Beginner/Intermediate 2 Hour Table Tennis Training Program

For When 1 Hour Just Isn't Enough...

Photo of Coaching Session
Make the Most of Your Training Time. © 2006 Greg Letts, licensed to About.com, Inc.

I've already put together a one hour training session for those table tennis players who don't have much time to train, so now I'm going to outline a two hour training session for those readers who have a bit more free time to play with.

Although it's nice to have the luxury of that extra hour to get things done, that doesn't mean that you want to waste time unnecessarily. Having a firm plan going into your session allows you to stay focused on what you want to achieve in the next two hours.

Sample Two Hour Table Tennis Training Session Outline

Pre-Session
Warm up

0 Minute Mark
Forehand to Forehand Counterhit - 2½ min
Backhand to Backhand Counterhit - 2½ min

5 Minute Mark
Forehand Loop to Block - 7½ min
Swap roles 7½ min

20 Minute Mark
Backhand Loop to Block - 7½ min
Swap roles - 7½ min

35 Minute Mark
Falkenberg Drill - 5 min
Swap roles - 5 min

45 Minute Mark
Push to Push - 5 min

50 Minute Mark
Short Push Simple Drill - 5 min

55 Minute Mark
Loop to Loop - 5 min
OR
Smash to Lob - 2½ min Swap roles - 2½ min

1 Hour Mark
Brief Rest - 5 min

1 Hour 5 Minute Mark
Serve Practice - 7½ min short serves - 2½ min long serves

1 Hour 15 Minute Mark
Serve, Return, Open - 5 min
Swap roles - 5 min

1 Hour 25 Minute Mark
Return of Service (Receiver chooses the serve) - 5 min
Swap roles - 5 min

1 Hour 35 Minute Mark
Player 1 Choice of Simple/Advanced Drill - 5 min
Player 2 Choice of Simple/Advanced Drill - 5 min

1 Hour 45 Minute Mark
Game Play
OR
Player 1 Weakness Drill - 7½ min
Player 2 Weakness Drill - 7½ min

2 Hour Mark
Cool down

Explanation of the Training Outline

Since several of the drills mentioned are the same as those used in the 1 Hour Training Program, I'll refrain from repeating the same information, and just focus on the new drills instead.

Pre-Session
Warm up
Although this session is two hours long, I don't recommend trying to warm up on the table as you go.

You'll be doing some drills that are going to require a lot of your body, so make sure you are warmed up and fully stretched before beginning to avoid injury.

0 Minute Mark
Forehand to Forehand Counterhit - 2½ min
Backhand to Backhand Counterhit - 2½ min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

5 Minute Mark
Forehand Loop to Block - 7½ min
Swap roles - 7½ min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

20 Minute Mark
Backhand Loop to Block - 7½ min
Swap roles - 7½ min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

35 Minute Mark
Falkenberg Drill - 5 min
Swap roles - 5 min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

45 Minute Mark
Push to Push - 5 min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

50 Minute Mark
Short Push Simple Drill - 5 min
The Short Push Simple Drill is an effective way of improving your short game and the transition from your short game to your attacking game, an area which is often neglected.

55 Minute Mark
Loop to Loop - 5 min
OR
Smash to Lob - 2½ min
Swap roles - 2½ min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

1 Hour Mark
Brief Rest - 5 min
Although you should feel free to have a drink at any time during the session, a brief break for a few minutes allows you a chance to get a drink, recover a little and regain your mental focus for the second half of the session.

1 Hour 5 Minute Mark
Serve Practice - 7½ min short serves - 2½ min long serves
Serving is an important part of the game, and so I recommend doing plenty of serving practice. I'd suggest trying a couple of my recommended serve drills to help keep things from getting boring.

1 Hour 15 Minute Mark
Serve, Return, Open - 5 min
Swap roles - 5 min
Refer to 1 Hour Training Session for details.

1 Hour 25 Minute Mark
Return of Service (Receiver chooses the serve) - 5 min
Swap roles - 5 min
In this drill, the receiver gets to decide which serve the server must use, in order to allow the receiver to practice against any serves that he feels awkward against.

1 Hour 35 Minute Mark
Player 1 Choice of Simple/Advanced Drill - 5 min
Player 2 Choice of Simple/Advanced Drill - 5 min
Each player can choose a simple or advanced drill to work on whatever aspect of his game he wishes.

I have a number of good table tennis drills for you to choose from, if you can't think of one yourself.

1 Hour 45 Minute Mark
Game Play
OR
Player 1 Weakness Drill - 7½ min
Player 2 Weakness Drill - 7½ min
Depending on your preferences, you can finish with 15 minutes of game play between you and your partner, or if you are getting plenty of match practice elsewhere, I'd recommend that each of you spend 7½ minutes working on your most critical weakness. Make sure it is the weakness that is hurting you the most during games - a two wing looper shouldn't be working on his chop!

The idea here is not necessarily to turn your weakness into a strength (you may never have enough time to achieve that), but to plug the gaps in your game that are being exploited by your opponents when they need to win a point against you.

2 Hour Mark
Cool down
A cool down period is needed after any training session, so make sure you at least spend a few minutes walking around to get your heart rate down gradually, and do another round of stretches to help prevent developing any muscle soreness.