August 3, 2020

Tip of the Week
How to Vary Your Receive Against Short Backspin Serves.

Coaches Who Do Online Coaching
Especially during these pandemic days, an alternative to private or group coaching is online coaching. There are several ways of doing this. Often a coach simply studies a video of a player and writes up an analysis with coaching suggestions. (I used to do this.) Sometimes it's an ongoing thing as the player perhaps sends in weekly videos for the coach. It can also be done live, with a coach watching via video as the player trains. I've compiled a list of top US coaches who do such online coaching. Take your pick! (Coaches - email me if I should put you on the list.)

  • LearnPong, with Kai Zhang, Brad Robbins, Chase Bockoven, Vlad Farcas, Andrew Williams, Christian Stelting, Bjorn Stelting, and Alfred Dela Pena.
  • Samson Dubina (OH), USATT Certified National Coach and multiple Coach-of-the-Year awards, and 2009 US Men's Singles Finalist. See his web page (scroll to the bottom of the products page).
  • Cory Eider (NJ), former USATT High Performance Director and 2013 US Men's Singles finalist, 2014 Men's Doubles Champion.  
  • Pieke Franssen (CA), USATT Certified National Coach and chair of the USATT Coaching Committee. See his USATT about page
  • Matt Hetherington (NJ), member of New Zealand National Team, now coaching in the US, ITTF Level 2 coach. See also his web page.
  • Judy Hugh (NJ), former member of US National Team. See her USATT about page
  • Christian Lillieroos (CA), ITTF Level 3 coach. See his web page.
  • Sean O'Neill (OR), five-time US Men's Singles Champion and two-time Olympian, USATT Certified National Coach, and current USATT High Performance Director. See his USATT about page
  • Tim Wang (CO), three-time US Men's Singles Champion. See his USATT about page

Mobile Feet = Better Shots
Here's video (51 sec) of me feeding multiball (random topspin to all parts of the table) to Navin Kumar this past Saturday. Navin is mostly a blocker, with long pips (no sponge) on the backhand, i.e. the "pushblocker" style. He doesn't always move his feet enough to play some of his shots as effectively as he could, especially on the forehand. Note how, at the start of the video, he's mostly leaning and reaching toward shots. But see how, starting 22 seconds in, he starts to do that little hop between shots, and this leads to mobility - and from there on, note how much stronger and more consistent his forehand is. Here's a Tip of the Week on this, How to Be Light on Your Feet.

Due to the pandemic, all group coaching at the club is on hold, and I retired from private coaching a couple years ago. But I made an exception with Navin. (But no others! I'm working with him because of his Parkinson's, and because I've worked with him for a couple of years. I coached him at the World Parkinson's championships last year - silver in doubles, bronze in singles - and may due so again next year, in Berlin.)

How to Move Up a Level
MDTTC featured one of my Tips in May, How to Move Up a Level. It's one of my most popular articles, and really boils down what it takes to improve in this sport.

Greatest Shots and Rallies
Here's video (10 sec) of a shot I pulled off against Navin Kumar in a coaching session on Saturday. So . . . how does this compare with this and this?

My Table Tennis Book Collection
I now have 266 books in my table tennis book collection!!! I had new shelves put in as the previous shelves weren't large enough. (They are in a mini-hallway, so I had to take the picture from an angle.) Of course, those are books by anyone. If you want my books, here they are! (I only actively collect books in English. The collection includes 257 in English, 9 in other languages.)

USATT Club Coach Certification and Courses
Here's the USATT News Item

New from Samson Dubina

Tao Wenzhang Training Videos
"If I can do it, there's no reason that students can't." -Tao Wenzhang

Playing Table Tennis With Both Hands - Good or Bad?
Here's the article and videos from PingSunday/EmRatThich.

Show 0328 - Table Tennis Diary
Here's the podcast (35:08) from PingSkills, featuring Mima Ito Notebook, Next Non-Chinese Winner, Block Timing, and Around the Net.

New from the Malong Fanmade Channel
Lots of new videos here!

New from USATT

New from Steve Hopkins

Portland Teen's Ping-Pong Skills Featured on CBS
Here's the article and video (4:12), featuring Kevin Nguyen. Kevin also has another video out this week, Table Tennis Training #1 (8:32), with highlights from his training.

Asheville Woman Beats More Than Opponents Through Table Tennis
Here's the article and video (2:12) from ABC 13 News (Asheville, NC), featuring Emily Scott-Cruz at the Asheville TTC and sobriety.

Starting From Scratch With Stephen
Here's the article from Coach Jon.

Table Tennis Players Compete for Tokyo Paralympics
Here's the article from NCTTA.

New from ITTF
Here's their home page and news page.

Igor Levitin Runs Unopposed for European TTU Presidency
Here's the ITTF article.

Champion Table Tennis Brothers from Australia
Here's the video (5:10) from a talent TV show.

Seven-Year-Old TT Trickster
Here's the video (4 min) - Most of the table tennis starts at 0:37, with the real trick shots starting at 0:55. By the time the video is over, you'll be yelling "Yeah!" along with the kid!

Ping-Pong Hoods?
Here's the picture!

Cross-Eyed Pong?
Here's the picture!

Bear Pong Gif
Here it is!

Why I Lost a Table Tennis Match
Here's the graph. (Here's the non-Facebook version.) If I did the graph, I'd add three more categories, "He won on his serves!", "He had weird rubber!" and "He had weird strokes!", since those, along with nets and edges, are the most common gripes after a match, but we'll keep "Opponent Played Better Than Me" at 1%. (We'll ignore the unneeded apostrophes in the graph.)

Trick Shot Card Game
Here's the video (6:05) from Pongfinity! (This went up a day late since they uploaded it on Tuesday, instead of their usual Monday.)

Send us your own coaching news!