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How to Handle Table Tennis Losses

It’s an inevitable part of the game “table tennis losses” and it’s unavoidable!
Greater London Table Tennis Championships

I witnessed the Greater London Championships a week ago and watched hundreds of players competing. Each player was trying to win and after speaking to players it was clear that most who lost blamed themselves. Often this is true we all have poor days but occasionally we are not honest with ourselves. We must admit that the occasion got to us or the player was better or outplayed us on that occasion.

Over Confident

I also witnessed players super confident who told me they will win the tournament or get to the final. Is this a good attitude? It depends, on this occasion neither player got past the quarter-final but that does not mean it was incorrect. If they truly believed the event was theirs, then it’s a good thing to have a positive mindset. I believe we are all different so we should find what suits us best and don’t let others tell you otherwise. This means you must learn what makes you perform and utilise it to the best of your ability.

Table Tennis is Different

Unlike some sports table tennis has two outcomes a loser and a winner, it’s about how we perceive the loss or win that builds our table tennis character. The aim of this blog is to make you think about why you lost and what are the effects of losing.

On most occasions when we lose and we blame everything but ourselves. On the odd occasion when we lose we come off saying” I played really well”. 

So what should we do to gain optimum benefit from a lose:

1. I was always taught that the real magic happens when you lose if your willing to learn from it. What does that mean? When we lose we often reflect on why we lost, assess the issues and try to implement an action plan against our poor performance. So when you do lose try to think why you lost, please don’t blame an edge or a net, that went against you (that is uncontrollable. When we win we are happy and often forget to reflect, hampering our progress, the tip here is trying to reflect on the match rather than just a lose or win.

2. We are too harsh on ourselves, losing is a part of the game (hate losing) but accept that it will happen. 

3. Are you a true winner? I often test my players for example I may provide extra physicals for the ‘winners’ yes the winners!! This shows me who really wants to win and who doesn’t mind losing. The players who fight to win regardless of the physicals have the right attitude, they are willing to sacrifice to gain a win. That’s the key, you must sacrifice and be willing to take many hits and many loses on your pathway to becoming a true winner.

“Winners never quit and quitters never win”