[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/4″ style=”” visibility=”” css_animation=”” typo_style=”” drop_shadow=”” bg_style=”” border_style=””][vc_single_image image=”472″ alignment=”center” border_color=”grey” img_link_large=”” img_link_target=”_self” rounded_image=”” img_size=”medium”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”3/4″ style=”” visibility=”” css_animation=”” typo_style=”” drop_shadow=”” bg_style=”” border_style=””][vc_empty_space height=”50px”][vc_column_text]Did you know that ping pong balls, which have been made of celluloid for decades, are now being made of plastic? While this won’t be making the nightly news anytime soon, it does actually have a pretty big impact on the table tennis world. Without getting into all the reasons the change was made, suffice it to say that not everybody is real happy about it.
But for better or worse, the plastic balls are here to stay. All the complaints, petitions, outrage, and frustration won’t get rid of poly balls and eventually you will find that you have to use them too. So, what can you do to make the transition smoother and keep your level of play improving? Consider some of the tips listed below and realize that these lessons were learned the hard way. Good Luck![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row full_width=”” parallax=”” parallax_image=”” visibility=”” css_animation=”” center_row=”” typography_style=”” column_spacing=”” tablet_fullwidth_cols=”” bg_style=”” parallax_mobile=”” parallax_style=”” parallax_direction=”” video_bg=”” video_bg_overlay=”” border_style=””][vc_column width=”1/1″ style=”” visibility=”” css_animation=”” typo_style=”” drop_shadow=”” bg_style=”” border_style=””][vc_column_text]
- Go ahead and make the switch. Perhaps the most frustrating part of doing this is realizing that poly balls are more expensive and don’t necessarily last longer. Buying a couple boxes of 3 stars a month should keep you stocked up for your matches. Also, remember the good celluloid balls were not free, so the cost for match balls may not hurt your budget too much.
- Give yourself some time to adjust. Some players take longer to adjust than others. You will probably need to play several matches and several different types of players before you can even begin to see if the new ball hurts you, helps you, or is just an adjustment that you will be able to make. Some players have said they couldn’t tell any difference at all. Most players, however, adjust or at least have an informed opinion within a few sessions of play.
- Don’t switch back and forth between celluloid and plastic. As much as possible, avoid using the celluloid ball at all. What normally happens with switching back and forth is that it hurts your play for both balls.
- Don’t assume you will have to get a faster blade or rubber. It is possible that you will have to make some equipment changes, but give it some time. Once you have fully adjusted to the new ball you will have a better idea if you want to make a paddle change.
- If you need to replace practice balls for multi-ball training, start gradually adding some 1 star poly balls. There are some excellent practice balls available. The 1 stars I have found are far superior to most celluloid practice balls, although once again, they are more expensive.
- Try a few different brands before you buy very many. Some brands are very similar and are decent quality while some have not gotten very good reviews. I have had good results with Double Fish balls, but there are other brands that play well also.
- Keep in mind that most poly balls don’t give you much warning when they are about to break. Unlike celluloid balls, the plastic ball often breaks wide open, sometimes right in the middle of a rally. At least you won’t have to spend too much time wondering if a ball is cracked.
Hopefully these tips can help you with a smooth transition and keep you playing your best.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]