Table Tennis Push Techniques

Table Tennis Push Techniques

Forehand push and backhand push are one of the 10 basic techniques in table tennis. Every new player should learn and master these techniques.

Today, let’s learn how to do the forehand push and backhand push techniques in table tennis. The tutorial is demonstrated by Zhao Yiyi.

The purpose of push techniques

The push technique is the fundamental technique. The push technique is very important.

It’s one of the best ways to control the ball when you don’t have the opportunity to attack. A good push can also prevent the opponent to attack first.

There are 2 types of push technique:

  • Forehand push
  • Backhand push

Firstly we study the forehand push technique.

Forehand push technique

To do a forehand push correctly, you need to prepare both for footwork and your stroke preparation.

  • Stand close to the table
  • Upper body slightly leans forward
  • The arm is naturally relaxed!
forehand push step by step
forehand push step by step

For the footwork,

  • step your right foot forward to the table.
  • Put the body center of gravity on the right foot.

For the stroke mechanism:

  • “Yin Pai”, elbow close to your body.
  • Relax your wrist! Very important!
  • Open your racket! Remember don’t contact when the ball is too far from your body!
  • Hit the ball! The force direction is forward! By doing this, you will have a stable shot.
  • Brush the ball at the bottom, around 4 o’clock.
step your right foot forward
step your right foot forward

Backhand push technique

Backhand push technique is a little different. The important point is where is put your elbow.

“Yin Pai”, put your elbow outside your body, but close to the body.

backhand push technique tutorial
backhand push technique tutorial

Important points to do a backhand push step-by-step:

  • Relax your wrist.
  • “Cut” (push) the ball at the bottom.
  • Use your wrist, and “accelerate” into the ball at the moment of contact. Some amateur players forget to “accelerate” into the ball, so the push has little spin.

Slow push and fast push in table tennis

There is 2 type of push technique: Fast push, and slow push.

  • Slow push: Easy to perform, mostly used by beginners.
  • Fast push: Require better timing, used by pro.

For slow push, you contact the ball after the highest position, position 4-4.5 timing.
Slow push will generate long and heavy underspin ball.

Fast push will return the ball faster, but less spin. For fast push, you contact the ball at the early timing, position 2 timing.

Quick Push vs Fast Push
Fast push Slow push
Spin Less spin Higher spin
Fast Faster Slow
Advantages Make opponent less time to response Higher spin and long ball. Easier to be attacked. Placement is crucial.
Timing position 2 3.5 to 4.5

If you don’t know the timing position (from 1 to 5), you can read the tutorial “Optimal timing in table tennis”.

timing position in table tennis
timing position in table tennis

3 tips to do play a push in table tennis

To do this technique properly, you need to apply these 3 tips:

  • Choose the right timing
  • Take the initiative
  • Adjust the racket angle

Tip 1: Choose the right timing

The timing is very important. It affects the spin and the speed of the ball.

For the fast push, contact the ball earlier (like the pro). Professional players tend to push earlier to make pressure on the opponent.

relax your wrist to maximize spin in your shots
relax your wrist to maximize spin in your shots

Slow push is easier to perform. Push the ball later can increase the spin, but slow push can be attacked easily. Amateur players tend to contact the ball late, and normally make the ball long.

Use fast push to surprise your opponent!

Tip 2: Take the initiative

Use backhand push only when you can’t attack the ball. For the no-spin ball or topspin ball, don’t use the backhand push. But you should take initiative by doing the backhand flick, or backhand topspin.

Learn to attack first!

Attack all the long ball! Don’t push the long ball!

Tip 3: Adjust the racket’s angle

Always adjust the angle of your racket depends on the amount of incoming spin.

For less underspin ball, you should close more your racket.

For heavy underspin ball, open more your racket’s angle.

These are the basic table tennis techniques that every player can do it easily. Learn more about another fundamental technique here.

For this shots, focus on the consistency, and control the placement of your push.

Learn more about the basic techniques in table tennis:

The push is used to return the serve passively!

These are another backhand and forehand technique that can help your return the serve actively.

Hope you enjoy this ping pong lessons.

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