Ping pong is a game (or sport) you can play with friends and family at home or wherever there are table tennis paddles and a table. But if you've played enough to know you really enjoy the game and want to learn more, the next step is joining your local table tennis center. It's where you'll find others in your town who share your interest in the sport and want to become better players. When you play against competitive opponents, you'll soon understand where you are with your game and what needs to improve. If your budget allows it, you might consider finding a coach to work on your game seriously.

Playing any sport well requires mastering many techniques, and table tennis is no exception. In some areas like concentration and finite moves, it is more nuanced and cerebral than others. It also requires a fair amount of physical conditioning. For example, it's crucial to play with a broad and low stance near table level. It'll take your legs a while to build up the endurance to stand in the ready position throughout a long match. You also need to learn to read your opponent – playing style, type of spin placed on the ball most often, etc. Excellent players adjust their technique depending on the opponent.

The table you play on and the lighting in the room are also factors in your game. Count on your local table tennis center to have those taken care of, along with regulation height nets on the tables. Surprisingly, many players have played a lot on tables with non-regulation height nets. If you're one of them, it can take time to adjust to a regulation height net, so the sooner you play with one at regulation height, the better. Properly placed lighting in the playing space is also crucial. Glare, shadows, or light positions that affect sight-lines or concentration can all hurt your game.

Practice robots are quite popular at some table tennis centers, and many players play against them. Many coaches like them for their players to practice specific skills. It may be helpful to mix into your training and practice sessions. Play against human opponents as often as you can, and when none are available, some practice returning shots from the robot. Becoming an excellent table tennis player takes a combination of things, and no two players are alike. Your practice and training regimen will be unique to you, and if you have an interest in the sport and a desire to win, you'll do well in the short and long runs.