Table Tennis for One Person

Last Updated on June 26, 2023 by Sorin Petroj

Table tennis is a game that requires a lot of skill, focus, and precision. Whether you’re playing it for fun or competition, it’s essential to practice regularly to improve your game. However, sometimes it’s not possible to find a partner or opponent to practice with. That’s when practicing table tennis alone comes in handy. In this article, we will discuss how to practice table tennis alone, some essential equipment you need, and some effective drills that you can do by yourself.

Equipment you need

Before we dive into the drills, let’s discuss the equipment you need to practice table tennis alone. The basic equipment you need is a table tennis table, a ball, and a paddle. These are the three essential items required for the game. When buying a table tennis table, ensure that it’s of good quality and meets the standard size of 9 feet long, 5 feet wide, and 2.5 feet high.

Besides the basic equipment, there are some additional items that can make practicing alone easier and more effective. These include a robot, a net, a practice partner, and a timer.

A robot is an automated device that shoots balls at you, simulating a real game scenario. It’s an excellent tool for practicing your strokes, footwork, and consistency. A net is essential to practice your serves and return shots. A practice partner can also help you practice your game, but in their absence, you can use a table edge or a wall to bounce the ball back to you. Finally, a timer can help you track your progress and ensure that you practice for a specific duration.

How to Practice Table Tennis Alone?

Now that you have the necessary equipment let’s dive into some of the drills and exercises you can do to improve your game when practicing alone.

  1. Serve practice

Serving is one of the most crucial aspects of table tennis. It’s the only time in the game when you have complete control of the ball, and you can dictate the pace and spin of the game. Practicing your serves alone is an effective way to improve your game.

To practice serving alone, set up a net or use a table edge. Then serve the ball to yourself, focusing on different types of serves such as the backspin, topspin, sidespin, and no-spin. You can also practice serving to different areas of the table, such as the corners, the middle, and the edges.

  1. Footwork

Footwork is another crucial aspect of table tennis. Good footwork allows you to move quickly and get into position to make your shots. Practicing your footwork alone can help you improve your agility, speed, and balance.

To practice your footwork, place a series of cones or markers on the ground and move around them quickly. You can also use a robot to simulate a game scenario and practice moving to different parts of the table.

  1. Stroke Practice

Stroke practice is one of the most effective ways to improve your table tennis game. Practicing your strokes can help you improve your consistency, speed, and precision. To practice your strokes, focus on the basic techniques such as forehand, backhand, and topspin.

One of the best ways to practice your strokes is to use a robot. A robot can shoot balls at you with different speeds, spins, and trajectories, allowing you to practice a variety of strokes. You can also practice your strokes by bouncing the ball off a wall or the table edge.

  1. Multiball Practice

Multiball practice is an excellent way to simulate a game scenario when practicing alone. It involves using a bucket of balls and a table edge or a wall to bounce the balls back to you. The objective is to hit as many balls as possible, improving your reaction time, consistency, and footwork.

To practice multiball, stand a few feet away from the table and have a bucket of balls nearby. Bounce the first ball off the table or wall and hit it back. As soon as you hit the first ball, bounce the second ball and hit it back. Continue this process, hitting as many balls as you can before they fall to the ground. Try to keep the balls within a specific area of the table, such as the backhand side, to simulate a game scenario.

  1. Mental Practice

Mental practice is an essential aspect of table tennis that’s often overlooked. Practicing your mental game can help you improve your focus, concentration, and confidence. Mental practice involves visualizing yourself playing a perfect game, imagining yourself hitting every shot perfectly and winning every point.

To practice mental practice, close your eyes and imagine yourself playing a game of table tennis. Visualize the table, the ball, and the opponent. Focus on hitting every shot perfectly and winning every point. Imagine the sounds of the ball bouncing off the table and the opponent’s reactions. This mental practice can help you improve your confidence and focus during a real game.


Practicing table tennis alone can be challenging, but it’s essential to improve your game. The key is to focus on the fundamentals such as serving, footwork, strokes, multiball, and mental practice. By using the right equipment and practicing regularly, you can improve your game and take your table tennis skills to the next level.

Remember, practice makes perfect, and the more you practice, the better you’ll become. So, set aside some time every day to practice table tennis alone and watch your game improve.


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