Today you are learning the most important skill in playing that is how to hold a paddle correctly? If you are playing table tennis at a competitive level feel and touch are the essential parts that you have to learn first.
Where you hold the bat is the key factor to learn in table tennis because this is where you will get to feel the ball when it comes in contact with your bat.
When I say feel of the ball, I am referring to the vibrations caused on the bat when it comes into contact with the ball. Without feeling, you cannot gain control and the position of the ball. This can be achieved only by learning how to hold a racket correctly?
2 Main Ways Of Holding The Paddle Correctly:
- Old Fashioned way.
- Modern way.
Old fashioned way:
Traditionally, we will discuss SHAKEHAND GRIP
Shakehand grip is very popular in the European countries since they use to eat their meal with forks and knives.
So, we can say that the word shakehand grip originates from the western countries. Shakehand grip is also called grabbing knife grip.
The shakehand grip:
- Firstly, Use your figers e.g. Middle, ring and little fingers to grip the bat’s handle.
- Keep in mind your thumb and fingers should be at the lowermost side of the rubber.
- Do not hold the racket with the tight but instead hold with a loose grip. For example, if someone pulls the racket from your hand it should easily come out of your hand.
- Placing the index finger and thumb in this manner will help you get very good control of the racket head and know which angle and direction your bat is facing.
- Now hold the paddle with a newly learned shakehand grip and tap the ball few times to feel the vibrations. This feel plays a vital role to help you know the both exact amount of force as well as spin you’re giving the ball.
- Use your forefinger and thumb to feel the vibrations when the bat touches with your ball.
In the modern, there are 3 variants developed by the living legends of the world table tennis like Ma Lin, Wang Hao, Xu Xin. And here we will go to learn in detail.
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Asians use chopsticks to eat. That’s why penhold grip is popular in China, Korea, Japan, and Vietnam.
Many traditional penholders play with their fingers curl as support which maximizes the flexibility of the wrist- makes blocking with one side easier. But this style has a disadvantage that makes your forehand stroke unstable, the same with a backhand stroke.
This is a grip in Which you straighten your supporting fingers and use 1 finger as support: this style stabilizes the forehand stroke a bit more compared to the above. Let you do RPB better, also gives you nice flexibility to play a short game.
Wang Hao’s grip:
You use two fingers as support, to have a more consistent backhand. This style is more balanced for forehand and backhand.
XU XIN’S GRIP:
- You use three fingers as support.
- This style has the more consistent forehand but somewhat restrains you to play RBP as it stiffens your wrist.