So I'm back in the game after 20+ years away. Getting into shape again, starting a local club, and having fun.
With my age, physical condition and situation in general, I'm not aspiring to be a top level player. I'm in it for the fun, and to help other players (including my son) to the same level of fun and hopefully a higher level of playing.
About myself: I play lefthanded, handshake, with backhand counterloop and flick as my strongest weapons. I like variety, so I will change from close to the table to mid distance to wayback lob/chop by choice (and of course sometimes by force, when facing a stronger opponent). When playing with different sides on the bat, I generally twiddle for both FH and BH, but not much (not yet, anyway).
I find that testing various equipment is interesting, so I will most likely be changing setups quite often. Such constant change is likely to harm my consistency, but will increase the fun factor and hopefully improve my ability to give advice to players in development (which to me currently are the more important aspects of the game).
Mostly for my own sake, but perhaps also to the benefit (and/or amusement) of others, I will try to document the changes in equipment, my impressions of the various combos, and how they affect my playing.
I welcome any input to this blog, comments to my own writing as well as your own experiences relating to what's entered here, as long as it doesn't resort to ranting (my blog, so ranting will be my privilege, if ever I choose.)
There will be edits to my posts, perhaps in conflict with the "blog tradition", but edits will only be for correcting typos and the odd clarification. No material content will be altered. (Most likely, none will ever be greater than this edit here, shown in blue.)
Due to the nature of this blog, an equipment history
may be relevant. Here goes (from faint memories):
- I recall a "Stiga pop" bat with sponge and pips-out, bought in a set of two. Fairly heavy, and with an uncomfortable handle, square and tapered. Quite long pips IIRC. Using it I developed up to a point, then I decided I had to get something else. (I believe I later thoroughly massacred one of the bats at one time, trying to remove the rubber. I can't recall that it was ever used again... FAILURE) One of them may still be in the attic at my mother's. Collector's item?
- Bought a Stiga "Hans Alsér" allround with a "three star" rubber. Great improvement over the "pop", until someone stepped on it and broke the handle. Taught me a lesson to not let stuff lie around on the floor... FAILURE
- Got a Stiga "Stellan Bengtsson" for my birthday. Immediately recognized that the straight handle was just right for me. I think it had Mark V rubbers on. However, the bat I got must have been a window display item, because the rubber on one side was "UV-treated" (brittle, to the point that it was literally cracking up) except for a diagonal band where the STIGA sticker had covered the packaging. Went back to the shop and got a refund that covered half the price of a Tackiness rubber. Got two Tackiness-D max thick rubbers (from a different shop), glued them on with regular contact cement, and used that for the rest of my "early career".