Everyone knows that soccer is the most popular sport in the world but did you know that ping pong is number two? Most people know of ping pong from playing in their garage or basement with a couple of cheap ping pong paddles. Anyone can play that way and have fun and that is much of it's appeal.
However, sports scientists recognize table tennis as one of the most complex sports to learn because of the many variables involved in becoming a truly great player. The top players all must have the quickest of reflexes, great stamina, the ability to hit a wide variety of shots, and have unwavering concentration.
Ping Pong at the highest levels is a thinking man's game as much as it is a game of athleticism. Spin and speed become the weapons that determine who is the winner when a player starts playing tournaments. Deception is also an important part of the equation and works hand in hand with speed. Being able to disquise a shot as to its speed and spin is a skill that any improving player must learn. The ping pong paddles the top players use are all custom made for their particular strengths and they cost many hundreds of dollars.
At the very top level of table tennis, the players are extremely fit. They do various drills and practice at the table for most of the day. They are dedicated and besides weight training and stamina training, they do footwork and visualization drills designed to help them make those split second decisions that are necessary in this arena.