The game of ping pong, commonly known as table tennis, gives you the opportunity to burn calories and have loads of fun while at it. One might argue that there are better and faster means of burning calories in the gym, such as working out on a treadmill
but then, most of those fitness exercises are rather monotonous and get boring easily. On the other hand, a round of ping pong is sure to get your adrenaline high and your circulation flowing better, keeping you fit without you feeling the stress.
Most often, people get the misleading notion that because ping pong is a table game, it’s purely an indoor game and may be the indoor version of lawn tennis. This cannot be farther from the truth as there are outdoor ping pong tables designed for use outdoors.
Besides, the game gets more interesting when played outdoors because then you have lots of room to move around and volley your hits at greater speeds. With the outdoor ping pong table, you don’t have to worry about space and movement, unlike when playing the game indoors, where you have to contend with other household furniture that are likely to cramp your movement. And especially if you’re practicing to play on a larger scene such as a competition, the outdoor ping pong table gives you more leeway to practice several different moves. You also get to improve on your shots and learn how to quickly catch and return high-speed spinning balls better. All these are nearly impossible on an indoor ping pong table, unless you have a large room dedicated to ping pong in your house.
Really, there are more advantages to playing on an outdoor ping pong table than on an indoor table, with the only disadvantage being that you cannot play on a bad weather day. What about showing off that new tennis racquet
? No one gets to see it if you’re cooped up indoors, you know.
Outdoor ping pong tables are built differently from their indoor counterparts in terms of tabletop material, thickness, and frame material. Because they stay outdoors all year ‘round in most cases, these outdoor ping pong tables are built with materials that are weather-proofed to withstand all sorts of weather changes from scalding heat to freezing ice and everything in-between.
Like every other table game such as pool or foosball
, the most important factors to look out for when buying the table are the surface thickness and the frame. Other important features to check out in the case of an outdoor ping pong table are the type of table, the convenience, and the price tags. We are going to be discussing these factors in detail, so keep reading.
As a general rule, most outdoor ping pong tables cost more than the indoor types because they’re usually built from sturdier materials meant to withstand adverse outdoor weather conditions. That said, there’s no point in going for the less-expensive indoor table in lieu of the outdoor table, because it’ll most definitely warp or decay in no time and you would have ended up wasting good money and an otherwise good indoor ping pong table.
Since most outdoor ping pong tables come with long-term warranties, it’s advised that you go for the best that you can possibly afford. Another factor that determines the price of a ping pong table is the surface thickness; the thicker the surface, the better and the more expensive it gets.
A great outdoor ping pong table will likely cost about $400 and may go as high as $1600 and even higher, and for your convenience, we picked out products within the above price range; whether you’re on a tight budget or inclined to splurge on a high-end item, you will most certainly find an outdoor ping pong table that’s within your reach, financially. Unlike some cheap outdoor ping pong tables we came across during our research, our featured products are from trusted brands guaranteed to give you the best ping pong game experience.
To make the right selection of an outdoor ping pong table that will last for years, you’ll need to critically consider some pertinent features before committing your money to the product. These features include:
- Type of table
- Table surface information
- Supporting frame material
- Ease of setting up
- Wheel configuration
- Additional features
Construction and Design
Table Surface Information
Having decided that you need an outdoor ping pong table, the next thing should be to get to know those features you ought to look out for to make the right selection. One of such features is the table surface information. First in this is the material of the table surface. Outdoor ping pong table surfaces are made from corrosion-proof materials that can withstand the rigors associated with the changing weather conditions outside. Most of them are made from metal or fiberboard that doesn’t warp, and they’re often coated with an anti-glare that protects from sunrays. Also, a good outdoor ping pong table material won’t dent from the force of the ball, and will always give an even surface for a great bounce.
The surface thickness is a major concern and for a satisfying game of ping pong, a table surface of 19mm to 25mm or half to one-inch thickness is recommended.
Type of Table
Since your table will be outdoors, it’s assumed you’ll not be moving it around much. But that notwithstanding, there are two main types of ping pong tables, whether outdoor or indoor: stationary tables and mobile tables. Stationary outdoor ping pong tables are made from a continuous piece of board, which comes quite close to standard tables used in competitions, but they’re not designed to be moved around. They’re also cumbersome when it comes to storage, thus it’s more like a permanent fixture when fully set up.
The mobile type is foldable and can be moved around easily (if you’re inclined to do so, that is). And because it’s foldable, it can be stored away quite easily. If your outdoor space is limited, you may want to go for the mobile type so you can store it away when not in use and use the space for something else.
Supporting Frame Material
The supporting frames of outdoor ping pong tables are sturdy and can either be aluminum or stainless steel. These two metals are most reliable because they don’t rust easily and are almost bend- and break-proof. They’re able to withstand all manner of weather conditions without buckling or warping. Other metals are also good as frame supports, but be sure to look out for an outdoor ping pong table with heavy-duty aluminum or steel frame, although they may be more expensive.
Performance and Ease of Use
Ease of Setting Up
Setting up an outdoor ping pong table may take up several minutes or a couple of hours, depending on the type. There are those that come fully or partially assembled so that all you need is just to put a few things in place, and you’re ready to hit on your first game. Others, especially the mobile types, require more time to set up, although they still assemble in record time. Ensure that the table you’re going for has a well-detailed assembly manual and doesn’t require any additional hardware not provided by the manufacturer.
Most outdoor ping pong tables, especially the mobile types, have wheels that make mobility a breeze. These wheels should have a large surface area for even balance. Most importantly, they should lock firmly in place when set up to prevent table movement or rocking when playing.
Apart from wheels, some outdoor ping pong tables are equipped with levelers that help achieve a level playing surface even when set up on uneven ground. Getting a table with a leveler is an added advantage; who knows, you might want to take your table with you on an excursion, and who’s to say if the ground will be smooth or uneven?
You may also want to check out some additional perks that come with an outdoor ping pong table, such as an outdoor cover to protect your table surface during the long winter months when you won’t be using it. This cover protects the surface from the worst of the elements and animal droppings that might scratch or discolor the surface.
Other perks include a carrying handle, pouches for storing your ping pong racquets and balls, and some tables may even have built-in storage spaces on them so you won’t ever have to rummage around for your paraphernalia again.
Now that you’ve gone through our outdoor ping pong table buying guide, there’s no doubt that you’re better-informed on what to look out for while shopping for one. Just keep your eyes open as you go through the top-rated outdoor ping pong tables that we’ve lined up for you in our individual product review section.
It was great having you around. Please do go ahead and place the order for the outdoor ping pong table that caught your fancy and get your groove on!