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All top players and coaches agree that table tennis requires a variety of training techniques. Some examples of training include – drills, robot, multiball, serving practice, matches, plus a variety of physical training. Within those types of training, a multitude of variations are excellent. To be a complete player, one must be able to win against any playing style – looper, chopper, pips, lefty, etc…
While training with my Newgy Robo-Pong 2050, (click here for YouTube video), I now practice with more variety than ever before. For drills such as #28 and #59, I set the robot for topspin/sidespin. This is best performed by adjusting the robot head to the left or right 3 clicks. This variation has done 4 things for me:
1. Improved my concentration
2. Improved my ability to follow the ball closely with my eyes
3. Improved my ability to counterloop against lefty and right hook loops
4. Improved my ball placement on “weird” balls
One might argue that this is “unrealistic.” Actually there are several US players that play these types of unorthodox strokes: David Zhuang and Gao Jun with blocking and De Tran with forehand counterlooping.
Give it a try- it’s fun and challenging!!!