What are the different game formats in ping-pong?
Versatile and adaptable, ping-pong has the benefit of being able to be played in different ways. Accessible in a traditional, individual and competitive game format or in a fun version for kids: there really is something for everyone! Ping-pong can be explored and reinvented at every level of the game. So how do you link amusement and a sporting activity and what are the game formats on offer?
THE TRADITIONAL PING-PONG GAME
For two to four players, what could be more enjoyable than a game of ping-pong? For beginners, amateurs or professionals, this game format appeals to the great majority. To play it under cover, opt for an indoor table, which can be adapted to the space available. Outdoor ping-pong tables are a lot more solid and hard-wearing and are geared up for dynamic play. Professionals can count on competition tables as a guarantee of sturdiness and stability.
The rules of the game
The first step consists of keeping a firm grip of your bat. Very popular in Asia, the penholder grip enables you to hold the handle of your bat in the same way as you would a pen. Meanwhile, the classic ‘European’ grip sees the player wrap the three lower fingers around the handle and grip the paddle with the thumb on one side and the index finger on the other. Opt for the grip, which feels most comfortable. In any case, make sure that your wrist is as mobile as possible. Your hand must be relaxed and loose to give your movements greater strength and precision. Once you’re holding your bat, decide which person will be first to serve. You can choose between playing singles or doubles. In the first instance, you can hit the ball anywhere on the other side of the net.
If you’re playing doubles, the first server is decided by the team, which has won the service and the opposing team then decides on the receiver. The server must serve into the right diagonal, which means that the ball must first bounce in the server’s right-hand half of the table then on the receiver’s right-hand half of the table. Next, each player must hit the ball in turn. The change of server then adopts the following sequence: the receiver becomes the server, and the server’s partner becomes the receiver, and so on…
Continue your exchanges as many times as necessary, and above all, have fun! If you play a match, remember that the winner of a set is the person who wins the first three games. A game is won in 11 points. The winner needs to gain at least a 2-point lead over the opposing team.
Rotating ping-pong requires a minimum of three players. The players respectively position themselves either side of the table. The side with more players is the first to serve. The principle of the game is to hit the ball whilst circling around the table. When a player misses a ball, the latter lays his or her bat on the table. If a player still in the game bounces the ball on the bat, the eliminated player can rejoin the game. Once there are no more than two players, they get involved in a match to decide the winner.
BEER PONG: EVENING PING-PONG
Beer Pong is a game of skill relished by students during party nights. The idea is to throw a ping-pong ball into a glass cup filled with drink, which your opponents have to down. Essentially, each time the ball lands inside the cup, the opposing team has to drink its contents. The cups are positioned in a triangle on both sides of the ping-pong table and must be touching. The player designated to shoot keeps his or her elbow behind the edge of the table. It’s possible to replace the cups at any point in the game. All you have to do is position the cups where they would have been if they hadn’t slipped over. The team which manages to reach all the opposing team’s cups wins the game. Opt for an outdoor ping-pong table, which is much more hard-wearing and suited to such ‘boozy’ leisure pursuits.
SOLITAIRE PING PONG
Ping-pong can be played by a single player, even if it’s much more fun to play against real partners. As a result, a person on their own can also reap the physical and mental benefits of this activity. All our tables are designed to favour individual practice. They enable one half of the tabletop to be folded up vertically. In its raised position, the tabletop provides an opportunity for you to train by making the ball bounce back onto a flat, raised surface. The advantage of this form of practice is that you can get in some training whatever your level. In this way, you can adapt your speed and your movements according to your preferences.
FUN GAME FORMATS FOR KIDS
Hitting balls back and forth for a long period is sometimes difficult for kids. Rather than creating frustration or irritation, why not offer some new game formats? There are a variety of really fun exercises that help to develop the child’s dexterity to handle his or her bat!
The hoop game
The hoop game is entertainment at its finest. To begin with, place five hoops at different distances apart. The first hoop corresponds with the shooting area. The aim is to hit the ball from the shooting area into the second hoop, then into the third and so on till the last. Entertaining and fun, this game favours concentration and precision.
The multi-ball game is ideal for older or more experienced children. Each player holds a ball. The designated player counts to three, then the two players serve at the same time and endeavour to keep both balls going back and forth for as long as possible. This constant exchange favours a sense of cooperation. Once there is just one ball in play, the two players become adversaries and battle it out till victory is achieved. The practice of ping-pong knows no bounds. Discover, try out and adopt game formats which you find most satisfying.