What Ping Pong Balls Do Professionals Use

What Ping Pong Balls Do Professionals Use

Last modified: September 27, 2023


When it comes to the game of ping pong, professionals make use of specific equipment to enhance their performance. One essential piece of equipment is the ping pong ball. In this article, we will explore the types of ping pong balls that professionals typically use and the characteristics that make them suitable for competitive play.

Types of Ping Pong Balls

There are two main types of ping pong balls used in professional play:

1. 40mm Celluloid Balls

For many years, celluloid balls were the standard in professional table tennis. These balls have a diameter of 40mm, which is the official size for competition. Celluloid balls are known for providing great bounce and spin, making them popular among professional players.

2. 40+mm Plastic Balls

In recent years, the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) made a change, introducing a new standard of 40+mm plastic balls. These balls are made from a plastic material instead of celluloid. They have a slightly larger diameter and are designed to have better durability and consistency compared to celluloid balls.

Characteristics of Professional Ping Pong Balls

Professional ping pong balls are designed to meet certain criteria to ensure fair and competitive play. Here are some notable characteristics:

1. Weight and Size

Professional ping pong balls must weigh 2.7 grams and have a 40mm diameter. These specific measurements allow for consistent play and bounce, ensuring that all matches are played on a level playing field.

2. Bounce

The bounce of a ping pong ball is crucial for competitive play. Professional balls are designed to have a consistent and predictable bounce, which allows players to develop their strategies and execute their shots with precision.

3. Spin

Spin is a fundamental aspect of table tennis, and professional players rely heavily on their ability to generate spin. The texture of a professional ping pong ball allows it to grip the table surface, allowing for enhanced spin potential.

4. Durability

Professional ping pong balls need to withstand the intense play of competitive matches. They are designed to be durable and resistant to cracking or breaking, ensuring that they can endure the fast-paced nature of professional table tennis.


Professional ping pong players invest in high-quality balls that meet specific standards set by the ITTF. These balls, whether made of celluloid or plastic, are designed to provide consistent bounce, spin, and durability. By using these balls, professionals can optimize their performance and engage in exciting and competitive matches. So, the next time you watch a professional ping pong match, take note of the precision and skill that these specialized ping pong balls bring to the game.

Additional Ping-Pong Resources:
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