Nation set for 'biggest ever' Table Tennis Day

Thousands of people will take part in the biggest national 'Table Tennis Day' ever in retirement villages, workplaces, museums and even on top of Scafell Pike in the Lake District. 

Commonwealth Games medallist Maria Tsaptsinos and Paralympic star Aaron McKibbin will host a showpiece event in Milton Keynes, and a vast array of activities across the country are aimed at increasing participation and raising awareness of the sport. 

Taster sessions, open days, 'teachers versus students' and trick-shot challenges have all been arranged with the biggest uptake yet expected since Table Tennis Day was launched in 2014. 

Paul Stimpson, from Table Tennis England, highlighted the impact such events can have on participation and regular exercise, saying: "We really just want people to pick up a bat and get involved. This event gives clubs the chance to reach out to local communites and get them playing and taking part. 

"We want to encourage active lives in schools and workplaces, and hopefully we can do that by increasing participation in our sport and raising awareness through our biggest ever day."


The main Table Tennis England event is at Milton Keynes shopping centre, where Tsaptsinos and McKibbin will be challenging shoppers to take up a bat and try out the sport. 

The shoppers will also have the chance to take part in other challenges – including 'beat the robot' and 'choose your weapon', which encourages participants to swap a bat for another object, such as a wellington boot or a flip flop. 

Milton Keynes is one of 26 Ping! locations around England that have tables in various shopping centres, retirement villages and other public spaces. 

Table Tennis England have also launched a new Loop initiative, in order to encourage physical exercise in campuses, schools and workplaces across the country through table tennis. 

"We want to make our game part of places people spend a lot of time in," Stimpson added. "Finding a time and place to play can be difficult, so we want to encourage participation this way and offer superb packages at the same time." 

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