I am 25 and I started playing table tennis 6 months ago. Since then I've played almost every weekday for at least 20 minutes. Currently I can play the standard shots. But I am not winning matches against the best players. It is mainly due to two reasons for me:

  1. Serve: while serving, very often I tend to serve a "no-spin easy serve", or a service fault.
  2. Return of serve: while returning side spin serves and other heavy spin serves, I mishit.

I know this is a fairly big question. But I feel it will be useful for the beginners like me to go in the right direction for improving further.

2 Answers 2


I understand your problem, that's common for all beginners. There are some training exercises for you:

  • Firstly, FEEL THE BALL: Try to master all of these services: topspin, no spin, and backspin serve. By doing the serve yourself, you can feel the "gesture" of the serve; you can also feel the speed, the spin of this type of spin.

  • Secondly, when you master the serving game, now, master the receive game. Ask your partner, at the same level of yours, to serve only topspin for 1 hour, only backspin for 1 hour, no spin for 1 hour, and you try to master your own return. Then finally mix them randomly.

With these two exercises, you will soon decrease your weakness in the match-game. It takes time, but firstly try it slowly in the training session. Don't rush and you will succeed.


The only way to master and play a sport to the best of your ability is PRACTICE, PRACTICE and more PRACTICE.

20 minutes of play time for 5 days a week is far too little to compete and give a fight against better players. You need to increase this practice time and make it more effective.

Find a player who is of your competence level in the sport and practice with him/her. Have a practice schedule: for example, one person can try out different spin serves while the other can receive it for the first 10 minutes. In the next 10 minutes, you can reverse roles. You can then move on to chops, rallies, smashes, etc. This helps keep the routine mixed so you don't get bored with one thing, as such. At the end of the practice session, both of you can have a match, where you can try out all the things that you might have practiced in the day.

When you don't have a table to play on, you can practice against the wall. Another way would be to for two players to play on a thin long horizontal stool/table, instead of the normal table. This will help you place the ball better and perfect your direction choosing abilities and the angles with which you play the shot, as the table is much narrower than the original table used in table tennis.

  • 1
    Not sure Allen Iverson would approve...
    – user527
    Feb 21, 2013 at 17:39

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.