As you have probably noticed, table tennis players apologize to the opponent when striking the ball into the net. Whether you have noticed this on tv, or have experienced it yourself behind the ping pong table, it is good to know why this is
In this article, I will teach you everything you need to know about why table tennis players apologize, what makes a good table tennis player, and some other things about sportsmanship. But first, why do table tennis players say sorry?
Table tennis players apologize when gaining a point from a net or edge ball. This is because a good point will end in a score that the table tennis players don’t feel like they earned. After all, net and edge balls are based on luck. Apologizing is a sign of respect and sportsmanship.
Having respect towards your opponent and playing with etiquette in mind is important; however, why should you apologize for a point that is legal and within the table tennis rules and regulations? Let’s take a deeper dive into the subject and see all the possible reasons why saying sorry from the net and edge balls is a thing.
Read also: What Do Ping Pong Players Shout?
- 1. Respect towards your opponent
- 2. Apology because a good rally was ended
- 3. Apologizing dates back to history
- Does every player apologize when hitting a net ball
- Should you apologize on edge balls
- What if a player doesn’t apologize on net balls
- Table tennis etiquette
- Can you hit a ping pong ball before it bounces
- My Favorite Table Tennis Equipment
1. Respect towards your opponent
The first and most obvious thing is to acknowledge your opponent and their skills. Getting the point from a net or edge ball is like gaining a point out of nowhere, and gaining a point from nowhere wouldn’t be fair. Therefore, apologizing because of that is reasonable.
However, if you hit the net all the time, apologizing for every time can feel weird and unnecessary, and you’d be right if that is what you feel. There are many different opinions between table tennis players about whether you should apologize whenever you hit a net or edge or apologize about it at all.
Nonetheless, apologizing when gaining a lucky point has become a big part of table tennis etiquette, and it will remain so. It is your personal choice whether you apologize about it or not.
2. Apology because a good rally was ended
Now this reason for apologizing is something that I personally understand better, even though I usually apologize because of gaining a lucky point as well.
Think about it; if you have a heated contest with your opponent with great smashes, spins, and defenses through an unusually long point, it is a shame and unwanted thing when that kind of a point ends in a net or edge ball.
Apologizing because this acknowledges that rally and opponent’s skills and saying sorry about it are really saying sorry about the great contest that ended in an unwanted way.
3. Apologizing dates back to history
The third reason why saying sorry on edge and netballs is that it dates way back to its history.
Table tennis dates back to Victorian England, and it was first an upper-class game. This happened at the end of the 1800s and early 1900s where etiquette and manners were a vital part of everyday life, much more than they are today.
Apologizing for lucky points is kind, and it acknowledges the opponent’s feelings because, let’s face it, nobody likes to end a good point in a net or edge ball, even if the point is yours.
These three reasons really make up the whole apologizing part of hitting the net and edge balls in table tennis, and there really isn’t much more to it.
Read also: Can You Play Ping Pong On A Glass Table?
Does every player apologize when hitting a net ball
In short, nearly all players apologize when they hit a netball at some point. However, most people don’t apologize about it every time if there comes a period where they strike multiple nets or edge balls in a short period of time. Some people don’t apologize at all because it isn’t necessary.
Should you apologize on edge balls
Whether you should or shouldn’t say sorry in table tennis when you hit a net or edge ball is up to you. I personally do that I read the situation, and 90% of the time, the apology is within the etiquette, and I do like to abide by it because it shows respect.
However, there are times when I don’t apologize. For example, if I hit many netballs in a row or if the opponent doesn’t apologize for his netballs, then I don’t bother to say sorry. First of all, if I hit many netballs, it feels weird to apologize for 3 times a row. Second, if the opponent doesn’t acknowledge netballs for whatever reason, then I just let it pass as well.
When you ask that should you apologize for an edge or netballs, it is totally up to you and your interpretation of table tennis etiquette.
What if a player doesn’t apologize on net balls
If my opponent wouldn’t acknowledge any net or edge balls and leaves me without a gentle lift of the racket or lift of a finger, I wouldn’t take much of it, but it is rude. This is because every table tennis player that takes it seriously knows about it, and nearly all players do apologize, at least for some of the netballs.
It’s not like they are actually sorry about netball; however, it isn’t about that. It is about acknowledging your opponent and the fact that it was a lucky point, not because they actually feel bad and need to say sorry.
In the end, if a table tennis player doesn’t apologize when they score from a netball, nothing happens because it isn’t a written rule, more like an unspoken one.
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Table tennis etiquette
There are various other unwritten rules than apologizing from edge balls in table tennis. The reason for these usually revolves around respect towards one another and sportsmanship. Below I have listed some of the most common etiquette rules in table tennis.
- Shake hands after the match
- Don’t cheer for your opponent’s mistake
- At the end of a match, the winner fetches the ball
- Make sure that the ball is dry before serving
- Confirm that your opponent is fully ready when serving
- Don’t disturb the match taking place next to you
Can you hit a ping pong ball before it bounces
In short, you can’t hit a ping pong ball before it has bounced once on your side of the table. This is because table tennis rules forbid it, and if you hit the ball before you let it bounce, your opponent will gain a point. However, hitting the ball before a bounce is nearly impossible in competitive matches.
Learn more: Why Do Ping Pong Balls Bounce?
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.
Apologizing for net and edge balls is important as being respectful in any sport. Appreciating the opponent and showing out that you are a good person in small gestures like a raise of a racket when you gain a lucky point is just nice to see, at least for me when I play against someone. However, you alone decide whether you feel that it is necessary or not.