Table tennis is a game that is usually played indoors on a table. It can be played by single players or double teams. The object of the game is to score points. A game is won by the first player to reach twenty-one points. Serving and returning the ball are the basic skills of the game.
It is played on a rectangular table nine feet (2.74metres) long and five feet (1.52metres) wide. The table top is two feet six inches (76centimetres) above the floor. The playing surface is divided into two courts by a net six inches(15.25centimetres) high. There is a white line round the edge of the table. Another white line down the center of the table divides it into left and right hand courts for doubles. The surface of the table tennis bat is covered with inward pimpled rubber or outward pimpled rubber.
No one is sure who invented the game. It was probably adapted from lawn tennis, so that it could be played indoors. In about 1890 a celluloid ball replaced the rubber ball. The manufacturers of the ball invented the name “ping pong”. The ITTF was founded in 1926. Its headquarters are in England. China became a member of the ITTF in 1953. China and Sweden are some of the dominant nations in world table tennis.
Table tennis requires speed, balance, stamina, agility, flexibility, coordination and good footwork. A table tennis player is also called a paddler.