The origins of table tennis game

Table tennis game, in its initial version, was a very popular after party game in England. Almost all the dinner parties and get togethers concluded with table tennis games. It is actually not known as to who discovered this game and infact, the game did not have a name during the initial years. It was popularly called as ping pong or wiff waff; these names were actually rough imitations of the sound made by the call during game play. The first known record of the game being played was in the early 1880s but it is understood that the game in its rudimentary fashion might have been played, even prior to that time.

The initial version of the table tennis game was played on a dinner table with a stack of books placed in the middle of the table, which served as the net and a golf ball served as the TT ball. The racquets were also books. Later, racquets made out of wooden bases with stretched parchment on the top. Celluloid balls were introduced later, during the early 1900s. The name of the game was trademarked as ping pong by one manufacturer, in early 1900s. The other manufacturers chose to use the generic term of table tennis for their products and this name stuck. The game continued to be played in many versions and different interpretation of rules for the next two decades.

The International table tennis federation was formed in 1926, which introduced standard rules of the game and these guidelines helped organizers to conduct championship games on a regular basis from then onwards. By then, the paddles made completely of wood were prevalently in use, as were celluloid balls. The modern version of the game owes its existence to the revolutionary changes that were made to the design and structure of the paddles in 1950s. Rubberized coverings were stuck on top of the paddles which provided a lot of spin on the ball. The spin was further accentuated by the addition of a sponge layer between the wood and rubber layers of the paddles. This brought about a change in the playing styles, which started a gradual process of adaptation, culminating in the present day, extremely fast paced game. Table tennis game allows the players to display their talent, speed, control and ability and at the same time allows spectators to enjoy the fast paced and extremely skillful game play between two highly skilled opponents.


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