How to Hold Table Tennis Racket

Last modified: October 30, 2021

Holding your table tennis racket is one of the most important aspects of playing the game. The right grip can help you return a serve, give your players a harder shot to return and control the game. There are several different ways that you can hold a table tennis racket that are legal and can help you play a better game. Here are the common grips and their advantages and disadvantages.

Shakeband Grip

The most common grip that is used by the top players in the game is known as the Shakeband grip. While there are other successful grips, the top players use this because the advantages the grip gives you.

To use the Shakehand grip, you must hold the racket loosely. The web between your thumb and index finger should be touching the curve of the blade. The index finger should rest alongside the edge of the backhand side. The thumb should rest against the bottom edge of the forehand side. You should keep the wrist straight with your forearm. You shouldn’t angle it up or down.

The Shakeband grip offers a lot of benefits. For instance, it offers a natural feel to the racket that can make playing easier. In addition, it offers flexibility and it can be used for both the forehand and backhand grips. However, it takes longer to make the switch between the forehand and backhand and this can often mean that you can lose a point because the time it takes to switch.

Penhold Grip

The Penhold grip is named because the paddle is held with the blade point upward, much like a pen would be held. It is very popular with Asian players but it is gaining popularity with Western players now as well.

To hold the racket with the Penhold grip, the edge of the blade should be tucked into the V of your hand. The index finger and thumb should be curled around the blade and the rest of the rubber.

This grip allows you to use the same paddle side for both your forehand and backhand strokes. Instead, you are relying on a lateral write rotation. Therefore, you’ve eliminated the crossover point that can harm returns with the Shakehand grip. The grip is also great for wrist flexibility and it is versatile for both aggressive and defensive styles.

However, this grip is challenging to impart backhand topspin. And this grip is very physically demanding, which can reduce your stamina over a game and cause you to lose points later on when you’re tired.

Final Word: How to Hold Table Tennis Racket

Above are the two main grips that can help you hold a table tennis racket. Which one you choose will depend on your playing style. How do you hold your table tennis racket?

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