How to Do a Forehand Block in Table Tennis aka Ping Pong

Learn how to do a forehand block from table tennis pro Tahl Leibovitz in this ping pong video from Howcast.

My name is Tahl Leibovitz and I’m here at SPiN, New York. I am a professional table tennis player who has been competing internationally since 1995. I am here today to speak to you about the intermediate and beginner aspects of the Olympic sport of table tennis
I’m gonna demonstrate the forehand block. What’s really important in table tennis is the block. The block is a very important stroke. From 1985 to 1993 the main reason the Swedish were very successful against the Chinese was the block- actually mainly the backhand block but we’re going to get to that in a minute. The forehand block is used, where we use a very compact stroke. The stroke has to be very short. The reason for this is your opponent is normally going to impart a lot of spin on the ball, the ball’s going to be really really spin-y. So, the more we move our hand, the chance for error and for missing the ball increases, so we need to be really really compact, and we need to try to pass through the ball. That’s the first thing. Second thing, because a lot of players are used to using a forehand smash or loop, they tend to block the ball and their racket tends to move too much forward. This is a very advanced stroke and there’s a very high chance for error. Its better to try to move the racket this way, more almost like you can imagine that there’s a window to your left and you’re trying to move the racket to the window. Even at the highest levels this works. So a very compact stroke, trying to pass through the ball, and trying to move your racket a little bit to the side, still trying to hitting the back of the ball. A lot of players, you can hit the top or the back. I prefer the back, some players prefer the top.