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  1. ArthurChan is offline
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    #1

    Switching from Penhold to Shakehand - Advice Needed

    I’ve always been a penhold player and recently (3 months now) I started getting coached. After about 6 sessions, my coach said I should try switching to shakehand. We gave it a try and I’ve taken to it in lessons pretty well. Forehand and backhand have more power/spin, starting to get better at pushes, but need to get a lot better with the basics (serving, blocking, chopping, etc).

    Now here’s the dilemma -

    Although it’s been great in lessons, I’ve been TERRIBLE playing shakehand in games and matches. I just don’t have the touch and feel that I do with penhold. I’ve been playing so poorly and getting so frustrated that now I feel like I’ve regressed overall. It’s worse playing singles but even with doubles, I revert back to penhold mid-match to give my team the best chance at winning.

    I feel in the long run, sticking with shakehand will improve my game more so than with penhold. However, trying to relearn the basics of shakehand has been really frustrating to the point where games and matches are not fun.

    What do you guys think I should do? Stay with penhold or continue on with shakehand?

    Your collective expert wisdom is much appreciated!




  2. passifid is offline
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    #2
    3 months is very little time I switched full time to shakehand after a two year pH stintCoaching is to get your strokes or tools as they areGames Is where you have to work out how to use those tools.
    Keep going and you'll be ok.

  3. SFF_lib is offline
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by ArthurChan

    I’ve always been a penhold player and recently (3 months now) I started getting coached. After about 6 sessions, my coach said I should try switching to shakehand. We gave it a try and I’ve taken to it in lessons pretty well. Forehand and backhand have more power/spin, starting to get better at pushes, but need to get a lot better with the basics (serving, blocking, chopping, etc).

    Now here’s the dilemma -

    Although it’s been great in lessons, I’ve been TERRIBLE playing shakehand in games and matches. I just don’t have the touch and feel that I do with penhold. I’ve been playing so poorly and getting so frustrated that now I feel like I’ve regressed overall. It’s worse playing singles but even with doubles, I revert back to penhold mid-match to give my team the best chance at winning.

    I feel in the long run, sticking with shakehand will improve my game more so than with penhold. However, trying to relearn the basics of shakehand has been really frustrating to the point where games and matches are not fun.

    What do you guys think I should do? Stay with penhold or continue on with shakehand?

    Your collective expert wisdom is much appreciated!

    I was in the same boat.

    It depends on your penhold playing style. Do you play just TPB? Exclusive RPB? Or a mixture of TPB and RPB?

    For me I played exclusive RPB, so switching to shakehand wasn't too difficult. My FH actually improved in consistency by surprise. My BH came naturally tbh.

    For me the difficult areas are service return and serve. For a penholder, it was easy to create all kinds of illusions and spins. I also had a lot of tricks up my sleeve to return service. I had to retrain all of that in shakehand. That took me the longest time.

    Even for now, after a year and a half in shakehand, I still can't produce service to the same level as before when I used penhold.


  4. ArthurChan is offline
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    #4

    Thanks for the feedback. I'm more TPB and have solid services and returns. Going shakehand, I only have an underspin serve, no topspin or pendulums.

    I realize now it's just going to take a lot longer than I thought to get there. What I need to avoid now is buying new equipment thinking it's going to help get me there faster.


  5. Lycanthrope is offline
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    #5
    Touch and feel will never be as good as Penhold. That nice feeling keeps tempting me to go back to Penhold. But if you have decided to go to Shakehand, you have to stick to Shakehand, don't use Penhold even for a single game.

    You may get used to Shakehand after 6 months if you get trained very hard. 3 months, it is just a start.

    Don't be frustrated, we play table tennis for fun.

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  6. SFF_lib is offline
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Lycanthrope
    Touch and feel will never be as good as Penhold. That nice feeling keeps tempting me to go back to Penhold. But if you have decided to go to Shakehand, you have to stick to Shakehand, don't use Penhold even for a single game.

    You may get used to Shakehand after 6 months if you get trained very hard. 3 months, it is just a start.

    Don't be frustrated, we play table tennis for fun.
    I agree. For us club players, it’s the fun and social elements that draw us together.

    I still play my thick 10.5mm kiso hinoki Jpen sometimes because I just miss the feel anf fun of it. And it’s ok if I had to lose a game or two.

    But if you are tournament-oriented, stick to SH. Don’t go back

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  7. ArthurChan is offline
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by SFF_lib
    I agree. For us club players, it’s the fun and social elements that draw us together.

    I still play my thick 10.5mm kiso hinoki Jpen sometimes because I just miss the feel anf fun of it. And it’s ok if I had to lose a game or two.

    But if you are tournament-oriented, stick to SH. Don’t go back
    Yeah man. I’m definitely tournament oriented. I guess I just need to give it time. So frustrating right now though.

  8. Centaur is offline
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    #8

    Don't leave! Penholders are a dying breed.

    I tried to swap back to shakehand, but quickly returned to penhold.
    My local coach refuses to train penholders. Guess we train ourselves.


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