Table Tennis Facts

(1) For a link to the FAQ page - click here

(1) USA Table Tennis (USATT) is the National Governing body for the sport of table tennis in the United States.
(2) Table Tennis is the worlds most popular racket sport.
(2a) Became an Olympic sport in 1988.
(3) There are 140 countries affiliated with the International Table Tennis Federation.
(4) There are 300 table tennis clubs in the USA.
(5) There are about 350 sanctioned tournaments per year
(6) Parker Brothers originally patented the name "Ping Pong" and the patent is now owned by Escalade Sports.
(7) First organized association was the American Ping Pong Assoc. in 1930, then in 1932 began the U.S. Amateur Table Tennis Assoc. and the National Table Tennis Assoc. The combining of these 3 groups became eventually the USA Table Tennis which became headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo. in 1979.
(8) World powers in Table Tennis are: China, Sweden Taiwan and Korea (2001).
(9) The USA men's team is 40th in the world (2001)
(10) The USA women's team is 20th in the world (2001)
(11) On Oct, 1, 2000, the size of the table tennis ball changed from 38mm to 40mm and weighs 2.7 grams and made of celluliod material.
(12) Beginning in 2000, games are played to 11 points (instead of 21 points).
(13) The racket, bat, or blade may be of any size, shape or weight.
(14) In 1952 foam rubber rackets were introduced by Japan.
(15) In 1926 the ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) was formed.
(16) In 1971, at a time when the U.S. had no diplomatic ties with China, the U.S. Table Tennis Delegation visited the People's Republic of China - creating front page news around the world with the history making "Ping Pong Diplomacy".
(17) Table Tennis tables are 9' long, 5' wide and 2'6" high.
(18) The web site for the USATT is:

(20) Reasons to play table tennis:
       (1) Promotes entertainment, athletic competition, physical fitness
       (2) Supports racial and religious diversity and interaction
       (3) Serves as an inter-generation magnet (i.e. all ages can play well together).
       (4) Is size and gender neutral. It's not uncommon for a 100 lb
            girl to beat a 200 lb man or an 10 year old boy beat a 30 year old man.
       (5) Is international

(21) What is the one thing that Table Tennis has that other sports don't? Answer: The thrill of the rally.

(22) How much does a Detroiter table weigh (the ones used at the Bixby Center)? Each half weighs 84 lbs.

(23)The Stiga net adjustment screws on the Tulsa Nets are M4 x 25 with .70 pitch


(24) There are 8 styles or types of players:

(1) Pips-Out Attacker: Stands within 3 feet of the table. The contact point on all strokes is as early as possible, top of the bounce or on the rise. This is a forehand-dominated style. Speed, not spin is used.

(2) Power Looper - Forehand-dominated style with a strong point-winning forehand loop stroke and tries to end the point quickly.

(3) All-Round attacker - A wide variety of attacking strokes with almost equal strength from both sides and the ability to adapt his game to attack the opponent's weaknesses using topspin attacking strokes from any position or distance from the table.

(4) Counter Driver - Often referred to as "walls", playing close to the table using forehand and backhand counter-drives and blocks. This style seeks to force their opponents into making errors.

(5) Mid-Distance Aggressive Looper - Prefers to stay within six to eight feet from the table. Their longer topspin strokes carry considerable power and spin, from either the forehand or backhand.

(6) Attacking Chopper - This style can best be thought of as an attacker who uses underspin to set up their attacking shots. Players most often use 2 different racket surfaces and will flip the racket to produce great variation.

(7) Close-to-the Table Defender - This style is built around a chop/blocking game executed from close to the table.  Uses underspin blocks to force weak topspin shots from their opponents. They will then attack the weak topspin with a well place drive or loop.

(8) Developing player -  a player without a defined style yet.

See also:


(25) Types of shot

(1) Backspin - a type of spin which makes the ball spin anti-clockwise as it leaves the bat

(2) Block - rebound shot which is played as soon as the ball bounces, when the player lets the ball hit the bat rather than the other way round

(3) Chop - another term for backspin, from the chopping action of the player used to cause backspin

(4) Counterhit - also known as 'flat hitting', hitting the ball hard with no spin, used against attacking shots

(5) Drive - a fast stroke which gives the ball speed and a little spin

(6) Dropshot - when the ball is played just after bouncing when it is close to the net

(7) Flick - stroke played from the wrist, used to return a short serve

(8) Float or no spin or nothing ball or dead ball- a shot with little or no spin on the ball, although it can look like it does have spin

(9) Half volley - also known as a block, a ball played soon after bouncing

(10) Kill - also known as a smash, the ball is hit as hard as possible

(11) Lob - the ball is returned high with topspin so it land near the edge of the opponent's half

(12) Loop (and counter loop) - a type of heavy topspin when the ball dips in the air

(13) Push - a short basic stroke, used to contain or control a rally

(14) Topspin - a type of spin which makes the ball spin clockwise as it leaves the bat