Forehand loop

Table Tennis Strokes and Technique

Last updated 3 weeks ago

Pooja Gopalakrishnan

Pooja Gopalakrishnan Asked 1 month ago

Hello Alois.

hope you are doing good. 
I’ve been having some trouble with forehand topspin against backspin. I’m able to play powerful loops against heavy backspin balls. But when my opponent gives me a weak, low back spin ball, I end up playing weaker loops which the opponent attacks easily. I’m not sure on how to deal with such balls. Should I let the ball drop a little more than usual and try to add more spin? Because if I use a lot of wrist to generate a heavy topspin, the ball flies out.  

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 3 weeks ago

Hi Pooja,

Dealing with weak, low backspin balls can present a challenge, but with a few adjustments to your technique and strategy, you can turn this into an opportunity to dominate the point.

Adjusting the Bat Angle: For low and weak backspin balls, it's essential to open up your racket angle slightly more than you would for a higher or faster ball. This helps in creating the necessary lift to counter the backspin without the ball flying long.

Timing and Contact Point: Instead of letting the ball drop too much, try to contact the ball at the peak or just after it starts to descend. This will give you a better angle to impart your own spin and speed. If you wait too long, the ball can become more difficult to lift due to the increased effect of the spin.

When the ball is lower, bending your knees more to get down to the level of the ball is crucial. Using your legs to lift the ball as opposed to relying solely on your upper body, helps in generating more controlled spin and power.

You mentioned difficulty in using a lot of wrist without sending the ball out. Here, focus on brushing the ball finely with your racket. Think of it more as grazing the surface with a closed racket angle to maximize the spin rather than hitting through it.

Since these balls are weaker and lower, a full, powerful loop might not always be necessary or effective. Sometimes, a slower, spinnier loop can be more beneficial as it allows you to maintain control while still putting pressure on your opponent.

Aim for deep and challenging areas on the table such as wide angles or deep into the opponent's backhand or forehand. This will limit their options for aggressive returns, even if your loop isn't as powerful. Remember, consistency and practice are key in mastering this skill. Try these adjustments in your training sessions, experimenting with different speeds and levels of spin to see what works best against varying backspin strengths. Keep practicing, and soon you’ll feel much more confident handling these tricky shots.

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