Did you spend the holidays playing table tennis on one of the great family outdoor ping pong tables? Perhaps you prefer to play indoors, in which case you should check out our top 10 indoor ping poing tables list.
In any case, as we reflect on what we want to achieve this coming year, most of us like to make New Year resolutions as a way to set goals and feel like we can achieve something. Losing weight and getting back in to shape is on most people's lists as they have over-eaten over Christmas holiday and had one-too-many drinks over the festive period.
Benefits Of Table Tennis As Exercise
Many people set a new year's resolution at the start of a year as they refelect on what they want to achieve for a new year. Setting goals and getting back in to shape is a great goal as you mentally prepare for a new year.
One of the ways to get fit is to play table tennis as it gives you a great all round work out and focus your hand to eye co-ordination. Table tennis has so many benifits, so I though it would be great to write an on how ping pong can help you get fit and give you pleaure in seeing the results as you progress with your fitness and overall table tennis game.
It's fine to go to the gym, work on weights, go running and have a workout class, but it can be a little boring if you work out on your own. In fact, I highly recommend that you do these things around your table tennis practise as it will help with your overall fitness and strength. What ping pong can give you is mental strength and an overall workout with someone which can be fun and improve your overall game.
We will give you a few tips to improve consistency in your game, techniques and a couple of exercises to help improve your game and fitness, so you can achieve your goal of getting fit in 2017. Good luck and if you have any questions please feel free to reach out and ask any questions you have.
So as this month brings a New Year with new challenges, one way to get fit is play table tennis. Believe it or not, table tennis has so many benefits to your mental strength, fitness and stamina.
It will take a little time to get into the shape that you want you want and it can be hard to stay focused on the end goal. Why not have a little fun and play ping-pong with your friends or family to get that general over all workout you need to stay on course with your new years resolution.
I'll give you a few exercise tips to improve your game and a little advice on what to eat and drink to aid weight loss. I know it can be hard to stay focused so a little guidance always helps.
It’s a real psychological battle to make a plan and stick to it to achieve your goals. Especially when the 1st of January is really just another ordinary day. We have spent long periods with family and friends relaxing away from work, but now it's time to get the fitness routine back together!
Learn Tips With Top Coach Eli Baraty!
Now, as it’s back to work for most of us, let’s also get back in to shape. One of the ways to get fit and have fun with your friends and family is to play Table Tennis.
Ok OK, you’re probably thinking that it's not a very active sport and will Ping Pong really get you fit? Quite simply, yes sir! It will. It’s one of the best ways to get fit and back in to shape as you’re playing with someone else, so it’s not like going to the gym where you do it on your own. Unless you do a gym class with other people, you're on your own but that’s not interactive like a great game of Ping Pong.
Getting fit on your own can make it very hard to keep up the motivation. I know I struggle with it.
Table Tennis is also very competitive. Once you get your forehand drive into gear there is no stopping you'll want to play for hours. I remember playing for 3 hours straight with my friend once. I didn’t even realize where the time went.
Can Ping Pong Help Me Get Fit?
The goal here is to get fit, lose a few pounds and have fun. Ping pong provides a great alternative way to get fit. I’m not aiming to be a nutritionist or provide you with a plan to lose weight, I’m just saying that you should consider incorporating table tennis in to your ‘get fit’ plan to give you a more pleasurable experience so the time passes a little quicker. It should be part of your fitness plan not all of it, which I will explain below.
For me, if I play table tennis once a week it gives me a fantastic all-round improvement on my fitness and muscle tone. I always come back from the club feeling like my whole body has had a complete workout.
If you think about it, you’re getting to use your whole body with ping pong. Stepping in to hit shots, using your forehand swing, back hand shots and quick movement with your legs puts your muscles under pressure and they will start to shape up over a couple of months. I have outlined a few questions below, so you can have a better understanding of how table tennis can help you with your 2017 New Year’s resolution get fit plan.
Playing with friends makes time go so quickly!
1. How Long Do I Need To Play Table Tennis For It To Help With My Fitness?
I would suggest playing for at least 1 to 2 hours a week, that way you will see an improvement in your overall fitness levels. Although once you start playing you might find that you will play longer as you’re having so much fun.
Once a week is good enough, unless you have a ping-pong table at home in the summer-house or garage. Then you might find that you either play every day with your family or when friends come around. I would thoroghly recommend that Ping Pong becomes part of your overall fitness plan.
2. What Benefits Does Table Tennis Have On My Overall Fitness Levels?
In short, lots! but here is a list of some of the benefits:
- Increased heart rate
- Improved reaction times
- Leg muscle tone
- Arm muscle tone
- Back muscle tone
- Weight loss
- Overall mental strength
- Team playing improvements
- Focus and Concentration improvements
These are only a few of the benefits and over time you start to see your body fat reduce, your game improve and your reaction times get shorter. Importantly your mental focus will get much better. As you progress with your fitness and game strategy you and your friends will become addicted to getting better. It’s one of the coolest games around!
Half the battle is mental strengtht to have the motivation to go and do some sports for a while. So why not make it fun and interactive. With Table Tennis, you will get a whole heap of benefits when playing the game.
Firstly, and foremost, ping-pong is a game of strategy as the Chinese know very well - you need to out-play the other person to win the point. You need to set up shots, do tricks and difficult spins to win the point. You need to think on your feet as the other player is also trying to work out your game and trying to win.
Mental strength is key to winning the game and not giving up. I can tell you now, I was in a competition recently where I was playing the best of 5 games to win. In two of the matches I was 2 games down and if I had lost the 3rd game I would have lost the match. I needed all my focus, mental strength, strategy, thought process and skill of great shots at the right time to win each point.
My opponents were good and my back was against the wall! I can honestly say that in both games I won the next three games by working them out, being patient, playing the right shots and setting up good strategies to win.
If you focus enough on one area of your life, you will start to see other areas of your life improve. It’s just the way of the world. I love the benefits that tables tennis brings me in my life and I hope you will get the same out of it.
Running along side Table Tennis increases your metabolism!
3. Would I Need To Do Any Other Exercises Around Table Tennis To Help With My Fitness?
Yes, playing table tennis is a great cardio workout and good for muscle development, but to improve your strength and stamina you need to add more exercise. To achieve your new year’s resolution goals I would do at least one run a week for 20 mins or longer. That way you will increase your lung capacity and reduce the fat in your body.
I try to go to the gym once a week as well, that way I know that I have done some fitness and sports three times a week. I know that this sounds a lot as most people have other commitments like work, families or studies. Believe me if you commit and stick to this and force yourself to go, after a while it will become second nature and you will start to see that you will have a massive improvement in your overall fitness.
After regular and frequent exercise you will look and feel better and want to start increasing your table tennis game level, running times and weights in the gym. Once you get over the first hurdle of being un-fit, which takes about 3 weeks, you will see a massive leap over 4 weeks and more.
4. Will Table Tennis Help Me Lose Weight?
It can and will increase your metabolic rate and use all the muscles that you need to burn fat and increase your muscle tone. But you need to do other things around playing ping-pong in-order to lose the weight effectively.
Losing weight, depending on how much weight you want to lose will take time. You need to be patient with it and try not to rush the process. It’s important to eat properly and hydrate yourself. You should drink at least 2 liters per day in-order to detox your body. The body needs to break down fat, and get your liver working properly and water is the best way to do this.
Try and avoid alcohol, sugar and junk food for a while. I’m not saying be very strict but just don’t eat so much if you want to get in shape and to lose the weight.
Have you heard anyone say ‘you are what you eat?’ Quite simply, if you only eat burgers and fries and drink sugary soft drinks you will put the lbs on fast!
If you want to get a proper nutrition and exercise plan, I would recommend looking at a website called https://www.mygymexpert.com and download their free nutrition plan PDF. It will give you a step by step nutrition plan to help you get your body to where you want it to be.
Most people are not expecting you to end up looking like Brad Pitt, but to get you looking in shape and to meet your desired weight and fitness levels to need a little discipline.
It’s funny because most people don’t notice that you’re overweight, from personal experience I felt overweight and uncomfortable with who I was and what I had become. What others DO notice, is when you’re looking great and in shape. A complement always comes in handy and makes you feel much better about achieving your goals. So have a great year and stay focused on getting fit. By the summer you will be looking awesome and have a little spring in your step because of what you have achieved.
you are what you eat!
5. What Exercises Can I Do To Improve My Ping Pong Game?
I have worked with Eli Baraty on several coaching videos to help people improve their overall table tennis game. These videos can all be found on our Youtube channel here: Table Tennis Coaching Videos.
Eli Baraty is a professional table tennis coach and you can attend one of his training camps if you want to get serious about table tennis. He has produced some nationally ranked table tennis players and has played at nation and international level. Eli has provided some training tips in the video below to give you a flavor of what he’s about and how he can help you. The benifits of playing table tennis. 3 exercises to improve your table tennis consistency
1. Multi-ball Ping Pong Training
If you have a sparring partner who can do a multi-ball exercise with you, this is very useful. It's a system that was introduced by the Chinese to increase consistency by hitting up to 100 balls within a space of 1 or 2 minutes.The system develops muscle memory and gives you the ability to hit thousands of balls within minutes. This is far more beneficial compared to a normal practice of 1 ball per rally followed by time spent on picking up the ball.
Multi-ball Ping Pong Training [Video]
2. Using A Ping Pong Robot
If you don't have access a sparring partner or coach and wish to get similar results you can purchase a table tennis robot. The same principle applies as you are able to hit many balls within a short space of time. The issue (you may agree with me or not) is the variety of shots accessible and the spin received can be unrealistic.
Furthermore there may come a time (shortly after initial use) where you will get bored due to limited sequences and no interaction, or feedback. Generally, the more expensive the robot, the more variety and patterns it can throw at you.
2. Single Ball Ping Ping Training With A Twist
One of my former coaches had a theory (if you train with one ball in a large hall) it encourages full focus and reduction of error. When you have lots of balls near by, there's limited focus which increases errors. I must admit this helped me in two ways:
- Focus became "match like"
- The disappointment of an error was thought about while fetching the single ball
I suggest doing this kind of training at least once a month and depending on the amount of times you train this can be increased or decreased.
3. Table Tennis Technique
Having the perfect technique is not vital for consistency but it may harm progression. The key, regardless of poor or good technique is to find what works for you. Once that has been established you must focus on re-enforcing that movement and make it muscle memory. This is because if you have developed a stroke that works and play a match with varying stroke movements you will increase your unforced errors. So repetition of a movement is vital to maintain consistency through an exercise into a match.
They say 6000 times is needed to build muscle memory so I would focus on developing a stroke that works and follow it up with 6000 reps. There's no real secret to becoming consistent, it's about correct reps and developing the mindset which believes in the work you have put in.
For more tips and coaching information in the UK visit Eli Baraty at https://www.ebattsport.com for his training camp. Meanwhile don't forget to browse our reviews of the best table tennis tables and upgrade the one you already have!