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PostPosted: 19 Sep 2012, 14:46 
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As a player with notoriously bad footwork, I think I can write about this topic with some authority. These tips can be useful for older players, disabled players, players with excessive weight, players prone to injury or anyone who wants to compete at a reasonable level with minimum footwork.

This is all I could think of at the spur of the moment. There are probably some big ones I missed.

1. Slow the game down: You need to give yourself maximum time to get to the ball.

2. Play the ball off the bounce: In contrast to the above, you want to pressure your opponent by giving them minimum time to get to the ball.

3. Keep them from easily attacking you: Use a disruptive long pip rubber and keep 'em guessing.

4. Use a neutral grip: Playing close to the table doesn't leave a lot of time for grip changes. It's in your best interests to get used to a neutral grip. If you're not doing it now, it will feel weird at first, but stick with it and pretty soon you won't even notice it.

5. Use a neutral stance: Not a good idea to have a stance that strongly favors one side or the other.

6. Learn to lean: You can adjust your position by a foot or more on either side without moving your feet by leaning.

7. One step can go a long way: A simple side step with one foot combined with an arm stretch can help you reach a lot of balls. This is especially good if you have a wide wingspan.

8. Position yourself correctly: Depending on where the ball is being served from or played from, you will need to be in the right place to get the best angles. This means shuffling side-to-side at times.

9. Work hard on serve and serve return: No matter how good your other strokes are, these shots largely dictate the point. You need to get these to the highest level possible.

10. Develop your touch shots: A push your opponent puts into the net is worth just as much as smash you blow by them. And most players don't practice this much...which is all the more reason why YOU should.

11. Use hardbat forehand strokes: One of the big criticisms of classical hardbat strokes is that they are mostly arm strokes not requiring a big body turn. Well, this is a great thing when you're not moving your feet much. And, yes, you can still smash the ball hard when it pops up. These strokes can be performed with short pips that are with or without sponge.

12. Learn to flick: This is a crucial stroke for those who want to keep the game over the table.

13. Learn to twiddle: If you're a combination bat player, this will double your arsenal of shots, as well as remove weaknesses.

14. Learn to chicken-wing: While frowned upon by conventional TT coaches, this is an important stroke for the mobility challenged. It can practically eliminate your crossover point. A lot of the players in the recent paralympics did this.

15. Forget about looping or chopping: This requires too much footwork. Your game is serve, serve return, push, flick, block, smash.

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PostPosted: 19 Sep 2012, 20:08 
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That was a nice read. It reminds me of me, when I don't wanna play seriously :)

but I disagree about forgetting looping, because even if you have poor footwork you should still try to attack 3rd ball or any weak ball you get to the FH. If the service is good it requires minimal footwork, and if your swing is decent you can win point right away.

Also I suggest that blocks should be active (with some forward motion) so that opponent could not pressure you easily by doing stronger and stronger loops each time you do a passive block..

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PostPosted: 20 Sep 2012, 00:29 
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Some good tips in there for players trying to develop a game to a certain level whilst being restricted by movement. As someone who has done this to a fairly large degree I have found that to take my game past that level has required me to find ways to become more mobile even within my limited mobility (if that makes sense :oops: ). I have noticed how much my mobility (especially in and out from the table) has increased on what it used to be by being forced by better players to do so to stay in many points. The brain is often part of our limited mobility in that it is scared to let our feet move much for fear of injuries being worsened by movement. But the longer we play the game, and the more we learn to move within our limitations, the more skilled our movement can become to protect us from further injury while at the same time achieving greater "agility". Of course, so many of MNNB's points are still valid even once this increased movement is embarked upon. I think there is a lot of people who will find help in what's been written here, even if they must adjust it to their own individual circumstances! :up:

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PostPosted: 20 Sep 2012, 11:17 
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Justas wrote:
I disagree about forgetting looping, because even if you have poor footwork you should still try to attack 3rd ball or any weak ball you get to the FH.

I agree with that. With short pips, as I recommended, looping isn't so good. With inverted, absolutely loop when you can.

RebornTTEvnglist wrote:
As someone who has done this to a fairly large degree I have found that to take my game past that level has required me to find ways to become more mobile even within my limited mobility (if that makes sense ).

Makes perfect sense. This was written from the perspective of having almost zero mobility. There are a lot of things people can do to improve that situation to varying degrees. BTW, I can still play doubles so I'm not quit to the growing roots stage yet. :lol:

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PostPosted: 16 Dec 2012, 16:02 
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I just stumbled accros this post, and I think it has some really good tips, nicely done MNNB! :clap:

I think this is especially useful for those that have not been taught properly or are self-taught and find it too hard to start from scratch, so we need to compromise. :up:

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PostPosted: 19 Dec 2012, 07:37 
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I know one old SP player who plays with almost no foot movement. He takes the ball really really early off the bounce, uses a slow bat (jap penhold) and returns no spin or light underspin) balls against topspin. He is the single most irritating player I play and he beats me very often (read always).

The fact that I can never warm up properly with him (he can not counterhit without putting underspin on the ball) is I think why I find him irritating because there are other plays who beat me regularly. The other reason is that with his SP, he smashes so hard its painful to get in the way!

So I think I totally get your point about taking the ball early.

What I might want to add is use a slow bat that is not very susceptible to spin so you can dictate the pace easily. And make sure your smash is truly badass.

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PostPosted: 19 Dec 2012, 09:26 
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I see this sort of playing a lot at my club, especially in the divisions I'm currently trying to escape from. One thing you might add is 'location, location, location', because many of the better non-footwork players win consistently with good ball placement - it's one of the things that infuriates me.

Admittedly, I consider myself to have good footwork. It might not be perfectly orthodox at times, but I can cover a lot of ground in no time. So, reading your list is a good reminder of what I have to avoid my opponent doing. Thanks!

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PostPosted: 19 Dec 2012, 16:41 
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How to play effectively without much footwork?

I usually try to resort to adding a spoonful or two of clorox to my oponent's drinking water an hour or so before matchtime. Effective way to get a default or an easy match.

;)

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PostPosted: 20 Dec 2012, 18:22 
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In my experience the oldest least mobile best players will always use OX rubbers, either SP both sides or SP/LP combination. On a fairly slow blade, they all play hard bat style strokes. Very uncomfortable to play mid tournament after playing 5 inverted players. In Victoria think Mr Fischer (hardbat 70 something, 75? and still playing well over US 2000 level) considerable reversal, Mr Furness (SP FH, LP BH) also gets tons of weirdness on the ball and Mr Heath (OX something, might be SP but it's got a lot of reversal whatever it is). The common theme is that none of them use sponge at all and they are all near or above US 2000 and all well into there 70's. I've had some epic battles with Mr Fischer he had my measure the first few times we played, beating me after hour long best of 7 matches, you have no idea how tiring it is to loop for an hour against a guy that almost never makes a mistake, the only way to win the point is hit it so he doesn't get to the ball. I finally got over him the last couple times we played but had to play amazingly consistent and patiently to do so.

My strategy in the end was feed him lollipops to force his attack which luckily for me doesn't have a huge amount of power in it and is quite returnable from distance then lob from distance until he dropped one short of the bounce and then end the point with a running loop drive from hard up against the table to somewhere he wasn't.. very difficult and you really have to pay attention to when he's going to drop it short to make it back to the table and prepare your loop in time. I have much respect for these guys because I'm 100% certain if I turned 75 overnight I would hardly get a point against these guys.

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PostPosted: 26 Jun 2013, 04:49 
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Particularly valid comments,many of them i've figured out myself.

Would add body posture....maintain forward like a downhill skier even against power shots,this helps to block the angles off hugely.


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PostPosted: 27 May 2014, 16:46 
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That's the thing about table tennis - there are lots and lots of players with limited mobility - not necessarily just those in wheelchairs but others who have been in accidents or are just athletically challenged - who are QUITE competitive (at least from the point of view of someone playing at my level). There is (or was) at least one wheelchair player I'm aware of who was rated over 2000, and was a two-winged looper to boot. No way I'd get more than 2-3 points off him! There isn't another court game like it, it's fantastic.

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PostPosted: 26 Oct 2015, 10:01 
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mynamenotbob wrote:
As a player with notoriously bad footwork, I think I can write about this topic with some authority. These tips can be useful for older players, disabled players, players with excessive weight, players prone to injury or anyone who wants to compete at a reasonable level with minimum footwork.

This is all I could think of at the spur of the moment. There are probably some big ones I missed.

1. Slow the game down: You need to give yourself maximum time to get to the ball.

2. Play the ball off the bounce: In contrast to the above, you want to pressure your opponent by giving them minimum time to get to the ball.

3. Keep them from easily attacking you: Use a disruptive long pip rubber and keep 'em guessing.

4. Use a neutral grip: Playing close to the table doesn't leave a lot of time for grip changes. It's in your best interests to get used to a neutral grip. If you're not doing it now, it will feel weird at first, but stick with it and pretty soon you won't even notice it.

5. Use a neutral stance: Not a good idea to have a stance that strongly favors one side or the other.

6. Learn to lean: You can adjust your position by a foot or more on either side without moving your feet by leaning.

7. One step can go a long way: A simple side step with one foot combined with an arm stretch can help you reach a lot of balls. This is especially good if you have a wide wingspan.

8. Position yourself correctly: Depending on where the ball is being served from or played from, you will need to be in the right place to get the best angles. This means shuffling side-to-side at times.

9. Work hard on serve and serve return: No matter how good your other strokes are, these shots largely dictate the point. You need to get these to the highest level possible.

10. Develop your touch shots: A push your opponent puts into the net is worth just as much as smash you blow by them. And most players don't practice this much...which is all the more reason why YOU should.

11. Use hardbat forehand strokes: One of the big criticisms of classical hardbat strokes is that they are mostly arm strokes not requiring a big body turn. Well, this is a great thing when you're not moving your feet much. And, yes, you can still smash the ball hard when it pops up. These strokes can be performed with short pips that are with or without sponge.

12. Learn to flick: This is a crucial stroke for those who want to keep the game over the table.

13. Learn to twiddle: If you're a combination bat player, this will double your arsenal of shots, as well as remove weaknesses.

14. Learn to chicken-wing: While frowned upon by conventional TT coaches, this is an important stroke for the mobility challenged. It can practically eliminate your crossover point. A lot of the players in the recent paralympics did this.

15. Forget about looping or chopping: This requires too much footwork. Your game is serve, serve return, push, flick, block, smash.

Bob, this sounds exactly like my game! Only I have a bad grip, which I have posted under coaching strategies a thumb grip. But this is fantastic advice if I stick to my thumb grip. Thanks! I don't know how to flick though, and a chicken-wing is something I've heard of, but never really picked up.


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PostPosted: 27 Oct 2015, 00:56 
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Any videos of this "chicken wing"?

Iskandar


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PostPosted: 27 Oct 2015, 02:01 
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iskandar taib wrote:
Any videos of this "chicken wing"?

Iskandar


Watch the vids in this thread viewtopic.php?f=35&t=28517

Marcin's game is so like mine its not funny....although I think my chicken-wing is better :lol:

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PostPosted: 27 Oct 2015, 02:14 
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