Serve + receive training camp

In this training camp you will learn how to improve your existing serves, how to follow your serve with strong 3rd ball attacks and you’ll learn a few new serves to bamboozle your opponents too. But the learning doesn’t stop there! You’ll also learn how to return your opponent’s serves, whether backspin, topspin, sidespin or no spin. By the end of training camp you will be much more confident at returning different serves and reading service spin.

  • Date: Tuesday 28 March to Friday 31 March 2023
  • Venue: Cambridge University Sports Centre, Philippa Fawcett Drive, Cambridge, CB3 0AS
  • Start / finish time: 10am-4pm each day
  • Coaches: Tom Lodziak, Ferenc Horvath, Charlotte Bardsley, Ádám Füzes
  • Participants: Maximum of 16 players per day
  • Cost: £65 per day


Here’s what to expect from the training camp…

Tuesday 28 March

  • 10am-10.15am – Warm-up
  • 10.15am-12.40pm –  Improve your serves … Learn how to make your existing serves even stronger with more spin, better placement and clever variations.
  • 12.40pm-1.20pm – Lunch
  • 1.20pm-3.45pm – Serve + 3rd ball attack … Learn how to follow up your serve with a strong 3rd ball attack.
  • 3.45pm-4pm – Debrief / stretches

Wednesday 29 March

  • 10am-10.15am – Warm-up
  • 10.15am-12.40pm – New serves … Learn some new high quality serves to bamboozle your opponents, get weak returns or win cheap points. 
  • 12.40pm-1.20pm – Lunch
  • 1.20pm-3.45pm – Service strategy … Learn how to use your serves effectively in matches – when to serve short, when to serve long, when to serve backspin, when to serve topspin and when to use your best serves.
  • 3.45pm-4pm – Debrief / stretches

Thursday 30 March

  • 10am-10.15am – Warm-up
  • 10.15am-12.40pm – Returning backspin serves … Learn how to return backspin and side-backspin serves with pushes, flicks and loops.
  • 12.40pm-1.20pm – Lunch
  • 1.20pm-3.45pm – Returning topspin serves … Learn how to return topspin and side-topspin serves with blocks, drives and topspins.
  • 3.45pm-4pm – Debrief / stretches

Friday 31 March

  • 10am-10.15am – Warm-up
  • 10.15am-12.40pm – Reading service spin … Learn how to read your opponent’s service spin and consistently get your returns back on the table.
  • 12.40pm-1.20pm – Lunch
  • 1.20pm-3.45pm – Applying pressure when returning serves … Learn how to put your opponent under pressure when returning serves with spin, speed and ball placement
  • 3.45pm-4pm – Debrief / stretches

Coaching team

The coaching team for this training camp will be:

Lead coach – Tom Lodziak – Tom is a full-time table tennis coach, based in Cambridge. In addition to coaching, he also competes in the top division of the Cambridge league and veteran tournaments around the country.

Support coach – Ferenc Horvath – Ferenc is head coach of Paragon Table Tennis and has featured in many of my YouTube videos. He has coached in many countries in Europe and plays to a very high standard. Ferenc will be joining the training camp for all four days.

Support coach – Charlotte Bardsley – Charlotte is an England International Table Tennis player and current England U21 champion. She plays for SV Böblingen in Germany (1st Division of the Bundesliga) and is studying History & Politics at the University of Cambridge. Charlotte will be joining the training camp on 29, 30 and 31 March.

Support coach – Ádám Füzes – Ádám has over 30 years of playing experience. He has competed in Division 1 in Hungary and enjoyed success in the senior British league. Ádám is well known for his range of spinny and confusing serves! Ádám will be joining the training camp on 28 March only.

Who is this training camp suitable for?

This training camp is suitable for players who are already competing at a local league level or in amateur tournaments. At a minimum you should be able to serve confidently and be competent playing a forehand push, backhand push, forehand drive and backhand drive. 

This training camp is not suitable for complete beginners. If you are unsure whether this training camp is suitable for you, please email me with more information about your playing standard and I will advise.


There will be a maximum of 16 players per day on this training camp. The small number creates a more intimate training camp and ensures every player gets lots of feedback from the coaching team. 

You will get the opportunity to play with different people throughout the training camp – usually a mixture of players from around the UK and also players from other countries. You will experience a positive coaching environment, joined by like-minded table tennis enthusiasts!

Venue + accommodation

This training camp will take place at Cambridge University Sports Centre, Philippa Fawcett Drive, Cambridge, CB3 0AS.

There will be seven high quality tables and lots of high quality training balls.

The sports centre has a small car park (free of charge) and modern changing facilities. The sports centre sells basic refreshments and also has free water dispensers to fill up water bottles. 

If you require accommodation, please take a look at this accommodation guide, which gives lots of affordable options.

Visit Cambridge

If you live in another part of the UK (or another country), you could combine this training camp with some sightseeing of Cambridge in the evenings. There is always plenty to do in the picturesque university city. Find out what’s on in Cambridge on the Visit Cambridge website

How to book

This training camp took place in March 2023.

Click here to view the latest list of training camps. Alternatively, you may be interested in attending one of my group coaching days.