© Table Tennis Rother (2022)
History of Table Tennis
Table Tennis the Way You Like It
‘History & Origin
Table Tennis is a fast, exciting and competitive sport .... as well as a relaxing, healthy activity. Thought
to have started in England in the 1880’s as a parlour or after dinner game based in lawn tennis, it
developed into a competitive sport in the early 20th century and grew rapidly into the worldwide,
Olympic sport it is today.
Table Tennis is truly a ‘sport for all’ attracting participants from ages 5 - 80+ and all sections of the
community. it is an integrated sport where male and female, able bodied and disabled players can
play together . In England around 2 million people pay with approximately 40,000 affiliated to the
English Table Tennis Association (ETTA) and playing in organised competitions.
Where is it played... ?
A global sport played in around 200 countries by approximately 300 million people - making it the
most popular racket sport in the World.
In England Table Tennis is played in a wide variety of venues including schools, community & Sports
Centres, church halls, holiday camps, at home and of course in Table Tennis Clubs.
What do you need to start....?
All you need to start playing is a pair of trainers, casual/sports clothing and a bat. If you join a club it
is likely they will provide a starter bat, and if you play at a sports centre bats are often available for
hire. Starter bats can be purchased from normal high street sports shops for as little as £6.00 with
specialist equipment and clothing available from mail order companies .
Most people enjoy playing recreationally with family and friends, but table tennis clubs can offer a
wide range of opportunities to extend the enjoyment of the sport. Some Table Tennis clubs offer
coaching, competition , open play and opportunities to get involved as a volunteer.
A club that is a registered PremierClub - the ETTA’s national programme for club development - has
committed to working towards a ‘quality mark’ that signifies that the club is operating to national
standards in areas of club development.
Table Tennis also participated in the Sport England Clubmark scheme which promotes ‘safe, effective
and child friendly’ sports clubs.