Table Tennis is also known as Ping Pong, it is a sport played by two or four people. Table tennis is administered by International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF). Players use a wooden racket covered with rubber on it to hit the ball on a hard flat surface table. The racket is also referred as bat or paddle. The wooden portion of the racket is called as blade. Table Tennis Racket is made of various kind of wood with different surfaces. Player select the racket with a variety of rubber on its blade for different spin and control.
Table Tennis is a very popular game these days and its popularity creates more confusion to select its equipment. There are several features to keep in mind while selecting a table tennis racket. The primary components of the racket are Blade, Blade handle and Paddle rubber.
Before evaluating the racket one should identify the level of the game as he/ she is a beginner, professional or a veteran player. A beginner is the one who wants to play table tennis for fun. Indeed table tennis is an exciting and thrilling game. So the beginner needs a basic racket to start with.
A professional player is the one who plays in a competitive manner. The player needs a racket according to the level of the game. Professional player need a racket with power, control, accuracy and spin on the ball.
As people get physically and mentally relaxed by playing table tennis, so some people use to continue playing it after their retirement age also. Such veteran players need a bat with less power and less stroke. So they need a racket according to that requirement.
Now we will focus on the main aspects one should take care while selecting a racket:
Blade: The blade of the racket plays an important role in the game, the surface of the blade hit the ball while playing. The blade is made of wood with the coating of rubber. The coating of the rubber makes no divergence to the beginner but it creates a massive difference for a professional player. The weight of the blade is an important feature of the racket. It varies to between 70 -100 grams. The spin of the blade depends on the weight of the blade, if the blade is light weighted then it is appropriate for a fast game which is preferable by the beginners. The professional players need force and energy so they prefer a heavy weight blade.
Blade Handle: The handle of the racket is the part which is in the hand of the player. Player should be comfortable to hold the racket. There are various kind of grips available in the market but the most commonly used are shakehand grip and the penhold grip. If the player holds the racket as he is shaking hand with someone then the player should go with shakehand racket and if the player holds the racket as he is holding a pen then the player should go with penhold racket. There are four patterns of blade handle flared, straight, anatomical and conical. Many players believe that flared handles are easy to hold. Straight handles are known for their defensive game and backhand strokes. Anatomical handle is like as flared handle but has a segment in the middle that better fits in the hand of the player. Conical handles are preferable by the large hand s players.
Paddle Rubber: The rubber of the blade is responsible for the feel and response of the ball. The rubber of the paddle maintains the speed and control of the racket. A thin rubber is appropriate for the players who need control of the ball and the player who prefer the speed need a thick rubber coating.
These are basic characters one should determine while selecting a table tennis racket. The kind of racket that a player select depends on his comfort and the level of the game.