Ping Pong 101: Which Side of The Ping Pong Paddle to Use

January 21, 2018
by Robert

If you’re a ping pong player trying to up your game then you should learn about which side of the paddle to use. As you can probably see, both sides of the paddle have different colors. There’s a reason for that, and it’s to help you distinguish between which side is for what style of play in your paddle.

 

Which Side of the Paddle Is Best For What?

 

To step up your game in ping pong, playing with each side as a different function will greatly help you. We’ve previously talked about how the red and black side of the paddle mean different things. However, you decide what they mean. For instance, you can choose your black rubber to be meant for spin on the ball, while your red rubber on the other side of your paddle might be heavy and meant for power and speed. When you set up your paddle you have some important choices to make. You need to remember which side means what. Traditionally, the red side of your paddle is meant to be used for attacking your opponent. This means that you should twist your paddle to the red side when you’re serving, or when you return with force.

paddle red side attack

On the contrary, the black side is traditionally used as your defense. This means that when your opponent is serving you should have your black side ready to return. The reason for this is that since your black side is usually going to be less powerful, it won’t return it too hard and out of the playing area, but rather it will return it back onto the opposite side of the table.

You should however note that there are no rules for the colors. Your ping pong paddle can be organized however you want it. Each ping pong paddle is made so that you can interchange which color is used for what on your paddle. It’s up to you. If you want your black side of the paddle to be used for speed, then you can do that! Just make sure that you remember your color configuration for the game. You should also note that there is no difference between standard paddles. 

What Goes Into Ping Pong Paddle Rubber?

Ping pong paddle rubber is a subject not many novice players know about. First of all, there exists a rule in table tennis that you always have to have two different colored rubbers. Also, if you’re playing in a standardized match, they have to be red and black. You’re also only allowed to choose from certain rubber producing brands for your paddle. There are also some variables that go into your rubber, and you should choose according to your playstyle:

  • Paddle Sponge is different in a lot of brands of paddles. The thickness is the main variable here that makes a difference in your play.  If you’re an aggressive player on offense, then choose a 2.0mm or above paddle, whereas if you’re a better defensive player then you should go with a thinner rubber, something below 2mm.
  • Pimple configuration on your rubber also plays a part. For example: when  you have a paddle that has long pimples on it, that rubber is more suitable to be used for defensive play, whereas the short pimples are mainly to be used for aggressive play.

If you are newer to table tennis and want to get the hang of it, then you should be using reverse rubbers for your ping pong paddles. This will allow you to switch it around how you like and get a feel for each style of rubber (with 4 sides to choose from).

Secret Ping Pong Color Configuration Tip

A secret in ping pong that not many people know is that using your attack hand as black is beneficial for you. Many pros use this configuration because of the creation of the rubbers. Supposedly, black rubbers tend to be a little bit quicker because they lack the die that the red rubbers have. This means that you should also configure your paddle so that your red side is used for spinning the ball, since red rubbers are supposed to be better suited for that. However, at the end of the day it’s completely up to you, and there is no big difference either way!

 

 

If you’re interested in designing your own paddle, we allow you to customize it whatever way you’d like.

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