Table Tennis is an inexpensive sport to get started, although as you progress it can be costly to buy equipment, attend tournaments and coaching camps, etc.
We have a small supply of cheap starter bats for loan to new members, but if you intend to keep up the sport, you are strongly encouraged to buy your own bat.
There are a few things you should know if you are considering buying a bat.
The bat must be legal according to ITTF rules, otherwise you will not be permitted to play in ranking tournaments. Both sides of the bat must be completely covered in undamaged rubber, one side black and one side red. There should be nothing written or drawn on the surface of the bat. The rubber should be ITTF-approved and must be embossed with the ITTF logo. Bats which are not coloured red/black are intended only for casual or outdoor play and are not permitted in tournaments.
A cheap starter bat can be purchased from Tony for approx €20-25 - slightly better than the loan bats available in the club - but I would suggest paying at least €35-€45 for your a "proper" bat, anything less and your bat will not be good enough for you to be able to improve your game. Certainly, if you intend to keep up the sport, you should be spending this much of more.
Bat prices can range much higher of course, up to €60-70 for off-the-shelf bats and much more for custom-made bats when you buy the blade and rubbers separately and either have the seller make up the bat or glue and cut the rubbers yourself (or with help! Tony will be happy to help with this).
Ted Bollard at Celtic Table Tennis is Ireland's top supplier of table tennis equipment (celtictt.com) have a range of bats as well as a huge variety of Butterfly, Tibhar, Donic and Stiga blades and rubbers. A "three-star" bat should cost €35-40 and is a suitable bat for the improving player. (If you are buying from Ted please let him know you were referred by Tralee Table Tennis Club). Ted will assemble blades and
rubbers and his prices are reasonable.
We would be happy to advise players on suitable bats.
From time to time we have bats available for sale (at cost price, we do not use this to raise club funds). Please keep an eye on the web-site or ask Tony if interested. These will either be good value pre-made bats from Ted's shop or other sources or blade-and-rubber combinations made up at a cheap price.
Here is a short video with Ryan Jenkins talking about choosing a bat: