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 Post subject: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 19 Dec 2017, 04:47 
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Hello everyone!

I play table tennis for half a year maybe or so, and want to improve my technique really hard. Watched tons of videos on youtube, bought allround setup which is slow for competitive play but good enough for training. I'm impressed by modern chinese players and want to master chinese setup: soft blade + tacky hard rubber and their playstyle.
I know my main weakness - it's physical strength and endurance (or it's absence :)
But maybe some one will be able to provide me with feedback, what I'm doing wrong in technique of top spin (both forehand and backhand).
Unfortunately, videos on youtube can't give tips xD

So I made two records where I'm trying to perform top spin, but it looks really bad. I'm trying to compare it with videos from pro training sessions but can't see enough to analyse by myself.
Forehand topspin - https://drive.google.com/open?id=1R2rp9 ... hsYruEM3Mg
Backhand topspin - https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ji8-3 ... e46csrXItg

Would be really appreciated for every advice you can give me.

Thanks in advance,
Ami


Last edited by Ami00 on 19 Dec 2017, 09:09, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 19 Dec 2017, 07:40 
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Looks pretty good for only half a year of playing! A couple of things though: you seem a little stiff in your movements, try to loosen up a little. Also your a bit square, put your right foot a bit back, this allows you to transfer your weight more and therefore get more power in your shots. Overall though, you look pretty good, and seem to be making progress. Keep practicing, good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 19 Dec 2017, 08:55 
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Only half a year?! :o :whew: Your technique is pretty good for someone who's only been playing for half a year! :clap:
I would follow ModerDef's advice (which I honestly need to work on too) and also, how are you holding your blade? It seems like everyone is saying you should hold it mainly with your index finger and thumb, with the rest of your fingers just wrapping around the handle with a loose grip; maybe that can help. Another thing I think is important is to make sure you turn your whole body to some degree; your waist, your shoulder, your wrist, your forearm, your upper arm, etc.
But as the old saying says, take this advice with a grain of salt 'cause I'm a noob :P

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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 19 Dec 2017, 20:55 
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I'm also in the noob category so take from my observations what you want.

You forehand was a bit tricky for me to pick. It looks quite good but as mentioned a little stiff. To me it looks like your arm is driving your body rather then the other way around. I actually though your last shot of the video looked the best with the body turning more naturally rather then being forced.

Backhand has a nice set up. Elbow is forward and away from your body. Stance looks good. What I can spot though is that your wrist is too tense on the backswing. There is no whip of your wrist. You look to have two distinctive parts, your backswing, then stop, then forward swing. Needs to be more fluent with it all bring in one motion. You need to relax your wrist and let it 'break' allowing the bat to fall below parallel. Then as you swing up using your forearm, if your wrist is relaxed it will continue to fall down until your arm whips it up creating faster bat speed. To me you look to be commencing your backswing a fraction early meaning you have to wait for the ball.

Good luck, doing great !!!



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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 00:49 
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you have done incredibly well for only 6 months! 2 thing to look at...


1: on your forehand...hit, recover, STOP(!!!), then hit. At the moment there is no pause in your swing. Also, on a related topic, there is no need to put your bat forward after each stroke. NO STROKE starts with your bat forward. Check out Zhang Jike doing multi-ball....as soon as he has finished a stroke he gets his bat BACK for the the next shot.

2: On your backhand topspin your wrist is going back the wrong way. Your bat should ALWAYS be facing where you want to hit the ball. I hope you know what I mean.


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 01:57 
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carbonman wrote:
1: on your forehand...hit, recover, STOP(!!!), then hit. At the moment there is no pause in your swing. Also, on a related topic, there is no need to put your bat forward after each stroke. NO STROKE starts with your bat forward. Check out Zhang Jike doing multi-ball....as soon as he has finished a stroke he gets his bat BACK for the the next shot.


Not quite sure what the "stop" means - if you're talking about stopping at the end of the backswing, I'd say that's wrong (or at least, Brett says it's wrong) - the backswing and forward stroke should happen without a pause at the end of the backswing. Thus STARTING the backswing too early is bad, also, since that leads to pausing between the backswing and the forward stroke. I do agree with everyone else - the stroke looks good, except it's a little stiff. The arm is a little stiff in general, the elbow should flex during the stroke. The wrist, too. About "putting the bat forward" - I think that's just the "ready position" you keep hearing about in books and on training videos. And standing square on to the table? It seems most people do that these days - square on to the table with a VERY wide stance. In older books, yes, for the forehand they tell you to bring the right foot back (and you stand the other way for the backhand). But this seems to be out of style, at least for the top-ranked modern loopers. Note how they move around - they take hops, all the while keeping the feet wide apart and square on to the table.

Haven't looked at the second video yet...

Iskandar


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 02:07 
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iskandar taib wrote:
Not quite sure what the "stop" means - if you're talking about stopping at the end of the backswing, I'd say that's wrong (or at least, Brett says it's wrong) - the backswing and forward stroke should happen without a pause at the end of the backswing.
Iskandar

That is simply incorrect.

for eg


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 06:42 
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One more bit of advice. Carbonman is a very high level player that knows his stuff so consider what the rest of us say but listen to him. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 09:35 
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No doubt you remember this? :lol: I've been implementing this (or trying to, when I remember) and it helps a lot. I do notice some high level players in videos pause at the end of the backswing but they aren't world class pros.

[/quote]

Iskandar


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 12:41 
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Honestly, I think your technique is at least 3 times better than mine. I mean, I've never received any coaching on it, but still... I've been playing for over 1.5 years now. Geez.

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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 13:18 
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iskandar taib wrote:
No doubt you remember this? :lol: I've been implementing this (or trying to, when I remember) and it helps a lot. I do notice some high level players in videos pause at the end of the backswing but they aren't world class pros.

Iskandar

Not sure which world pros you are watching. The one's I watch dont appear to leave their bats forward and then whip their arm back and forward in the same movement (many of the top women who play close to the table do but that relates to the type of game they play).

for eg The very first rally is instructive enough.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3NIlQB0YxME

If the whipping action is working for you then great, be careful with your shoulder though.


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 16:52 
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There is a subtle confusion in here about what it means to stop on the middle of the stroke.

What I understand Carbonman to be saying is always return your stroke to the ready position as that is the beginning and the end of the stroke. Make a slight pause in that position because it is where the muscle memory will be built for preparing for the next shot etc.

This is not the same thing as pausing at the end of of the backswing.

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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 18:18 
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Sometimes this pause occurs at the backswing (for eg this is often the case with counterlooping) and sometimes just before. This can be easily seen in the clip I posted. What doesn't usually occur is that the pause happens with the bat FORWARD and then an elaborate backwards/forwards motion follows. This is a common mistake beginner to intermediate players make and it is usually responsible for mistiming and airballs. It is also one of the reasons why such players always appear rushed.

In regards to the OP, as I pointed out, he either has no pause at all or the pause occurs with his bat forward.


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 18:33 
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I interpreted carbonmans posts as pausing at the end of the backswing. If so, this is incorrect. The backswing and swing are always fluid. Disconnect them at your peril.

The problem lies with the focus on the arm instead of the body. In that training video, Zhang Jike is indeed not returning his arm to the centre position. He is training forehand and is expecting the next shot to be forhand. But that is not the backswing. You can see his backswing in his body movement, hips and legs, before contacting the ball, regardless of his arm position. His body does not stop at the end of the backswing, it slows down and then accelerates into the swing.

It's also a bad idea to observe a game or training situation and extrapolate rules based on your observations, as it often lacks context.


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 Post subject: Re: Mastering topspin
PostPosted: 20 Dec 2017, 19:15 
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The point is that there is a pause, a pause which the OP does not have. Of course they are not standing like statues but there is a pause. This pause usually occurs either at the backswing or just before it. The swing should not be in constant motion like the OP's swing.

"It's also a bad idea to observe a game or training situation and extrapolate rules based on your observations, as it often lacks context."

Who here does this? If we were at a TT centre I would demonstrate this to you myself. As we are writing on a forum we cannot do this and so use available videos to support what we are saying. Please feel free to post a video of your own swing if you like.


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