Table Tennis Backspin and Side Spin

Let’s start with backspin as you’ll probably use this a lot more than side spin. In order to pull this one off you’ll have to be subtle so that your opponent doesn’t see what’s coming, if he or she knows how much backspin you’ve put on the ball it will be much easier to return.

Let’s get onto the shot then. You have to slice the ball underneath, be it a forehand or a backhand, you’ll need a good paddle to get it right as a cheep one without much grip won’t be much use for spinning the ball, the paddle needs to grip the ball so that the motion of slicing spins the ball backwards.

The backhand is the easiest way to get used to this shot as all you have to do is tilt the paddle back a bit as you hit the ball strait on, you’ll find the ball goes quite high in the air so it won’t be much good against an experienced player but see how much spin you can get, it’s a great way to teach yourself the shot, then you can start hitting it with less angle and more of a slice to get the ball nice and low.

It’s a great feeling when you get enough spin on the ball so that when it hits on your opponents side it has so much spin that it comes back over to your side without giving your opponent enough time to hit the ball and so you get the point. You’ll have to get it just right though so that it only just goes over the net, if you hit it too far it won’t come back to your side no matter how much spin you put on the ball.

Now let’s get some side spin happening, if you pull your paddle to the right as it hits the ball, then it will curve to the left. If you push your paddle to the left then the ball will curve to the right, you can also do this shot with your wrist by flicking it over one way or the other to get the same effect.

In the beginning you’ll probably find it easier to use your whole arm but as you advance you’ll be able to put more wrist action in and get a much better way of doing the shot, it also makes it much harder for your opponent to see what you're doing. Try mixing side spin with backspin and also topspin to get shots that will really start to puzzle your opponent.

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