Coach Samson Dubina 2016 US National Team Coach 2015 - 2018 USATT Coach of the Year
 

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That's a Really Good Question!

Looping or Blocking or Both?!?

 
I receive hundreds of table tennis questions.  Here is a very common question that you might be asking as well...
 
Hi Samson.  Great clinic, thanks again.  If you don't mind, I've got one follow up question.
Since the clinic I've played 3 times so far at local clubs.  I've been focusing on attacking just about everything with loops and flips, and throwing in some punch blocks from time to time.  It's worked pretty well, and I'm winning against players who i normally lose to.
owever... I've found myself losing to a few players who I used to beat.  Looking for a pattern, I realized that these guys all hit really hard.  In the past I would just block their shots.  Now I'm trying to take my time and loop their shots, but most of my loops go off the table or into the net.
What do you suggest?  Go back to blocking these guys?  Or keep looping but back off from the table a bit?  Or something else?
Thanks in advance...

 
Great question.
I'm really happy to hear that you have started implementing your loop into your game - that's great.  With your style primarily as a blocker, I would recommend mixing in loops with blocks depending on the ball.  If your opponent is pounding you hard with fast balls, it will be very difficult for you to consistently loop those shots.  You need to be very selective when to loop and what type of loop to use.  Against those particular players, you can use one of the following strategies.
Strategy A
Try to attack first so that they can't pound you hard.  By attacking their serve, by receiving short, and/or by serving low and short you should be able to create the opportunity to attack first.  Once you initiate the attack, be persistent.
Strategy B
Allow them to attack and be prepared to block them out of position.  If you are more consistent than they are, then you will probably win.  Once you have blocked them out of position, then look for the opportunity to counterattack.
 
I hope this helps!
Samson
 

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