First off, this is not a review of ping pong. We already know that ping pong is great. It doesn't matter if you like to overhand smash like Kramer, or you have a nuanced brush style like Ma Long. It doesn't matter if you're barely able to reach the table or you have the reach of an orangutan. Ping pong is the low impact tennis for the indoor kids. The only problem has been that you need a table, and where are you going to store this table? If you're living in a downtown apartment you probably have space for one table, or you eat off a kitchen island, or you need to go to the local starbucks to see one of these tables people talk about. But now you don't need a table to play table tennis. All you need is the Pongo Portable ping pong net and paddles from Umbra. Now any table becomes ripe for some tennis.
A regulation ping pong table takes up a good nine feet by five feet. Most likely even if you fold that table in half and store it away somewhere that's still taking up a large enough footprint for something that you use occasionally. Unless you might also start eating dinner off it, that's just too much square footage to give up. But this kit lets you turn any flat surface into a ping pong table, irrespective of regulations. A kitchen island or peninsula? Now it's a ping pong table. You only have a coffee table? Now it's a coffee tennis table. You don't own your own table? Go to work and convert the boardroom table into a break room table with a quick conversion. What may be the best feature about this add-on net is that it just sits on the surface without the need to clamp onto the sides of the table.
The kit comes with more than the net – there are also balls and paddles to complete the package. The net unrolls and rolls back up to be very compact tangle-free during travel. And the winding mechanism makes it possible to get a taut net even on narrower playing surfaces. And if that wasn't enough of a feature set for a net, it also stores the balls! But the compacting doesn't stop there. The handles of the paddles fold into the head of the paddles. Does this make them less than ideal paddles? For the connoisseur, absolutely. The provided paddles do however provide enough grip to put spin on the balls and control your slice. Though I must say they make an interesting hollow noise when struck that brings way more audio impact to your game.
– Evan Abrams
Pongo Portable Table Tennis Set
Ages 7 and up