The ping pong professionals know what they are doing. We, as hobbyists, may not. We play ping pong for the fun of it, and maybe for the glee of snatching a win over our opponent. But, many of us want to keep our game strong, or we love the thrill of competition between friends, so we strive to keep our skills sharp.
There are four ping pong moves that you can master that will really ramp up the intensity of your games. Be warned that though these techniques are perfectly legal, some will frustrate your opponents and make them poor losers.
Controlling the spin of the ball does more than make you look like a professional player, it unsettles your opponent. This is because by spinning the ball you can control how the ball bounces on the return. The Backspin makes the ball bounce up rather than forward, and when it hits your opponent's paddle the ball will rebound downward - potentially making it unable to clear the net.
The key to this move is to brush the ball, not hit it, by moving the paddle down and forward. You're pushing the ball into a new motion, not shooting it forward with bounce and force.
The Drop Shot
The Drop Shot will be sure to infuriate your opponent if you use it more than once. This move absorbs the momentum behind your opponent's serve and returns the ball so gently that there is almost no power behind it - causing the ball to fall short on your opponent's side of the table. They will have to dive forward to return it in time!
What you want to do is move your paddle back with the motion of the ball and return it by pushing the ball not flicking it. It takes some practice to perfect this move, and learn how to control and return momentum so that you can nail this shot every time.
The Slam is an ultimate finishing move to unleash upon your unsuspecting opponent and is self-explanatory. It will almost certainly assure your victory - if you can aim the ball's trajectory correctly. Clever players will play calmly with smooth returns, waiting for the opportune moment to unleash this whip-fast move.
Basically, utterly smash the ball in a sharp, downward strike so that it slams into your opponent's court. They'll either have to react fast to return the ball or surrender the round to you!
Like The Backspin, The Topspin causes the ball to spin in a certain direction, tripping up unprepared opponents and allowing you to dominate the game. The Topspin works by making the ball spin forwards in a low arc, rather than simply bouncing, and returns will often have the ball flying high in the air.
To nail The Topspin, you need to hold your paddle at an angle less than 90° and push the paddle upwards and forwards, brushing the ball rather than smacking it.
Master these four ping pong techniques and you'll be racking up the wins in no time!
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