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eye height on service receiving

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    Posted: 12/31/2021 at 6:05am
I have seen so much about keeping your head down to watch at a better eye height.  Even from the pros.  But everytime I watch them in matches doing it, they don't stay there during the contact point on the serve, so what is the point?  

It just tires you out to get so low for no reason.

Anyone got a counter arguement here?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BRS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/31/2021 at 7:23am
I think they are just loading their legs so they can move quickly.  Watching the pros oftentimes you see them move in for a short receive before the ball is even touched by the server, so they aren't waiting for contact on those points. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Slowhand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/31/2021 at 3:50pm
Most pros start low and then stand up as the toss goes up. I was taught to do this, but then to bend lower again as the toss drops. The idea is to keep your eyes on the level of the ball. No question in my mind that it's easier to judge trajectory and spin from this perspective. But I think you're right, most pros don't do this. Instead, they seem to get a good read before contact and then start moving even before the serve is on the way.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jfolsen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/31/2021 at 4:17pm
As others have said, many pros start very low. Hugo Calderano gets down until his eyes are at table height, below the net. But he is higher when the serve actually happens.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/31/2021 at 10:49pm
At first glance and from a pure efficiency standpoint, that is a typical table tennis idiosyncrasy that brings no value to one's game in addition to wasting energy. Somehow it got contagious overtime, a bit like yelling "chole!" after winning a point. 

Slightly but quickly crouching as the ball falls from the toss and contacts, then bouncing back to go where the ball goes seems more efficient, there is no way we cannot read the spin as well from the different angle we have with our eyes higher.

The only explanation is that it tells the server "I am ready to receive, go ahead." so it is more table tennis culture, a behavior that evolved from the necessity to communicate something important and avoids embarrassing moments like "I was not ready!" 

How can we communicate the same without crouching and bending over with the paddle up like a knife in a street fight? It is not that easy to answer.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/31/2021 at 10:58pm
I propose staring at the server and extending our free open hand forward with the palm up before closing the hand, opening it again and closing it again, just to say "Bring it on!" Bruce Lee style, that works doesn't it? Smile




Edited by stiltt - 12/31/2021 at 11:05pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bozbrisvegas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/01/2022 at 8:31am
I agree with everyone here.  Bruce Lee in particular. LOL  

The trajectory thing makes sense and absolutely agree, but the fact is if they pull off a fast long serve, it's going to get to you out of counter striking position if you're at the table.  Possible if you stand back a metre though and ready to rush in if it is short.  Half the time if you are back a metre you can miss seeing the contact point anyway and just watch what the ball does.  Skip forward/bounce higher/left/right etc.

When I came back to playing TT I was standing at the table, and missed a lot of long serves till I stood back and encouraged them to serve short... much easier for me at least to rush in for a push or flip or stand my ground and punish them for something long.

As Bruce Lee acted, I feel it's a bit of a myth that has stuck, to show you are watching what they got and are pro enough than standing there at the table with your feet together.

stilltt, I can't understand because I would probably not be able to walk the next day if I served like Ovcharov's classic BH serve.  What an absolute knee stress that is.  + to add to love of using energy then stomping on the serve.  I used to this but stopped because my knees told me too.   And now that I mention it I believe he had knee surgery recently.




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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/06/2022 at 2:01am
Originally posted by BRS BRS wrote:

I think they are just loading their legs so they can move quickly.  Watching the pros oftentimes you see them move in for a short receive before the ball is even touched by the server, so they aren't waiting for contact on those points. 

Yeah I think so too. It's much easier to go from low to high than it is to go from high to low. Not starting low may lead to us forgetting what it's like to go low during the point itself. 

I suspect it's something to do with inherent laziness in the human psyche, none of us love being in the TT crouched position for long. 

The other thing is that for short serves, normally the lunge itself to reach a short serve starts off with a relatively high position to a lower position - so as the viewer it creates the illusion that they're in a high position but they're actually just preparing for the lunge forward, their body position is still generally very low.

Timo explains a lot of it here:




Edited by blahness - 01/06/2022 at 2:10am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Basquests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/06/2022 at 8:49am
One thing I've just picked up on which I feel is relevant to the thread / especially Timo's perfect receive position video, and maybe it's obvious (or not)...

Plenty of players (Pro's for example) hold their racquet with two hands when getting ready to receive, or just before receiving. Or are touching it with their non-playing hand to some extent.

I tried doing that consistently, and apparently it's fixed a problem I didn't necessarily know I had, which was having slightly (and moderately) different bat angle, before my opponent has even tossed the ball.

By holding or securing the racquet with the non-dominant hand, you reset the bat angle, and voila, the amount of errors (small and especially big) on receiving have reduced tremendously compared to before as my bat angle is starting off the same.



Edited by Basquests - 01/06/2022 at 8:52am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/06/2022 at 9:05am
Originally posted by Basquests Basquests wrote:

One thing I've just picked up on which I feel is relevant to the thread / especially Timo's perfect receive position video, and maybe it's obvious (or not)...

Plenty of players (Pro's for example) hold their racquet with two hands when getting ready to receive, or just before receiving. Or are touching it with their non-playing hand to some extent.

I tried doing that consistently, and apparently it's fixed a problem I didn't necessarily know I had, which was having slightly (and moderately) different bat angle, before my opponent has even tossed the ball.

By holding or securing the racquet with the non-dominant hand, you reset the bat angle, and voila, the amount of errors (small and especially big) on receiving have reduced tremendously compared to before as my bat angle is starting off the same.


Wow nice one - imma gonna try this out haha
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Basquests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/06/2022 at 8:41pm
Originally posted by blahness blahness wrote:

Originally posted by Basquests Basquests wrote:

One thing I've just picked up on which I feel is relevant to the thread / especially Timo's perfect receive position video, and maybe it's obvious (or not)...

Plenty of players (Pro's for example) hold their racquet with two hands when getting ready to receive, or just before receiving. Or are touching it with their non-playing hand to some extent.

I tried doing that consistently, and apparently it's fixed a problem I didn't necessarily know I had, which was having slightly (and moderately) different bat angle, before my opponent has even tossed the ball.

By holding or securing the racquet with the non-dominant hand, you reset the bat angle, and voila, the amount of errors (small and especially big) on receiving have reduced tremendously compared to before as my bat angle is starting off the same.


Wow nice one - imma gonna try this out haha

Let me know how it goes once you've tried it for a wee while. 

Receiving(/serving) is probably one of if not the most critical factors in deciding who wins a match, anything that can give you a medium/large improvement feels like a gamechanger.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tinykin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/07/2022 at 12:20pm
Originally posted by Basquests Basquests wrote:

One thing I've just picked up on which I feel is relevant to the thread / especially Timo's perfect receive position video, and maybe it's obvious (or not)...

Plenty of players (Pro's for example) hold their racquet with two hands when getting ready to receive, or just before receiving. Or are touching it with their non-playing hand to some extent.

I tried doing that consistently, and apparently it's fixed a problem I didn't necessarily know I had, which was having slightly (and moderately) different bat angle, before my opponent has even tossed the ball.

By holding or securing the racquet with the non-dominant hand, you reset the bat angle, and voila, the amount of errors (small and especially big) on receiving have reduced tremendously compared to before as my bat angle is starting off the same.



I suppose that's why some players rest the bat on the table.
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