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Table tennis equipment


The table
The playing surface for table tennis is 2.74 metres long and 1.525 metres wide and stands 76cm above the floor. It can be made of any material, but must have a matt finish. The colouring is always dark, usually green, with white line markings.

The end and sidelines are white markings two centimetres thick. For doubles purposes a 3mm white line splits each half of the table directly in half from end to net to mark out serving areas.

The net stands 15.25cm in the centre of the table and is tethered to a pole of the same height at each side of the table.

The ball must be matt, have a 40mm diameter and weigh 2.5 grams. Each player chooses a number of balls before the match and the umpire chooses, at random, which is to be used.

Racquets are not restricted in size or shape, but as the rules require blades to be rigid and flat, with wood accounting for 85 percent of its thickness.

If the actual size of the racquet is not restricted, this is made up for by tight specifications for the racquets' rubber surfaces. Players are allowed to use either pimpled rubber or sandwich rubber, although pimpled rubber sheets must be no thicker than 2mm, and sandwich rubber sheets must be no thicker than 4mm. A racquet shall not be changed during a match unless it is accidentally damaged so badly it cannot be used.

At the start of a match, and whenever players change racquets during a match, the players must let their opponent and the umpire examine their racquets.

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