Coach Samson Dubina US National Team Coach 4x USATT Coach of the Year

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...Thinking toward the future...

Last week at the local table tennis club, there were about 10 players rated 1800 and 1 player rated 2100 who was a controlled looper.  I asked the 2100-rated player what he could possibly do to improve to the next level…  After a bit of discussion, we agreed that he needed to learn to play more aggressively and develop his power shots. 
As I observed the 2100-rated player competing against the lower competition throughout the night, it appeared that he was playing very passively and struggling through many matches.  I asked him why he wasn’t practicing to improve to 2200 or 2300 level.  He said that he didn’t want to lose.  He didn’t want to lose.
This is one of the major underlying problems of players today.  They actually know what they need to do to improve; they know the necessary changes that need to be made.  However, they are not willing to implement new techniques and strategies in the matches. 
If you want to improve this year, you need to do several things….
#1 Learn what you need to improve
#2 Practice your new skills
#3 Use your new skills in games
#4 Continue to evaluate your new skills
#5 Use your new skills in tournaments
#6 Continue to evaluate and re-evaluate your new skills
Learning to backhand loop, learning to flip, learning to implement a new serve, learning to counterloop, learning to do any new skill takes time and persistence.  If you are persistent at implementing your new skill, you should be seeing results within 6-12 months.  Think long term and have good results!