Table Tennis Tips for Beginners

People from all around the world love to take part in an exciting game of table tennis. And why not? This sport is easy to learn, loads of fun, and can be played by just about anybody regardless of age or athletic ability.

It’s no wonder that sports tickets for this activity are popular. If you are a beginner in the world of table tennis, or you want to learn a bit more about this exhilarating sport, then check out these tips for beginners. They will get you on your way to a riveting game right away!

table tennis tournament
table tennis tournament

Getting the Right Equipment

Of course, you can’t play any sport or game without having the proper equipment. As the name suggests, table tennis requires the use of a table. Specific tables for this sport are available at sporting goods stores all across the country. You shouldn’t have any issues finding one.

The typical table consists of a short net dividing the table into two halves, and each half has a painted white line running vertically. Each player will stand on their side of the table and hit the ball over the net. Table tennis rackets are small and usually made of laminated wood, with one side having a rubber covering. Besides the table tennis ball, this is all you need to get started on a game.

Practicing Your Technique

This sport may look relatively simple at first glance, but don’t let the pros fool you – there is a lot of technique and practice that goes into being a great table tennis player.

Read more: How To Practice Table Tennis Alone

First of all, there are different grips to hold the racket. Typically, you hold it as if you were shaking hands. Others may choose to hold it as if they were gripping a pen or pencil, and still, other players may place their index finger on one side and their thumb on the other, with the handle resting on their other fingers.

And then there are the swings! They say that it’s all in the wrist, so small, concise actions end up going a long way compared to jolting, large motions. As you progress, you can try varying the speed and power behind your swings.

Scoring During a Table Tennis Match

The last thing that any beginner should know about table tennis is how to keep score. In a nutshell, if your opponent fails to hit the ball over the net, you get the point. If they hit the ball off the table, they hit the net, or they hit the ball over your head, you get the point. Also, the ball is not allowed to bounce more than once between swings. The first player to eleven points wins!

More Playing Tips for Beginners

Take your time to read and understand each of these table tennis tips for beginners, explained in this post, and make sure you apply them to your game.

Use the right equipment.

One of the problems beginners face is choosing the wrong types of equipment. Especially the table tennis rackets. There are different types and categories of rubbers and blades that make up the table tennis racket.

playing table tennis tips
playing table tennis tips

It is recommended that you start with a racket that consists of an all-around blade and rubbers. Avoid buying the fastest and most expensive racket because you cannot use it if you are still a beginner.

Know the rules

One of my most crucial table tennis tips for beginners is to know and understand the sport’s basic rules. You have to know the rules of table tennis if you want to improve your game. There is a big difference between basement rules and the official rules of table tennis.

Learn the basic techniques

Concentrate more on learning the basic techniques in table tennis, including the basic serves, the basic strokes, and the basic footwork. Do not try to learn any advanced techniques until you can master the basic techniques.

It would help if you were focused.

Focus and listen to your coach, follow instructions you read from eBooks, or watch videos from the internet or DVDs. Always focus on improving your game and avoid any distractions.

Use the right grip

You must first know the different grip types and how to use the proper grip that can help you develop your game quickly.

The shakehand grip is highly recommended for beginners because it is the most common and easy to use among the different grip styles.

A wrong grip style will make it difficult for you to develop your techniques.

Be realistic.

It would help if you had realistic goals, do not have an unrealistic expectation about improving your game.

There are no magic ways to improve your skills. You have to follow the normal process, and the only thing you can do is work hard and focus on improving your game.

Do not work too hard.

You do not need to try too hard but practice according to your ability. If your coach tells you to do something, you do not need to kill yourself to do it. However, do your best but do not do more than yourself, because you will be doing more harm than good.

Make mistakes and correct them.

You can make mistakes in table tennis, like every other sport, but your ability to learn from your mistake is essential. If your stroke gets stopped by the net, play it a little bit high next time.

You need constant practice.

It is the most important among the table tennis tips for beginners that have been mention above. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect. It would help if you practiced every technique you learn for you to get it right. The more you practice a new technique, the more it becomes part of you.

Common Mistakes Made by Beginners in Table Tennis

After many years of playing table tennis, I have observed some common mistakes made by beginners in table tennis.

Here are the most common mistakes which beginners make in table tennis.

ping pong mistake
ping pong mistake

If you can avoid these mistakes, you will develop your table tennis skills and become a better player.

Choosing the wrong rackets 

It is one of the mistakes made by beginners in table tennis. If you are ready to buy your first table tennis racket, I will advise you to read my article about premade and custom rackets before making your choice. This single article can help you not to make the mistakes that most beginners have made.

Using the wrong grip

A wrong table tennis grip will hinder the progress of any new table tennis player. I strongly advise you to read my article about table tennis grip to help you know the correct type of grip that will help you develop and improve your table tennis skills.

Being too careful

Most table tennis beginners are too careful when playing in their first competition. They become nervous and afraid not to make mistakes, so they will over guide the ball instead of just hitting the ball. I will advice that you hit the ball the way you do during your training and practice.

Bad footwork

It is a very common mistake made by beginners in table tennis. Most beginners prefer to stretch their arms instead of moving their feet when playing their strokes. You should learn and improve your footwork in table tennis so that you can play your strokes better.

Lack of regular practice

I have always emphasized in most of my table tennis articles the importance of regular practice. Practice with determination and seriousness is the key to becoming a better player. So always practice your table tennis techniques as much as possible.

Too much information

It is one of the reasons why most beginners find it challenging to improve on their game. There is too much information on the internet about table tennis which is conflicting and confusing to beginners in table tennis.

I will advise that beginners stick to the information they will receive on this site because this website is a guide for beginners in table tennis. Apart from this site, you will find another useful site that I will recommend, which is also helpful to beginners.

Being impatient

Most beginners are too anxious to learn table tennis and become professional players in less than one year. However, table tennis is quite an easy sport to learn, but there is more to it than just playing the ball back and forth.

It will take a lot of time, energy, and continuous practice to master the techniques involved for you to become an advanced player. So relax, take your time to learn and enjoy the sport, you will become a better player even before you know it.

Lack of concentration

Most beginners have the potential to improve on their game but lack the concentration to do so. They get easily distracted and forget about what they have being taught. It is why a coach is essential. A table tennis coach can help you become more focused and create a way to concentrate more on your game.

Bad playing habits 

Like lack of concentration, some beginners who have played their game at home develop bad habits. These habits mostly have to do with the rules of the game. As a beginner, the best way to get rid of these bad habits is to join a table tennis club. In a table tennis club, you must have to play the game according to the rules.

Check out for more Table Tennis Tips

table tennis DVDs


Warren Davies

1 thought on “Table Tennis Tips for Beginners”

  1. Thanks for sharing. I think I am going to get my kids a table tennis set for Christmas. I will have to make sure to get all the equipment with it. I hadnt thought about that. I am sure my kids will be happier if we have padels and balls and not just a table.

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