Welcome to TableTennisCoaching.com, your Worldwide Center for Table Tennis Coaching!

 Photo by Donna Sakai

This is an evolving website and Table Tennis Community. Your suggestions are welcome.

Want a daily injection of Table Tennis? Come read the Larry Hodges Blog! (Entries go up by 1PM, Mon-Fri; see link on left.) Feel free to comment!

Want to talk Table Tennis? Come join us on the forum. While the focus here is on coaching, the forum is open to any table tennis talk.

Want to Learn? Read the Tip of the Week, study videos, read articles, or find just about any other table tennis coaching site from the menu links. If you know of one, please let us know so we can add it.

Want to Learn more directly? There are two options. See the Video Coaching link for info on having your game analyzed via video. See the Clinics link for info on arranging a clinic in your area, or finding ones that are already scheduled.

If you have any questions, feel free to email, post a note on the forum, or comment on my blog entries.

-Larry Hodges, Director, TableTennisCoaching.com

Member, USA Table Tennis Hall of Fame & USATT Certified National Coach
Professional Coach at the Maryland Table Tennis Center

Recent TableTennisCoaching.com blog posts

NOTE – due to a neck injury (see “Weekend Coaching”) I can barely hold my head up straight. So, I’m doing a shortened version of my blog this week, where I’m skipping all the usual links. (I’ll catch up with them next week.) Much of the below was written in advance. The rest I painstakingly typed this morning.

Tip of the Week
The Four Types of Defense.

Table Tennis Doubles for Champions - NOW ON SALE!!!
My new book is out at Amazon!!! It’s 133 pages, with 109 pictures and illustrations. There have been many instructional books on singles, but rarely more than perhaps a few pages on doubles. So, if you like doubles, this is for you! (I’ve won a lot of doubles titles, but more importantly, I’ve coached a lot of doubles champions.) Chapters include:

Tip of the Week
The Definition of Insanity and Its Table Tennis Implications.

2024 US Table Tennis Hall of Fame Inductions
Here’s the announcement! Inducted this year are Glenn Cowan as a player, Stellan Bengtsson and Dennis Taylor as contributors, and Patty Martinez-Wasserman the Lifetime Achievement Award. The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony and Dinner will be held on Oct. 10 at the Houston International TT Academy, in conjunction with the Si and Patty Wasserman Jr. & Open Championships on Oct. 11-13. (I expect to be there, both for the HoF Inductions & dinner and to coach at the tournament.) I’ll be doing the Hall of Fame program booklet, as I’ve done since 2009. Already started on it! (On a side note, both Stellan and Dennis are on the Editorial Board for my upcoming book, “Table Tennis Doubles for Champions,” which should be out by the end of March.) Here are the honorees:

Tip of the Week
Be the Lawnmower.

Table Tennis Doubles for Champions
Last Wednesday I sent the draft of the book to the Editorial Board. They are supposed to get back to me by Monday, March 11 with any edits, suggestions. They bring a wide range of talents to the job, from table tennis to editorial expertise.

Who is this Super Seven? Stellan & Angie Bengtsson, Mark Dekeyser, Sean O'Neill, John Olsen, Dan Seemiller, and Dennis Taylor. That’s a pretty nice group. (Edit- it's now the Great Eight, with Dell Sweeris joining the Editorial Board.)

Tip of the Week
The Laziness of Simple Serves.

USATT’s Illegal Chair, USATT Assemblies, and Those Pesky Bylaws
I sent another email to the USATT Board regarding this. (I blogged about the issue last week, including a link to my previous email.) Just to be clear, I have zero expectation that anything will come of this – too many enablers on the Board. The point is they can no longer deny knowing about it. This abuse of power, as well as policy issues, will be among the big issues in the Fall USATT elections. The facts speak for themselves. The primary “defense” against this is the assertion that Char’s term started on Jan. 1, 2021 – but it’s argument by assertion, with no facts or logic backing it up. But there’s little accountability in USATT these days, and so they can do pretty much get away with anything. Normally the lawyers report to the CEO and Board, and the CEO reports to the Board which oversees everything, but these days it’s pretty much reversed.

Tip of the Week
Learn From Your Easy Wins and Bad Losses.

USATT’s Illegal Chair of the Board
[Skip this segment if you have no interest in USATT politics. And sorry about the length!]

Tip of the Week
Types of Topspin Contact.

Weekend Coaching, Doubles Book, and USATT, Oh My!!!
I split my coaching weekend between feeding multiball (yes, lots and Lots and LOTS of footwork drills), and as a practice partner at the end. I used to be in charge of running these group sessions, but now that I’m semi-retired others have taken over, and I get to just coach. My primary function in most sessions is feeding multiball, where I put them through a series of drills while working on their technique. Different players are rotated to me (the multiball station) throughout the session, so I work with a lot of the players.

Tip of the Week
Start With Your Trickiest Serve.

Three Big Things to Happen to USA Table Tennis Since I Started
I started playing table tennis and joined USATT in 1976. Since that time, I would say there are three BIG things that have happened in our sport, specifically in the US for two of them. (If I’d started five years earlier, then I might have put Ping-Pong Diplomacy as a fourth.) They are:

Tip of the Week
Court Tricks.

Weekend Coaching
Only did one group session this past weekend – other coaches needed the hours more than I did! I did multiball for about an hour and thirty minutes as a practice partner. (There were 18 in the group. We have over 70 in our junior program, so have to have different groups based on level.) The multiball focus was lots and Lots and LOTS of fundamentals, focusing on topspin drills and footwork. While one player does multiball, another shadow-strokes behind him, matching his shots and imagining hitting the ball each time. Another player does serves, while another does ball pickup. As a practice partner, we again did lots of footwork drills. We also did a rather intensive shadow-practice session at the start, going through lots of stroking and footwork drills without the ball. I spent much of the time yelling, “Turn your shoulders!” as many kids get lazy and go for rapid-fire but poor arm strokes – but not on my watch!!!

Tips of the Week

2023 US Open
The 2023 US Open seems ages ago – it was held Dec. 15-22 in Ontario, California, near LA. But since I’ve been traveling almost non-stop this is my first blog since then. (I’m back to blogging every Monday, except when sick or out of town.) Here are a few tidbits – with more in the next segment about USATT. I had more to write about, but since it’s been a month, I’ll keep the segment short.

Next Blog: January 15
I’ll be out of town Dec. 15-27 for the US Open and then Christmas, and again Jan. 2-10 for the $36,600 Ping Pong World Cup in Mexico City (plus some sightseeing afterwards). So next blog will be Monday, Jan. 15. There will be a Tip of the Week on Monday, Dec. 18, and Monday Jan. 8. Have a great holiday season!

Tips of the Week
Dec. 11: Why Aren't You Pushing Heavy?
Dec. 18: Are You Too Backhand Oriented?