How to read no spin or backspin serve?

Table Tennis Service Return

Last updated 9 years ago

Archel Taneka Sutanto

Archel Taneka Sutanto Asked 9 years ago

Hi Alois and Jeff,

Yesterday I played table tennis with my teacher. I realized that he used the no spin and backspin serve, but I can't decided what serve between the no spin and backspin. He swung the back up and finished down below, I thought that was a backspin serve, so I turn my bat open. When I hit it, the ball went up high and he executed it easily with flick or forehand/backhand topspin. I couldn't defend the ball properly, I tried to track the ball but it went too fast before I could defend it. Is there a way to execute them?

Thanks a lot
Regards, Archel


Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 9 years ago

Hi Archel,

The secret will be in the contact he is making.  Even though he is starting up high and finishing low, his contact is probably quite flat with a slight change in the angle of his bat as he is swinging through.

This is an advanced serve.  You can listen to the sound of the contact and also watch the contact really carefully.  Try to return against it as often as possible and you will start to get the idea of the differences.


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