Is Table Tennis Good For Seniors? (Incredible Benefits)
Life can have several issues inclined to stress human life. Doctors advise on the importance of living a healthy lifestyle because this is one of the primary causes of depression. It includes making oneself happy by doing heart-boosting activities, and things that easily make you happy. Playing table tennis is one of the best things to boost your overall life. It is easy to learn, cheap to start, and very exciting to play. But is it good for seniors?
Table tennis is good for seniors because of the physical, social, and mental health benefits it comes packaged in. It is for this game that you find many people looking much younger than their ages. It is because of the all-around nourishment in this sport.
Did you know table tennis is a classless and ageless game? Make sure you read ahead to know every unheard bit about this sport.
- What Are the Health Benefits of Playing Table Tennis?
- Can You Consider Table Tennis as a Sport for All Ages?
- What Injuries are Commonly Associated With Table Tennis?
- How Should the Elderly Play Table Tennis?
- What Are the Social Benefits of Playing Table Tennis?
What Are the Health Benefits of Playing Table Tennis?
The health benefits of playing table tennis are improved body coordination, reduced weight, and better mental care. Other benefits are a sharp brain focus, general reflex for muscles, and different joint issues. It also helps in the treatment of dementia.
As I said before, we live in a world full of several downhearted and discouraging things. And it’s so unfortunate that these life issues don’t choose whom they bother. They can bother the elderly and young, who may have no idea what the real meaning of life is. And this is why if you went to a hospital today, some illnesses get a prescription of sports, dancing, and other intense physical activities that will help the victims.
That’s why you need to play table tennis more frequently. It is also one of the cheapest games to start and very easy to learn. However, I must confess, that if it will be your first time, there might be slight this and that with your joints, and muscles. But as long as you persist, the game takes over in you, and you reach a point of no return.
Moreover, table tennis can be so addictive that if you ever lack a partner to play with, you will not mind setting up the table in front of a wall to play it alone.
Table tennis provides great aerobic activity, as well as excellent physical and mental benefits. Some of the health benefits of these sport include:
Improves Body Coordination
Intense activities in this sport increase alertness across the body. As much as it may seem like hand-eye coordination, it also involves a deep psychological state, so long as you keep focused, you can be sure of absolute mental alertness and general upper-lower body coordination.
Although table tennis appears to be a game played from a single position. You will grow muscle and tone your body by spending much of your time at the table and swinging out to hit the ball.
It’s Great For Joint Issues
The knee is the most common place to develop joint problems, whether they are related to an accident or old age. It is usually a matter of finding the right stretch that can help heal the knee without putting the ankles and other parts of the body at risk. Therefore, table tennis is the best solution for the problem due to its ease of handling on the knee.
Enhances a Focused Brain
Table tennis is popularly known as the best brain sport because it involves the whole body parts. so it helps in the stimulation and coordination of both the upper and lower body. Management of all these movements at the same time avoiding possible injuries needs an active brain system. The shots and different strategies aiming to win the game also improve your brain’s sharpness.
I recommend that you learn the 11 table tennis mental training tips to get the most benefits for your brain!
It’s Good For Weight Loss
Even though most people believe in going to the gym to reduce fat and reduce their weight. You do not have to do it simply because someone else did it. Table tennis is another option you can consider. Keeping up with your exercise will cause you to burn more calories, so you won’t realize just how much weight you will have cut in a short time.
It’s a Great Treatment for Dementia
Dementia is a memory loss disease with a wide range of effects resulting from brain damage. It is most common in the elderly and one of its best healing approaches is playing table tennis. It is because the sport activates many parts of the brain, which awakens the mind.
Learn more: What Muscles Does Table Tennis Train (Full Guide)
Can You Consider Table Tennis as a Sport for All Ages?
You can consider table tennis as a sport for all ages because it requires zero strength or power to play. The sport is all about timely techniques and knowing when to apply what stroke.
Despite the direct advantages of table tennis, there are still those who may need a little more persuasion to see into it or to believe it. So, if you are unsure about joining the sport, here are some reasons why you should do so as soon as you can.
Money Is No Problem
Apparently, in some states of the world, money has been a reason to differentiate between classes of people. Nowadays, you can’t tell who is rich from who isn’t in a table tennis hall, because everyone is too busy concentrating on playing the game in baggy t-shirts and matching baggy jeans.
In addition, this is the kind of game you can easily play from home. All you need is to get a table, a net, some paddles, and a ball. If you are determined to play the game, you won’t spend more than $20 to start it out. You don’t have to start high, moreover, if you have invented any equipment that you like, that’s where you get the drive to play the game every other time. You can play it from the comfort of your patio no matter if you’re a kid or an old grandpa.
When talking about money, a popular question is: can you make money playing table tennis? The answer to that question isn’t so straightforward so I encourage you to read my article about it!
Learn more: Is Table Tennis Expensive? (Real Answer Revealed)
Any Age Can Play
You don’t need prior physique training to play table tennis. If you’ve never seen this, you should walk into any tennis lounge in town, and witness an 80-year-old person making a 30 years man sweat. It’s because the game needs more of a tactical and strategic approach to stand out.
The fact that it’s ageless also means that young and old alike can test out their skills all the way even with deep grey-haired persons.
One popular question within the table tennis community is whether height makes table tennis difficult or not. I highly encourage that you learn about it in my article.
It’s Fun and Exciting
I won’t be surprised if you scrolled past this section after reading the mention of fun and excitement. It’s because our minds tend to believe that anything fun, attractive or appealing goes with younger age. How wrong we are! If you have never played this game, you should consider doing so, and feel how easy you get to hit the balls.
There is this satisfaction feeling when you make the balls bounce across the net and hardly miss either of them. The feeling has no age limit. It ignites this unexplainable excitement.
Hey, do you think some kids disregard you because you’re old or have grey hair? You may be smiling at them, but it is morally wrong to do so. Why not visit the tennis lounge, do some practice, sharpen your skills then call the youngsters in for a friendly?
They might laugh at that, but after they come through, be sure to leave them with a winning message in their heads. Real-life issues such as ego don’t go together with respect. Let them sweat it out the hard way, and they will respect you from then on. Give them a handshake, nod, and let them feel like beginners. You’ll thank me later.
What Injuries are Commonly Associated With Table Tennis?
Common injuries associated with table tennis are sprained ankles, knee injuries, shoulder pain, and tennis elbow. If you get injured you should seek medical attention immediately to prevent any diverse effects that may prolong your healing process.
It’s sad to acknowledge this but, as much as table tennis is generally an easy game to play along. You also need to know that it has some level of injuries that might not be avoidable. But that should not stop you in your old age from playing the game. I will share with you how to avoid these injuries.
You will also note that I have this section first before the next section on how an elderly can play table tennis. So this is just a rough preparation for the game. Here are some of the common injuries:
So you don’t do lots of movement while playing table tennis, but you, unfortunately, cannot avoid the general weight you exert on your lower body. So you can easily sprain your ankles when making a sharp turn to deliver a tactical stroke but with little balance on your legs. It can also happen when you put in an overly excessive effort in that technique you just learned the other day.
So to avoid the sprained ankle, you need to reduce the effort you put in sudden movements. It is also helpful to get into a ready stable posture after making your shot, expecting the ball to bounce back on either side. The right kinds of shoes are always a bonus as well.
This is a result of poor strategy when hitting the ball. Even if you score, if you use the wrong technique, it can leave you in agony. It often results from a backhand shot gone amiss. This propels the pain to your wrist or elbows based on the intensity you hit the ball with.
Keep an eye out for your technique and avoid doing what you saw some experienced player doing. In addition, in case you feel any pain, you must seek medical care immediately. Piling of such wrist pains can take very long to heal completely. I bet you don’t want that.
Table tennis involves frequent movement of the elbow. So shoulder pain pops in when you overuse one technique or when you play for longer hours. Consider your age, for instance, if you are about 75 and above. An hour in the game is enough, at least thrice in a week. Therefore, you should avoid spending long periods there, subjecting your body to physical hurt that may prevent you from ever returning to the same game.
Weighing out every technique should help you along on avoiding shoulder pains. Since some techniques can demand much of your effort.
This is almost like an ankle sprain because it results from doing something a little more than you should. It can be making a save, or delivering a tactical shot. It’s more common so you should be careful. The best way to counter this is by avoiding throwing yourself over for a shot or saving a ball.
You need to know that all these injuries can be minor or severe based on the intensity of your gameplay. In addition, there’s always something about an elderly person’s body being more susceptible to injury because of joints that may tend to grow weaker. Therefore, you should take caution while playing the game.
Another thing to consider is that an elderly person’s body might take longer to heal than a teenager’s. So you don’t want to get bedridden because of trying to save a simple shot.
Another common table tennis injury is back pain. I have an in-depth article about it and how to prevent and even remove back pain. Check out the article here!
How Should the Elderly Play Table Tennis?
An elderly should play table tennis by switching between different strokes and standing much closer to the table. They should also take advantage of weak balls from their younger rivals who fear hitting hard balls on them.
Are you over 70 years of age and wondering how you will look if found holding the bat? This sport is ageless, don’t let anyone tell you what to do when you know you are doing right for your body.
So here is how you can play the game with lots of ease and even beat younger players.
- Switch Between Different Strokes
You should return those serves with different techniques. It will help your move to be unpredictable to your opponent while also reducing any chances of you getting injured.
It will also help you to make timely deliveries thus reducing the movement that would risk you getting sprained ankles or knee injuries.
- Stay Closer to the Table
Considering your age you need to be much closer to the table. It will help you to reach the balls easily after their bounce making you return them earlier. It also gives you an increased angle entitlement that gives you an advantage over your opponent while minimizing your constant movements around the table.
- Practice strategic Serves
It will help you spin and deliver tactical balls. However, it might need a little more practice to ensure you don’t injure yourself in the process. This has nothing to do with energy or effort, you can deliver slow or fast but very tactical serves.
- Learn to Use Pimples
A pip is a conic-raised bump on your bat. It can help you switch the spin and speed of the ball to confuse your rival. It, therefore, gives you a clean score every time you use it. However, you may need to practice it much more for you to be able to use it. It’s something that most players complain about being unable to manage.
- Take Advantage
The fact that you seem elderly, might make your opponent afraid of hitting high-end balls that can strain you. Therefore, you should take advantage of such opportune. Avoid being that lenient on them. Keep your opponent moving around the table. It will not matter whether you win or not, at the end of the day you will have had a fun time.
Proper table tennis equipment is always a great way to get ahead of the competition. In my article, you can see everything a table tennis player could need, and decide for yourself what fits your needs!
What Are the Social Benefits of Playing Table Tennis?
The social benefits of playing table tennis include great recreation for spending your summer. You get to meet lots of people as well as helping you to manage different situations with honor. Whether a win or a loss you learn to appreciate every situation.
The sport also enhances teamwork skills and ensures you fit into all sorts of persons even the physically disabled. So basically, it gets you adapted into different social situations.