Table tennis is fun, but it can also be frustrating. The latter is especially true when you keep on losing to your opponent. What am I doing wrong? This is surely a question that you keep asking yourself. Well, while there are many things that can be blamed, one of the most common would be the grip. When you master the grip, winning can be an easier feat!
If you do not know how to hold ping pong paddle the right way, the rest of this post has got you covered. We will let you know some of the techniques that you have to learn. It may take quite some time to practice these, but once you get used to it, there is a higher likelihood that you will emerge victorious after every game.
Shake Hand Grip
This is perhaps the most popular from all of the types of the table tennis grips that you can learn. Obviously, it is named as such because the technique involves mimicking the act of shaking hand with the paddle as you play. It makes use of both sides of the paddle, providing you with a high level of control.
The short video below provides a visual guide to how to do this correctly, followed by the detailed steps on how to hold the paddle using this technique.
- Hold the racket in such a way that the handle is pointing out at you. The tip, on the other hand, should point out to the side.
- When your playing hand is positioned on the racket, the thumb should be on one side while the index and the other fingers are on the other side. Your fingers should be pointing towards the ground and must hold the racket as if you are shaking hands.
- While doing this grip, make sure that your fingers are relaxed, so as your wrist. Nonetheless, see to it that you will have a firm grip on the racket so that it won’t be wobbly. This will also provide you with a complete control of the paddle.
- You can also experiment with the exact placement of your hand. You can go up or down the handle of the paddle, but make sure that the fingers are wrapped properly like you are shaking hands.
Pen Hold Grip
From the way it is named, you will already have an idea of how this is done. You do this simply by pretending that you are writing using a pen, except for the fact that it is a ping pong paddle you are holding. There are different variations of this grip, but the most popular is the Chinese pen hold grip, which is shown in the short video below.
- For this style, you will need a round racket that has a short handle.
- Position your thumb and index finger on the front of the ping pong paddle, which you will also use to have control.
- Meanwhile, the three other fingers should slightly curl at the back of the handle. This will provide support while the two fingers on the front control the movement of the racket.
The short video below shows another popular variation of this grip, the Japanese pen hold. The shape of the racket and the handle is what makes it different from the one mentioned above.
- Position the thumb and the index finger in the front of the paddle. They are a bit closer to each other compared to the Chinese pen hold grip.
- The three other fingers, on the other hand, should be placed at the back of the handle. Rather than being curled, they are in a straight position. This will allow you to use it not only for support, but to also control the movement of the paddle. It will add force to your shots.
At this point, you should already have a basic understanding of how to hold ping pong paddle. Above, we have tackled three main ways of doing it. However, the most popular is the shake hand grip, which makes it important that you learn it first before you master the others.
Take note that it is not enough that you know how to grip the paddle the right way. To be better in every game, you also need to use the best table tennis racket, which should suit your playing style and stroke.
Did you enjoy reading this guide? Are there other techniques that you would like to share? Feel free to leave a comment below.