View Full Version : Returning to Table Tennis after 40 years Advice Please

12-19-2013, 12:29 AM
As the title says I am returning to table tennis after 40 years. I recently had a clear out and found my old Butterfly bat still in the case. So was tempted to have another go. As I work in a school as a caretaker I am able to use their tables and have found that a few of the staff like to have a game or two.

So we now play whenever we can, and I have found that my skills have not left me its just my age and lack of movement against younger player than me is holding me back a bit.

Just for interest my original bat is a Butterfly "Kenny Style" cannot remember if this was any good in the old days perhaps someone will know. It has Butterfly Tackiness on one side and Yasaka "Wallie" on the other both in black. As you all know you did not need two different colour rubbers in those days.
Well tried it out and still ok, but no spin left in it these days. But wanted to know what you thought of my choice of blade and rubbers in the 70s.

I have ordered a new bat and rubbers now, hoping they arrive for christmas.

This was my choice

Butterfly Tackiness Chop Rev Table Tennis Rubber
• Sponge Thickness: 1.5, Colour: Black
Butterfly Andrzej Grubba ALL+ Table Tennis Blade
• Handle Type: Flared

Butterfly Tackiness Drive Rev Table Tennis Rubber
• Sponge Thickness: 2.1, Colour: Red

Your thoughts on my choice would be helpful, also would like to add new rubbers to my old bat any thoughts on what to buy would be of some help.

Back in the 70s in the UK I played from division 10 up to division 4 over 2 to 3 years I suppose I class myself as a beginner low intermediate but age is against me I fear but still need and want to improve. I do hope someone can give me some encouragement.

12-19-2013, 04:20 AM
well, there is no age limit in playing table tennis. :) it is impressive that you still have those skills after 40 years. I guess it had become your second nature but I think it is a little bit rusty. Just try to play as often as you can and your reflexes will be better.

12-19-2013, 04:06 PM
Welcome back to our favorite sports :) .

I am sure you get back your form if you continuously play for the a period of 3-4 months. However, from what little I have learnt and seen there has been a lot of changes in terms of equipment and technique in the game since you left it.

You can definitely research on the internet and in this great forum for videos for techniques and tips. However, if you need specific help from the forum members here I guess it will be best to add a video or two of yourself playing . I am sure people here will be enthusiastic to provide you help on equipment and technique once they get to see your playing style and level.

12-19-2013, 06:20 PM
I'm back too but for me after a lay off of some 35 years. I never played to a decent level, just enjoyed playing at school in lunch times with mates. There were no clubs or competitions anywhere near where I lived, or if there was, I didn't know about them.

I will follow your progress to see if I can learn anything from your writings.


12-19-2013, 08:22 PM
The game has not changed much in those 40 years for us low level players. The most significant change was to the now 40mm ball vs the old 38mm. The bigger ball actually makes the game a bit simpler regarding spin.
I would say to simply practise and get onto a league team if possible.
Technique wise, learn to throw up the ball when serving as the rules now stipulate a minimum height of 6 inches. At low level it doesn't matter. But the higher you go as you improve, the pickier your opponents will be with regards to the rules.

12-19-2013, 11:07 PM
Thank you for the nice comments I will certainly try to improve, but I do suffer with arthritis in my knees so moving fast these days is not that good. After about a hour I need to have a rest. I also have the problem that most of my opposition at work are not as good as me they have not played competitive games. I am also 30 years older than them.

My new bat has arrived which has helped no end today and only lost one game today. The others are improving but need to play against more experienced players.

Still interested if anyone can give me some information on my old bat and how they rate it for a 70s bat.

Also any opinions on my choice of the new bat and rubbers. Could I have made a better choice or is my selection ok.

12-19-2013, 11:43 PM
Smoke, UR bat is SLOW, but for some, that is a good thing. it isn't about how one rates a bat, but how suitable it is for the player and the type of game he or she is trying to evolve into. I have seen geniuses with the fastest stuff and black-hole class slow stuff both play well and poor.

Enjoy your times back man!

12-20-2013, 02:07 AM
Your old Kenny blade is one of the great classics and is as good or better than any of its class made today. It was particularly popular in England perhaps because of its association with Des Douglas. The Grubba that you bought is more or less today's equivalent.

Since you like your new bat, and if you are not particularly attached to the Kenny, sell it on ebay. If in good condition, it will go for much more than you paid for it.

There's quite a bit of TT played in your area but you'd have to travel. You could start by contacting the Eastbourne TT League on 01363_730 762 to find clubs near to you.