How High Should A Table Tennis Net Be? (Optimal Height)
If you have played table tennis even a little bit, you know that you can adjust the net’s height most of the time. The question is, what is the optimal height for a table tennis net?
In this article, I will reveal the optimal net height used in competitive matches, information about nets and posts, the best nets available, and more!
Before getting ahead of myself, how high should a table tennis net be?
International Table Tennis Federation rules state that the standard net shall be suspended tightly from the posts 6inches (15.25cm) above the whole tabletop’s surface.
That’s plain and simple. There are some other rules to the net assembly that need to pass the ITTF rules for competitive play. These rules are found below and in the ITTF Handbook.
- 2.2.1: The net assembly shall consist of the net, its suspension and the supporting
- posts, including the clamps attaching them to the table.
- 2.2.2: The net shall be suspended by a cord attached at each end to an upright
- post 15.25cm high, the outside limits of the post being 15.25cm outside the
- side line.
- 2.2.3: The top of the net, along its whole length, shall be 15.25cm above the
- playing surface.
- 2.2.4: The bottom of the net, along its whole length, shall be as close as possible
- to the playing surface and the ends of the net shall be attached to the
- supporting posts from top to bottom.
By following these rules, your net is assembled to regulation standards, and there isn’t anything else to worry about. Now, let’s take a closer look at the 3 different net and post types available for table tennis tables.
What different types of nets are there?
There are 3 main categories of nets and posts, and you can find them below in a lesser to a superior order.
1. Retractable nets
Retractable nets are the cheapest and favored by most recreational players. This is because they are so easy to install and uninstall thanks to the great mechanism where the net will retract into one of the posts, making them compact-sized where the net won’t be tangled up as it can in other net types.
To install a retractable net, you simply need to add it to the other side of the table and pull it from the post that isn’t secured to the other side and install it from there. Super simple, super easy.
On the conside, if the net or retracing mechanism get’s broken, you need to replace the whole thing because you really can’t just replace the net here, unlike in other models. Luckily, these are quite cheap.
Another con is that these nets aren’t as securely held in the table as clip-on and clamp nets because the securing mechanism is easily placed on the table, which really doesn’t have any support. Therefore if you bump into one of the posts, it will get out of place.
2. Clip-on net
Clip-on nets are like the middle types of nets between professional clamp nets and retractable nets. If you need a more secure net and post set than a retractable net, but don’t need a professional level net and don’t want to invest so much money on one, then clip-on nets are the go choice.
These nets are surprisingly securely held on the table because of the quite strong mechanism that you simply clip on the table. The clip, however, is stiff, so it will hold on well to the table so that the slightest bump won’t get it out of place.
Another great benefit is that if the net get’s damaged, you don’t need to buy a completely new set, you just need a replacement net, and it’s like nothing happened.
However, if you are looking for a professional level net that will really stay in its place even if you bump into it, clip-on nets simply won’t be on that level.
3. Professional clamp nets
Last but not least, professional clamp nets. These nets are of the highest quality and come with the highest cost, but if you are looking for a professional-level net, they certainly are worth the cost.
You simply can’t get the level of stability from retractable and clip-on nets than you can from a clamp net. These nets work that you loosen the screw beneath the gap where you will install the post and then tighten it like a normal screw, giving it the maximum stability you can have.
These nets will take the most time to install, but it’s not a big difference. Also, you can adjust the net’s tightness from the smaller screw on the edge of the post.
Professional clamp nets are the only fit for competitive tournaments because they will hold securely during the game.
Learn more: 5 Best Table Tennis Nets And Posts
What nets are being used in international competitions?
As you might know, the ITTF rules are really strict in international competitions regarding the nest and more even in everything else. However, that’s the way it should be to guarantee a truly fair competing environment for everybody.
When it comes to the nets used in international competitions, there are a couple of things to consider.
In international table tennis competitions, the net needs to be 6″ (15.25cm) above the surface, and it can only be a professional clamp to ensure true stability during the game. Also, the bottom of the net shall be as close to the playing surface as possible.
What is the best net and post set?
Depending on your intended use, you might be best off with either retractable, clip-on, or professional clamp net. However, the best net you can have is the Butterfly National League Table Tennis Net. This professional clamp set is ITTF approved net that has been used as the official net set of the U.S Open and U.S National Championships!
My Favorite Table Tennis Equipment
Thanks for reading this article. I hope it brought you great value that you can implement into your own life! Here you can find my preferred table tennis equipment that I believe you could benefit too!
- Racket: My favorite racket choice is the beautiful Killerspin Jet800 because it fits my offensive and speed-focused playstyle. The two carbon layers, 2.1mm sponge, and 190g weight makes this racket powerful.
- Ping Pong Balls: New technology and design have made the JOOLA Flash Seamless 3-Star Balls stand out from the other balls. These balls are seamless, meaning they are more durable than any ball with a seam! Even when these balls come at a higher price, they will pay themselves quickly. As a bonus, the design makes me excited!
- Table Tennis shoes: The famous Butterfly Lezoline Rifones is my choice as it is for many others because they are designed specifically for table tennis standards. I like the excellent support, comfortable cushioning, and lightweight sole with great traction, which gets you exploding fast to whatever direction you need to.
- Fan Equipment: If you’re a fan more than a player, you don’t want to miss Fan Equipment by Fanatics. You can find items from various sports that bear your favorite team’s logo, such as jerseys, gift ideas, or other surprising things.