TEACHING THE BLOCK
A block is a simple way of returning a hard drive. It is simpler than a drive, and many coaches teach it first for that reason. However, one of the worst habits a player can get into is blocking too much.
A block can be done either forehand or backhand. The stroke is similar to a drive except that there is no backswing and very little follow through. There is also no weight shift. A block is best described as just that - a block. Just stick the racquet in the way of a hard hit ball. If the racquet angle is correct, the ball will go back low and with a good pace.
Another difference in the block is that you should contact the ball earlier. Take it right off the bounce. The block is most effective as a way to return an opponent’s drive as quickly as possible so as not to give him a chance to keep attacking.
Later on, when you show your players how to do table tennis drills, you will often have one player attack with forehand and backhand drives, while the other blocks.
Very little backswing. Just get the racquet into position so that the incoming ball will contact it.
Very little, except on an aggressive block.
The key to blocking is to use the opponent’s speed and spin to return the ball. Contact should be made right after the bounce. Quickness is the key - you don’t want to give your opponent time to make another strong shot.
Hold the racquet firmly and let the ball sink into the sponge and trampoline back. At contact, move the racquet forward some, more so against a slow ball than against a fast one.
Although you have no backswing and hardly any forward motion before contact, you do have to follow through. Just move the racquet forward, rotating at the elbow.
Copyright Larry Hodges
Copyright Mark Nordby, Dan Seemiller, John Oros
Copyright USA Table Tennis
Last Update : 06 Kasım, 2002
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