The Table Tennis Trainer is a gamified ping pong training system that gives stats and feedback in the form of neon lights.
We have already seen tools bring interactive training to cycling, yoga, basketball and more. Now, it’s ping pong’s turn too. The Table Tennis Trainer, created by interactivity student Thomas Mayer for his BA thesis, is a projection-mapping tool that enables players to view real-time data and receive feedback from a virtual trainer during and after games.
The Table Tennis Trainer is an interactive ping pong table that brings the capabilities of gaming to table tennis via an interactive display and training system. To begin, players log in using their personal NFC-equipped paddle, which brings up all their historical statistics. Then, two overhead projectors transform the table-top into an interactive display and a pair of Playstation webcams record the game in action. The system monitors their techniques and provides feedback via data on the dashboard. Players can choose between training modes or simply play each other. Visualizations, such as neon streaks of light that highlight the path of every ball, help the player identify their weaknesses, improve their game and monitor their progress.
The project is still in prototype form but Mayer has had a lot of interest from table tennis manufacturers. Could other sports integrate Playstation-style stats into training tools?