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    1. Top | #1
      TheKhan123 is offline
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      Wrist or no wrist in forehand

      Hey guys. So, lately, I've been having a look at some forehand topspins and I found some styles of it such as:
      Ma long with a slight use of wrist
      Timo Boll with high usage of wrist
      Dima ovtcharov with a Bent wrist but no usage
      And so many players with regular wrist and no usage
      Which technique do you find the most efficient?

    2. Top | #2
      Takkyu_wa_inochi is offline
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      I think its up to you to find whats the most efficient for you !

      personally first of all i prefer to open my wrist when i hit FH, to avoid hitting the ball with the edge of the racket and then to execute the stroke without much wrist. The exception is when i play crosscourt aiming for the short side of the table with sidespin, then i would definitely use some wrist and to do that i would not open the wrist as i do on other FH shots

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    4. Top | #3
      Baal is online now
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      I know for certain that if my wrist was a little looser I would generate more spin and power. That seems pretty clear from the times when I have videotaped myself. I have tried to change that at various times but it never felt comfortable. On the other hand, I am pretty steady and generally not erratic and I compensate with more body rotation. That in turn though demands a lot of time working on moving. And getting old, so........ I would definitely coach a kid to use more wrist.
      Last edited by Baal; 4 Weeks Ago at 06:27 PM.

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      Wrist or no wrist in forehand

      I use my wrist when looping backspin (especially heavy backspin). My coach advises me not to use a big wrist movement during topspin rallies because he thinks it will increase my chance of missing the ball too much. (Maybe I'll revisit that in the future)

      Against dead balls and blocks I sometimes use the wrist (depends on the speed of the ball).

    6. Top | #5
      burhanayan is offline
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      I only use wrist off the table to do spin variation and generate more spin during topspin-block, topspin-topspin rallies. Most of the time, I don't need it. For now, my footwork concerns me more.

      Off course, on the table I try to use my wrist as much as I can.

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    7. Top | #6
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      Hopefully all of this stuff happens with much less conscious control and micromanagement of the movement. If you are trying to think of whether to use your wrist or not, or how much, that will make you much stiffer.

      Ideally, you learn good technique and there are many variations of that as evidenced by how the pros all have good technique and all of them have slightly or more than slightly different technique.

      Once you have trained decent technique, you want to shut the mind out of the process and let the body do the technique. The mind has better things to occupy itself with during training and play.

      Go do a multiball session with hundreds of FH strokes. As you groove the stroke and let to technique go....largely.....unconscious, your stroke will improve. Do that several times a week for a few years....hundreds of thousands of FHs....and your body will know how to do the FH stroke without your head getting in the way. As you practice, your technique will develop over time to the needs of your actual body: size of legs, size of torso, length of upper arm, length of forearm, ratio of length: forearm/upper arm.

      All aspects of your body would play into ways in which you can do an effective and efficient forehand stroke.

      And when you watch good players, you will notice they use different FH techniques for different shots. So it is not like any of this is monolithic.

      Practice multiball....train hard....let your body figure it out for itself.
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    9. Top | #7
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      wrist should only be practiced if you have a bit of feel when you loop especially on the forehand. for teh bh i think is really essential early during training.
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    10. Top | #8
      Simas is offline
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      You can make a great killer topspin without usage of the wrist. It's an extra layer on top I personally don't use it and don't miss it

    11. Top | #9
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      Quote Originally Posted by TheKhan123 View Post
      Hey guys. So, lately, I've been having a look at some forehand topspins and I found some styles of it such as:
      Ma long with a slight use of wrist
      Timo Boll with high usage of wrist
      Dima ovtcharov with a Bent wrist but no usage
      And so many players with regular wrist and no usage
      Which technique do you find the most efficient?
      It is very dangerous to look at the end product of a forehand topspin and from it derive what drives the stroke unless you have worked with good coaches or an experienced player.

      The primary drivers of the forehand topspin from a physics stand point is the speed of the swing and the trajectory of the racket across the ball. The motion needs to hit the ball and make it rotate. In order to gain the racket head speed and the proper trajectory, most amateurs focus on how the arm is used. Properly coached or advanced players tend to use the body far more with the arm usage at the end of the kinetic chain.

      What many people call wrist usage is often just the end product of forearm/elbow pronation and a not so tight grip. When people see the wrist move, it is often the results of pronation at the elbow they are noticing but they are focused on the motions of the racket at the wrist. This misconception can lead to many bad technical attempts at mimicry which lead to abbreviated strokes.

      If you want to learn table tennis, find a good coach or video and learn the basic technique. Subtle changes in the swing can be made later after the technical foundation is sound with the subtle changes allowing for more diverse handling of spin and speed of the incoming ball. While some people disagree, I think it is dangerous to start out by looking at the technique of advanced players. It is better to understand what is the core of all their strokes and when you master the core, continue to improve your stroke and adapt it to more and more balls.

      Moreover, one of the major successes of the Chinese is that they are very technical about their own approaches to the ball in some ways too technical for a basic amateur. They have a variety of adaptations to incoming balls so they can be more variations than even the top Europeans in terms of taking out the ball (you rarely see Europeans do windmills for example). So making generalizations about forehand technique is useful but inevitably inaccurate.
      Cobra Kai TT Exponent - No mercy in this dojo, no matter your rating or the score. All spin, no power or footwork.

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    13. Top | #10
      Takkyu_wa_inochi is offline
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      I agree with NL. Body + arm is the most important for FH. When you get these right, you can start thinking about wrist, and even fingers

    14. Top | #11
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      From what I see, people who use "wristy" top spins generally dont use much body or rotation. Many people use wrist snapping as a way to get extra power and compensate for not using the rest of their body

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      allencorn is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by UpSideDownCarl View Post
      Hopefully all of this stuff happens with much less conscious control and micromanagement of the movement. If you are trying to think of whether to use your wrist or not, or how much, that will make you much stiffer.

      Ideally, you learn good technique and there are many variations of that as evidenced by how the pros all have good technique and all of them have slightly or more than slightly different technique.

      Once you have trained decent technique, you want to shut the mind out of the process and let the body do the technique. The mind has better things to occupy itself with during training and play.

      Go do a multiball session with hundreds of FH strokes. As you groove the stroke and let to technique go....largely.....unconscious, your stroke will improve. Do that several times a week for a few years....hundreds of thousands of FHs....and your body will know how to do the FH stroke without your head getting in the way. As you practice, your technique will develop over time to the needs of your actual body: size of legs, size of torso, length of upper arm, length of forearm, ratio of length: forearm/upper arm.

      All aspects of your body would play into ways in which you can do an effective and efficient forehand stroke.

      And when you watch good players, you will notice they use different FH techniques for different shots. So it is not like any of this is monolithic.

      Practice multiball....train hard....let your body figure it out for itself.
      One of the best posts I have read in some time. There is a sound philosophy of learning physical movement based on problem solving. Create a challenge like "Forehand topspin crosscourt against underspin", and try lots of approaches to figure out what works. Sure there are fundamentals a coach could tell you, but figuring it out yourself has great benefits. That is why there are so many different styles, even grips - there is no one "right" way. Watch 5 different world class players, and you'll see 5 slightly different approaches. There may be common denominators, but they pretty much figured out what to after, as UDC put it, "hundreds of thousands of FHs"

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    17. Top | #13
      NextLevel is online now
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      Quote Originally Posted by LordPippington View Post
      From what I see, people who use "wristy" top spins generally dont use much body or rotation. Many people use wrist snapping as a way to get extra power and compensate for not using the rest of their body
      It is a kinetic chain illusion - the core motions are just not as obvious. I am at times considered this kind of player and I train witth one so I know the type. Moreover, such players can only do well against incoming power if they maintain this approach at higher levels. Especially with the new ball as it doesn't reward spin as easily.

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    19. Top | #14
      Hysteresis is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by LordPippington View Post
      From what I see, people who use "wristy" top spins generally dont use much body or rotation. Many people use wrist snapping as a way to get extra power and compensate for not using the rest of their body
      I think it has alot to do with how you play your counterloop/topspin block when you don't have alot of time/space to play a big forehand.

      If you are used to generating alot of pace off the small action, you are
      a) Probably going to be using alot of wrist on the forehand and
      b) Probably still going to be using alot of wrist on a bigger forehand, but it won't be as obvious because you are using the rest of your body more

    20. Top | #15
      Baal is online now
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      table tennis is a constant struggle between getting a lot of racket speed on certain shots while keeping the number of 'degrees of freedom' under enough control that you can execute consistently and reliably. This is especially true at the wrist. A looser wrist (and a snap at the end) can help you get a lot of pace and spin on the ball but it can cause you to mistime and to have the racket angle not quite right when you hit the ball. I think different really good players find different solutions to this. It is definitely worth experimenting with it but I think it will help a lot if you videotape yourself doing it.

      The thing Carl mentioned is also important. This is the kind of technical thing in a stroke you cannot change easily or overnight, and if you are thinking about it too much it will definitely hurt you until such time is this new motion becomes automatic. The question then becomes is it worth it?
      Last edited by Baal; 3 Weeks Ago at 07:27 PM.

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    22. Top | #16
      Baal is online now
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      Quote Originally Posted by NextLevel View Post
      It is a kinetic chain illusion - the core motions are just not as obvious. I am at times considered this kind of player and I train witth one so I know the type. Moreover, such players can only do well against incoming power if they maintain this approach at higher levels. Especially with the new ball as it doesn't reward spin as easily.

      From my observations over a long time, I think LordPippington's observation is often true. Not an absolute rule, definitely not for everybody with wristy forehands. But often. And if I remember correctly, your strokes are not particularly wristy, certainly not your forehand which is (I think) what we are talking about here.
      Last edited by Baal; 3 Weeks Ago at 07:30 PM.

    23. Top | #17
      NextLevel is online now
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      Quote Originally Posted by Baal View Post
      From my observations over a long time, I think LordPippington's observation is often true. Not an absolute rule, definitely not for everybody with wristy forehands. But often. And if I remember correctly, your strokes are not particularly wristy, certainly not your forehand which is (I think) what we are talking about here.
      It is an illusion at the end of a kinetic chain. What usually characterizes those players is that they don't move as aggressively as other players and often don't get low. So people think they are using wrists. But you can't hit the ball either your wrists, you can only use a chain motion to get good power that whips them.

      I am an upper body player so people usually ask similar questions (he doesn't bend his knees, how does he get his power etc.) I have actually worked harder at getting my lower body involved because there are major footwork and stroke reset speed limitations when you don't use the lower body to set the stroke especially on the forehand.

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    25. Top | #18
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      excellent posts earlier by NextLevel and UpSideDownCarl ... my two cents ...

      Is wrist an essential component of any table tennis stroke .. yes ... tabletennis is a very fast game so you will need to use your small muscles as much as possible the closer you are the table . Here is a golden rule of technique one of my coaches told me :

      1. When you are inside the table ( flick + push ) , wrist is joint you should use for pivot ( I should have asked whether its true for FH pushes but I didn't )
      2. When you are playing close to the table , elbow is the pivot .
      3. When you are playing away from the table shoulder becomes the pivot.

      Again , this does not mean you are not going to use combinations or you can choose to use smaller pivots for consistency even when you are outside the zones marked. e.g. because of the speed of the ball a lot of techniques prefer to primarily use wrist on the BH side even when you are not inside the table but close enough.

      Now the degree and how to engage wrists vary based on different factors. e.g. when you are developing your forehand loop , and you find the issue of mistiming mentioned above , the coaches tend to ask you to lock the wrist . Less number of moving joints = easier to have more consistent power and movement = more chances of making the shot. But this is true only during the development of the stroke , when your stroke is matured it will will include wrist . should include wrist unless you have presistent issues either physically or stroke wise.

      The way it works for me , I just let it flow the way Carl mentioned , that is I keep the wrist loose enough so the kinetic chain mentioned by Nextlevel does not finish till it causes the wrist to complete its movement.

      Now is the amount of wrist involved same in sidespin cross court loop in the short corner , a standard cross court loop, a forehand down the line and a fade ? of course not ! They are different strokes , its like comparing FH loop vs BH loop drive ...
      Last edited by ttmonster; 3 Weeks Ago at 03:57 PM.
      Lets go Spinny Looping !

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    27. Top | #19
      BryanY is offline
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      The question for me is whether I should lock (or partially lock) my wrist to prevent the natural (kinetic) wrist movement during a topspin rally. During a rally I may miss the ball or (or have bad contact) if my wrist is moving too much.

    28. Top | #20
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      Somebody qualified needs to see you in action to find out whats the right thing ... what about the third possibility that it has nothing to do with your wrist ?


      Quote Originally Posted by BryanY View Post
      The question for me is whether I should lock (or partially lock) my wrist to prevent the natural (kinetic) wrist movement during a topspin rally. During a rally I may miss the ball or (or have bad contact) if my wrist is moving too much.

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