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    1. Top | #1
      delerious is online now
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      What can I do to improve my reflexes?

      How can I improve my reflexes so I can return smashes like Koki Niwa?

    2. Top | #2
      Kuba Hajto is online now
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      Train, train a lot. Reflexes improve over time. The more you train the more you see. Pro players can can predict where ball will go based on opponent body position. You will learn that too while playing.

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    4. Top | #3
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      Random multiball placements and types of spin

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    6. Top | #4
      Baal is online now
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      Also as your opponent hits random shots at you think about getting better at anticipating where the ball is going from how the opponent's body is set up just prior to his hitting the shot. Good players unconsciously do this well but simply KNOWING this is a skill helps you learn to do it a bit faster and design some drills to acquire it. Koki Niwa is amazing at this. Back in the day Waldner looked like he was moving slowly his anticipation was so good.
      Last edited by Baal; 12-11-2019 at 12:34 PM.

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    8. Top | #5
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      Quote Originally Posted by yogi_bear View Post
      Random multiball placements and types of spin
      Thats it!

      Just keep doing it...

    9. Top | #6
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    11. Top | #7
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      A quite common way of training reflexes is to have a coach throw tennis balls towards you and you should catch them in one way or the other.

      Have a look at this and skip forward to 6.45:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7F_9FDK970

      Or around 7.55 in this one:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-h-10Ml1tU

      There're lots of variations of this drill.
      Last edited by mart1nandersson; 12-11-2019 at 02:29 PM.

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    13. Top | #8
      Dream2K is offline
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      try the Rubik's cube

    14. Top | #9
      delerious is online now
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      Some good advice guys, thanks.

      Are you guys able to block smashes by just standing at the edge of the table? I find that when I hit a high ball, I start backing up immediately because I know I won't have time to react if I'm up close to the table.

    15. Top | #10
      Baal is online now
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      A lot of what people think are reflexes is actually anticipation.

      By the way, in a strict sense, nothing we do in TT is reflex, at least as defined on neuroscience. Reflexes are simple networks, 3 or 4 synapses, automatic, many never get higher than the spinal cord, and generally not trainable.

      Reactions to stimuli can be increased a little. But anticipation is always better than reaction.

      Can I block smashes from close to the table? I succeed more often if I can see in advance where they are going.

      Learn to see and read your opponent's body before he hits the ball.
      Last edited by Baal; 12-16-2019 at 03:42 AM.

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    17. Top | #11
      Takkyu_wa_inochi is offline
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      it will take time to retrain your brain.

      but here are some tips:
      - never go back when somebody smashes. try to get ready for the block, however difficult it looks to you
      - are you at the right distance from the table when you are "at the table" ? the right posture/ distance: your legs should be quite apart from each other, knees bent forward, your upper body bent forward. Now extend your arm. there should be at least one tennis ball between your elbow and your body. The tip of your racket should not be above the table but just behind.
      - when in a block situation always keep the racket high in front of you. and be sure to be low on your legs and upper body bent forward. Then try to watch the arm/body of the other player to guess where he is going to hit the ball. focus on the ball also of course !
      - Don't panic ! stay calm , its just a shot like many others in TT
      - shorten your strokes. you'll be back in position quicker and have more time for the next shot, even if the other guy can take a big shot you will be able to react !

      drill with multiball with random placement at a high speed. it will develop a lot of things, your footwork but also your brain , it should be so fast you cannot pay attention to your own ball but as soon as you hit the ball you have to see where the guy feeding you is hitting the ball.
      Last edited by Takkyu_wa_inochi; 12-12-2019 at 03:30 PM.

    18. Top | #12
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      Quote Originally Posted by delerious View Post
      Some good advice guys, thanks.

      Are you guys able to block smashes by just standing at the edge of the table? I find that when I hit a high ball, I start backing up immediately because I know I won't have time to react if I'm up close to the table.
      I don't quite follow. First you ask about blocking a smash close to the table (so playing defense against a smash) and then talk about backing up after you smash (when you're on the offensive which I don't get. If you're on the attack and they're defensively just trying to stay alive yeah you should stay at the table and continue to smash).

      Back to playing D and talking reaction time:
      I'm actually starting to wonder if you think your reactions are slow when maybe it's possible they're fine. You're just not moving back when your opponent is about to smash a high ball on you and you're left wondering why you can't block that ball back.

      While one might get a nice reactive block vs a smash close to the table the goes back quickly for a winner from time to time, I think this is more the exception rather than the rule. I think if you get in the habit of trying this too often, you'll find you generally lose that point 80% of the time.

      I think when you see the opponent loading up for a big smash you should be backing up. I'd go as far as to say it's bad strategy to stand there up at the table stubbornly as if you don't know what's coming. What's wrong with giving yourself a fraction more of time? Just a few steps back can seem like a world of difference sometimes. At least for me it can.

      You see pros when they get into trouble and the point is going against them start to back up. Maybe start lobbing staying in the point. Looking for an opportunity to loop back if given the opportunity. But their focus is to stay alive in the point. Maybe the opponent will miss. Maybe if they fish enough, they'll get an opportunity to give a big loop right back and get in the point.
      Last edited by suds79; 12-12-2019 at 05:37 PM.
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    19. Top | #13
      Xylit is offline
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      Play fast video games.

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    21. Top | #14
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    22. Top | #15
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      1. Play against opponents in matches on youtube using your footwork and a good laptop/screen that you can move around in front of.
      2. Develop good short stroke technique, play your backhand with the hips and back and the forehand with left leg twist for shoulder and hip rotation - play neither stroke with purely the arm or the reset and transition will be too slow for you to recover from.
      3. Play a few matches as a blocker where you get to watch your opponent more and read his game.
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    24. Top | #16
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      Block to a set location while your practice partner loops to random locations. This kind of drill helps improve read and react skills very quickly.

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    26. Top | #17
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      Quote Originally Posted by GusShnaps View Post
      hilarious

    27. Top | #18
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      Quote Originally Posted by Baal View Post
      Also as your opponent hits random shots at you think about getting better at anticipating where the ball is going from how the opponent's body is set up just prior to his hitting the shot. Good players unconsciously do this well but simply KNOWING this is a skill helps you learn to do it a bit faster and design some drills to acquire it. Koki Niwa is amazing at this. Back in the day Waldner looked like he was moving slowly his anticipation was so good.
      Quote Originally Posted by Baal View Post
      A lot of what people think are reflexes is actually anticipation.

      By the way, in a strict sense, nothing we do in TT is reflex, at least as defined on neuroscience. Reflexes are simple networks, 3 or 4 synapses, automatic, many never get higher than the spinal cord, and generally not trainable.

      Reactions to stimuli can be increased a little. But anticipation is always better than reaction.

      Can I block smashes from close to the table? I succeed more often if I can see in advance where they are going.

      Learn to see and read your opponent's body before he hits the ball.
      Exactly, it's not that much about reflexes, but about prejudging from your former experiences about what is going to happen next. You can't train "reflexes" a lot and also most of the ball hitting games ar just too fast to act only on pure reflexes. I don't remember the numbers, but what I am saying is that reflexes take x ms of time (for eye to capture the info, to send it to the brain, for brains to process it, issue signal to muscle and muscles to contract) and that time is pretty much the same for all humans and if the ball travels in time which is smaller than x, you can't win purely on reflexes and you have to prejudge what is going to happen in advance. There is a very good podcast about that and I have posted a link of it some time ago in the forum. So if you are interested, feel free to search and listen and post it

      So to sum it up, if you wan't to improve your "table tennis" reflexes, just play more table tennis
      Last edited by Simas; 12-17-2019 at 10:37 PM.

    28. Top | #19
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      Seeing what is happening better can be improved by watching what your opponent is doing, body position, angle of racket on contact etc.

      Increasing reaction time can be helped by things like fast multiball or multiball being sped up progressively.

      So, increased reaction time and increased brain processing speeds while also knowing how to watch opponent when they are about to contact the ball will not help your reflexes but will help what the OP is talking about.

      All that being said, I think the most important posts in this thread are the ones made by Baal.

      Here is a video of the kind of multiball and the pace of multiball that top level players might use to help increase their reaction time and their ability to adjust to random placement.

      Spin Everything.

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    30. Top | #20
      Baal is online now
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      Multiball training will always make you better. Anticipation is a very big thing in TT, but you still need to be able to get to the right place in time! Actually, a big thing I see with amateur players that tends to hold them at the 1800 range is that they spend a lot of time practicing their topspin strokes from a stationary position, and then in free play when they have to move to get to the ball their technique collapses. One of the most important things to get beyond that is to find someone you can train with who can consistently provide the kind of balls you need to get better.

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