Table Tennis

This game is played on a table, by two or four contestants, with a small, lightweight celluloid ball and small rackets, often called bats or paddles.

Rules & Equipment :

Game played on a table by two or four contestants, with a small, lightweight, hollow ball and small rackets, often called bats or paddles. The table is 9 ft by 5 ft (2.74 m by 1.52 m), with its upper surface 30 in (76 cm) above the floor. The table is divided into opposing courts by a net 6 in (15.24 cm) high. The ball is about 1.5 in (3.81 cm) in diameter and is made of celluloid. The rackets are usually oval and made of wood, faced with rubber or sponge.
Table tennis involves hitting the ball back and forth over the net until one player misses the ball, or hits it into the net or off the table; in each of these cases the opponent scores a point. A serve must hit the table on the server's side of the net first. One player serves until 5 points have been scored, after which the opponent serves for the next 5 points. During rallies, the ball must hit the table before being returned. A game is won by the player who first scores 21 points and is ahead by 2 or more points.
History :
Most authorities agree that table tennis is of English origin and that it was first played with improvised equipment on dining-room tables. Around 1900, when celluloid balls began to replace rubber and cork balls, the game became very popular in England and the U.S. Early manufactured sets were called Gossimar, Whiff- Whaff, and, more commonly, Ping-Pong, the latter being a patented trade name. Its popularity as a parlor game quickly waned, but about 1922 a simultaneous movement started in several parts of the world to revive table tennis as a serious sport. A meeting held in 1926 in Berlin among five nations resulted in the formation of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF). The U.S. Table Tennis Association (USTTA), founded in 1933, governs tournament competition in the U.S. The annual national championships consist of matches in more than 45 different classifications, such as men's singles and doubles, women's singles and doubles, and junior and senior events with players under the ages of 10 to over 75. The USTTA joined the ITTF in 1933. The International Federal, composed of about 140 member nations, sponsors individual and team play at the world championships held every two years. From the 1960s through the early 1980s China often dominated these championships; interim titleholders came primarily from Japan, Sweden, and Hungary. In the late 1980s, however, with the entry of table tennis into the Olympic Games, South Korea and Sweden finally ended China's dominance.


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