View Full Version : How to choose the best setup that is going to improve your game

03-20-2011, 06:31 PM

I have been researching for a new setup that will improve my game.
My current setup is a Butterfly Jonyer Hinoki Flared with Standard Mark V Yasaka on both sides and even though this is > 5years old , it still serves me well.

Until recently I was more a recreational player but off late decided to pursue the game a little more seriously.

My Style of play is close to the table first ball attack. I have decent smashing and looping capabilities for around 1500 player.

My weaknesses are typical of a beginner :
1. Footwork : partly because I had never learnt it when I was a kid and partly because of my left knee injury sustained during playing soccer.
2. In practice and rallying I look like a 1700 + but I am not able to translate that into game , probably due to less match experience and stuff like that.
3. My current looping technique uses more arm and hip rather than legs ( which I am trying to learn )
4. I had a problem with grip switching from forehand to backhand that I am trying to correct. Still once in a while the current setup slips ... to make it clear I have to be conscious to make sure while hitting repetitive backhand / forehand loops my grip does not become favorable to either ...

My question is :
1. At this point should I look for a new setup or rather wait for another 6-7 months to refine my technique
2. After much researching I figured a Donic Ultra Senso Carbo with Mark V Extend on forehand and HPS Soft on back hand might help me . I was lucky enough to try a Donic V1 Senso Carbon with the same rubbers ( Max ) from my friend's. Do you think this is a good idea ? Or rather Donic goes with Donic ? Or there is a markedly different feel between Donic Ultra Senso Carbon and V1.
Based on my experience , I felt I lacked control on my pushes even though my loops improved markedly.

I guess this is loooong post :( .. but pretty much what came to my mind. Any advice/help is most welcome .

Happy playing !!

03-20-2011, 08:08 PM
Well the lack of control was from the carbon blade which makes it a bit more difficult as far as touch and short game since the ball comes off so fast. I would stick with an all wood blade, I think they have the best feel and touch. A couple of drills to include into your regular practicing would be 3rd ball attack and your knee injury permitting, falkenberg. 3rd ball would just be you serving short underspin and your partner returning with a push long so that you can practice opening with a loop. What I usually do for this drill is rotate through the push coming long to my forehand and looping cross court, then to my middle so I have to take a small step in order to be balanced to complete a strong loop to the same spot as the first loop. Then backhand down the line off of the long push. Then have your partner practice so you can practice feeding and working on control of your pushes as far as speed and spin. Then change back to you and this time same thing but go to the opposite corner with your loops. so forehand loop down the line, push to your middle then take a step to your left (assuming you're a righty like me) and loop to where the first one you hit was, then backhand cross court. This will help you incorporate taking the first open with a strong loop into your game, which sounds like how you like to play. Falkenberg is more of a footwork drill where all your balls are going to be at the same target, say to the right hand corner. start with a backhand then cross over your backhand to receive with your forehand, then the third ball will be blocked down the line so footwork will have to bring you there to make a forehand down the line then go back to your backhand and repeat. Not sure if you know these already but I figure its good to keep in mind when practicing instead of just playing games if you are considering playing more competitively. Hope this helps a bit!

03-20-2011, 10:10 PM
Thanks a lot Dustin !!! I did know about falkenberg but was not doing it that often.
So if my understanding is correct , this is what you suggest :
1. Feeder pushes to forehand , loop cross court . Feeder pushes to middle , loop cross court . Feeder pushes to back hand , loop backhand down the line.
2. Feeder pushes to forehand , loop down the line. Feeder pushes to middle , loop down the line . Feeder pushes to back hand, loop back hand cross court.
3. Classic Falkenberg.

I will take your advise to stick to the wooden blade to retain the control. Is there anyway to tell if my current rubbers are dead and need to be changed ?

03-21-2011, 01:10 AM
Put your full concentration on the movement of your opponent and in the ball..

03-21-2011, 03:35 PM
thanks chris ! I will keep that in mind surely .

03-21-2011, 05:00 PM
Sounds like you got the idea, just to clear things up, when I say middle don't necessarily mean the middle line of the table, it's the crossover point where you have to make a decision on what stroke you are going to play, either a forehand or backhand. This is usually around the player's dominate side hip. So learning to push there is helpful in bettering your chances of receiving a weak ball from someone who did not move to make a shot. Just focus on the tiny adjustments you need to make to get ready to receive the next ball

Once you've done this for a while you can add to it by making it a 5th ball drill where you partner will block back you loop and you will continue looping and playing out the point.

As far as your rubber is concerned, they say you should change your rubber the amount of times per year as you play per week, i.e. if you play 3 times a week you should change 3 times a year. That can get expensive, so what I do is change when my rubber when I'm having to put forth a lot of effort to get the same results as if the rubber was new, which for me is about once a year even though I played 4 times a week before I left for school. I would say you would notice a difference changing from 5 year old rubber, but I also know 2000+ level players who haven't changed their rubber in over 15 years...

03-21-2011, 06:25 PM
Thanks a lot for your advice Dustin !! I will try to learn how to recognize the crossover point , I guess as you said it should be the hip or the elbow of the opponent.
Meanwhile, I tried with the new rubber and I was able to do ghost serves for the first time in my life :) with my friend's setup ... so I guess that should be a good starting point to know when I need to change my rubber .. which is immediately :) . I play around 4-5 times a week if not more because I am starting off , once I get the hang of it and reach a certain level of consistency I might cut down.

Thanks again for your valuable tips it will surely help me a lot !

03-21-2011, 07:18 PM
* The important thing is Concentration, Focus on the ball and when the ball approaching from you by 5 cm start to control on it and do what u want.

- Don't be nerves.
- When you Making a topspin get back to right position to prepare to the next ball.

Thanks a lot for your advice Dustin !

06-02-2011, 02:04 PM
I think that if your rubbers are 5 years old, it is about time to put on some new rubbers. You could try the same rubber setup, or maybe something new? It depends on how much you want to spend on improving your game or how much you are willing to experiment with equipment.

Some rubbers that are good offensive rubbers with nice control:

Tibhar Nimbus Sound, Stiga Boost TX, Stiga Boost TC, Butterfly Tenergy 64, Stiga Calibra LT Sound, Butterfly Bryce Speed FX

Ive tried alle those rubbers with offensive blades, and I liked all of them. But all in all it all comes down to what you think suits your playing style.

Good Luck man! :)

06-02-2011, 02:22 PM
I can't give any advise for which rubber you should pick, since it is really kind of personal preference. Like myself, I'm been use chinese rubber since the first day I play.

But if you want ask about the training drill, I can come out a lots of different drill. Some of them may need a training partner, some of those can do it with a robot.

For basic footwork, you can do a lot of footwork practice without a table and paddle. And it also depends on your age, if you are still young, I would suggest includes various fitness training.

For the switch between backhand and forehand, we used to have a training called "push from backhand and offense from forehand" (it just a direct translation from chinese). We have a partner who will keep push the ball to your backhand then forehand then backhand repetitively.

Talk about the robot, for my personal experience, somehow I would not recommend get a newgy Robo Pong.

06-02-2011, 02:27 PM
Some rubbers that are good offensive rubbers with nice control:

Tibhar Nimbus Sound, Stiga Boost TX, Stiga Boost TC, Butterfly Tenergy 64, Stiga Calibra LT Sound, Butterfly Bryce Speed FX

Those are good suggestions. If you are developing your game, having a basic all wood blade is a good idea. The Jonyer Hinoki is a good blade. I don't know that you need a new blade, but having good rubbers that will grab the ball so you can really spin your loop against underspin is important to improving your skills. When the rubber stops gripping the ball it is hard to develop good technique and improve your strokes.

06-02-2011, 02:56 PM
I am ranked 200-300 in my country, and I play with a slow allround rackert with excellent control! The thing that improved my game the most, was that I slowed down a bit, learned the good technice and actually played slow..slow..slow

06-02-2011, 04:29 PM
I already changed my setup to Waldner Ultra Senso Carbon , Tenergy 05 ( Forehand ) and 05-FX ( Backhand ) . What I found is that over the last couple of months my game has improved a lot !
May be because of the "Senso" it helps in "middling" the ball better. Also noticed that finally I could start "power looping" , not yet in matches but atleast in practice.
Thank you all for your advice. I have already started on the first ball attack and falkenberg . Noticed that it improves the game a lot , especially for close to the table players like us .
Also a little bit power helped because otherwise I was grabbing the paddle too tight and was ending up with a tennis elbow.

06-02-2011, 05:11 PM
For me, equipment just affect around 20-30 % of your game..
There is no equipment that is perfect for you.. Instead of changing your equipment, 'change' your technique..
But, feel free to choose equipment that suits you the best..

So my answer is more to the technique, not equipment..
Good luck and God Bless your training :D

06-02-2011, 10:37 PM
Thank you Yosua !!