Luke Jackson has been a member of the club for over six years now and was voted into the role of club captain back in 2018. Luke has progressed and played all the way up to division one of the West of Scotland Junior League and has completed two seasons in our senior league squad. Many club tournament wins at various age groups, in addition to his positive attitude and personality make him a highly respected player and role model within the club. With it being the school holidays we were fortunate to have Luke answer a few burning questions of ours for this week’s blog.
How did you get involved with the club & why?
I first became interested in table tennis while playing it abroad with my family; however I wasn’t good at all. I hated (and still do) hate losing so I was determined to become better than my dad. When I came back home I went to training with my brother who had already been going to the club for a while. From the minute I started I have loved every moment!
What is your favourite thing about Table Tennis?
I love the social aspect of table tennis; everyone gets on with everyone regardless of their ability. You always have a number of people backing your corner during competitive matches as well.
What Junior or Senior League match have you enjoyed the most?
I couldn’t pick one specifically however the entirety of my first senior league was very beneficial as I seemed to learn a lot from older and more experienced players. After my matches my opponents were always willing to help me learn and improve.
Has your involvement in other sports helped with your Table Tennis (& vice versa)?
Yes. After playing football for several years I believe my confidence has risen and I can be very vocal in the table tennis hall. I would also say table tennis has helped me understand that many sports require a lot of strategy and tactics.
As Captain, what advice would you give to younger & newer players at the club?
Perseverance is so important when learning how to play table tennis. You mustn’t give up if you are unable to hit the ball or play a certain shot. Everyone has their own ability so don’t compare yours to everyone else’s.
What are you most looking forward to getting back to when then club returns?
I can’t wait to see everyone at the club. There are loads of people I only get the chance to see when at training and matches it will be nice to speak to them. I am also eager to get back into senior league although I will need to learn how to play table tennis again it has been that long!
“A ladder tournament is a form of competition for games and sports. Unlike many tournaments, which usually have an element of elimination, ladder competitions can go on indefinitely. In a ladder competition, players are listed as if on the rungs of a ladder. The objective for a player is to reach the highest rung of the ladder.”
At East Kilbride Table Tennis Club, we have made use of this format to encourage and facilitate competitive play on selected club nights each month. A new ladder is created for each tournament with competitors names drawn at random and placed on the ladder starting positions – this offers the opportunity for less experienced players spend a bit of time further up the board than they would normally be.
Competitors are allowed to challenge anyone above themselves on the ladder and must play everyone on the ladder before challenging the same player a second time. The ladder competition is timed and finishes at an agreed time.
They make for exciting nights and frequently deliver surprises right up to end of the session.
Club Night Restart ??? – Unfortunately we have had no indication from anyone at SLLC as to when we might restart despite our best efforts. – We have done as much as we possibly can to get ready and will continue to engage with SLLC to get a rough idea of a restart date.
Tuesday Virtual Club Meetings – EKTTC Session 1 – We will restart our virtual club meetings on Tuesday night 5th October at 7pm. – The meetings will be on Zoom on the following link below – once you have signed in. – As this is a new format bear with us 🙂 – Topic: Virtual Club Night – Time: Oct 6, 2020 07:00 PM London – Our first virtual club night will look to engage players back into thinking about the game both technically, tactically and personally. – Peter, Euan & Chris will take us through some key considerations & importance of good basics. – The session will be around 30 minutes long and will be discussion based, with the aid of video clips & information slides. – Join Zoom Meeting https://us04web.zoom.us/j/73426421948?pwd=Ly9OS2dxakpiVnBPRjA1a3VWeUVIUT09 Meeting ID: 734 2642 1948 Passcode: tkRGp3
Table Tennis Pop In & Play is a Table Tennis Scotland initiative aimed at encouraging participation in the sport. By establishing Pop In & Play venues in vacant Shopping Centre units, the concept allows for easy, accessible opportunities for visitors to literally take some time out of their visit to pop into the unit and play some table tennis.
In contrast to the unsupervised equivalent Ping Pong Parlours in England, Pop In & Play venues are supervised by volunteers thus providing opportunities to support play along with the chance to chat and signpost interested visitors to other opportunities to play.
The first venue was established at the Gyle Shopping Centre in Edinburgh in 2019 with East Kilbride originally due to be online in early 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has interrupted our plans but we have over 20 volunteers ready to support the venue as soon as we are able to do so.
Multiball is a training system that we use to improve players at all levels. The coach, or other player, uses a bucket of balls to serve a rapid succession of balls and a player has to play a series of predetermined return shots. The supervising coach can identify problem areas or reinforce the parts of the players shot making that is going well. A table tennis robot can also be used as a multiball feed and both these methods are used at our club.
Players who are learners concentrate on improving stroke techniques and consistency while more advanced players work on improving spin, speed and footwork.
The coach can run video sequences of the training session and show them during a chat with each player to show progress being made as well as areas for improvement.
There is lots of videos showing table tennis multiball sessions on youtube and in particular the ETTA coaches video is a great example of a coach working with players during multiball training. We encourage members to keep watching, shadowing and we look forward to putting you through your paces once again soon.
The West of Scotland Table Tennis (Senior) League (WoSTTL) allows for our members to begin to experience playing against other clubs throughout the west of Scotland. The league format allows for home and away fixtures to be played against around 10 different clubs from October to May and provides our players invaluable opportunities to play against different styles and abilities in table tennis. The competitive yet social environment allows for our young players to develop life skills such as discipline, respect, and communication skills.
The season just past (2019/20) the club were represented by 7 junior players, 5 of whom were making their senior league debut. The fixture list was unforgiving at times with 9 game matches being crammed into a 12-week block between September and December and between January and March. The players deserve a lot of credit for the way they represented the club over the course of season and we’re all immensely proud and thankful for their efforts. We as a club believe we have built the foundations to kick on in seasons to come and this year’s team have inspired more club members to take part in the new season when it is safe to do so.
I even heard a few whispers that some of the coaches are dusting off the old rubber and shredding the timber put on during lockdown to show the young guns how’s its done. Watch this space!
Ever wondered why we do certain activities and work on particular skills on club nights? Well despite perhaps looking like we make it up on the spot it is the product of short and long term planning of our coaching group! The group was formed roughly 2 years ago when the club was working with UWS to offer student placements that we had to manage, in addition to supporting our other coaches with qualifications such as UKCC.
The group originally meet four times a year where we would set out overarching objectives for the coming months, in addition to outlining what themes each Friday night session would take (such as movement, multi ball, serves etc). Working in this way has allowed for each coach to get opportunities leading sessions and making sure we are offering a well-balanced programme to develop each part of a player’s game across the year. Some examples of wider implementations of the group include: introduction of the ladder nights, player of the month award, mini sessions on topics such as sport nutrition, and regular video analysis.
In more recent times, the coaching group led to our weekly lockdown sessions across April/May (quiz, virtual rally, Stephen Gertson workshops, and parent’s challenge). Currently the group are meeting weekly to work on our return to sport plans and getting us safely back ASAP. Moving forward we look forward to working with new volunteers and leaders who have registered for pop in and play, in addition to helping develop new coaches and increasing our representation in the West of Scotland Senior League.
Butterfly Skills Awards are primarily intended for the young player between the ages of 7 -16. However, they are also suitable for adults just starting to play the sport, or improve their play. The programme includes adaptations for disabled players. The aim is to assist in the development of basic table tennis skills in a fun and safe environment.
By the time a player has worked their way through to the highest level, they will have all of the skills necessary to compete with confidence. For each level completed players receive a certificate and a sleeve of balls too!
Enjoy Butterfly Skills programme for new and existing members on our return. We know many of you are keen to get up to the next level, looking forward to it.
East Kilbride Table Tennis Club takes Child Protection seriously. All adult helpers and coaches are PVG checked and you can check out our full policy and guidelines for child protection & safeguarding on our Documents page.