Buying table tennis bats

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Table Tennis Bats

 So many variations... which one to buy?  There are only several factors that really matter, however all the permutations of these factors make it confusing as to which bat (a.ka. paddle or racket) is right for you.  Here is a short primer on how do get your game on.

Pimples
If you like to spin a lot, get rubbers with pimples in (towards the wood).  But you have to be really good at returning your opponent’s spin too!  If you are more defensive or like more power rather than spin, get pimples out.  Sometimes, you might be offensive on the forehand and defensive on the backhand, for example.  Then, get one side pimples out and one side pimples in.  Pimples work by absorbing the spin of your opponent, and giving you more control.  But at the same time, giving you less spin ability.

Long pimples are for advanced players; they return the opposite spin your oponent hits at you (he hits topspin at you, you will return a backspin).  So, stick with medium or short pimples.

Rubber Type
The thicker it is, the more spin you will get on it, but the less power.  Control is more dependent onthe rubber quality.  You can get high control rubber with either spin or power.  Also, the thicker the sponge the more spin, too.  Another thing that affects spin is grippiness (tackiness).  The grippier it is, the more spin you will get, but also the more your opponent's spin impacts what you do.  You have to see what the qualitative description of the rubber is; there is no standard system for grading rubber stickiness.

Bat Type
Unless you're advanced, doesn't really matter.  Get a good bat based on comparing prices (under £10 usually doesn't qualify).  It should of course be multi-ply wood (5 is a solid number).

Bat Handle
Matters very little.  Flared ends might give you a bit more "hold on" ability, which is good for heavy topspinners and the like.  Straight ends give you a bit more wrist flexibility.

Rubber Colour
Doesn't matter!  Get whatever you like.  Unless you're playing at advanced level, trying to confuse your opponent with colour combinations won't get you much traction.

Speed Glue
Seriously, don't worry about this.  It gives you added spin without loss of power/control for a few hours after you put it on, but it's a pain in the butt unless there is a medal at stake.

Go play!!
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