Table tennis is usually played between two players, or two teams of two.
They hit a ball with paddles back and forth to each other on a table which is divided with a net. Players must allow a ball played towards them only one bounce on their side of the table and must return it so that it bounces on the opponent's side. It demands lightening fast reactions!
Table tennis can be played competitively in clubs and leagues; and informally in lots of different social settings, including cafes-bars, shopping malls and parks, where the emphasis is about having fun and playing as part of an active social life.
Why is it good for me?
Table tennis is a great way to socialise and make friends. It can be played competitively, or just for fun, so is something everyone can enjoy.
You’ll improve your reflexes, flexibility and mental agility.
How much does it cost?
Costs vary between clubs, but some run free taster sessions.
If you’d prefer to play in a more informal setting, many cafés and bars have free to use tables, with just a small deposit for use of the equipment, and there are plenty of free outdoor park tables.
What equipment do I need?
To give table tennis a go at your local club, you just need to wear comfortable clothes, your bat and balls will be provided for you.
If you play competitively, you may need to buy a club uniform or invest in your own bat. Ask your club or coach about this.
If you’re playing in a public place, bring your own ball and bat, or hire one from the venue.
Table Tennis England, the National Governing Body has a Table and Club Finder on their website. Ping! and Loop are other websites worth visiting. On them you can find out where you can play socially - in everyday (and some rather unexpected) places!