how to hold a Ping Pong Paddle

The ping pong game, also called table tennis, can serve as a casual diversion or a competitive sport. Regardless of how you view ping pong, the game entertains both players and spectators. With the playing table field and the center net, the game’s object involves volleying the ball back and forth between opponents. Players earn points when their opponents do not legally return the ball. By learning the basics of the game, including how to serve in table tennis and how to hold a Ping Pong Paddle, you can develop your ping pong skills for casual or competitive play. Furthermore, if you desire to learn how to play ping pongas well as how to hold a Ping Pong Paddle, below are some techniques worth using:

The Penhold grip

With the penhold grip, you keep the paddle as if it were a fountain pen. This table tennis grip is used more by Asian players, including world number 1 ping pong player, Wang Hao. The penhold grip has the advantage of allowing the user to apply more spin to the ball. There are also two techniques under this:

  • The Japanese technique: you keep the paddle to extend the middle finger on the reversible side. The paddle handle should not be symmetrical, and the cork should cover its backside as well.
  • The Chinese technique: with the Chinese technique of the penhold grip, your fingers, which are at the back of the racket, must be folded. For this, the handle must be symmetrical and short. Check out the Best Ping Pong Paddle for Penhold.
penhold grip ping pong

The Orthodox grip

With the orthodox grip, the racket is held like a hammer, though in a classic fashion. Your middle finger should be stretched out and should be on the coating of your paddle. You have to pretend that the racquet is a continuation of your hand. With this grip, you do not need to change the position to perform the whole shots. Western players use this grip more. It is also very practical and does not require a lot of learning.

how to serve in ping pong

The Korean grip

This is a variant of the Japanese technique of the penhold grip. The difference with the Japanese technique is in the positions of the ring finger and the little finger. Here, they are all close to each other, while with the Japanese technique, they are put on the back of the racket. The advantage of this technique is that you can move your wrist as you wish. By moving your grip as you wish, you have the opportunity to have a good rotation on the forehand part and during the serve.

The Shakehand grip

The shakehand grip is a way of holding a paddle in ping pong. The name comes from the fact that you grip the ping paddle as if you were shaking hands with someone. When using the shakehand grip, not all five fingers enclose the racket grip, but only the middle, ring, and the little finger. The thumb is on the forehand and the index finger on the backhand side of the paddle face. So it looks like you’re shaking hands with someone. The thumb and forefinger hold the paddle face leads to better control of the paddle, a better fixation of the paddle in hand, and a clearer perception of the ball contact – overall to better control than if you put all five fingers around the handle.

What is the proper way to hold a ping pong paddle?

As earlier highlighted, learning How to Hold a Ping Pong Paddle is very important. Thus, below are some basic instructions on the proper way to hold a ping pong paddle:

  • Hold the ping pong racket in your dominant hand as if you were going to shake your hands with the racket to keep the paddle in a “shake hand” grip. The shakehand grip is the most commonly used grip by home and tournament players today.
  • Place your thumb alone inside the paddle with your four fingers together on the outside of the paddle.
  • Wrap your third, fourth, and fifth fingers tightly around the paddle and extend your index finger out along the bottom of the paddle (just touching the paddle rubber).
  • Check your reach to make sure you are not holding the paddle too tightly. Hold the paddle firmly enough to control it, but not so tight that your hand feels uncomfortable around the wrist.
  • Strike the ball with the front of the paddle whenever the ball comes to your forehand side.
  • Strike the ball with the back of the paddle, the side your index finger is on when the ball comes to your backhand side.

What is the most common grip in table tennis?

The Shakehand grip currently stands as the most common grip in table tennis.

How do you hit Ping Pong forehand?

To Ping Pong forehand, do follow the following steps:

  • Place your feet properly, with the right foot (for right-handed people) slightly behind. This gives a proper impulse through the flexion of the legs and the rotation of the torso during the strike,
  • Place the racket between the hip and the shoulder.
  • Stand at the center of the table.
  • Once the ball hits your side of the table, rotate your body in the opposite direction and hit the ball at the peak of its bounce. At this point, you can as well accompany the ball with the racket slightly for a better effect.

Is Penhold better than Shakehand?

Yes. The penhold is better than Shakehand because it gives room for free wrist movement, much more than the shake hand grip.

How big is a ping pong paddle?

The ping pong paddle is usually made up of the following dimensions: 15cm across, 25cm in length, and 10cm in the handle area.

How do the Chinese hold a ping pong paddle?

The Chinese usually hold a ping pong paddle by folding their fingers, which are at the racket’s back. This is popularly known as the Chinese penhold grip.

Why do ping pong paddles have red and black sides?

The faces of ping pong paddles have different colors because the rules of the game dictate it. Like most of the ping pong rules, this was added according to the evolution of the game itself: at one time, the games were long because the defense was better than the attack. Rules have rebalanced the two, but new developments have emerged. Over time, once the attack was much better (whoever served won for sure), the defender was better, following the evolution of tactics, techniques, and materials.

The rule of surfaces of different colors was added after material evolutions allowed the appearance to influence the effects, thanks to different types of surfaces, which tend to impact the ball more or less. At that time, the players usually put a coating favoring the effects on one side and a coating, reducing them on the other (to defend the adverse effects better). And with the same color on each side, a player could turn his racket unnoticed and easily deceive his opponent as to the effect he was going to make, and the offense once again took over the defense. Therefore, the international federation has decided to impose the two colors (red and black), with one on each side of the paddle to rebalance each attack and defense during play.

how to hit a ping pong ball

What is forehand push and backhand push?

The forehand push is a hit that occurs when you make contact with the ball on the same side with. Which you hold the ping paddle. The right for right-handed players and the left for those players who are left-handed.

The backhand attack is an offensive stroke that allows the ball to impede a high translation speed. Thanks to a movement executed in front of the body and obey the same principles as the forehand push.

How do you hit a spin shot in ping pong?

To hit a spin shot in ping pong, make use of the following steps:

  • Hit a stroke behind and below the ball.
  • Wait while the ball bounces off the table in an upward direction
  • Move your hand upwards and forward, while brushing the ball at a slanting angle.

How do you hit a backhand in ping pong?

To hit a backhand in ping pong, the player takes his swing from the forearm; but he has to twist his wrist to bring the paddle into the correct position. The gesture is performed by rotating the forearm around the elbow joint forwards and upwards.


In conclusion, ping pong stands as a great sport, and for all who desire to learn How to Hold a Ping Pong Paddle. This has been properly highlighted above. You can choose one among the ping pong grips, which seems easy to you and master it very well. It is also better to have a perfect mastery of a particular type of hold than to do several styles without real mastery of any.