Why does something new feel easy

Table Tennis Discussion

Last updated 3 weeks ago


D K Asked 3 weeks ago

Greetings Team,

Today I just for fun practised with inverted rubber bat,which I normally do not use, and I tried a backhand loop,which I normally do not use. I was surprised that I was able to play on par with an offensive player as a both wings looper and blocker of Samsonov-like type. I was able to fire off seven backhand loops off blocks and loops in row. Also,I was able to react to strong loops from a close range and block the opponent out. And with the backhand loop,I was nto even using a full swing.
Then I tried to play with my normal bat,which is longpimpled. But when I twiddled the inverted rubber to my backhand,I was not able to replicate nor the loop technique,nor the blocking consistency,nor the reaction speed.

Do you have any idea why this happened?
Why I could perform a backhand loop which my opponent described as better than his own,despite that he trains it for 8 years and I train it sporadically with a bat which I am not used to,yet I was not able to replicate anything with the inverted side of my normal bat?


Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 3 weeks ago

Hi Dan,

This is a phenomenon that I see often.  Though I don't have a detailed explanation for it I will try to explain my thoughts.

When you try something new whether it be a new racket or a new stroke you have no expectations and therefore your body goes into the action in a completely relaxed state that allows yourself to produce what it knows.  It can feel really easy for this reason.  It is actually your true potential at the time because of the lack of expectations and therefore tension in your swing.

It is actually a great lesson for us all and something to try to tune into when we are learning anything and then trying to execute skills.

Notify me of updates
Add to Favourites
Back to Questions

Thoughts on this question


D K Posted 3 weeks ago

Then,what can I do to physically repliucate itwith my normal bat?
In case of my forehand, I was able to play almost equally with both bats.
I do not understand how could I match 8y of experience with 8 hours of experience (in total)

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 3 weeks ago

Focus on the relaxation in your body and allowing yourself to just play the game.  Take another look at our Sports Psychology section as a starter.

Jasper Low

Jasper Low Posted 3 weeks ago

Sometimes I can relate to the "easy first time" thing you described 


D K Posted 3 weeks ago

Hmmm...Today I trained with weaker players,and I was able to partially replicate the movements.
Then I realized one thing:

When I am using dualinverted bat,I have basically only one possible reaction: flat stroke at close range or loop at mid-long range.
Meaning that I almost do not have to select.
But when I am using my normal longpimpled bat (as I am longpimple chopper by default) I have to choose the twiddle state,I have to choose between defensive topspin,chop,no-spin chop or no-spin throw,which is affected by the twiddle state etc,meaning that I have to go through very complicated selection process of stroke.
While playing a kid who does not really force me to play at more than 20%,I had enough time and I could predict them well enough to even use Waldner-type passive blocking.
Could this aspect be the source of the problem?

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 3 weeks ago

Yes that could be one thing that can effect what is happening.

Nigel C

Nigel C Posted 3 weeks ago


When you ride a bicycle, you manage to pedal, steer and balance without conscious thought. If you had to think, push feet, turn handles, lean left, no now lean right etc you'd fall off! If you try and make concious decisions when playing table tennis it slows your reactions down. While it can all sound a bit mystical you have to relax and let your subconcious play.


D K Posted 3 weeks ago

That is why I had to use side wheels on my bike for more than 5 years Nigel....because your description exactly fits what I really do.
I TRULY have to consciously think about most movements. My subconscioussness simply does not work.
Not for physical movements. It is one of my physiomotoric flaws. Yes,I have 18 years of practise with my bike,yet I still do not have full control and occassionally lose track-exactly due to problems your described,and the same applies for table tennis.

Become a free member to post a comment about this question.