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Learn the Best Ping Pong Chops

There are many different shots in ping pong, and different ways to hit the ball, all generating different amounts of spin and such.

Table tennis, or ping pong, is an exciting sport, requiring both speed and dexterity to win at. I have played in many table tennis tournaments, and I play almost every day on my ping pong table. While ping pong still has not caught on as a major sport in the United States, it is very popular overseas, and the upcoming release of the table tennis movie Balls of Fury may spark more interest in this tiny racket game. There are many different shots in ping pong, and different ways to hit the ball, all generating different amounts of spin and such. For some players, especially beginners, this can be very hard to get used to, but once one has learned how to do these shots, it is not too hard to understand other table tennis shots. The backspin shot is a very popular and pretty standard table tennis return, and mastering it is really important for players who wish to get better at ping pong.

Before you hit with backspin, you must understand the basic idea behind this shot, also known as the chop. With a backspin shot, you are actually hitting the ball in a manner to generate a reverse (aka backspin) spin on the ball. Thus, once the ball hits the table after having this spin put on it, it will slow down, as it tries to spin back towards where it came from. If you cannot picture this from here, just get a basketball, hold it in your hands, spin it towards you, and drop it straight down. The ball should bounce towards you, thanks to the spin. It is the same way with ping pong, except that you are striking the ball with a paddle to get it to spin and move.

Hold the ping pong ball in your hand, with the paddle in your other, predominant hand. Toss the ball up, and come underneath it from an angle, sort of cutting it down. You are still hitting the ball with enough force to drive it fairly straight forwards, but not so much that it is a flat hit. Instead, it is more like your paddle is slicing the ball from the back, towards the bottom, thus generating that needed backspin. That is the basic idea of the chop, or backspin shot in ping pong.

Now, get your opponent, or training partner, and have them hit you some shots. Try returning each shot with this chop. You will find that you can use this shot to effectively send a ball that is really low, even lower than the table if from a strong shot, back onto you opponents side. This is also a good shot to use when your opponent hits a ball to you that you have little time to react to, as your opponent will have to deal with the added backspin on the return, giving you several valuable split seconds. Some players spend their whole game chopping, but it is best to be able to hit with a variety of shots, so that you can tackle most table tennis situations.

Ping pong is an exciting and fast paced sport. Learning new shots and returns is vital to staying at the top of the game, and the backspin shot is no exception. Practice it, and master this game of tiny balls and paddles.

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