Lillieroos Has Spanned the Globe Preaching His Unique Coaching Philosophy

By Richard Finn | Oct. 09, 2018, 10:22 a.m. (ET)

Christian Lillieroos Table Tennis Coach


Lillieroos Has Spanned the Globe

Preaching His Unique Coaching Philosophy

By Richard Finn

ITTF Level 3 coach, course conductor and trainer of conductors Christian Lillieroos has spanned the globe in the more than four decades that he has been coaching table tennis.

He started in his native Sweden when he was just a teenager and has visited Ecuador, Canada and Mexico coaching.  For the last year and half he has been coaching private and group lessons at the Paddle Palace Club in Tigard, Oregon. He also conducts ITTF Coaching Clinics around the world.

This month the 59-year-old is in India and Bangalore working with the state team of Karnataka.

But, wherever he has gone, Lillieroos has preached his 3 Golden principles of Table Tennis

1) You train and develop an athlete in the same order that things happen in a point in a match. The 5-point training system

2) All techniques are based on the direction you want to create with ball using Outside the ball contacts and Inside the ball contacts that desired and more predictable return of the opponents’ balls. 

3) The true basics of table tennis lie in timing. a) Where to start all strokes from, b) when and how to leave that position, and c) how to go forward in every stroke. Timing needs to be learned before technique. 

 Looking to keep ahead of the teaching curve and what the future will be in the sport, Lillieroos has expanded on his “3” principles by developing the “Body, Mind, Spirit” program.

“Body Mind Spirit is on a much more broader scale when you start to use Sport Psychology and Sport Spirituality in your training,” explained Lillieroos.

“We know a lot about the body, but is has many limitations, we know a little bit about the mind that has much more potential than the body, and almost nothing about the Soul or spirit, but it has unlimited potential and that is where the new frontier lies in sports.” 

Through his career Lillieroos has seen many changes in the coaching techniques and how the game is played at the elite level.

“When I started to coach in the 70's and I was also still an active player it was all focused on Forehand and your own attack,” recalled Lillieroos. “I remember in interviews all the stars at the time always complained that they had weak serve returns and backhands. Then when I looked at the training, well they did not train any backhand nor serve returns. It was a strange notion at the time that you have to learn serve return in matches and that is it.”

Starting from that point and through stops in Mexico, Canada and moving to the United States, Lillieroos began to develop his own teaching style and philosophy.

“When I looked at World class players they all have different techniques but they have one thing in common and that is their timing,” explained Lillieroos.

“The reason most people make their mistakes in not really because of technique but because of incorrect timing. So I developed the 3 principles of timing. It was very clear that slow balls and low is where the most common mistakes are for players. And a change in rhythm is how you provoke mistakes in the opponent.

“This system I felt was completed around 1999. Trends in Table Tennis has always been my marker in my teachings,” explained Lillieroos.

The End