Why I love Table Tennis
Sports is not my forte. I used to play Cricket and Football at school but that’s all at kids level. I was one among the lazy fellows who thought physical activities are “not my cup of tea” and lived contented watching friends play and making fun of them. Sports commentaries are a separate genre of fun, especially when you get to practice your commentating skills in your friend’s game.
Flash forward to my work life, I’d either be sitting before my laptop or discussing or at friend’s place or cafeteria during breaks. I hardly did any physical activity and I could feel gaining a lot of weight. I tried going to office Gym, but I couldn’t keep up with proper timings between work and gym time.
That’s when I started playing Table Tennis.
It was my teammate Rahul who dragged me into TT room while I was just passing by the “Ping Pong” room. It would have been so much fun for people to watch me playing TT like cricket (Karma!!!!). A week later, I bugged him to teach me during the wee hours of work when not many people would be playing. And slowly I started picking the game.
Fast forward to today, I’m still a beginner who plays the game more enthusiastically not caring about winning or losing. That helps me to enjoy the play more than the score. Six months into TT, the game has taught me so many things which I’d like to share.
Helps you Focus
Often I find myself need time to think something through or a deviation from the overloading thoughts and I find TT a better solution for that. It helped me take my focus away momentarily and when I visit back at it after the game, I find myself able to concentrate more. Basically, TT is a better physical activity when your mind is crowded with too many thoughts or if you want to concentrate more.
I found a lot of buddies at office through Table Tennis and the recent TT tournament in office. Honestly, I have made more friends in the last few months than I’ve made a plenty of time I spent before in office.
TT is now my substitute for Gym. Though it can’t entirely replace gym time, I would at least have some physical activity to sweat out and burn some calories.
Fact #1: An average person can burn 272 calories playing TT for an hour.
Mental Acuity and Reflexes
Since it is a short-distance fast-paced game, your reflexes will turn super-sharp when you play for quiet some time. The speed, placement and spin of the ball is crucial for the game. It helps you to put your brain to use whether to smash the ball or slice it through in a flash of a “millisecond”. You’d be often wondering if it were you who did it. That much I can guarantee the changes the game will have on you.
Eye-Hand Coordination and awareness of surroundings
During the initial days into the game, I could see my brain acting faster but not my body. I’d want to go there to take the shot, I’d reach half-way but alas, I’d have missed the shot. This had happened to me for 1000s of times. But slowly, the game helped me improve my Eye-Hand coordination.
Your brain will be active of the surroundings where the opponent player is, whether your teammate can take the return shot if you place the ball at this place etc…
Fact #2: Table tennis has the potential to be helpful for older people with dementia in particular because it combines physical activity with spatial skills, cognition and keeping social.
Some interesting story of How TT helps a guy who recovered from Coma → Link
Going back to my commentary skills,
I thank all who played with me as a team mate or opponent for helping me grow and look forward for great experience playing with you!
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