Coaching Tip of the Week Archives - Butterfly Online
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Coaching Tip of the Week – Never Decide If You Have to Move

(By Larry Hodges) There are so many snap decisions a player has to make while playing that it’s mind-boggling that players often increase the mind-load by adding unnecessary decisions. In table tennis, there is never a decision on whether you have to move; you always move – or more specifically, you always assume you have […]

Coaching Tips of the Week: How to Stop a Simple Third-Ball Forehand Attack

(By Larry Hodges) A common tactic for forehand loopers with good footwork is to serve short (often to the middle, to cut off the extreme angles), and when the receiver predictably pushes long to the backhand, the server simply steps around and forehand loops – either winning the point immediately or dominating the rally from […]

Coaching Tips of the Week: Keep the Ball to the Extreme Angles in Practice

(By Larry Hodges)   I remember something USATT Hall of Famer Ricky Seemiller once told me at one of my first training camps: “Amateurs practice to the middle forehand and middle backhand. Top players practice to the wide angles.” What does that mean? Many players get in the habit of warming up and practicing their […]

Coaching Tip of the Week – Do You Receive to Set Up Your Game?

(By Larry Hodges) Most players learn early on to serve to set up their game. However, many do not do this with their receive. They will instead focus on just getting the serve back in the most consistent way they can that doesn’t too easily set up the opponent. This works to an extent, but […]

Coaching Tip of the Week – Pavlovian Response and Table Tennis

(By Larry Hodges) In last week’s tip I wrote about toweling. In it, I mentioned the Pavlovian Response, also called Classical Conditioning. It’s not just towel breaks. You should develop the same routines before matches, and before every point, both serve and receive. If you do so, you’ll develop that Pavlovian response that prepares you for the match […]

Coaching Tip of the Week -A Table Tennis Player’s Guide to Toweling

(By Larry Hodges)  According to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, “A towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have.” The link above gives some of the many ways a towel helps, such as (I’m not making these up!) “use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; […]

Coaching Tip of the Week – How to Learn by Watching the Top Players

(By Larry Hodges)  Most players who watch top players play look like this. That link should take you to a 22-second video of five cats looking side to side as they watch a ping-pong match. Those cats are enjoying the epic match they are watching, but they are not learning anything. All they are seeing is […]

Coaching Tip of the Week – Be Both a Machine and an Artist

(By Larry Hodges) It’s great to develop great mechanical proficiency like the top players, who often seem to play like machines. As noted in last week’s tip, “They make even difficult shots with such seeming ease and consistency that they make it look easy.” But while you are developing that mechanical proficiency, you can be […]

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