A Look at the Sport’s Growing Popularity of Table Tennis in the Philippines

Since 1900, table tennis in the Philippines has grown. From a backyard pastime, the sport has grown to become a competitive sport with national championships, thanks to its players and fans. 

OKBet fam, here is a brief look at table tennis in the Philippines.

The Brief History of Table Tennis

Table tennis (ping-pong) has a brief but intriguing history. England created the Table Tennis Association in 1901 and recognized it in 1926. The International Table Tennis Federation was established in 1926 to establish rules and regulations for the sport as it became more popular in Europe, Asia, and the Americas.

Table game is among the most popular indoor sports in over 200 countries. It was then integrated to the Olympics in 1988 after it became prevalent in the 1930s and 1940s.

Over the years, the sport has undergone many changes, including the introduction of new equipment, scoring systems, and playing styles. From its humble beginnings as an indoor pastime to its current status as a competitive sport enjoyed by millions worldwide, the history of table tennis is a testament to the game’s enduring appeal and adaptability.

Quick Trivia

Who Invented Table Tennis?

Late 1800s, England invented table tennis. Game inventorship is contested but still, British sports fans started playing indoor tennis with books as paddles and champagne corks as balls. 

In What Country Did Table Tennis Originate?

Table tennis was invented in England and was considered as a type of tennis that is played indoors. However, it became a separate sport in the early 1900s.

In What Year Did Table Tennis Become an Olympic Sport?

Olympic table tennis began in 1988. The Seoul Olympics introduced it as a medal event. Since then, the Summer Olympics have included singles and team table tennis events for men and women.

Table Tennis Scoring

Table tennis players score points by hitting the ball over the net onto their opponent’s side. Players score points when their opponents lose or hit the ball out of bounds. The 1st player to 11 points with a two-point lead wins. A 10-10 tie continues until one player gets a two-point lead. The person who wins an odd number of games, such as 5 or 7, wins the match.

Table Tennis Table Size

Table tennis tables are 2.74 meters (9 feet) long, 1.525 meters (5 feet) broad, and 0.76 meters (2.5 feet) high. A 15.25-centimeter (6-inch) net divides the table in half. Green or blue paint covers the table’s wood surface. The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) regulates table size and specifications to promote consistency.

Table Tennis Terminologies

Like any other sport, table tennis has its own set of unique terminologies. See the key terms used list below in table tennis:

Serve – starting a point by hitting the ball from behind the end of the table and over the net onto the opponent’s side.

Forehand – a shot hit on the dominant side of the body, usually with a forward swinging motion.

Backhand – a shot hit on the non-dominant side of the body, usually with a backhand swinging motion.

Rally – a series of back-and-forth shots between two players.

Topspin – a shot hit with a forward and upward motion that causes the ball to spin forward and downward when it bounces on the opponent’s side of the table.

Backspin – a shot hit with a downward and backward motion that causes the ball to spin backward and upward when it bounces on the opponent’s side of the table.

Block – a defensive shot that redirects the ball back over the net with minimal spin.

Smash – an aggressive shot hit with a downward and forward motion that aims to hit the ball with great force.

Deuce – a tie score of 10-10 in a game, after which the game continues until one player takes a two-point lead.

Understanding of Table Tennis Rules

The following is a rundown of the game’s fundamental regulations:

  1. The game is played on a table that is 2.74 meters long, 1.525 meters wide, and 0.76 meters high.
  2. A net divides the table into two halves. The net is 15.25 centimeters high and stretches across the entire width of the table.
  3. Serving starts the game. The server must launch the ball at least 16 centimeters into the air, causing it to bounce once before crossing over to the other side of the table. 
  4. If the ball hits the net on the serve and lands on the opponent’s side, it is called a let serve and is replayed.
  5. After that, the opponent is responsible for bringing the ball back to their side of the table, where it must bounce once before moving back to the server’s side.
  6. If your opponent drops the ball or sends it out of the playing area, you get the point.
  7. A game is played to 11 points, and the player who reaches 11 points first wins the game. However, if the score is tied at 10-10, the game continues until one player takes a two-point lead.
  8. In a match, the winner is the player who wins the best of an odd number of games (e.g., best of 5 or best of 7).
  9. These are the basic rules of table tennis. However, many other rules govern the game, such as rules for serving, doubles play, and equipment regulations.

Benefits of Table Tennis

Table Tennis, like all sports, has some benefits for its players. Here are some of the key benefits:

Mental Stimulation

Table tennis requires strategic thinking, concentration, and quick decision-making. Playing the game can help improve cognitive function and boost mental agility.

Stress Relief

Playing table tennis can help reduce stress and anxiety by providing a fun and social outlet for physical activity.


Table tennis is a social sport played with friends and family or in organized leagues. Playing table tennis can help build social connections and improve overall well-being.

Table Tennis, Indoor or Outdoor?

Table tennis is played inside on a specially-made table. Wooden table tennis tables have green or blue playing surfaces. Weather, wind, and other external phenomena don’t affect the game indoors.

Outdoor table tennis is conceivable, especially in casual settings. Outdoor tables feature weather-resistant surfaces and are built of metal or composite materials. Outdoor table tennis is exciting but requires more room and may be affected by weather and other environmental factors. Thus, competitive table tennis is usually played indoors, while recreational or informal play is outdoors.