Finding the right ping pong table can be a tricky process. A lot of brands are available that offer different kinds of table tennis tables with varying features and different prices.
Before you go out and buy any table, it is important to research and weigh some important features that your table should have. Below are some of the things you should consider when buying your ping pong table:
#1 How do you plan to use the Table?
#1 Recreational Play
If you are planning to use the table for casual play with friends and family members, you don’t have to purchase a table built for professional use.
These tables are usually expensive, since they are approved for use in tournaments and other professional table tennis events. However, there are some high-end models for recreational use available if you want to purchase one.
If the table is meant to be used by several people like in public places or office use, consider investing in a table that is durable and strong enough to withstand heavy usage.
#2 Tournament/Professional Play
Generally, tables that will be used for tournaments go by standards approved by the International Table Tennis Federation(ITTF).
For serious players, the table should be 9 feet long, 5 feet wide and 30 inches in height. The net should be 6 inches high and 6 feet long and the table surface should only be painted with blue or green.
#3 Indoor vs. Outdoor
Table tennis tables for indoors has a surface made of wood, engineered wood or particleboard.
Unless you really need the table to be placed outdoors, it is usually recommended to choose tables designed for indoor use. This is because indoor tables usually have better playing surfaces, rather than outdoor ones.
Most tournaments use indoor table tennis tables, so you’re better off practicing on one from the beginning.
Indoor tables can also be used outdoors, but only for a certain amount of time and should certainly not be left outdoors. This helps to avoid warping and bending, especially if it is exposed to direct sunlight.
The best ones usually have components made of galvanized steel with weatherproof surfaces and concrete tables with polished tops. More affordable ones are made of aluminum, melamine, and other types of resin with thinner table tops.
#2 Rollaway vs. Stationary
Stationary tables are more stable than tables with wheels. However, if you have ample space to set up a stationary table, rollaway ones are more commonly preferred since you can put them away when not in use.
Additionally, rollaway tables can be easily moved around wherever you want them placed. Another important thing to consider is if you plan to put it away constantly.
If you do, you should opt for a model that can be easily folded and assembled again by one person.
A good rollaway table should have wheels that can be easily maneuvered, as well as strong brakes to keep the table from moving around when in use.
#3 Other Important Features to Consider
#1 Playback Position
This feature allows the user to lift one side of the table vertically in order to practice solo.
This feature is popular with beginners and children who want to practice alone. For more advanced players, this is not very effective; the ball does not follow the natural trajectory seen in a real match.
#2 Table Surface Thickness
The thickness of a standard table tennis top is 1 inch. Tables with these surface thicknesses usually give a nicer, more even bounce. However, unless you‘re into serious table tennis games and tournaments, 3/4 inch thick table surfaces will usually suffice.
#3 Table Frame and Legs
This is also an important feature to check, since this will ensure the stability of your table. Well-made legs are necessary, since the table will have to withstand frequent beatings over time.
You may also find tables with levelers. this is also a great feature to have, since you can play properly even if your floor is uneven. You just need to adjust the levelers accordingly in order to maintain a nicely leveled surface.