Ping pong, or table tennis, probably the most played racket sport around the world, is played on a hard table where two or four players hit a hollow ball, back and forth with rackets. The table is split in the middle by a net. Apart from the serve, a players should hit the ball in such a manner that it bounces once on the opponent's side, after which the opponent returns the ball in the same way. When any player is unable to return the ball within the rules of the game, the other player gets a point. It is a fast game demanding quick reflexes and reactions from players. The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) is the governing body of the sport, and since 1988 it is even been included in the Olympics.
The game originated in Britain in the 1800s where it was known as whiff-waff. It wasn't a full-fledged sport back then and was usually played as an activity game after dinner. Books were used as rackets, a pile of books served as the net and a golf ball was used to play the game. The rules and equipment used in the game has undergone a tremendous change ever since. However, size of the ping pong table has remained more or less similar since inception.
Ping Pong Table Measurement
A ping pong table is made from Masonite, a kind of hardboard comprising wooden chips. These wooden chips are treated with steam, prior to being used, so that they form long fibers. These fibers are then used for making boards and the actual table.
A ping pong table should be 9 feet in length. When converted into meters, the length comes out to be 2.74 m. This length is standard across for all tables, as specified by the ITTF. A net divides the table into two equal halves.
A ping pong table is 5 feet wide. When converted to metric terms, it becomes 1.525 m. A white colored straight line divides the width into two equal halves. These sections are essential while playing a doubles game.
A ping pong table stands 2 feet 6 inches (30 inches) above the ground.
The net place in the center of a ping pong table should be 6 inches (15 cm) tall. The net assembly consists of clamps and two supporting posts which aid in joining the net to the table. The net is made of nylon and is suspended from the supporting posts with help of a chord.
An important aspect of the ping pong game is that there should be uniform ball bounce throughout the table. For this, the ITTF has set a standard that when a ping pong ball is dropped onto the table from a height of 12 inches, it should bounce up to 8¾ inches in height. Ping pong tables usually have a dark-colored surface either green, red or blue in color. Lines on the table are white in color. The white line which divides the width of the table is 3 mm in thickness. The border lining all around the table is 2 cm thick. In spite of a border lining on the table, the playing area on the table not only includes the border lining, but also extends up to the edges of the table.
Ping Pong Ball and Bat Sizes
Apart from knowing the ping pong table's size, it is important to know the ball and bat dimensions as well. The ping pong ball is made of celluloid and is hollow. Earlier, the ping pong ball use to be 38 mm in diameter which has now been revised and standardized to 40 mm. A 3-star rating for the ball indicates that its bounce and roundness are consistent. The weight of a ping pong ball should be 2.7 g.
The ping pong racket should be 10.6 cm in length, 15.24 cm in width and 19.36 cm in height. Its weight should be about 180 g. The hard, pimpled rubber bats used initially gave way to the sponge rubber bats used these days. The ping pong racket is also known as 'paddle' in the USA and 'bat' in Europe.
Knowing the table tennis table's size is important for people looking to build a table at home by themselves, along with ones who have found a recent interest in the sport itself. It is an excellent sport which can not only be a good exercise, if played regularly, but can also improve a person's hand-eye coordination and reflexes to a great extent.