Ping Pong Grip Types

Almost all popular racket sports include more than one way to hold the racket. The same can be said for ping pong. But why are there different ping pong grip types? Isn’t one universal one enough?

Well, you’d think so but there are two main types of best ping pong grip types that most players seem to adapt to very nicely. In this guide, we will cover all of the most popular ones and show you how to master them all.

The Different Types of Proper Ping Pong Grip Types

As I already mentioned, there are two main types of ping pong paddle grip types that exist. They are called a Penhold grip type and a Shakehand grip type, not to be confused with a “handshake” grip ping pong type. In addition, each of these two main types includes a few other subtypes.

Let’s see how they look.

The Penhold Grip Ping Pong Style

Ironically enough, the Penhold grip type highly resembles how you would hold a pen. In order to do this one correctly, you have to curl your index finger and thumb and have them touch the rubber of the paddle. At the same time, place all of your other fingers on the sponge.

It looks a little something like this.

penhold grip type

Image Credits: MLFM Table Tennis

There are three different types of Penhold ping pong grip types. This includes the Chinese ping pong grip type, the Japanese Penhold, and the Reverse Backhand Penhold.

Chinese Penhold

This is a unique type of Penhold ping pong grip that is basically the same as the standard Penhold type we described above. It’s popular among Asian players and is rapidly gaining popularity all across the world. It’s a comfortable ping pong grip type that is also easy to get used to quickly.

Japanese Penhold

The Japanese Penhold ping pong grip type is quite similar to the standard Penhold with just one slight change. Instead of having the three fingers on the sponge curled, you have to straighten them out. This way, you can provide much more power and strength when you hit the ping pong ball.

Reverse Backhand Penhold

And finally, the Reverse Backhand Penhold is used as the name suggests. You basically arrange your fingers in the Chinese Penhold ping pong grip and just use the side with the three fingers on it. You don’t use the side where your thumb and index fingers are. One very qualified player who can teach you this move is a Chinese ping pong player known as Wang Hao.

The Shakehand Grip Ping Pong Style

shakehand grip

There are two main types of the Shakehand ping pong grip type that you can easily learn. In fact, this ping pong grip type is much easier to master and is excellent for beginner players. The way it got its name is because of the stunning resemblance of how you perform a handshake. You basically grab the ping pong paddle as if you were shaking someone’s hand.

The Shallow Shakehand Grip

To perform this ping pong paddle grip type, all you have to do is grab the paddle’s handle as if you were shaking someone’s hand. Then, straighten your index finger as seen in the image above and have your thumb rest while gently touching your index finger on the handle.

That’s all there is to it.

The Deep Shakehand Grip

The only difference between the Shallow and Deep Shakehand grips is in the positioning of the thumb. All you have to do here is make the Shallow Shakehand grip and then straighten your thumb on the ping pong paddle’s sponge. This allows you to use this ping pong grip type as in both forehand and backhand shots without sacrificing any power or stability.

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