July 17, 2017

Tip of the Week
Sports Psychology.

Post Nationals Saturation Training
Now that the Nationals is over, it’s time to address various technical issues with some students. You don’t want to mess around with their technique too much just before a major tournament, so there have been some cases where I averted my eyes to certain things, waiting until after the Nationals.

Now it’s time for a few of them to do a bit of Saturation Training. I’ve kept notes on players I’ve been coaching, and now we’re addressing these problems. I’ve noticed a similar bad habit among three of them, who seem to have adopted backhand ready stances as their neutral stance in matches, even though they don’t seem to do so when drilling. One player has been struggling with his forehand in fast rallies – he seems to go into a backhand stance sometimes, and tries to play forehands from that position. Many top players do this, but it takes a LOT of physical and table training to get right, and we’re probably going to make some adjustments.

Two others players have similar problems – they seem to start many rallies standing in a backhand stance, and aren’t ready to attack with their forehand when they get the chance, often backhand pushing even against balls toward their forehand side. That has to stop!!! Anyway, I worked with one of them yesterday, and he’s now focused on keeping his right foot at least slightly back in his ready stance. (He’s a righty.) Note that if you stand toward your backhand side and have your feet parallel to the end-line, then you are facing the opponent’s forehand side. That’s fine if he’s about to hit a shot from there, but if he’s serving or hitting from the backhand side, then you should be roughly facing him, meaning your feet should be parallel to him, not the table.  

Other problems we’re working on with various students include the need for more spin on their backspin serves; more serve variety; ready to loop deep serves; and trying to stay at the table rather than back up the first time the opponent hits the ball harder than a push. Plus, the inspiration for this week’s Tip of the Week was the number of times at the Nationals I saw players blow 2-0 game leads. (This didn’t happen to any of the matches I was coaching, so maybe there is something to this sports psychology thing!)

Table Tennis Update: China National Team Boycott and Giveaway
Here’s the video (8:30) from EmRatThich.

How to Read Service Spin
Here’s the article and video (7:43) from Tom Lodziak

Service Tactics
Here’s the video (2:49) from PingSkills.

How to Counterloop——Yangyang's table tennis lessons
Here’s the video (8:22).

Ask the Coach
Questions answered at PingSkills.

USATT Announces Youth National Teams for 2017-2018
Here’s the article and listing.

Table Tennis Joins LA Mayors Inauguration Celebrations
Here’s the USATT article.

Chop Blocks by Koki Niwa
Here’s the video (57 sec). The Japanese star is #9 in the world.

Tomokazu Harimoto vs. Joo Se Hyuk
Here’s the video (8:24, time removed between points). The 14-year-old phenom from Japan, who recently turned 14, is now ranked #18 in the world! But now he’s up against the experienced chopper/looper from Korea, the men’s singles finalist from 2003.

2017 US Nationals Slo-Mo Analysis
Here’s the video (45 sec) by Cory Johnson. “Modern Defense: Rushing the Table Mistakes. Here are two examples of half-executed technique for when the modern defender should "rush the table" –– especially if one (like myself) is far too comfortable away from the table. Although I do make the "correct" decision & stroke when rushing, I nonetheless fail to finish out the point.”

Ball Bouncing while on a Vibrating Exercise Machine
Here’s the video (37 sec).

Wimblepong: Ping Pong on the Streets
Here’s the hilarious video (4:25)! “We took our Pongo Portable Ping Pong Set out on the streets and challenged random people to a game of WimblePong which is Ping Pong Wimbledon Style.”

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