Developing Full-Width Resizable Tables with React TanStack Table

Anton Ioffe - March 11th 2024 - 9 minutes read

In this comprehensive exploration, we unlock the powerful capabilities of React TanStack Table, a tool that is revolutionizing the creation of full-width resizable tables in modern web applications. As we delve into the essentials, practical implementation, and optimization techniques, you’ll discover how to leverage this tool to achieve responsive, dynamic table layouts. Whether you're aiming to enhance user experience with seamless resizing, integrate advanced functionalities such as sorting and filtering, or navigate the challenges of performance optimization, this article serves as your guide. Prepare to elevate your web development skills with high-quality, commented code examples, insightful optimization strategies, and expert advice on avoiding common pitfalls while adhering to best practices. This journey will not only refine your technical prowess but also inspire you to innovate adaptable, efficient web interfaces that stand out in the digital landscape.

Foundations of React TanStack Table for Resizable Tables

React TanStack Table, as an evolution of React Table, propels the functionality of tables in web development to a new level, especially when it comes to creating responsive and resizable tables. Its headless design means it provides the logic and architecture needed to manage table states such as sorting, pagination, and importantly for our discussion, resizing, without dictating the UI. This flexibility is crucial for developers aiming to implement full-width tables that need to adjust seamlessly across various screen sizes, enhancing user experience in a diverse device ecosystem.

At the core of React TanStack Table's architecture lies a comprehensive suite of hooks that offer granular control over table functionality. The use of hooks, a feature that capitalizes on React's strengths, means developers can integrate resizable table features without the component itself rendering any specific markup or styles. This approach allows for the customization of tables that not only fit perfectly within an application's design but also dynamically respond to changes in viewport size, table content, or user preferences.

The implementation of resizable tables using React TanStack Table necessitates an understanding of how to efficiently leverage these hooks to manipulate table dimensions. The flexibility provided by the headless architecture is a double-edged sword; while it affords developers the freedom to create highly customized table UIs, it also requires them to construct the UI components that will utilize the resizing logic provided by the library. This design empowers developers to craft tables that can dynamically adjust their widths, ensuring that the user interface remains intuitive and accessible regardless of the device used to access it.

To support resizable tables effectively, React TanStack Table embraces modern web standards and technologies, ensuring compatibility across different browsers and devices. Its adoption of TypeScript for the library's rewrite enhances developer experience with type safety and autocompletion, reducing bugs and streamlining the development process. This solid foundation is instrumental in creating resizable tables that are not just visually appealing but also robust and maintainable.

Understanding the foundational capabilities of React TanStack Table for resizable tables sets the stage for leveraging its full potential in web development. By embracing its headless approach, developers are equipped to innovate beyond conventional table designs, creating fluid, responsive, and resizable tables that cater to the demands of modern web applications. This foundation is crucial for exploring more advanced features and implementations, allowing developers to push the boundaries of what is possible with table UIs in React environments.

Implementing Full-Width Resizable Columns

To implement full-width resizable columns in a React TanStack Table, you'll first need to set up the table with a responsive layout. Begin by importing useTable, useBlockLayout, and useResizeColumns hooks from TanStack Table. These hooks are essential for creating a table that adjusts both its layout and column widths dynamically. The useBlockLayout hook is particularly useful for full-width tables as it allows table cells to fill the available horizontal space, unlike traditional table layouts that distribute space based on content.

import { useTable, useBlockLayout, useResizeColumns } from '@tanstack/react-table';

After setting up your table instance with the required hooks, define your columns with the size attribute for each column. This attribute specifies the initial width of the columns, which is vital for the resizing feature to function correctly. Here, the useResizeColumns hook plays a crucial role by providing the logic for adjusting column widths through user interaction.

const columns = React.useMemo(
  () => [
      header: 'Name',
      accessorKey: 'name',
      size: 200, // Default size
      header: 'Age',
      accessorKey: 'age',
      size: 100, // Default size
    // Add more columns as needed

In your table component, you'll use the useTable hook to initialize the table with your data, columns, and layout hooks. It’s important to apply the getTableProps and getTableBodyProps correctly to your HTML table elements and use the headerGroup.getHeaderGroupProps and cell.getCellProps to bind the necessary properties to your header and cell elements, respectively.

const tableInstance = useTable({
}, useBlockLayout, useResizeColumns);

// Destructure properties and methods from tableInstance as needed

When rendering your table, wrap it in a container with a style prop set to width: '100%' to ensure it occupies the full width of its parent container. Furthermore, for columns to be resizable, you need to render a resizer element within each table header cell and apply the resizerProps provided by the useResizeColumns hook. This small addition makes the columns interactively resizable, providing a flexible user experience.

<div style={{ overflow: 'auto' }}>
  <table {...getTableProps()} style={{ width: '100%' }}>
      // Render the header groups and cells here, applying getHeaderGroupProps and getCellProps
    <tbody {...getTableBodyProps()}>
      // Render the rows and cells here

By following these steps and utilizing the mentioned hooks, you create a React table that not only fills its container width but also allows users to resize columns as needed, adapting flexibly to varying screen sizes and user preferences.

Performance Optimization Techniques

Efficient rendering techniques are essential when dealing with large datasets in tables created with React TanStack Table. One effective strategy is virtualization, which renders only the table rows and columns visible to the user, drastically reducing the number of DOM elements created and managed. This can be achieved by integrating react-virtualized or similar libraries with TanStack Table. Virtualization ensures that user interactions such as scrolling remain smooth, regardless of the dataset size. Here’s a simplified example of how virtualization might be integrated:

import { useTable } from '@tanstack/react-table';
import { FixedSizeList as List } from 'react-window';

function VirtualizedTable({ columns, data }) {
   const {
   } = useTable({

   return (
       <div {...getTableProps()}>
           {/* Render table header */}
           { => (/* headerGroup rendering */))}
           <div {...getTableBodyProps()}>

   function RenderRow({ index, style }) {
       const row = rows[index];
       return (
           {/* row rendering with style applied */}

Avoiding unnecessary re-renders is another crucial performance optimization technique. React’s useMemo hook can be invaluable here, ensuring that data transformations or computations critical for rendering your tables are only recalculated when their inputs change. This is particularly important when your tables rely on derived data.

const memoizedData = React.useMemo(() => computeExpensiveData(data), [data]);

Memoization can also be applied to the columns definition, preventing them from being recreated on each render if the column configuration does not change. Similarly, React’s useCallback hook can prevent unnecessary recalculations of callback functions passed to table row or cell components, which may trigger re-renders.

Row and cell components should be designed to render efficiently. Defining these components outside of your table component can prevent them from being recreated on every render:

const TableCell = React.memo(({ value }) => {
   // Cell rendering logic

function TableRow({ row }) {
   // Row rendering logic using TableCell

Finally, tailoring TanStack Table to efficiently handle updates through controlled state management can significantly improve performance. By managing state outside of TanStack Table and only updating it when necessary, you avoid costly operations that could lead to a sluggish UI. For instance, bundling multiple state updates into a single operation reduces the number of re-renders required.

const [data, setData] = React.useState(initialData);

// Example of a function to handle data update in a performant manner
function updateData(newData) {
    setData(prevData => /* calculate updated data */);

By employing these techniques, developers can ensure that their full-width resizable tables remain responsive and performant, even when handling extensive datasets.

Enhancing Usability with Custom Features

To substantially enhance user interactivity and ease of access in full-width resizable tables, integrating sorting, filtering, and pagination features is pivotal. Utilizing React TanStack Table's comprehensive API facilitates the inclusion of these functionalities. For example, the useSortBy hook can be employed to implement column sorting. This necessitates incorporating useSortBy into the table instantiation process alongside the existing hooks, and then simply spreading .getSortByToggleProps() on each header. This approach not only renders the columns sortable but also maintains the table's full-width responsiveness by ensuring that the layout readjusts seamlessly upon interaction.

const tableInstance = useTable(
    { columns, data },

// In your table header component
<th {...column.getHeaderProps(column.getSortByToggleProps())}>

Filtering columns adds a layer of data management that significantly elevates the table's usability. The useFilters hook can be integrated for this purpose, enabling the definition of filter types on a per-column basis or globally. An input element can be introduced above or within the table header for entering filter criteria. The flexibility of defining custom filtering logic or using predefined options caters to various data types, ensuring users can effortlessly narrow down the information they seek.

// Example of a basic text filter
function DefaultColumnFilter({
    column: { filterValue, preFilteredRows, setFilter },
}) {
    return (
            value={filterValue || ''}
            onChange={e => setFilter( || undefined)}

Incorporating pagination is crucial for managing extensive datasets efficiently, enhancing both performance and user navigation. With React TanStack Table, the usePagination hook can be added to the table setup to paginate data on the client-side. This setup provides users with controls to navigate through pages, select page sizes, and directly jump to specific pages, all while ensuring the interface remains intuitive and responsive across different device sizes.

const {
} = useTable(
    { columns, data },

// Pagination component controls
    <button onClick={() => gotoPage(0)} disabled={!canPreviousPage}>
        onChange={e => {
        {[10, 20, 30, 40, 50].map(pageSize => (
            <option key={pageSize} value={pageSize}>
                Show {pageSize}

While enhancing the table with these custom features, it's vital to consider the overarching need for maintaining responsive, full-width tables. Responsive design can be ensured by using CSS along with conditional rendering in React to adapt the visible elements and functionality based on the client's viewport size. React TanStack Table's flexible architecture supports this by allowing developers to tightly integrate these features without compromising on performance, usability, or responsiveness.

In sum, enriching resizable tables with sorting, filtering, and pagination not only augments their functionality but substantially boosts the UX by enabling users to interact with, navigate, and manage data more efficiently. Following these strategies, developers can leverage React TanStack Table's flexible and extensive API to build highly interactive and accessible tables tailored to their application's requirements.

Common Mistakes and Best Practices

One common mistake developers make when working with React TanStack Table for developing resizable tables is overlooking the importance of memoization. Without properly memoizing the table’s data and columns, every state update can lead to unnecessary re-renders, significantly affecting performance, especially with large datasets. The correct approach is to use the useMemo hook for columns and data, ensuring that these parts of your table only re-render when actually necessary. This practice not only boosts performance but also provides a smoother user experience, as it eliminates the lag caused by excessive rendering.

Another frequently encountered issue is the improper management of state for table state updates. Often, developers bundle unrelated state updates together, leading to performance bottlenecks. The best practice is to manage table state externally and only update it in a bundled fashion when necessary. By strategically updating state - for instance, using the React useReducer hook or managing state through a more global state management solution - developers can ensure that updates are efficient and do not cause unnecessary re-renders.

The design of row and cell components outside of the main table component is also crucial. A mistake often made here is not using React.memo for these components. Given that table cells frequently update and rerender, failing to memoize them can lead to severe inefficiencies, especially as the table grows in size. Implementing React.memo for row and cell components ensures that they only re-render when their props have changed, thereby significantly optimizing rendering performance.

Developers sometimes also fail to fully leverage the headless nature of React TanStack Table by hardcoding layouts or styles directly into the table structure. This approach limits the table’s flexibility and scalability. Instead, embracing the library's headless UI by creating custom, reusable components and leveraging CSS for styling grants much more freedom. This method enables developers to create more responsive, accessible, and visually consistent tables that are easier to maintain and update over time.

Lastly, neglecting accessibility and responsiveness in resizable tables is a common oversight. It's vital to ensure that tables are not only resizable but also accessible on various devices and to users with different accessibility needs. Implementing features like keyboard navigation, screen reader support, and responsive design that adapts to different screen sizes are best practices that enhance usability and inclusivity. By focusing on these aspects, developers can create resizable tables that offer a superior user experience for a wider audience.


This comprehensive article explores the powerful capabilities of React TanStack Table for developing full-width resizable tables in modern web applications. It covers the foundational concepts of the tool, implementation techniques for full-width resizable columns, performance optimization strategies, and enhancing usability with custom features like sorting, filtering, and pagination. The article emphasizes the importance of memoization, proper state management, and efficient component design, while also highlighting the significance of accessibility and responsiveness. To further challenge readers, they are encouraged to explore integrating additional features, such as row selection and editing, into their resizable tables to further enhance the user experience.

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