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Table tennis requires much more discipline than most people realize. When an inexperienced player matches up with someone who truly understands the game, they quickly come to see this.
In watching table tennis videos you will notice that the arm movements are very precise. For example, a backhand drive requires more than it initially seems. First, your feet should be set slightly wider than your shoulders, and squared toward where you want the ball to land.
Your elbow should be out so that the forearm is almost parallel to the floor. The racket should be held near your center, and the majority of your movement should come from the forearm. Use a slight follow through. If you are too wild or move more of the arm than you should you will not be able to control the shot, and accuracy is very important.
Meet the ball at the height of its bounce with your racket and return the shot. As you practice you will notice that the motion becomes second nature and your speed and reflexes will improve.