- My forehand loop is much stronger than my reverse penhold backhand. So there is less to deteriorate to begin with with the backhand stroke.
- My forehand loop was developed through sheer practice and not from strong fundamentals. It relies on excellent timing. Without constant practice, it simply doesn't work. That is, the percentage landed is low.
On the other hand, my reverse penhold backhand has been coached professionally from the beginning. So although it hasn't had the time to become as well-developed as the forehand, the fundamentals are better and don't require as much calibration.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
No ping pong in Doha?
I've been here a month in Doha working at CMU Qatar. Like many unfamiliar cities with a large expat population, once you learn a few things and get to know Doha a little better, it's possible to find decent food and just about anything... except ping pong perhaps. I've tried emailing the Qatar Table Tennis Association. I've put out feelers on the Table Tennis group on qatarliving.com. Never got a reply. There is an ITTF event in Doha every year. The Qatar Open attracts the best players in the world. Sport shops sells cheap paddles. Players? I haven't found any. As a last resort, I went to the Table Tennis social hour scheduled for Monday nights at the Recreation Center in Education City. Predictably, the room was completely empty. Nobody showed up. They have truly excellent lighting and three tables. I'm sad. So what did I do? No robot. And I only had two balls. I stared into the mirror and practiced my serve for an hour... Why did I make this blog entry? Well, a search engine will pick this up if someone is looking for table tennis in Doha. The Activity Room upstairs at the Recreation Center, Education City. Now you know. Update: Something to think about... My game declines when I'm not playing. The longer I'm without practice, the rustier I get. But to my surprise what I'd call the strongest parts of my game are not necessarily the parts that are best preserved or decline the least. For example, most people who know me would say my forehand loop is the strongest part of my game. But after nearly two months without playing, I realize my forehand loop is off. Surprisingly, my reverse penhold backhand (a relatively new stroke for me) is still there. I think there are two possible explanations: