How To Hold A Ping Pong Racket

How To Hold A Ping Pong Racket

Last modified: October 7, 2023


Holding a ping pong racket may seem like a simple task, but the way you hold it can greatly affect your game. The grip you use determines your control, power, and speed when playing. In this article, we will discuss three different grips commonly used in ping pong and their advantages and disadvantages.

Eastern Grip

The Eastern grip is one of the most common grips used in ping pong. To hold the racket with an Eastern grip, follow these steps:

1. Place your non-dominant hand flat on the racket handle.
2. Position the racket handle diagonally across your palm, with the base of your index finger resting on the bottom-right side of the handle (for right-handed players).
3. Close your hand, making sure your thumb is on top of the handle, pointing towards the racket head.
4. Wrap your fingers around the handle comfortably, ensuring a firm but not overly tight grip.

Using the Eastern grip offers good control and allows for quick wrist movements. It is particularly effective for beginners or players who prefer a more conservative playing style. However, it may limit your power and spin potential compared to other grips.

Penhold Grip

The Penhold grip is commonly used by players from East Asian countries and is named after the way the hand resembles holding a pen. To hold the racket with a Penhold grip, follow these steps:

1. Place your non-dominant hand flat on the racket handle.
2. Grip the racket handle with your thumb and middle finger, forming a V shape.
3. Curl your index finger slightly over the backhand side of the racket, close to the blade.
4. Lightly wrap your other fingers around the handle for stability.

The Penhold grip provides excellent control for the forehand shots. It allows for quick and precise movements, especially for close-to-the-table play. However, it can be challenging to generate as much power and spin on the backhand side due to the limited range of motion.

Shakehand Grip

The Shakehand grip is the most popular grip in international table tennis. To hold the racket with a Shakehand grip, follow these steps:

1. Place your non-dominant hand flat on the racket handle.
2. Hold the racket handle with your thumb on the backhand side and your index and middle fingers on the forehand side.
3. Wrap your remaining fingers around the handle, creating a firm grip.
4. Relax your wrist and ensure a comfortable position.

The Shakehand grip offers a great balance between power, control, and spin. It allows for full utilization of the wrist and forearm for generating powerful shots. The Shakehand grip also provides flexibility in incorporating various playing styles and techniques.


Choosing the right grip in table tennis is important for optimizing your performance on the table. Whether you prefer the Eastern grip for control, the Penhold grip for quick movements, or the Shakehand grip for a balanced approach, each grip has its advantages and disadvantages. Experiment with different grips and find the one that suits your playing style and comfort level best. Remember, practice and consistency are key to improving your ping pong skills.

Additional Ping-Pong Resources:
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