It’s true that certain skills are easier to learn for people with certain physical advantages. Tall people often have an advantage in basketball, darts is easier for people with a steady hand, and arguably the best professional footballers are those who are adept at pulling off a blatant dive, come on ref, are you totally blind?!
Table football, of course, has its own particular demands of players, and mastering these puts you at an automatic advantage in any game. The good news, though, is that physical advantages don’t have much of an effect here; anyone can learn these skills! Of course, excellent reflexes are always a big plus, but on top of that it always helps to have…
1. and 2. Diligence and Patience
This one will hardly be a surprise. It’s less of a secret to success, and more just a fact of life! You can’t get properly good at anything without practice, and the same goes for table football too. You don’t necessarily have to put whole evenings aside – just a few minutes occasionally. Take a wander over to your table and just take five or ten to carry out some quick solo practice. (Here at the Games Room Company, we’ve got no shortage of indoor and outdoor tables for you to practice on: whether you’re a Soccer Deluxe type of person, or you prefer a design statement like our Teckell Cristallino!)
If you’re not sure what solo practice involves, we’ve actually outlined a couple of ideas for you in a few recent blogs on both control and shooting, We understand it’s not got quite the raw thrill of playing against other humans, but practice does indeed make perfect!
3. An open mind
Despite what you may have witnessed from casual pub games, there’s a lot more to table football than simply belting the ball down the length of the table at first opportunity. There’s more of an art to it than that! Our linked posts above should give you a couple of ideas for basic control and firing techniques, but look out for them in the midst of actual games, too. Experiment with any moves you think might work in the heat of the moment (especially on tables like our RS3 Wooden Leg) and watch for any moves and techniques that are successfully used against you.
Afterwards, have a bit of a think about them. Why did they work? Was your opponent simply faster, or did they get inside your head somehow? Did they simply spot a gap in your defence you hadn’t noticed? Asking yourself these sorts of questions can really help you improve your game. If you’re fast enough at learning, you can even turn their techniques against them right there on the field!
4. A secret specialism
Talking of developing your shots, it’s always helpful to have one that you’re good at, that you know well. Remember, it’s not just a case of knowing it, but recognising the best time to use it! Do you find that you’re particularly good at the Bank Shot? The Dead Man shot? The Rollover snake shot? (No, we’re not making these up!) Always keep trying out different shots, as we’ve discussed above, but if you find you’re particularly good at one, it’s worth quietly specialising in it. The thing is, you don’t want to become too closely associated with one style of play in particular, because they key above all things is to…
5. Stay unpredictable!
Foosball (table football) is a high-paced game, and one of the best advantages you can have is the ability to read your opponents on the fly. Which shots they favour, whether they shoot down a particular side, or frequently back-pass to their defenders. Once you can predict your opponent, it makes it far easier to block them. That means that you have to stay unpredictable in turn! Keep your secret specialisms secret, and try and avoid developing (or at least displaying) a consistent style of play. By frequently changing up your tactics, you keep your opponent on their toes – and as a bonus, perhaps you can rattle them a bit at the same time. Now obviously all that is much, much easier said than done, and you’ll probably never be able to achieve total unpredictability, but it’s something to aim for!
There’s no better time to perfect your table football game than summer, especially considering the current World Cup madness! The beautiful weather makes an excellent setting for games like our RS2 Stainless Steel Outdoor table football, but that’s far from the only table we’ve got in stock! Feel free to browse our full range of foosball tables right here on our website, or alternatively pop down to our Weybridge showroom and see what treasures you can find!