Table tennis (also known as ping pong) is a ball game in which two (singles) or four players (doubles) hit a ball with rackets between them. The game is played on a table divided by a net. The game starts with a serve (serve) (the starting player hits the ball so that it bounces first in his own half and then in the opponent's half of the court) The opponent "only" has to hit the ball to the other half of the court, after that the serving player has a similar task. The aim of the game is to score a point against the opponent with hits that he cannot return over the net.

The tools

Mixed doubles


Table tennis cannot be played by both genders, in addition to individual and doubles competitions, mixed doubles is also organized - where men and women play as a pair against the other mixed doubles. Table tennis is played on a relatively small table, which means that the image of the game can be extremely varied. It is characterized by a small racket, a small and light ball, and an extremely fast game that requires very good coordination skills, speed, and endurance when played at a high level. In addition to a sufficient feel for the ball, those who want to achieve serious results also need fast reflexes and a well-learned technique


At the basic level, the basics of the sport can be learned in a relatively short time. Experience shows that the game provides a lot of joy and experience for children, so it is worth introducing this game to them in any age group, even in school settings. It is worth doing this as early as possible, because the selection for competitive sports should take place very early, at the age of 7-8.

A special and popular sport

For all ages

However, table tennis does not only exist for young people, the specialty of the sport is, among other things, that even older athletes can play their beloved sport at a high level. Understandably, the main goal for them is health preservation and pleasant relaxation. Another advantage of ping pong is that it does not require a large financial investment to create the physical conditions. It can be used at school even during longer breaks, after-school activities or home tournaments.

The start

According to some sources, a game similar to ping pong was played in contemporary Europe as early as the 12th century, so the origins of the sport go back quite far. The sport in its current form appeared in England in the 19th century, where it was initially considered leisure entertainment and exercise worthy of gentlemen.

The prehistoric age

Competitors long ago

In fact, table tennis was a scaled-down, less expensive version of tennis transferred to the table. At first, it was mainly developed for light exercise after lunch, and to be able to play tennis indoors in case of rain. This line of thought developed in England, as the island country has a very high number of rainy days, so we can conclude that England can be considered the birthplace of table tennis. The appearance of celluloid balls was a big change in the development of table tennis.

Gibbs, who is of English origin, bought balls made of celluloid, which were previously only known as children's toys, during a business trip to the States of the Association. The game became popular during the 1899-1904 "ping-pong fever" in England. It is interesting that the patent application for the name "ping pong" was submitted by a company called Parker in the United States. The term "pinpong" can therefore be considered a commercial brand name.

It can also be played outdoors

The golden team

By the beginning of the twentieth century, "ping pong" had become very popular throughout Europe, so much so that it began to spread to Asia and other continents as well. This was a very important period in the history of the sport, as it was during these years that table tennis developed into a competitive sport. They unified the rules, introduced sets lasting up to 21 points, and the exchange of organs lasting up to five points. The competition rules of the sport were patented by Baxter in 1891.

The rules of modern table tennis were compiled by L. Huchinson, a member of the Cavendish Club. It was during this time that the first sports clubs and national professional associations were founded. The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) was founded on December 12, 1926, in London. Hungary was also among the founding members. Currently, the association has more than 200 nations.

The first ITTF World Championship was held on December 6-11, 1926. was held in London in five competitions. It was held annually until 1957, then every two years. The women's pair was included in the competition from 1928 and the women's team from 1935. In the early days, Hungary was considered a great power in table tennis. Table tennis was introduced in Hungary in 1902, an English football player introduced this game. The Hungarian National Table Tennis Association (MOATSZ) was founded on December 23, 1924. In the early years, the best of our country were considered dominant in the sport. With forty world championship medals, Viktor Barna is still the most successful competitor in the sport as a twenty-two-time world champion. The last world championship gold was won by the Hungarian "Golden Team" (Gergely Gábor, István Jónyer, Tibor Klampár) at the 1979 WC in Pyongyang.

At the end of the century

Jan-Ove Waldner

European stars

In the 1980s, in addition to the Chinese, the golden era of the Swedes followed, led by Jan-Ove Waldner, nicknamed "King", who beat the Hungarian legend, Tibor Klampár, at the European Championships in Budapest in 1982 on his home court, gaining immense fame throughout the world. with this. Apart from the Swedes, only a few players could be worthy opponents of the Asian players. The German Timo Boll, the Belarusian Vladimir Samsonov, the Austrian Werner Schlager and the Danish Michael Maze stood out among them.


Despite its popularity, table tennis was not included in the program of the Olympics for a long time, it was only added to the official list in 1988, in Seoul.

Tibor Klampár

Among Hungary's competitors, Tibor Klampár took 4th place in the men's singles in Söül, and the women's pair Csilla Tóth Krisztina Bátorfi took 4th place in Sydney. Among Hungary's competitors, Tibor Klampár took 4th place in the men's singles in Söül, and the women's pair Csilla Tóth Krisztina Bátorfi took 4th place in Sydney.

Csilla Bátorfi and Kisztina Tóth


After the 2000 Summer Olympics, the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) adopted some important rule changes in order to increase the popularity of the sport. From October 2000, the 38 mm diameter ball was increased to 40 mm in order to make the ball more visible on television broadcasts and thereby make the game more enjoyable for the spectators. From September 1, 2001, 11-point games were introduced at events organized by the ITTF, making the matches faster and more exciting.

Table size does not change

Endre Major


Table tennis was already part of the program at the first Paralympics held in Rome in 1960. At that time, 35 competitors from 10 countries compared their skills in 11 events. The global database of the international confederation's (IPC) records shows the extraordinary development and unbroken popularity of the sport. According to this, nearly 5,400 table tennis para-athletes are registered in more than 130 countries. Approximately 80 athletes from our country have been included in this register so far.

The table tennis competition rules of the Paralympics are basically the same as the regulations of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF). The only difference is that the mobility of wheelchair athletes differs in a special way from that of standing athletes, so some points of the regulations concerning them have been supplemented and modified. In the categories, individual and team events were organized, which were complemented by an open event as appropriate. The international regulations are also applied domestically by the Hungarian Table Tennis Association (MOATSZ). At the next Olympics in Paris, instead of the team competition, a doubles competition will be held.

Ibrahim Hamadtou no hands

Ibrahim Hamadtou ball toss

Az asztalitenisz már az első, 1960-ban Rómában megrendezett paralimpián a program részét képezte. Ekkor 10 ország 35 versenyzője, 11 versenyszámban mérte össze tudását. A nemzetközi szövetség (IPC) nyilvántartásának globális adatbázisa megmutatja a sportág rendkívüli fejlődését és töretlen népszerűségét. E szerint ma már több, mint 130 országban, közel 5400 asztalitenisz parasportolót tartanak nyilván. Hazánkból ebbe a nyilvántartásba ez idáig nagyjából 80 sportoló került be.

Classification, sports categories Table tennis players compete in categories 1-11: • Class 1-5 category: wheelchair-bound competitors • Class 6-10 category: standing competitors • Class 11 category: mildly mentally disabled competitors After their preliminary domestic classification, the competitors they get their category at their first international competition. The international categorization of intellectually disabled competitors is based on VIRTUS regulations.

Bhavinaben Patel