A smash is a very important stroke in ping pong. It is always heavy and aggressive. This makes it hard for your opponent to successfully return the ball. A smash can be done in both forehand and backhand. Learning and understanding the forehand smash and the backhand smash may be hard especially to the beginners. The following is an in-depth look of the two smashes that should be part of your ping pong game.

1. Forehand smash

In this smash, the player uses his front part of the hand to make a shot. The smash can be made when your opponent makes a long shot that creates a good opportunity for you to return the ball aggressively. Forehand smash forcefully pushes the opponent to the back and he/she may not be able to successfully return it. If successful, the opponent can return your smash with another heavy smash that will require you to hit back heavily. The smashing may, therefore, become a loop that can only be won by the most opportunistic player.

Forehand smashing requires proper timing, precision, and technique. You should be opportunistic and unique for you to win a loop smash. Smashing highly depends on your skills and that is why you should practice it as much as you can. A forehand smash is commonly not associated with heavy spins.

How to do a forehand smash

Step 1: Position yourself

A forehand smash heavily relies on your body movement. That is why you need to stand firmly and correctly. Start by keeping your feet apart and in a position that slightly exceeds your shoulder width. Your dominant foot should be kept slightly behind the other one. Bend your knees a little and let them support your front-bent body. The arms should be spread to the front with the striking elbow making a bend of about 90 degrees. You should remain near the table and have your body weight distributed to the toes and not the heels.

Step 2: Do the backswing

Rotate your body to the side and send your weight to the back foot. Bring the striking arm directly to the back following the ball’s path. The racket should remain back and up so that it comes directly down and forward to smash the ball.


Step 3: Strike the ball

Make sure to get the ball while it is just before the peak of its bounce. The body should provide the smashing force by swinging to the front and transferring all the weight to the front foot. The hips and shoulders should rotate and accommodate the body swing. Your forearm should move down and forward to make the paddle meet with the ball with power. The paddle should remain slightly inverted in that its front part of the blade is a bit higher than its back part.

Step 4: Follow through

Make sure to follow through and maybe make a little spin. The arm should however not completely cross your body. The elbow should remain close to your body.

2. Backhand smash

Backhand smash helps you return slightly-high balls aggressively. The smash requires your body movement and needs a lot of power. A backhand smash pushes your opponent to the back and can hardly be returned successfully. It requires little to no spin and remains highly effective with the absence of tricks. Backhand smash is always fast and heavy. It should, however, be used occasionally.

How to do a backhand smash

Step 1: Position yourself

Your feet should be apart and positioned at such a point that they are slightly exceeding your shoulder width. The dominant foot should remain a bit in front of the other one. Your knees should bend a little and support your front-leaning body. Both arms should be spread to the front with the striking elbow bending at an angle of about 90 degrees. You should remain near the ping pong table and distribute your weight to the toes and not the heel.

Step 2: Do the backswing

The smashing power should come from your body. Swing your body through the front and transfer your weight to the back foot. Your arm should follow the body and go back and up.

Step 3: Strike the ball

You should strike the ball right after it bounces. Swing your body back to the front and transfer your weight to the front foot. The paddle should follow and be directed by the arm that retains its bending angle. The paddle should make a nice and flat contact that is heavy. Your arm should now start to stretch and allow the contact.


Step 4: Follow through

Follow through is important as it helps you use all your power. The arm should follow through and rotate outwards as it stretches. The wrist should remain relaxed throughout.


Forehand and backhand smashes are important and should be part of your table tennis game. Backhand smash should be used occasionally as it is more applicable when a slightly high shot is made. The forehand smash can be used for all long balls no matter their intensities. Practice the two smashes as much as you can and make them be a part of you.

6 Replies to “How to Do a Smash in Playing Ping Pong – Important Technique Beginners Should Know”

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