Publication Details

Wong, D. Wai-Chi., Lee, C. & Lam, W. (2020). Biomechanics of table tennis: A systematic scoping review of playing levels and maneuvers. Applied Sciences (Switzerland), 10 (15), 5203.


© 2020 by the authors. This present study aims to review the available evidence on the biomechanics of table-tennis strokes. Specifically, it summarized current trends, categorized research foci, and biomechanical outcomes regarding various movement maneuvers and playing levels. Databases included wereWeb of Science, Cochrane Library, Scopus, and PubMed. Twenty-nine articles were identified meeting the inclusion criteria. Most of these articles revealed how executing different maneuvers changed the parameters related to body postures and lines of movement, which included racket face angle, trunk rotation, knee, and elbow joints. It was found that there was a lack of studies that investigated backspin maneuvers, longline maneuvers, strikes against sidespin, and pen-hold players. Meanwhile, higher-level players were found to be able to better utilize the joint power of the shoulder and wrist joints through the full-body kinetic chain. They also increased plantar pressure excursion in the medial-lateral direction, but reduced in anterior-posterior direction to compromise between agility and dynamic stability. This review identified that most published articles investigating the biomechanics of table tennis reported findings comparing the differences among various playing levels and movement tasks (handwork or footwork), using ball/racket speed, joint kinematics/kinetics, electromyography, and plantar pressure distribution. Systematically summarizing these findings can help to improve training regimes in order to attain better table tennis performance.



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