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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2015, 23:14 
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Hi,

One of your regular members put me onto this site. I would really appreciate anyone's advice on what to do with my bat.

I used to play at University level in Ireland and England but I have played very little in the last 19 years and my bat and rubbers are even older. In the meantime, I developed very bad repetitive strain injury from computer use. The injuries have improved a bit in recent years but I haven't recovered. I've just joined a very good club (two days ago!). I'm more concerned about my wrists than about my form.

My bat is a five-ply Yasaka Gatien Extra with a flared grip. The rubbers are butterfly salvo speed (forehand) and butterfly tackiness-D. Total weight: approximately 150 g. I'm an attacking player but more so with my forehand. I mostly serve with my forehand. It's a slow blade, apparently, but I haven't noticed that to be a problem.

Do you think I should upgrade my bat straightaway or play for a few weeks/months first until I get back into it? Do you think I should keep my blade or get a new bat? What rubbers and/or blade would you recommend bearing in mind that I still have wrist/forearm problems? (I have small hands and think a flared or anatomic grip would suit me best.)

I got lots of generous advice at the club on Saturday, including that I might want to think about getting 1.9 soft rubbers that are 42.5 degrees (if I remember correctly!), such as the Tibhar evolution MX-P of FX-P (I can't remember which). One possibility was just to get new rubbers (such as the S1-Turbo or S2) and to consider changing the blade at a later date. He advised against a seven ply blade on weight grounds, given my wrists. He also suggested that I ask on your forum for more advice.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Price is a consideration :) . Thanks!

P.S. I notice that there is some great stuff on this form already about injuries, such as by Baal and nathanso (I might try Armaid).


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2015, 21:42 
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Blade: Zhang Jike SZLC
FH: Tenergy 05 2.1 Blk
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Welcome to the forum 20thCentury !!

For the benefit of the forum I played with 20thCentury for possibly an hour last Saturday and for a guy who had only played twice in 19-20 years he blasted many balls past me with his FH. His BH didn't stand out but it would need more practice to get the consistency. But he had a decent stroke.

In our local league format of Division 1 to Division 6 he would excel in Division 3 and in time would do well in Division 2. No real idea on ratings but he's currently at 1500 and would easily rise quickly to 1800-1900 judging by some of the clips on here.

When I checked his setup he was using fairly dead rubbers. Initially I thought he would do well with a new 5 ply blade e.g. a Korbel since I'm not a fan of the new Primorac. When I saw how well he played I bombarded him with a series of new generation setups and the carbon was too much compared with his current setup. Stepped it back with a sample 5 ply OFF- rated blade from HK with classic rubbers and he became more consistent. He finished off with a Stiga Clipper with control rubbers - Magic something. He played well with this but after an hour overall was starting to tire a little.

At this point I heard about the wrist problems and felt that keeping the weight down was an important consideration. Got the coach involved along with the guy who runs the club and they gave him some advice. 20thcentury got a bit blinded with all the advice so I directed him to this forum.

My suggestion is the following

New 5 ply blade along lines of an Adidas Avenger 5
https://www.megaspin.net/store/default. ... -avenger-5

This can be got from Teesport who currently have exclusivity on the supply of Butterfly blades. This one is discounted
http://www.teessport.com/blades-c5/butt ... lade-p5567

To buy off Teesport setup an account with Parcel Motel and set up an account in N.I. t avoid the courier delivery. Paypal exchange rate is currently £1 to €1.48.

Note that the Adidas have pulled out of TT so if you like their blades it would be advisable to get a 2nd blade.

Rubbers wise on your current blade I would take a chance on
S1 Turbo for the FH and
S2 for the BH

I had originally thought of you going for MX-P 1.9 and FX-P on the BH. But the new generation rubbers can be a bit heavy. Donic rubbers above (s1t and s2) are slightly older generation rubbers. s1t is supposedly a little softer than s1 but the throw is a little flat but should be fine on a your current blade looking at the specs. Young Japanese guy in the club has the S1t and S2 on a Nittaku Violin and is playing super stuff.

On a new blade like the Avenger 5
I would probably go for Evolution FX-P 1.9 (or possibly Xiom Omega V Europe) on the FH. To keep the overall weight down you could get the Super Defence 40 rubber for the BH. Light rubber and might be some what similar to what you were using. These rubbers you can get locally from Celtic Table tennis at very keen prices.

Please note that I haven't used any of the above blades. Have used all the rubbers except for the Super defence & the Omega V Europe.

Did suffer myself from tennis elbow and wrist tendonitis but this was down to increasing my time from 2 to 3 hour training sessions. This happened when I moved club which was further away playing less often but for longer periods. Using too heavy a setup and having too big a handle didn't help. I now keep my setups below 185 grams and do some cross training.

A 5 ply blade are generally below 85 grams and with a 1.9 new generation FH and a Super defence would guess that it would be around 170-175 grams.

Looking forward to seeing you progress of the coming months !!!

Appreciate if the forum could throw in their two pence worth :)


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2015, 22:16 
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Those Gatien Extras are lovely blades, especially the older models. Great for looping. A friend has been using one for years. He was probably US2250ish at his best. Try just getting some snappier rubber and see how you go.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2015, 00:55 
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I use the latest version of the Yasaka Extra and it is over 80g usually. I don't see any good reason why someone can't still use it. I asked for the heaviest stuff. I don't see why one can't put something lighter on it and get decent benefits.

Repetitive strain injuries from work are very different from those from TT in my experience. Just pointing that out.

I have also found that more important than the absolute weight of the blade (after all, these are 200g objects here) is the balance of the blade. A heavier blade with more weight in the handle/palm (which is what the Extra tends to have in terms of balance, at least the newer Sweden model clearly does) is very helpful. I tend to almost exclusively use 88g blades and my Sweden Extra feels lighter than a Tibhar Powerwood or Force Pro with exactly the same weight when rubbers are attached.

So I would recommend you use the Extra or a newer model and just try a new rubber out. Softer rubbers are generally lighter. The newer, power oriented and spinnier ones feel heavier though all things considered. But I think you would do well with anything soft sponged and then go from there. Evolution FX-P is one of many options. I would also say you should try to use the rubbers of people in your club to get an idea of what is out there. That is what works best.

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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2015, 03:15 
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Blade: Zhang Jike SZLC
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BH: Tenergy 05 2.1 Red
Really appreciate the responses to-date. :up:

One of the girls in the club (she would have been a really decent junior in her day !) went off to our local TT guy with her 20 year old bat - when the old rubbers were pulled of it - some of the outer pile came off with the sponge. New blade was needed. Not too sure if some speed glue had been used.

2 guys I know with the original Primorac need new blades and have struggled with a replacement. One of them is using a Xiom Amadeus and is struggling with a 93 gram weight. The other is bracing himself with a Stiga blade that he ordered after already getting a Rosewood V that he didn't like. Of some of the blades that I've got to-date I liked walnut (Xiom V1 ?) so I thought that the Avenger 5 might be worth taking a chance on. Lost faith with some of the newer wood blades and not really keen on any resin surfaced 5 ply blades like some of the newer Stigas.

I leaf frogged from a Stiga all round classic to carbon blades and missed the middle stage of a competitive all wood blade. So I'm relying on the forum to recommend a suitable an all wood blade for 20thCentury. If the current blade can be salvaged quick solution is new snappier rubbers (as already mentioned) but knowing murphy's law a new blade will be in order.

Not too sure of the differences between RSI from using a keyboard verus getting wrist injuries from bat sports. I thought that having a light setup, right grip plus decent technique would help. Did mention about not holding the blade too tightly and using the thumb and first finger as a squeeze point.


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PostPosted: 12 Aug 2015, 00:56 
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Blade: Zhang Jike SZLC
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Multispoke wrote:
....One of them is using a Xiom Amadeus and is struggling with a 93 gram weight. ...

Meant to say it was the Xiom Maximus as opposed to the Amadeus. Amadeus used Hinoki and was easier to use and lighter at 88grams but had a smaller head.

So any contributions for 20thCentury before he heads off to myTT ? ;)


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PostPosted: 12 Aug 2015, 02:34 
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Thanks everybody so far!

Multispoke, thanks for the generous posts – and I'm glad that I now know your username! :) Those forehands I was hitting with you on Saturday might not have been such a good idea! My shoulder wasn't too happy later. I may need to take it a bit more slowly. I don't know if I would be putting the cart before the horse with a new bat but assuming I'm able to keep playing, I will be using the advice you and others have given me here.

Thanks very much for your comments NextLevel and carbonman. NextLevel, your comment about balance is interesting. Is 88g heavy for a blade? I think the older version that I have might be 84g.

I could see if the rubbers come off okay. I suppose it all depends on how likely it is that, as multispoke mentioned, the blade might be ruined in the process. Murphy's Law has fairly bad odds.

Any other suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again.


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PostPosted: 12 Aug 2015, 12:21 
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Your current bat at 150g is very light, it will be hard to get to a similar weight with modern rubbers, unless you get a very light blade. Multispoke's suggestion sounds very good, the older Tensors certainly being lighter than most of the latest generation. Not sure which would be the lightest. Softer sponges are always lighter. :up:

Once you decide on a blade, it will be worth asking the retailer to find their lightest one, as there can be quite a difference even among (supposedly) identical blades.

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PostPosted: 12 Aug 2015, 19:12 
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Just remembered that I had some pictures of your setup. Thought it might help your thread along a little.
Tackiness D can still be got and Celtic may have a sheet or 2 in stock.

Also the Japanese guy last Monday wanted to change his Donic rubbers. He was complaining about the grip on them but they are probably 3-4 months old and he's being putting in at least 10-12 hours a week.

Having too light a setup can give a sore shoulder. Optimum weight helps that with a compact stroke using body rotation. The coach in the club last Saturday will help you with that.

Worthwhile giving Celtic a call and getting them to fix you up.


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PostPosted: 12 Aug 2015, 22:45 
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Thanks for the pictures, I've never seen or heard of that rubber before! :o

Multispoke wrote:
Having too light a setup can give a sore shoulder.

Interesting, I've never heard that before. I can this being possible when you change from a heavier bat, to a lighter one which is less powerful, so you're putting in extra effort to get the same speed, putting more strain on the shoulder.

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PostPosted: 17 Aug 2015, 03:35 
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haggisv wrote:
Thanks for the pictures, I've never seen or heard of that rubber before! :o

Multispoke wrote:
Having too light a setup can give a sore shoulder.

Interesting, I've never heard that before. I can this being possible when you change from a heavier bat, to a lighter one which is less powerful, so you're putting in extra effort to get the same speed, putting more strain on the shoulder.


Thanks for asking haggisv. I don't think my bat had anything to do with it. It's possible the problem came from borrowing other people's bats, since I was using those mostly, and my shoulder was also sore after I played again after a few days break (only for about 40 minutes and, again, mostly with other people's bats). It may be more likely, though, that the problem is with my shoulder muscles that have atrophied in the last 20 years as a result of my RSI. I may need to build up my strength a bit before I can start playing table tennis regularly or before I can can start going for my shots.


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PostPosted: 17 Aug 2015, 21:09 
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20thcentury wrote:

My bat is a five-ply Yasaka Gatien Extra with a flared grip. The rubbers are butterfly salvo speed (forehand) and butterfly tackiness-D. Total weight: approximately 150 g. I'm an attacking player but more so with my forehand. I mostly serve with my forehand. It's a slow blade, apparently, but I haven't noticed that to be a problem.

Do you think I should upgrade my bat straightaway or play for a few weeks/months first until I get back into it? Do you think I should keep my blade or get a new bat? What rubbers and/or blade would you recommend bearing in mind that I still have wrist/forearm problems? (I have small hands and think a flared or anatomic grip would suit me best.)


Whether or not to use the same racket would depend on what condition the rubber is in. I came back after a long layoff, too, and all my rubber sheets had turned rock-hard and slick, so I went out and bought new rubber. You could probably keep the same blade and get new rubber.

Maybe something lighter might be better if you've got an injury - there are blades in the 70-80 gram range that would work. My favorite is the very inexpensive Yinhe N11 blade ($11-13 including postage from Eacheng's various outlets on ebay and AliExpress). It weighs between 79 and 81 grams and is reasonably fast. The only other blade I have that is lighter is my (considerably more expensive) Darker 7p-2 7 ply hinoki that's 74 grams, and it's markedly slower. Slower means having to swing harder.

Lighter rubber? LKT Pro XP/XT is light, comes in various different sponges. These are seriously light, though a little slow. You can easily knock 7-8 grams off a racket by replacing one side (assuming you're using 2mm or 2.2mm sponge and a "regular" rubber on that side) and 15 grams altogether by changing both sides.

I can't say I've ever heard that light rackets can cause sore shoulders, either, but I have gotten a sore arm from using a heavy racket. When I first started playing again I used a 88-89g blade and I'd get sore from attempting slow loops with that. I do get a sore shoulder from doing backhand too many topspin loops (or attempting to.. :lol:).

Iskandar


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PostPosted: 03 Sep 2015, 05:20 
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iskandar taib wrote:

Maybe something lighter might be better if you've got an injury - there are blades in the 70-80 gram range that would work. My favorite is the very inexpensive Yinhe N11 blade ($11-13 including postage from Eacheng's various outlets on ebay and AliExpress). It weighs between 79 and 81 grams and is reasonably fast. The only other blade I have that is lighter is my (considerably more expensive) Darker 7p-2 7 ply hinoki that's 74 grams, and it's markedly slower. Slower means having to swing harder.


Belated thanks for your advice. Interesting idea about the speed. That makes sense to me. I was playing with a slower blade when I got the sore shoulder. I'd rather play with a light fast blade with less effort than play with more effort but fewer mistakes! :)

I don't know whether the bat was a factor but it took me a good week for my shoulder to mostly recover after some relatively short knock-ups last time. I haven't been back on the table since. I might try a bit of rehab before picking up the bat again. I ordered an armaid that was mentioned elsewhere on this forum. I will see if that's any use, even though it won't help my shoulder. Based on my limited use of armaid so far, it seems like it could be good for forearm trigger points.

Thanks everyone for the advice. Plenty of food for thought.


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PostPosted: 03 Sep 2015, 06:10 
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Just a little piece of advice.
Pay attention to the balance of the bat! Head heavy bat will cause tension in the wrist. You might be comfortable even with heavier blade but only in case when balance is not head heavy.
In your case my suggestion will be:
1. Choose rubbers that suit your style and which are on the lighter side (I would exclude Evolution series, they are quite heavy)
2. Try them on your current blade. If you're comfortable with this setup- then it's done
3. If no- then change your blade to the new one which is less head heavy. Just some hints- you need light head and not overly light handle.
So avoid hollow handles (wrb, senso series etc) and handles with balsa inserts.
You might appreciate blade with small head sizes. Smaller head size makes less weight both for rubbers and for head itself. If I'm not mistaken current dimensions of your blade is 157*151 mm. You can get 155*150 for example or less. Andro blades usually have small head size. As well as Adidas blades and some models from Tibhar.

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PostPosted: 06 Sep 2015, 08:15 
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Thanks very much for the advice alx. Putting some of the advice together, perhaps I should get a light fast rubber for the forehand (Tenergy 64 FX maybe, S1 Turbo or one of the others suggested above?) and a light defensive rubber for the backhand (such as one suggested above).

It seems (if I can't keep my existing blade) that I should get a well-balanced blade, such as the newer extra or a lighter/smaller blade with a lighter head than handle.

Again following iskandar taib's logic, I may want to go with a fast blade too. I was looking at teessport.com and you can list blades by weight. A number of blades are listed as being 8-9.25 for speed and under 80 g, such as Adidas Synchro Plus ALL+ Table Tennis (67 g), Adidas Challenge Light ALL Table Tennis (72 g), and Donic Ovtcharov Feat OFF Table Tennis (75 g). Any thoughts on these?


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