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I was playing ping-pong the other day. Little did I know at the time, my rubber was slowly coming off with every stroke of my paddle. When I was about to close out the game, I attempted to smash but twice, my balls died on the return and didn't clear the net. Knowing this was unusual, I checked out my paddle and saw a quarter of my rubber detached from my paddle with a slight tear. I still was able to win, but not without adjustments. This has happened during practice, but never during the heat of the moment. I'm considering replacing my paddle.

Is there a foolproof way to prevent this? Would a higher quality rubber/paddle prevent this problem from occurring in the future?

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A foolproof way to prevent that from happening is with proper maintenance, this is especially true in racket sports where wear & tear on the players' gear can greatly affect their performance.

Having higher quality rubber does make it less likely for tears on the surface to occur (especially for antispin rubber), however, even the best quality rubber would wear with continued use and age and would eventually need replacing. It's the same way as how tennis and badminton rackets need to be restrung depending on how often they're used.

Additionally, worn out rubber can result in an unintentional change in the rubber surface's playing characteristic, which, according to the ITTF rulebook, is illegal.

Read: How often should you replace your table tennis rubber

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