Table Tennis

Table Tennis

What is Table Tennis?

Table tennis originates from the upper class of England in the late 1800's. Players used whatever they could find to create a table and makeshift paddles. In the 1900's, the game became more structured, and the International Table Tennis Federation was formed.

Rules and Regulations

Table tennis is similar to court tennis, in both rules and strategy. Table tennis is a two player game. Each player uses a paddle and the sport is played on a 9 feet x 5 feet table. Tables, balls, and paddles must be regulated in tournaments and league play. Tables are usually 9 feet x 5 feet and the size of the ball varies based off the league or tournament.

A match is typically best of 3, 5, or 7 games. Each game is won by reaching 11 points before your opponent.

For official play, games are monitored and judged by a table tennis umpire, also referred to as a referee. Throughout the game, they are responsible to make rulings such as if a ball hit the table or missed it.


Table tennis is a highly strategic game. Players can implement backspin and topspin, and can use several different kinds of shots. A few examples of these types of shots are forehand, backhand, drive, and push.

Ping Pong Versus Table Tennis

Ping-pong and table tennis are essentially the same sport. The difference in names refers to how the game is being played. Table tennis refers to the competitive sport. This includes tournaments, leagues, and the olympics. If someone says Ping-pong, they are probably referring to a friendly match. Ping-pong is also a trademark, where as table-tennis is the name of the sport.

Summer Olympics

Table tennis is an Olympic sport. It was introduced in the 1988 Summer Games in Seoul, South Korea (Sports reference).