Table tennis (or ping-pong) offers several unique benefits compared to other sports, and an expert explains why we should all pick up this fun and healthy pastime.
Top 5 Benefits of Playing Table Tennis
Unlike other sports, Table Tennis is quite gentle on the body, virtually injury-free, and does not require any special skills —at least at the beginner level. And the best part about it is that it’s relatively easy to learn and a great way to de-stress yourself. Kevin James, co-founder of PingPong Bros, highlights the top five benefits of playing table tennis.
1. Health benefits that go beyond ‘it’s a sport’.
From the outset, there is a common misconception that the sport is not physically demanding, but this is a myth. Table tennis is one of the fastest indoor sports and requires a great deal of stamina and quick reflexes. However, unlike other sports, Table Tennis is quite gentle on the body, virtually injury-free, and does not require any special skills—at least at the beginner level—and the best part about it is that it’s relatively easy to learn and a great way to de-stress yourself.
People of all age groups can play and enjoy this sport. On average, you burn 500 calories per hour while playing table tennis. So you can say goodbye to your treadmill. Table tennis is a high-Intensity sport that helps you improve your stamina, reflexes, hand-eye coordination, and your focus.
The sport is all about reflexes, and you need to be always on your feet, constantly moving and chasing the ball. During play, the blood circulation to your heart increases, giving that vital organ a good workout. A 2011 study showed table tennis can be highly beneficial for kids with ADHD.
Table tennis as a sport has more to offer than you think. This all-round sport provides immense health benefits, which not many other sports do.
2. Table Tennis is fun socially too
Table tennis is a great game to gel with friends, family, and colleagues. Simple rules and ease of playing make table tennis the perfect recreational sport. What’s more, the game is not very demanding physically iF you don’t want it to be, yet at the same time is very engaging.
The sport is a great ice breaker and helps you connect with your peers better while bringing the best out of everyone. You may even discover the funnier or competitive side of your colleagues or loved ones.
Looking to get even with a friend or simply had a bad day at the office, just play ping pong and you sure are going to feel better!
3. The Brain Game
If you have ever watched a game of table tennis, you’ll know that it is incredibly swift. While the game itself is pretty simple, it demands all your focus and reflexes.
From a naïve perspective, it may look like you just need to hit the ball over the net. However, the sport is extremely demanding. You will always need to be alert to the ball and your partner’s moves.
No doubt, playing table tennis regularly will keep your body fit and your brain sharp.
Table tennis is often referred to as a ‘super-sport’ – one that covers all aspects of healthy living and social interaction. Coordination and balance are also areas which the sport covers. After all, you are hitting a small ball over a small net!
Table Tennis is quite an enjoyable game too. While you relish a game of table tennis, your brains produce serotonin – the brains ‘feel good’ chemical. That’s your brain’s way of saying ‘thank you’ to you and your body.
You can definitely opt for this activity when you’re looking to entertain yourself and connect with people!
4. Helps develop and refine strategic thinking
Just as much as table tennis helps in developing mental alertness, it also improves hand-eye coordination, motor skills, cognitive function and the flow of blood to the brain. As per Alzheimer’s Weekly, table tennis helps improve overall human physiology.
Since you have to study your opponent’s moves and devise your strategy within a fraction of a second, the sport can also help improve your tactical thinking and mental conditioning.
For younger players, table tennis is a great way to know and learn strategic thinking. For the older ones, it helps in further bettering the same.
5. Table Tennis and the Reality of Today
Table tennis is perhaps one of the best-fit games in modern society. People are short of time, and always on the run. They often cannot afford to spend a lot of time playing complete outdoor games, until of course, they’re passionate about it.
But table tennis can be easily played anytime and anywhere you want to. In fact, many offices these days have a table tennis table in their breakout area for the employees. You can just as well take a break from work and treat yourself to a game of table tennis for as little as 15 minutes! And this will surely make you feel better at work.
In today’s active lifestyle, it can become quite challenging to take out time for your kids and family members. But table tennis can help you bond with your family members and at the same time provide you the much needed physical exercise.
As you can see, table tennis offers several unique benefits compared to any other sports. So, what’s stopping you from picking up this wonderful sport? Let’s play!
Kevin James is cofounder of PingPongBros.
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