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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 05 Dec 2018, 23:02 
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Ninja of the Holy Chtchet
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Zhaoyang wrote:
Hey Japsican!

What do you mean, "I need hack"?

***

Some people use the same rubber and blade for their whole career. Maybe that takes a different kind of personality? [Like Gao Jun.]

Some people might experiment for some time, because "inquiring minds want to know", but are always drawn toward certain things, always ending up there. The trick would be recognizing those things you can never let go.

Some people try a style they admire (and the equipment supporting it), but are able to quickly decide that it isn't suitable for some reason, and they're able to move on with peace of mind. [Like after I "knew" I would never play like He Zhiwen, and was able to let it go.]

Some people might have a model player and a model style in their mind but have modified it to suit themselves (once they figure out what "suit themselves" means). An example would be playing like Chtchetinine but with thicker sponge.
Myself, the outline of the game of Zhou Xintong stays in my mind, but I'm using a lp OX with a little more grip, and inverted on the other side of my cpen instead of sp. (I play an inverted game half of the time, and "can't let that go".)

Some things are set deeply in the personality and psychology. [This affected the way I played chess, and the chess players I admired. So I've been aware of this issue, of needing to play in a way that does not satisfy something deep inside (i.e., leaving one unhappy with playing, despite winning games), because one recognizes that *the nature of a game* can place certain demands in reality, regardless of our feelings.] A good example is someone who is temperamentally suited to be a "positional player" (let's say) like Chtchetinine, Gao Jun etc, but who is ordered by a coach to use double inverted and drill the usual offensive game. Or one who recognizes (or believes he recognizes) an objective advantage in reality to double inverted, and thus decides to play that way, and in some sense is never happy with it. Maybe many people like that never know they aren't happy with it, because they never tried the niches, etc.

Are there some things you would never be happy abandoning, even though you know it costs you games?
Are you more interested in "self-actualization" and creativity and self-expression - via occupying a niche - than you are in winning?

It might be possible to find the things you love, and forever never care that you'll never be as good as your model.

Lots of good stuff there my friend. And I always enjoy your perspective as it's very relatable to my situation. And indeed this is all psychological, and this post will likely resemble a therapy session...LOL. And BTW, you also used the Chtchetinine examples very well as those situations were exactly what I have gone through...I'm sure that's by design on your part.

I have historically endeavored (as you know) to be like Chtchetinine, and had a goal of 2000 USATT, but that is very difficult to do in today's TT. Plus my BH chop is really getting me down, and the ability to correct it seems unlikely. I somehow have taken to using too much arm and not enough elbow, it's hard to explain, and it only happens in matches. It's a weird aesthetic that I have never seen before in a chopper. In isolation my form is better during drills. I had no idea my in-game chop was bastardized so much. I could go see the 2500 level chopper up north to correct it at $60 per lesson. But I don't have time, it's 45-60 minutes away from me, and expensive. My wife already complains about how often I play.

Winning is important to me, but not the most important so long as my game play is what I want. But I do put winning at 30% importance because if I lose enough it makes me revert to winning tactics and style regardless of aesthetics. But game aesthetics are important to me too. I didn't realize it till this whole ugly BH chop thing cropped up. Apparently I am vain enough to care about this on some level. So, if I'm being honest with myself, 'looking good' when I play is pretty important. It's not a character trait I'm particularly proud of, because in other walks of life I have a "who gives a s***" attitude so long as whatever i'm doing is effective. Not sure why TT is different.

You may recall I started off playing Jpen. While playing, I "look" better as a penhold player and I think that's why I have been playing a lot of that lately, despite the fact that I lose more often. Jpen to me is the most beautiful of styles, but so difficult to win with. As an aside, I have a pretty good RPB stroke. Again, my BH is better than my FH by a lot except for opening. I have been a big fan of wang zengyi and have been thinking about short pips as a penholder. I think I'm about 1400 or so when I play that way....not bad. My BH RPB is pretty killer. I have lost all muscle memory for TPB though, so that's a poor option for me.

And then there's the idea I could play an at-the-table LP game. With either Penhold or Shake. I'd be better doing that as a shakehand player for sure. I think I might be able to transition to that style easiest, and perhaps I have the best chance of winning that way, given the fact I can't play often and coaching is in dearth supply with my schedule. I already have all of the common LP strokes, I'd just need to fine tune them to stay at the table, learn proper placement. Placement for at-the-table LP is different strategically vs. chopping where you expect to drop back from the table.

I play so infrequently due to personal stuff at home, I don't even have a club membership anymore. I just pay to play each time I get a chance.

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 00:04 
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Japsican wrote:
...

But game aesthetics are important to me too. I didn't realize it till this whole ugly BH chop thing cropped up. Apparently I am vain enough to care about this on some level. So, if I'm being honest with myself, 'looking good' when I play is pretty important. It's not a character trait I'm particularly proud of, because in other walks of life I have a "who gives a s***" attitude so long as whatever i'm doing is effective. Not sure why TT is different.
...

And then there's the idea I could play an at-the-table LP game. With either Penhold or Shake. I'd be better doing that as a shakehand player for sure. I think I might be able to transition to that style easiest, and perhaps I have the best chance of winning that way, given the fact I can't play often and coaching is in dearth supply with my schedule. I already have all of the common LP strokes, I'd just need to fine tune them to stay at the table, learn proper placement. Placement for at-the-table LP is different strategically vs. chopping where you expect to drop back from the table.

I play so infrequently due to personal stuff at home, I don't even have a club membership anymore. I just pay to play each time I get a chance.


Your first point underlies the importance of never filming yourself :devil: . You can't be influenced that much by what you don't see. Makes me happy I have very few videos of myself (and the ones I have were quite traumatic ...).

I think you might want to try PH with LP at the table - there are some aspects of it that makes LP easier for PH, I think. Every time I watch Jay Lee at our club, makes me want to try hitting wth LP more, for instance, or learn how to do soft chop-blocks off the bounce - the ball just dies when he does it.

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 00:28 
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Ninja of the Holy Chtchet
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pgpg wrote:
Japsican wrote:
...

But game aesthetics are important to me too. I didn't realize it till this whole ugly BH chop thing cropped up. Apparently I am vain enough to care about this on some level. So, if I'm being honest with myself, 'looking good' when I play is pretty important. It's not a character trait I'm particularly proud of, because in other walks of life I have a "who gives a s***" attitude so long as whatever i'm doing is effective. Not sure why TT is different.
...

And then there's the idea I could play an at-the-table LP game. With either Penhold or Shake. I'd be better doing that as a shakehand player for sure. I think I might be able to transition to that style easiest, and perhaps I have the best chance of winning that way, given the fact I can't play often and coaching is in dearth supply with my schedule. I already have all of the common LP strokes, I'd just need to fine tune them to stay at the table, learn proper placement. Placement for at-the-table LP is different strategically vs. chopping where you expect to drop back from the table.

I play so infrequently due to personal stuff at home, I don't even have a club membership anymore. I just pay to play each time I get a chance.


Your first point underlies the importance of never filming yourself :devil: . You can't be influenced that much by what you don't see. Makes me happy I have very few videos of myself (and the ones I have were quite traumatic ...).

I think you might want to try PH with LP at the table - there are some aspects of it that makes LP easier for PH, I think. Every time I watch Jay Lee at our club, makes me want to try hitting wth LP more, for instance, or learn how to do soft chop-blocks off the bounce - the ball just dies when he does it.

Hahaha! Right. I have experienced this before with my FH loop. It's ugly. But the BH chop is the basic and most important stroke of being a chopper!!! I could live with an ugly FH loop. But I am near TT suicide having discovered an ugly BH Chop!! :rofl: :headbang:

PH LP...Hmm.... like Zhaoyang's style (and Zhou Xin-Tong). I have tried this in the past and one needs to do a lot of TPB with the LP. I remember feeling chop blocking is awkward like that because the grip isn't as solid as a shakehand BH. But that IS an interesting thought.

Like this guy:


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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 00:41 
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Japsican wrote:

...

Hahaha! Right. I have experienced this before with my FH loop. It's ugly. But the BH chop is the basic and most important stroke of being a chopper!!! I could live with an ugly FH loop. But I am near TT suicide having discovered an ugly BH Chop!! :rofl: :headbang:

PH LP...Hmm.... like Zhaoyang's style (and Zhou Xin-Tong). I have tried this in the past and one needs to do a lot of TPB with the LP. I remember feeling chop blocking is awkward like that because the grip isn't as solid as a shakehand BH. But that IS an interesting thought.

Like this guy:



Yup, that guy is pretty good. I suspect its easier to do last minute change of direction with PH, and in general it probably gives better control/touch, since wrist is much more involved.

P.S.Now I want one of their blue shirts with pink pimples...

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 02:00 
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My thoughts on your post…:

-- If you want to become a 2000 level player, you have to play more. Unfortunately, there isn’t a single “hack” to get you there. Certain “hacks” (let’s say pushblocking, pips both sides, anti or something unorthodox) can get you closer, but again at 1800 you will reach a point of needing to train/play more.

-- If you were to take lessons from the “coach up north” – we are talking the same person – he would have you focus on things you didn’t even know were issues. I know his teaching style very well so below are the things he would likely have you focus on -- I’ve gone through all of it with him over the last 18 months. Take 2-3-4 lessons, film your and his game, you will be very happy with the outcome.

-- Things of importance, IMHO:
• Solid pushing with pips (solid meaning being able to push vs inverted 9 times out of 10, etc.) I personally never twiddle, only to serve.
• LP game over the table (side swipe returns, chop-blocks, LP hits)
• Solid chop in training (being able to chop 4-5 times in a row, not leaning backwards, elbow down, movement, using legs properly, etc)
• In and out footwork (else you will be out of position resulting in an uglier technique). If you want to look like a chopper when you play, this is the most important one.
• Finally, consistent forehand (doesn’t have to be deadly but consistent). Being able to do 3 point FH drills, loop down the line, cross court, etc.

-- Once the basics are down, you would start moving on nice-to-haves:
• Looping underpin (for when people push your chops)
• Developing better serves to suit your game
• Counter looping (both from a distance and 4th-6th ball counter loop)
• Sidespin loops, Hou Yingchao style

I don't FH chop so of course YMMV


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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 04:17 
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Ninja of the Holy Chtchet
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notfound123 wrote:
My thoughts on your post…:

-- If you want to become a 2000 level player, you have to play more. Unfortunately, there isn’t a single “hack” to get you there. Certain “hacks” (let’s say pushblocking, pips both sides, anti or something unorthodox) can get you closer, but again at 1800 you will reach a point of needing to train/play more.

I think you misunderstood me. I had a goal of becoming a 2000 level Chtchetinine. I no longer have that goal because I realize it's impossible given my time constraints. By "hack" I mean I need a hack to maximize my enjoyment of TT (and maybe maximize my competitive level). Because I know I cannot improve or fix the things I need to fix at 1-2 times a week. Unfortunately, training and playing more is not an option with my family situation. I'm lucky to get in once.

notfound123 wrote:
-- If you were to take lessons from the “coach up north” – we are talking the same person – he would have you focus on things you didn’t even know were issues. I know his teaching style very well so below are the things he would likely have you focus on -- I’ve gone through all of it with him over the last 18 months. Take 2-3-4 lessons, film your and his game, you will be very happy with the outcome.

I have taken several lessons from WCL a few years back. Because I live in fairfax, we are talking a 1-3 hour round trip, and because I'm not a member it's expensive. I think it's actually 70 bucks for 1 hour now..correct me if I'm wrong. I agree with all of the things you are saying are important. 100%. I just don't have the time to dial them in. If I decide to spend my 1 time out to train, it means I can't play. I can go in for 2 hours...that's it.

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 04:55 
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Japsican wrote:
I just don't have the time to dial them in. If I decide to spend my 1 time out to train, it means I can't play. I can go in for 2 hours...that's it.


If it all comes down to your availability and your schedule limitations grab your favorite setup and don't worry too much about "BH chop looking awkward".. I was in the same shoes 3 years ago when I was pursuing two sports in parallel, only playing TT once a week. This was when I switched to pips looking for some magic and easy rating points. Eventually I had to make a choice and quit my other sport to focus solely on the TT.


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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 05:03 
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Ninja of the Holy Chtchet
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Exactly. Which is why I am forgoing any sort of hope to improve. It's just not in the cards. I can just hope to maintain my level as best I can. But I can attempt to find more enjoyment through other avenues. Or quit. Which sadly, is where I'm at. Family has to come before TT. Stupid family always gets in the way. :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 06 Dec 2018, 23:11 
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notfound123 wrote:

If it all comes down to your availability and your schedule limitations grab your favorite setup and don't worry too much about "BH chop looking awkward"..

Rationally I believe in this. Emotionally, somehow it bothers me greatly. Like I said, it's weird that it does because I don't have this problem outside of TT... kind of a big surprise to me.

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 08 Dec 2018, 00:54 
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After playing mostly penhold for the last couple of months...Last night I decided to play chop vs. my practice partner. I didn't win a single match although I think I played pretty well once I re-acclimated. But 2 games went to 5...

The biggest thing I had to acclimate to was the forehand. The face of the bat on the forehand when using Jpen is kind of angled downward, and shakehand is kind of angled upward. This 4 to 6 inch difference is HUGE and takes a good while to adjust to, so I was whiffing a lot playing shakehand. But when I make contact, my penhold forehand is far superior in quality, even thought it's not as consistent. Back in the day, when I used to play Jpen, I as far more consistent in block and counter on the FH, of course that's all gone bye bye since converting.

One thing which has been interesting when playing Jpen, is the RPB. My RPB is pretty darn good! It's rare to do RPB with a Jpen, but I have a BTY Selebes which is designed for 2-sided play...it's not a 1-ply hinoki. The other PH players were making comments and asking me how I learned to do it so fast. It just comes naturally...although I do loop long sometimes so it's certainly not perfect.

I think sticking with jpen is the hack I need to maintain interest. Even though my level is around 1400...200 points worse then where I am. I think i'm having more fun if not winning. But I will admit, it bugs me to lose to people I usually destroy. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Holy Chtchet!
PostPosted: 08 Dec 2018, 01:05 
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Japsican wrote:
After playing mostly penhold for the last couple of months...Last night I decided to play chop vs. my practice partner. I didn't win a single match although I think I played pretty well once I re-acclimated. But 2 games went to 5...

The biggest thing I had to acclimate to was the forehand. The face of the bat on the forehand when using Jpen is kind of angled downward, and shakehand is kind of angled upward. This 4 to 6 inch difference is HUGE and takes a good while to adjust to, so I was whiffing a lot playing shakehand. But when I make contact, my penhold forehand is far superior in quality, even thought it's not as consistent. Back in the day, when I used to play Jpen, I as far more consistent in block and counter on the FH, of course that's all gone bye bye since converting.

One thing which has been interesting when playing Jpen, is the RPB. My RPB is pretty darn good! It's rare to do RPB with a Jpen, but I have a BTY Selebes which is designed for 2-sided play...it's not a 1-ply hinoki. The other PH players were making comments and asking me how I learned to do it so fast. It just comes naturally...although I do loop long sometimes so it's certainly not perfect.

I think sticking with jpen is the hack I need to maintain interest. Even though my level is around 1400...200 points worse then where I am. I think i'm having more fun if not winning. But I will admit, it bugs me to lose to people I usually destroy. ;)


I think that might be temporary - Jpen has some unique advantages, I think (being rare, for instance). We have a guy in our club from Brazil (the last bastion of jpen, it seems) - stuff he does is really impressive, even while being bothered by his back half of the time. Looks like you can hit with it REALLY well, on both wings, actually, even without RPB. Oh, and you can put pips on BH for extra fun...

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