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PostPosted: 28 Feb 2017, 07:17 
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Pips Out, Enemies Rout:
BY YING WANG | FEB. 27, 2017, 1:01 P.M. (ET)
Ying Wang NCTTA Table Tennis

Pips Out, Enemies Rout: Guide to Short Pips Supremacy

The best defense is a good offense. In today’s fast paced game, more often than not a point is ended by a decisive third or fifth ball attack. In recognition of the overwhelming advantage of a strong offense, ITTF attempted to slow the game down by first introducing the 40mm ball, followed by the 40+ plastic ball. This resulted in a 1-2% reduction in velocity, and a much more devastating reduction of spin by up to 20%.

Charles Darwin once said “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” 40+ is here to stay, and those that don’t adapt to the new style risk going the way of the dodo. How does one adapt to a reduction in the primary strength (spin) of inverted rubbers? Capitalize with a speed based offense with short pips and sting like a bee.

The primary advantage of short pips over inverted is in speed and trajectory. While inverted looping style grants consistency through spin and a high arc, such a trajectory also gives the defender ample time to react. On the contrary, a hit based offense with short pips combines sudden acceleration and a flat trajectory that applies immense positional and reactionary pressure to your opponent.

Due to its explosive power, short pip strategies are typically high risk high reward third / fifth ball attack based. A short pip player tends to play close to the table to maximize its speed advantage, the combination of a shorter flight path and explosive power disrupts your opponent’s rhythm as the ball comes back much quicker than an inverted player’s. Secondly, it is also critical to end the point early and not go into extended mid-table loop rallies against inverted players, as the longer distance nullifies our speed advantage and their higher trajectory allows for better consistency far away from the table.

A second weapon in a pips player’s arsenal is in spin variation, by having short pips on one side and inverted on the other, a short pips player can greatly vary spin and rhythm with largely similar looking strokes. An advanced technique known as twiddling (flipping the blade around so your forehand rubber is now your backhand rubber) during service or in the match further increases this variation. This will force your opponent into making weak returns which you can then capitalize with a strong pips attack. Lastly, an attack with short pips feels a lot “heavier” than a similar stroke with inverted. This results in a ball that drops earlier and requires much more effort to loop. The first step to this wonderful journey is a fundamental paradigm shift, hitting is now your primary form of attack.

In order to hit a ball with quality, you will need to make adjustments to your positioning, timing, contact point, paddle angle, forearm movement and waist rotation. Fear not, the shock on your opponent’s face one day will make it all worthwhile. Timing is critical in a good hit, the optimal timing to hit the ball is just before the highest point of the ball’s bounce. Having strong footwork to get into position will be the keystone to your success. Once there, the contact point should be just above the center of the ball, with your racket at about 80 degrees relative to the ground.

The hitting motion should be focused on hitting through the ball with a relatively small stroke augmented by a quick snap of your forearm. The biggest difference between hitting and looping is your forearm should never drop below the ball throughout the entire stroke, even during the backswing. As your hitting motion is accelerated, be sure to ensure your waist turn and weight shift is sped up as well to match the chain of motion; starting with a shift in your body weight, followed by the turn of your waist and lastly the snap of your forearm. Remember, you’re not hitting with just your arm, but the force of your entire body.

Congratulations on embarking on your journey to offense nirvana, it has been a great honor to be your short pips sherpa. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step: step 1, bust out that glue.

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PostPosted: 28 Feb 2017, 07:32 
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This is an interesting view. I've heard arguments made that the new ball is a big disadvantage for short pips players because it's harder to overcome the spin on the heavier ball, and so players have to use the short pips to loop, which kind of defeats the purpose of short pips, but then Mattias Karlsson does seem to be using them to loop successfully. (There's a mini-discussion of his style here, with a comment that, with the new ball, you're going to see more players using short pips on forehand like he is and using them to loop: http://www.experttabletennis.com/use-sh ... -ball-era/). My own experience working with multi-balls of the 40 and 40+ variety is, indeed, that it's easier to hit through the smaller ball, while with the large ball, your timing has to be exactly right. (I use short pips on my forehand and long pips on backhand but also twiddle to finish off loose balls that come to my backhand.) I'd be curious to hear other views of short pips players and how they've adjusted to the new ball and the differences they see between the use of short pips with the old ball vs. the new ball.

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PostPosted: 28 Feb 2017, 08:31 
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PostPosted: 01 Mar 2017, 00:07 
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Thanks for interesting article 'bout short pips.


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PostPosted: 01 Mar 2017, 08:04 
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I find it interesting that there's a prevailing misconception that all SPs are the same, and that one needn't spend much money to get a good SP. Equally strange is how some think that ancient (38mm era) SPs are somehow still appropriate for the 40+ poly ball, when these same players are eagerly surveying all the latest inverted rubbers. I've bought and tested a dozen or more SP rubbers and can make the following observations:

1) Like with most things, you get what you pay for. Spend $10 for an obsolete Chinese SP and you'll be duly rewarded.

2) Quality SPs are more consistent ball placement-wise. Those trying to pick up SP techniques with a cheap sheet of SP are adding to their woes because the ball won't go to the same place twice, even when perfectly hit.

3) SPs need to be cleaned often (just like LPs) due to their smaller contact area. Use a lint-free cloth sprayed with a little rubber cleaner and rub the damp cloth on the pips. Never spray the pips with cleaner or you'll be waiting hours for them to dry.

4) The 40+ poly ball is slower than its 40mm and 38mm predecessors, particularly for SP rubbers, hence the need for an SP that's been designed for the 40+ poly ball. Older SPs are slow in comparison, and speed is where SPs get their advantage.

5) Service spin from SPs is confounding for many players; more so than inverted.

6) 802 and 802-40 are over-recommended and over-rated. 802-40 does not play like inverted, and isn't a good stepping-stone SP for inverted players. TSP Super Spinpips is a better choice in this regard.

7) Japanese SPs are better than Chinese SPs (see #1 above). I don't have experience with European SPs.

8. SPs come in vertical and horizontal pips orientation and thus play differently depending on your grip type (shakehand vs c-pen/jpen). Pips-in (inverted) rubbers also have these orientations but the difference isn't as pronounced due to the pips not contacting the ball.

9) Chopping with most SPs is really difficult.. but not impossible.

10) It takes months -- not hours -- to transition from inverted strokes to SP strokes with the same proficiency. After six months of using SP my SP game is now US100 points above my inverted rating, and I can now switch back and forth from inverted to SP with a couple of minutes of reaclimation.

11) The type of ball used with SP make more of a difference than with inverted rubbers. Nittaku 2-star and 3-star 40+ are best.

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PostPosted: 01 Mar 2017, 18:38 
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I agree mostly with Nathanso but I have issues with some of the very general statements made.
You're using the Beautry actually which is a very special SP and I guess it has influence on some of your remarks. Of course, Waran or Beatry will behave different to Speedy Soft or Killer, those interested in going for SP (on FH?) will have to make up their mind in what they want to achieve before chosing a suitable rubber regardless to price or origin.

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PostPosted: 06 Mar 2017, 17:17 
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So we need a short short pips guide. :)
Eg: for smashing most suitable would be: ... ; for blocking: ...
of course there should be a remark fh/bh.
So at least 2 players (fh and bh) who used many different sp's are needed to create such table. :)


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PostPosted: 06 Mar 2017, 18:39 
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There is an Indian company with name GKI...They make a SP (GKI nano attack).....They were my first SP..followed by TSP spectol and Dr. Neubauer Killer..All on FH (as well as killer and GKI on BH)...As per my skill set, I came to the conclusion that GKI nano attack was superior in attacking, blocking and chopping away from the table. Serves were better with the other two though..More control on placement and pace of serves. Although sponge hardness differ with max on spectol and GKI and 1.5 on killer.

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PostPosted: 06 Mar 2017, 18:40 
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In addition, GKI nano attack's price is ridiculously low.

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PostPosted: 06 Mar 2017, 21:42 
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watching this topic with interest... :up:

is there a difference in SP for FH and for BH...is there a general rule to play with a FH SP that is more grippy so you can spin the ball, and more "disturbing" for BH, closer to MP?

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PostPosted: 06 Mar 2017, 23:10 
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I'm currently using 802-40 on my BH. I play mainly defense; blocking, chop blocking and chopping close to mid table. What modern SP can you recommend as an alternative? One that suites the 40+ era.


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PostPosted: 07 Mar 2017, 01:22 
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genrel001 wrote:
I'm currently using 802-40 on my BH. I play mainly defense; blocking, chop blocking and chopping close to mid table. What modern SP can you recommend as an alternative? One that suites the 40+ era.

Your choice of rubber is fine. Is there a specific reason as to why you want to get a different sheet?


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PostPosted: 07 Mar 2017, 10:01 
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Danthespearton wrote:
Your choice of rubber is fine. Is there a specific reason as to why you want to get a different sheet?


Nothing specific. Nathanso said that 802-40 is obsolete and overrated, and doesn't fit the 40+ era anymore. It got me thinking maybe there's a modern SP that plays just like 802-40 but way better in a way that suits to the 40+ ball well.


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PostPosted: 07 Mar 2017, 21:38 
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Hello,

I disaggre whith Nathanso in some points.
Only expensive stuff is good stuff? Big companies pay a lot of money for advertising and contract players (which is advertising as well). You don´t have that with Friendship. And Friendship produces much more quantity (which lowers the price).
Why we on amateur level shouldn´t be successfull with rubbers for example He Zhi Wen or Zhian Jan played for long years?
I played 802-1 a long time and it is a superb rubber (I changed it only because I changed my playing style to medium pips)

With your playing style (blocking, chopping, more defensive) you don´t want a modern sp rubber with much catapult, because that would make it much more difficult to block an chop consistent. (If you want to play aggressive the most time, it´s another thing)

On poly ball: the differences are exaggerated on amateur level. Maybe one has to make small adjustments in material (thicker sponge, slightly faster blade) but be careful with that.

Greetings Claus


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PostPosted: 08 Mar 2017, 01:12 
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genrel001 wrote:
Danthespearton wrote:
Your choice of rubber is fine. Is there a specific reason as to why you want to get a different sheet?


Nothing specific. Nathanso said that 802-40 is obsolete and overrated, and doesn't fit the 40+ era anymore. It got me thinking maybe there's a modern SP that plays just like 802-40 but way better in a way that suits to the 40+ ball well.

Lol. 802-40 is good for the way you're playing; chopping with it is fine, pushing close to the table is also fine, and you can use spin variation to your advantage. I don't see why you would want to change your rubber unless you want something different out of your rubber. You could try some of the more expensive SP's that are used for chopping, but if I were you, I'd be satisfied as of now.


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