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perham
05-01-2018, 10:29 AM
Hey guys! I finally managed to record a video of my game. Right away I found out many problems in the game that are not present in the training, but that's why we play, isn't it? :D Any and all feedback are welcome.

https://vimeo.com/267382545

P.S. 1. sorry for the camera angle. There's really no place to put the phone on. Next time I'll try with a tripod.
P.S. 2. btw, I'm the happy fat guy.

UpSideDownCarl
05-01-2018, 01:58 PM
Yep. When you get to see footage of yourself, it is easy to see things that you are doing that you can improve. Our internal image of what we are doing is often off. What we think we are doing and what we are actually doing are usually pretty different. Consistently watching footage of yourself can help you improve immensely. And can help your internal image become more accurate.

I was a professional ramp skater and I was in the circus for 2 years doing that. We spent a lot of time watching footage to help improve our skating. At a certain point, as you get better and see yourself regularly, your internal image gets closer and closer to what you are actually doing. But watching and analyzing footage always helps you improve. Often in ways you would not have expected.

Your loops are good. I like your BH chop when you are away from the table. You are a versatile player. Sometimes when you are not ready for a return and too close to the table you chop when you should attack. But for the most part, you are playing a good versatile game. Keep smiling and laughing while playing and you will get better. Probably a big area for improvement is reading the points as they happen which means, doing match play for improvement.

And if you practiced serves and keeping the serves low, you could go up a level or two without anything else changing.

It is nice to see your video. Thanks.

Atas Newton
05-01-2018, 02:20 PM
- Whose motorcycle is this?
- It's not a motorcycle, baby, it's a chopper.

perham
05-01-2018, 06:36 PM
- Whose motorcycle is this?
- It's not a motorcycle, baby, it's a chopper.

This made me giggle. :D Pulp Fiction? I actually read the first part in French accent.

perham
05-01-2018, 06:44 PM
Yep. When you get to see footage of yourself, it is easy to see things that you are doing that you can improve. Our internal image of what we are doing is often off. What we think we are doing and what we are actually doing are usually pretty different. Consistently watching footage of yourself can help you improve immensely. And can help your internal image become more accurate.

I was a professional ramp skater and I was in the circus for 2 years doing that. We spent a lot of time watching footage to help improve our skating. At a certain point, as you get better and see yourself regularly, your internal image gets closer and closer to what you are actually doing. But watching and analyzing footage always helps you improve. Often in ways you would not have expected.

Your loops are good. I like your BH chop when you are away from the table. You are a versatile player. Sometimes when you are not ready for a return and too close to the table you chop when you should attack. But for the most part, you are playing a good versatile game. Keep smiling and laughing while playing and you will get better. Probably a big area for improvement is reading the points as they happen which means, doing match play for improvement.

And if you practiced serves and keeping the serves low, you could go up a level or two without anything else changing.

It is nice to see your video. Thanks.

Your feedback gives me hope! Well, the first impression I had after watching the video myself was "wow!! I'm missing so many balls because I'm awkwardly out of position". The second one was that sometimes I just make the wrong choice of strokes. For example, I lost a point basically doing backhand drives on middle-forehand sides. Also the issue of "chicken chops" that you mentioned has a lot to do with positioning and correcting my footwork. These are some stuff that I need to mentally work on before being able to execute in match play.

I have never exclusively worked on my serves. I try to vary the spin, speed, and placement, but to be honest, they're not that spinny nor very fast. I blame this mostly on having played in a lower division this past season, and not really needing to push myself. This is definitely something I need to work on since I'll be playing in a higher division next year.

Thanks for the feedback!

Lightzy
05-01-2018, 08:21 PM
Hey that was fun to watch, love the smiles and happiness, you seem like you would be a guy that's real fun to train with!

As for the game feedback, mostly focused around the point at 1:35, and mostly about things which I think aren't incidental but show up as patterns for many club players I've seen, which may or may not be the case.


1) The backhand to forehand switch. That was a classic example you see a lot. And it's a shame coz when you prepare your forehand it looks like good preparation!

My suggestion is to entirely avoid hesitation. In the next few practice games get your hand and body down and ready to come up for a forehand topspin even if you don't know where the ball will come. Just as soon as you hit, get ready for a forehand. It develops a good habit, even if you lose a few points because of getting hit on your backhand.
Besides, the backhand motion is a lot more compact and quick, and setup for it is also very quick, so you probably will gain more points than you lose even on the immediate.

2) Your right leg is forward, which I think is something to be conscious of. You want your left foot slightly forward at nearly all times (except when coming into the table). or you'll be immobilized every time you need to play a forehand shot. I'd practice this, at least for now, before you're very accurate and quick about micro-adjusting stance (same logic as preparing the forehand topspin always).
Right foot forward is for playing over the table, but immobilizes you if you don't retract it immediately, and in this case this is not over-the-table play. Left foot forward (or off-foot, generally, depending on your handedness) is the way to go.

3) Those backhand shots are nice! You wait exactly for the top of the bounce which is the first and most important principle that's sometimes difficult to get the hang of, but all 3 shots are different because your right foot is forward and so you lean into each shot more and more until there's nowhere left to lean to :) So against any ball with a bit of quality they won't have gone in.

4) The block at 1:22 is often indicative of a habit of doing that. Blocking with a forehand in the body instead of a backhand a bit to front. If it is, it's not good even if it works and even if it's 'consistent' :) So probably good to work on blocking random-placement slow balls with a partner. It'll almost never produce a non-super-attackable ball which against someone who can topspin that'd be the end of that.


In short I would work mostly on eliminating hesitation (even if by means of forcing something potentially suboptimal at first), and on very simple 'random placement' practice with weak, slow, no spin balls, keeping left foot a bit forward.


Regarding serves:

In general I would agree with Carl's assessment that developing spinny serves would win you points easier, but I'd also be cautious of doing that. At the level you play I often suggest not to use complicated serves at all because it stunts overall development (this is my personal philosophy).
There is nothing more head-bangingly annoying to me on wednesdays and fridays (when I help coach beginners at the club) than seeing two beginner players who have all kinds of side/under/top spinny serves they worked on at home but can't keep the ball on the table for more than 3 hits or even really read the spin on the return of their own serve.
The spinny serves stunt the development of their game and they just win some points on serves against other players their strength and that's it. And the worst thing is that they think they're hot because of the serves...
At this level I would advise to deliberately not use anything more complex than a weak backspin serve and practice playing points with consistency rather than brilliance.

perham
05-01-2018, 09:04 PM
Hey that was fun to watch, love the smiles and happiness, you seem like you would be a guy that's real fun to train with!

Thanks! We (the amateurs) are all playing for nothing more than fun, so I don't see the value in bitterness ;)



As for the game feedback, mostly focused around the point at 1:35, and mostly about things which I think aren't incidental but show up as patterns for many club players I've seen, which may or may not be the case.


1) The backhand to forehand switch. That was a classic example you see a lot. And it's a shame coz when you prepare your forehand it looks like good preparation!

My suggestion is to entirely avoid hesitation. In the next few practice games get your hand and body down and ready to come up for a forehand topspin even if you don't know where the ball will come. Just as soon as you hit, get ready for a forehand. It develops a good habit, even if you lose a few points because of getting hit on your backhand.
Besides, the backhand motion is a lot more compact and quick, and setup for it is also very quick, so you probably will gain more points than you lose even on the immediate.

This is very helpful. I will do this in the next few sessions. I have until September before the new competitive season starts, so I have some time to change some really bad habits.



2) Your right leg is forward, which I think is something to be conscious of. You want your left foot slightly forward at nearly all times (except when coming into the table). or you'll be immobilized every time you need to play a forehand shot. I'd practice this, at least for now, before you're very accurate and quick about micro-adjusting stance (same logic as preparing the forehand topspin always).
Right foot forward is for playing over the table, but immobilizes you if you don't retract it immediately, and in this case this is not over-the-table play. Left foot forward (or off-foot, generally, depending on your handedness) is the way to go.


This is something that I do struggle with. I need to consciously remind myself every time to return to ready position, otherwise I'll just watch the ball. :P This is one of the things I need to transfer from training to match play. While in training I do this very well, in the match play I'm often stuck in a bad position. I think this has to do with the "planning" phase that is not practiced in training. Carl had a very nice video on this. I've been doing some random placement training recently to address this problem, but I think it takes some time.



3) Those backhand shots are nice! You wait exactly for the top of the bounce which is the first and most important principle that's sometimes difficult to get the hang of, but all 3 shots are different because your right foot is forward and so you lean into each shot more and more until there's nowhere left to lean to :) So against any ball with a bit of quality they won't have gone in.


I've been practicing backhand a lot lately, but still I'm far from perfect. I'll keep working on it!



4) The block at 1:22 is often indicative of a habit of doing that. Blocking with a forehand in the body instead of a backhand a bit to front. If it is, it's not good even if it works and even if it's 'consistent' :) So probably good to work on blocking random-placement slow balls with a partner. It'll almost never produce a non-super-attackable ball which against someone who can topspin that'd be the end of that.

I call it "chicken" blocks. It's definitely a horrible habit. I just need to move to the left and attack those balls.




In short I would work mostly on eliminating hesitation (even if by means of forcing something potentially suboptimal at first), and on very simple 'random placement' practice with weak, slow, no spin balls, keeping left foot a bit forward.


Will do!



Regarding serves:

In general I would agree with Carl's assessment that developing spinny serves would win you points easier, but I'd also be cautious of doing that. At the level you play I often suggest not to use complicated serves at all because it stunts overall development (this is my personal philosophy).
There is nothing more head-bangingly annoying to me on wednesdays and fridays (when I help coach beginners at the club) than seeing two beginner players who have all kinds of side/under/top spinny serves they worked on at home but can't keep the ball on the table for more than 3 hits or even really read the spin on the return of their own serve.
The spinny serves stunt the development of their game and they just win some points on serves against other players their strength and that's it. And the worst thing is that they think they're hot because of the serves...
At this level I would advise to deliberately not use anything more complex than a weak backspin serve and practice playing points with consistency rather than brilliance.

I kinda agree. Well, serve practice is not the focus of my practice right now. I sometimes have problems with the return of my own serves if it is pushed long into my backhand due to aforementioned positioning problems; so, they need to be fixed first. I guess my serves need to go up a level anyway when I play next year, since the challenge will be much harder there. So I try not to put too much emphasis on it, but train it as a side issue.

UpSideDownCarl
05-01-2018, 09:08 PM
As far as being set for the wrong shot, I think that is a function of a slow reset. You need to be reset and in a ready position before your opponent hits the ball.

Often you are trying to get ready for the next shot after the ball is already coming at you. And sometimes you are getting ready for a different ball than the one that is coming at you.

Not a big deal. But the fix is:

1) reset faster.
2) watch the opponent for what is actually going to come at you.


Sent from The Subterranean Workshop by Telepathy

UpSideDownCarl
05-01-2018, 09:12 PM
Oh, serves:

The main thing I saw with the serves is, they are all long and high.

My comment was practicing serves to get them lower. The serves are lower, and you are able to make them short when you want, you will be able to get pushes to attack when you want them and how you want them.

I am not talking about getting serves good enough to win points outright on them. I am talking about using the serves for higher level strategy of taking control of the points better.

You may win points with long serves without being in control of the point. Whereas, there are ways to improve your serves that can help you improve your rally skills too.


Sent from The Subterranean Workshop by Telepathy

perham
05-01-2018, 09:28 PM
Oh, serves:

The main thing I saw with the serves is, they are all long and high.

My comment was practicing serves to get them lower. The serves are lower, and you are able to make them short when you want, you will be able to get pushes to attack when you want them and how you want them.

I am not talking about getting serves good enough to win points outright on them. I am talking about using the serves for higher level strategy of taking control of the points better.

You may win points with long serves without being in control of the point. Whereas, there are ways to improve your serves that can help you improve your rally skills too.


Sent from The Subterranean Workshop by Telepathy
I think this has to do with the recent change of equipment as well. Hypertouch is slightly lighter and much faster than my old Power Wood. Also the rubbers are bouncier than before (Rhyzer 48 vs. Rasant Power Grip). So it gets some getting used to. I would say I'm on 70% of all cylinders working now, and I hope eventually I get back to 100% after a month or so.