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A lob can have nearly any kind of spin.

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Though the opponent may smash the ball hard and fast, a good defensive lob could be more difficult to return due to the unpredictability and heavy amounts of the spin on the ball. Lob is used less frequently by professional players. A notable exception is Michael Maze. Adding spin onto the ball causes major changes in table tennis gameplay.

Although nearly every stroke or serve creates some kind of spin, understanding the individual types of spin allows players to defend against and use different spins effectively. Backspin is where the bottom half of the ball is rotating away from the player, and is imparted by striking the base of the ball with a downward movement.


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Due to the initial lift of the ball, there is a limit on how much speed with which one can hit the ball without missing the opponent's side of the table. However, backspin also makes it harder for the opponent to return the ball with great speed because of the required angular precision of the return. Alterations are frequently made to regulations regarding equipment in an effort to maintain a balance between defensive and offensive spin choices. The topspin stroke has a smaller influence on the first part of the ball-curve. Like the backspin stroke, however, the axis of spin remains roughly perpendicular to the trajectory of the ball thus allowing for the Magnus effect to dictate the subsequent curvature.

After the apex of the curve, the ball dips downwards as it approaches the opposing side, before bouncing. On the bounce, the topspin will accelerate the ball, much in the same way that a wheel which is already spinning would accelerate upon making contact with the ground. When the opponent attempts to return the ball, the topspin causes the ball to jump upwards and the opponent is forced to compensate for the topspin by adjusting the angle of his or her racket. This is known as "closing the racket".

The speed limitation of the topspin stroke is minor compared to the backspin stroke. This stroke is the predominant technique used in professional competition because it gives the opponent less time to respond. In table tennis topspin is regarded as an offensive technique due to increased ball speed, lower bio-mechanical efficiency and the pressure that it puts on the opponent by reducing reaction time.

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It is possible to play defensive topspin-lobs from far behind the table, but only highly skilled players use this stroke with any tactical efficiency. Topspin is the least common type of spin to be found in service at the professional level, simply because it is much easier to attack a top-spin ball that is not moving at high speed.

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This type of spin is predominantly employed during service, wherein the contact angle of the racket can be more easily varied. Unlike the two aforementioned techniques, sidespin causes the ball to spin on an axis which is vertical, rather than horizontal. The axis of rotation is still roughly perpendicular to the trajectory of the ball.

In this circumstance, the Magnus effect will still dictate the curvature of the ball to some degree. Another difference is that unlike backspin and topspin, sidespin will have relatively very little effect on the bounce of the ball, much in the same way that a spinning top would not travel left or right if its axis of rotation were exactly vertical. This makes sidespin a useful weapon in service, because it is less easily recognized when bouncing, and the ball "loses" less spin on the bounce. Sidespin can also be employed in offensive rally strokes, often from a greater distance, as an adjunct to topspin or backspin.

This stroke is sometimes referred to as a "hook".

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The hook can even be used in some extreme cases to circumvent the net when away from the table. Players employ this type of spin almost exclusively when serving, but at the professional level, it is also used from time to time in the lob.

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Unlike any of the techniques mentioned above, corkspin or " drill-spin " has the axis of spin relatively parallel to the ball's trajectory, so that the Magnus effect has little or no effect on the trajectory of a cork-spun ball: upon bouncing, the ball will dart right or left according to the direction of the spin , severely complicating the return. In theory this type of spin produces the most obnoxious effects, but it is less strategically practical than sidespin or backspin, because of the limitations that it imposes upon the opponent during their return. Aside from the initial direction change when bouncing, unless it goes out of reach, the opponent can counter with either topspin or backspin.

A backspin stroke is similar in the fact that the corkspin stroke has a lower maximum velocity, simply due to the contact angle of the racket when producing the stroke.

To impart a spin on the ball which is parallel to its trajectory, the racket must be swung more or less perpendicular to the trajectory of the ball, greatly limiting the forward momentum that the racket transfers to the ball. Corkspin is almost always mixed with another variety of spin, since alone, it is not only less effective but also harder to produce. Competitive table tennis is popular in East Asia and Europe , and has been [ vague ] gaining attention in the United States.

Continental competitions include the following:. There are also professional competitions at the clubs level; the respective leagues of Austria , Belgium , China specifically, the China Table Tennis Super League , France , Germany and Russia are examples of the highest level. There are also some important international club teams competitions such as the European Champions League and its former competitor, [ vague ] the European Club Cup , where the top club teams from European countries compete. The following table presents an exhaustive list of all players to have completed a grand slam.

Persson is one of the three table tennis players to have competed at seven Olympic Games. Ma Lin China won both the Olympic gold and the World Cup, but lost three times, in , , and in the finals of the World Championships. Founded in , the International Table Tennis Federation ITTF is the worldwide governing body for table tennis, which maintains an international ranking system in addition to organizing events like the World Table Tennis Championships. On many continents, there is a governing body responsible for table tennis on that continent.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Racket sport. For other uses, see Ping-pong disambiguation. This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Main article: Table tennis racket. Shakehand grip. Chinese penhold Ma Lin. Traditional penhold Ryu Seung-min.

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