As a largely indoor sport, an indoor table tennis table is the mainstay piece of equipment. A quality table can give you years of satisfying playing experience. So what should you look out for when buying an indoor ping pong table?
While outdoor table tennis tables have become popular recently, the quality cannot compare to a good indoor table. Therefore, for a table tennis enthusiast, indoor table tennis tables remain the equipment of choice.
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Portability and Storage
Keeping a large piece of hardware like a ping-pong table (which measure up to 9ft by 5ft) indoors brings its own set of problems. One, you need a large enough space to not only accommodate the table, but also leave enough room to move around and play the game. Two, portability becomes an issue, considering that most high end tables weigh over 250 lbs.
To counter these two problems, most manufacturers have come up with innovative designs that make it easy to fold up and rollaway the table after use. Most indoor ping-pong tables sold by major manufacturers such as Butterfly, Stiga, Killerspin, Kettler, etc. incorporate some measure to fold the table for easy transportation.
In most designs, the two halves of the tables can be folded up against each other, resting on 2 pairs of wheels. This makes it incredibly easy to roll the table to any desired place.
Rolling and folding the table can cause significant damage to the table over time. Therefore, one has to ensure that the undercarriage that supports the table is strong enough to take all the stress. Make sure that your indoor table tennis table has large wheels (ideally larger than 5″), solid steel construction, and safety measures such as locking mechanisms, etc.
Quality of Playing Surface
Other than the portability, the most important element to consider when buying an indoor ping-pong table is the playing surface. The thicker the top, the better the bounce and spin it generally will offer.
Competition-level tables usually have a 25mm thick top. Low end tables meant for beginners or children have a 12mm thick top. For casual players, an 18-22mm thick top would suffice, but for semi-professional or professional players, nothing less than 25mm would do.
Besides the thickness, also pay close attention to the material used in construction. Commonly used materials are chipboard, laminate plywood, fiberboard, etc. If possible, try knocking a few balls around on the table to get an idea of the bounce and speed offered by the surface. A good playing surface would offer consistent bounce, spin and speed.
Indoor Table Tennis Table – Find The Correct Table for Your Needs
The kind of indoor table tennis table you should buy will depend on your own requirements. If you do not have a lot of space, you should buy a table that offers maximum portability. If you are a casual player, you do not need to spend thousands of dollars on an expensive competition level table. Conversely, serious players should consider buying the highest quality table they can afford. It is an investment that will last you years, if not decades.
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