Wednesday 12 June 2019

Understanding the Purpose to a Table Tennis Training Drill

An area of training which is often overlooked, particular by young developing players, is understanding the main focus/purpose of a training drill. This is a very important learning phase for players in their improvement and also the efficiency of their practice. It also aids individuals in choosing the right practice drills to help enhance particular areas of their game.

You can find a full range of coaching topics on my Coaching Blog.

USA's Lily Zhang
Courtesy of ITTF

Monday 4 March 2019

Pitchford Aims to Open Dialogue Around Depression and the Pressures and Expectations of Succeeding in Sport

I recently had a great, long, talk with Liam Pitchford about him opening up publicly about his battles with depression and becoming an advocate for Samaritans and how he dealt with the pressures of chasing the dream to become one of the world's best players.

Pitchford wants the dialogue to be open on mental health
Image courtesy of ITTFWorld

Monday 25 February 2019

Simple Foundations of Balance and Movement in Table Tennis

Today I'm going to get into something which seems very basic, but incorrect foundations when it comes to maintaining balance or moving in table tennis are usually major contributors to poor technique, timing and table coverage. So let's observe some simple, yet important, foundations.

Dimitrij Ovtcharov with exceptional balance
Courtesy of ITTFWorld

Monday 18 February 2019

The Pyramid Rule: Advantages of Staying Close to the Table as an Offensive Player

Some years ago I coined a rule called the pyramid rule, whilst writing a coaching article for Table Tennis University I have used that rule whilst teaching players of many different levels and trying to emphasize the benefits of holding the table and not drifting back unnecessarily. I have revisited the original concept and will try and add some more detail to the rule including some new points I have added. Find more useful tips and advice on my Coaching Blog.

The Pyramid Rule in Table Tennis
by Matt Hetherington

Adriana Diaz Sets the Benchmark for Stardom in Table Tennis

Adriana Diaz is becoming a household name in Women's Table Tennis, busting into the top 30 players in the world and having recently claimed a big win at the Pan Am Cup. The occasion marked something special for Diaz, and showed a success in areas where others are lacking. Diaz won the Pan Am Cup crown on home ground in Puerto Rico, in front of a buzzing local crowd - energetic and certainly the largest showing of spectators at a Pan Am event. So what can we learn from the growing career of this sensational young woman?

Adriana Diaz is bringing fans into the sport
Photo Courtesy of ITTFWorld

Thursday 31 January 2019

Brazil's Standout Champion is Pushing the Boundaries: Interview with Hugo Calderano

Hugo Calderano is a name making waves event after event on the ITTF World Tour. The 22 year old sensation from Brazil constantly exceeds expectations, now having reached a pinnacle world ranking of 6th, the first Latin American player ever to reach the world's top 10.

Ahead of this weekend's ITTF Pan American Cup, where he is top seed in the Men's Singles, I had a chance to do a brief interview with him - my first blog interview since early 2017! Enjoy!

Hugo Calderano at the 2019 Hungary Open
Photo Courtesy of ITTFWorld

Sunday 20 January 2019

Receiving Heavy Spin Serves in Table Tennis

Received a great request to discuss in a little more detail the topic of returning serves with heavy spin. Of course I will try and focus on as many different examples as possible to give a broad overview of the various scenarios you may have to face.

Fan Zhendong Serving
Courtesy of ITTFWorld

Friday 18 January 2019

What Are Your Options When You Are Out of Position in a Point

Positioning is a vital part of table tennis, fast footwork and anticipation - getting to where we need to be in the blink of an eye to stay in the game. Coaches are constantly pushing their students to get in position, balance and use weight transfer - but what about the contingencies? What should a player do when they are caught out of position?

Hugo Calderano out of position
Photo Courtesy of ITTFWorld