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Table Tennis Training and Drills

Last updated 1 month ago

Jasper Low

Jasper Low Asked 1 month ago

Hi Alois, how do you coach athletes of different physical and intellectual disabilities? How do you modify the way you train them from the way you train able-bodied players?


Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 1 month ago

Hi Jasper,

Working with athletes who have different physical and intellectual abilities can be incredibly rewarding and does require some adjustments to standard coaching techniques to ensure everyone gets the most out of their training.

Here are a few strategies I use: Each athlete, regardless of ability, is unique. The key is to understand their individual needs, capabilities, and goals. I start by assessing each athlete’s physical condition and cognitive understanding to tailor the training program accordingly.

Depending on the disability, modifications to the equipment or the environment might be necessary. For instance, adjusting the table height or using balls with different colours for better visibility can be quite helpful. In cases of intellectual disabilities, simplifying instructions and using more visual cues can aid understanding.

It’s essential to adjust the pace of the sessions based on the athlete's learning speed. Some might grasp a concept quickly, while others may need more time and repetition to master the same skill.

Effective communication is key in coaching. This might mean using simpler language, sign language, or more demonstrations. Ensuring that instructions are understood is crucial.

Emphasise what the athletes can do rather than what they can't.

Modify drills and games so that everyone can participate. For example, adjusting the size of the playing area, the game rules, or even the scoring system to accommodate everyone’s abilities.

Each session can be a learning experience for both the coach and the athlete. The aim is to make the sport enjoyable and accessible while encouraging physical activity and personal growth. It’s about adapting to the athletes, not the other way around. Keep learning and adapting, and you'll provide great value to your athletes.


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