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The secret of Topspin Forehand in Table Tennis

Topspin Forehand

Hitting a topspin forehand in table tennis requires a great deal of skill and practice. The topspin forehand is a powerful shot that can be used to keep your opponents on their toes. Most beginners learn table tennis from topspin forehand as it’s the foundation of all the ping pong techniques.

However, many beginners are confused with how to hit topspin forehand in table tennis as forehand is always more difficult than backhand. The essential part of the topspin forehand is swinging your racket up, and making contact with the ball just above the table surface and around your body to transfer your weight from the right leg to the left leg. When the ball is hit, the arm should be extended fully and then snap upwards as the paddle makes contact.

This motion will add spin to the ball, causing it to rotate forwards as it moves across the table. With practice, you’ll be able to hit shots with amazing speed and spin, leaving your opponents scrambling to return them.

It’s quite essential to learn topspin forehand and actually, there are lots of details that you should pay attention to. Some players have bad posture or hit the ball, not at the correct and proper time. All these will have a great impact during the match, especially when in some key points.

Topspin Forehand

What is forehand topspin in table tennis?

This is quite a theoretical question. Knowing the definition of topspin can help understand this technique better and hit the ball perfectly. It is called topspin as the ball is hit tangentially in the middle part and the ball rotates and moves in a forward way. Note that the players should hit the middle of the ball and turn it upwards.

If they hit the ball too low on the racket, it will not spin properly and may go into the net. If they hit it too high on the racket, it will not have enough power to reach the other side of the court. Forehand topspin is a difficult stroke to master, but once players have perfected their technique, it can be a very powerful weapon in their arsenal.

Sometimes beginners cannot hit the ball in the correct place because they have the wrong way to hold the ping pong bat. I have written a blog about how to hold the table tennis racket in the right way. If you are interested you can just click the link and make a reference.

Topspin Forehand

Ordinary topspin forehand in table tennis

The ordinary forehand topspin means that the players mainly use their elbows to generate more force and spin when hitting the ball. This is really common for many amateurs or beginners who don’t have advanced levels.

To execute a forehand topspin in table tennis, start by holding the paddle in your dominant hand and positioning yourself so that you are facing the side of the table.

Place your non-dominant hand behind your back and bend your knees slightly. Then, swing your arm forward and brush up against the ball, applying an upward spin. Follow through with your shot, and use your wrist to create additional spin if necessary. This is the forehand topspin that we are familiar with.

The limited point:

For beginners, when they want to improve their skill to a more advanced level, they have to realize the disadvantage of the way that they play forehand topspin. Players just focus on the elbow but ignore the other parts of the body. So it lacks enough consistency and players will find it struggling to reset and prepare for the next shot. It’s quite less stable.

Besides, only using the elbow lacks sufficient force so it’s quite difficult to loop kill the ball. Sometimes the ball doesn’t go forward but goes much higher and is easy to be out.

Topspin Forehand

Advanced topspin forehand Table Tennis

When it comes to delivering a powerful and advanced forehand topspin in table tennis, the secret is all in the weight transfer. Players should focus on their legs and ensure that the weight is shifting from the right leg to the left leg as they make contact with the ball.

It’s also important to hit the ball using your waist instead of your hand, forearm, or elbow, as this will add more force to the shot and make it incredibly powerful.

The advantage is that players can move much faster and have sufficient time to reset. If you watch videos of top players like Xu Xin or Ma Long, you’ll notice that their elbows and forearms are close to their bodies and they move their waists or bodies a lot. By following these tips, you’ll be able to generate more power in your forehand shots and take your game to the next level.

Forehand topspin and forehand drive in Table Tennis

There are actually two kinds of ways to hit the ball in table tennis with a forehand that is forehand loop and forehand drive. So what is the difference between them?

The major difference between forehand topspin and forehand drive is spin. Forehand drive almost doesn’t have any spin. But forehand topspin can be quite spinny.

The forehand loop is an essential shot in table tennis. By definition, it is a stroke that loops the ball over the net with a topspin. The forehand loop is often used as an offensive shot because it has more spin and power than a normal drive stroke. It is also difficult for opponents to defend against because of its late timing. The ball is usually looped at a further distance from the table, which makes it really spinny and powerful.

The forehand drive is a stroke in table tennis that is hit with the palm of the hand facing the direction of the shot. The player will take a position with their feet shoulder-width apart and their weight distributed evenly.

Thus, we can make a general comparison of these two different drills as follows:

  1. Forehand Drive: The forehand drive is a flat, powerful shot that is executed with a quick arm motion, with the goal of generating speed and placement over spin.
  2. Forehand Topspin: The forehand topspin imparts topspin on the ball, causing it to dive down into the opponent’s court. The forehand topspin requires a more complex arm motion that involves brushing up the ball and is executed with a combination of speed, spin, and placement to challenge the opponent.

Topspin Forehand

And then they have to swing their arm back and snap their wrist to make contact with the ball. The forehand drive is less offensive than other strokes, such as the topspin, because it does not have as much spin. But the forehand drive is mainly used to control the match or to move your opponent by its fast speed.

By the way, if you want to know how to serve topspin with the forehand, you can make reference this blog: How to serve in table tennis like a pro.


Whether a beginner or a professional player, if you want to add more power and spin to your loops, you should always remember what we mentioned in this blog.

This stroke will help you take control of the point and put pressure on your opponent. Be sure to practice this move often so that you can perfect your technique and start winning more matches.

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