April 24, 2018

Coaching Is Like Awkwardly Programming a Computer
How is this true? When coaching, you are trying to change the habits of the student's subconscious, which is what controls his conditioned shots. The student's conscious mind might be a partner in doing this, but it is the subconscious that is really the student.

If the student really was a computer, you'd just program him properly. Is he hitting forehands without rotating his body? Just go into his forehand programming, click the "rotate body" button, and you're done. But in real coaching there's no "rotate body" button, so you have to do it more awkwardly. Here's what really happens.  

STEP ONE: Tell student's conscious mind he needs to rotate his body on forehands.

STEP TWO: Student consciously rotates his body while hitting forehands.

STEP THREE: Student's subconscious mind notes that body is rotating while hitting forehands, and protests, since this isn't "normal," and so gives student feeling of awkwardness, which the student attributes to not being used to rotating his body while hitting forehands.

STEP FOUR: Student's subconscious gradually stops protesting as it gets used to this weird and newfangled idea of rotating the body while hitting forehands, and stops protesting as much. Student starts to feel more natural with the shot.

STEP FIVE: Student now rotates body somewhat naturally on forehands since this is now the "norm" for his subconscious. All is well.

STEP SIX: Student takes a week off from playing. Subconscious starts to yearn for those days of playing table tennis, causing subconscious to want to go back to playing as well.

STEP SEVEN: Student returns to playing. But subconscious remembers those good ol' days of not rotating while hitting forehands, and goes back to that.

STEP EIGHT: Go back to Step One.

Table Tennis Match Play
Here's the article by Eli Baraty. "How important is match play?"

Table Tennis Tidbits #25
Here's the USATT article by Robert Ho: "Ishigaki:  Moving Up in the Whirl?"

National Collegiate Table Tennis
They have a number of articles on the College Nationals held this past weekend. (I linked yesterday to USATT articles.)

Ormeau - Point of the Day!
Here's the video (46 sec).

Pong and Song
Here's the video (2:40) from Jules Apatini. Music starts about ten seconds in, singing about 30 seconds in.

$100 Robot Challenge!
Here's the video (3:43) from Samson Dubina. I posted his challenge before, but this is a new video. It's pretty funny to watch the kids in the camp try to return the robot's feeds!

Love All - A Table Tennis Story
Here's the article as they try to fund this unique project. "If you were in a room with lots of people, and you realized that everyone around you believed the Earth was flat, how would you feel? This is the kind of situation millions of table tennis athletes face as they struggle for table tennis' identity as a "real" sport, despite it being one of the most physically and mentally challenging sports. NO FILM exists which dives deep into this subject that affects the perception of the most played sport in the world. Help us make one!"

History of USATT – Volume XX – Chapter 25
Here’s chapter 25 of Tim Boggan's latest volume, which covers 1993-1994. Or you can buy it and previous (and future) volumes at www.timboggantabletennis.com. Chapter 25 covers "1994 International Tournaments." Note that Volume 21 is now out. This volume is 438 pages with 1667 graphics, and covers all the wild things that happened in 1994-95 - and I'm mentioned a lot! Why not buy a copy - or the entire set at a discount? Tim sells them directly, so when you order them, you get it autographed - order your copy now!

Street Pong
Here's the picture from China! (Here's the non-Facebook version.)

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