What is the Best Table Tennis Serve Grip?
The most crucial technique in table tennis is the serve. The table tennis serve is the only time when you have complete control over how and where you want to play the tennis ball. If you have mastered the advanced table tennis serve, you will be at a greater advantage.
You can improve your chances of winning if you know several advanced table tennis serves that you can use to defeat your opponent. Also, you need to know how to vary the spin, direction, and speed of the tennis ball. This is where grip comes into play.
It is all about the way you use your wrist. You can use a different grip for your forehand serve and return to the traditional grip after hitting the tennis ball. That being said, if you came here wondering what the best table tennis serve grip is, you should know that the answer may vary from one player to another.
In short, you need to figure out the grip that works best for your style of playing.
4 Table Tennis Serve Grips
Here is a list of the best table tennis serve grips:
1. Short Backspin Serve Grip
The short backspin serve grip makes it hard for your opponent to play an attacking stroke.
- You need to stand close to the tennis table, facing it. Take a low stance, relax your arm, and loosen up your wrist.
- Throw the tennis ball up in the air as vertically as you can. This will cause it to rise at least 6 inches after it leaves your hand.
- Let the tennis ball drop and then using a forward action to hit the ball with your paddle, striking it on the descent using quick wrist action. Next, brush under the tennis ball, so it gives full backspin on the tennis ball.
- Use a short stroke, making it as short as you can, and maintain a minimum body movement.
2. Short Backhand Sidespin Serve Grip
The short backhand sidespin serve grip restricts your opponent to use different strokes, hence making their return weak.
- Stand close to the table tennis table, facing it, and assume a low stance, relax your arm, and loosen up your wrist.
- Throw the tennis ball up in the air, keeping it as vertical as you can. This will result in the tennis ball lifting at least 6 inches in the air, after it leaves your hand.
- Let the tennis ball drop and using a sideways and forward movement, hit the tennis ball.
- Use a short stroke, as short as you can make it, with minimal body movement.
- Use a quick wrist action on the center of the tennis ball when you hit it, so that it gives full sidespin onto the tennis ball.
3. Forehand High Toss Serve Grip
The forehead high toss serve grip causes the tennis ball to fall on to the paddle with speed. This serve gives the tennis ball extra spin and more speed.
- Stand close to the table tennis table in the backhand corner, relax your arm, and loosen up your wrist.
- Throw the tennis ball up in the air, keeping it as vertical as you, causing the tennis ball to rise at least 24 inches in the air after it leaves your hand. Ensure your free arm and body do not conceal the tennis ball from view.
- Let the tennis ball drop and with a loose wrist movement, strike the tennis ball fast. This will impart full spin onto the tennis ball. Your paddle should strike the tennis ball about 6 inches in the air, about the same height as the net.
- Produce variations in spin using various stoke movements.
- Conceal the type of spin on the tennis ball using your follow-through action. Do this by moving the paddle to the direction you used when you hit the tennis ball.
4. Super Heavy Backspin Serve Grip
For the super heavy backspin serve grip, hit the tennis ball from underneath instead of tapping or hitting it on its back.
- Ensure the paddle’s face is completely open. Keep the paddle horizontal to the tennis table to start and finish the serve. This allows you to slide the tennis ball when you hit it.
- Accelerate your paddle to the tennis ball as quick as you can. The speed of the paddle creates a super heavy backspin.
- The acceleration comes from your elbow or both your elbow and wrist used together. The latter is more difficult to do so. Begin with your wrist locked in position and once you do it effortlessly, use your elbow to add a little wrist action to it.
Since this is a difficult serve to pull off, here are a few tips you can use to improve it:
- Focus on heavy spin serve first and the length later.
- Ensure you slice the tennis ball from underneath.
- Accelerate your paddle as much as you can when you contact the tennis ball.
- Aim at your opponent’s forehand side if their forehand push is not that strong.
- Practice your fine contact with the paddle and tennis ball as much as you can.
This list shows that you do not have to settle for a single grip, but you can learn them all and beat your opponent. You can choose one as your favorite though. Remember, without practice, learning these table tennis serve grips won’t be easy. After you have practiced these at home and played them in court, you will start to notice a significant improvement in your performance.