should do instead. So if you are a beginner player, this blog post is for you… Keep reading

(Video) Sidespin serve – tips and tactics

(Video) Sidespin serve – tips and tactics

One of the most popular serves in table tennis is the forehand sidespin serve, also known as the pendulum serve. I have been using this serve for 10+ years and it’s a great service weapon to have. At a lower level, players really struggle to return the serve. You can win lots of cheap points. At a higher level, you can put your opponents under a lot of pressure by using all of the different spin and placement variations. In this coaching video, I explain how to do the serve, how to get lots of spin, how to vary spin and how to use the serve to set up a 3rd ball attack. Keep reading

Do you need ‘perfect’ technique to be good at table tennis? No you do not!

Do you need ‘perfect’ technique to be good at table tennis? No you do not!

When I post a coaching video on my Youtube channel, I usually get a few comments, where my technique gets completely trashed. I get told I do this wrong and that wrong and I should try to play the shot like the best professionals (usually someone from the Chinese National Team). But how true is this? Do you have to play like the best professionals in the world to be any good at table tennis? Is there such a thing as ‘perfect’ technique? Let’s explore these questions… Keep reading

(Video) How to attack a backspin ball with a forehand topspin

(Video) How to attack a backspin ball with a forehand topspin

If you want to improve and play at a higher level, you need to learn how to attack backspin balls, e.g. pushes, chops, backspin serves. In this video I share some of the teaching methods I use with the players I coach. I explain the technique in full, then I break the learning process down into smaller chunks. Most of the time my methods work. So if you struggle with this shot, try out the things I show in the video and hopefully it will work for you too. Keep reading