It is important to master the basic skills in any sport to improve your game. Similarly, in badminton, there are certain skills you need to master for consistent performance.
Both, a beginner and a professional player have to work on these skills to make it to the top. Besides, if you don’t have your basics perfected, it will impact your game in the long run.
Moreover, anybody can master the basic skills required for playing badminton. Well, in this article, I have enlisted a few of the basic skills that every player must focus on to develop.
While playing badminton, almost all muscles of the body are used as it’s a high-intensity sport. Therefore, you should know how to warm up properly before entering the court. A full-body warm-up is important, otherwise, it could lead to injuries. You must be properly warmed up at the start of the match rather than gaining momentum after 4-5 rallies.
Well, a warm-up doesn’t need to be for a long time, you can go an extensive warm-up in 5-10 minutes. Here are a few ideas for a short warm-up-
- Skipping (1000-1500)
- A 5-10 minutes jog around the badminton hall
- A small routine of jumping jacks, squats, burpees, and lunges.
My coach used to suggest to warm up till my shirt drenches with sweat. Therefore, keep warming up till you feel sweat dripping at least down your face. That’s the time you are ready for a match or training routine.
Learning how to hold a grip is a fundamental skill in badminton. Without this, you would not be able to play properly. The forehand grip and backhand grip are the primary grips that a player starts with.
Moreover, the right grip gives you control over the shots while avoiding the chances of a wrist injury.
Forehand and Backhand Grip
The forehand grip is similar to a friendly handshake. Remember to keep the handshake friendly to not form a tight grip. A tight grip restricts the flexibility of the wrist which could lead to injuries. Moreover, the index finger controls the racket in this grip and the thumb should be comfortably placed at the wider surface of the grip.
In a backhand grip, the thumb controls the racket and it should be placed a bit tight on the wider surface of the grip. You need to push the thumb forward while hitting backhand strokes.
Specialize these two grips to enhance your game.
If you want to learn the different grips in badminton, check out this illustrated guide with pictures of each grip.
A stance is how you stand in badminton before and during a rally. It’s the basics of building good footwork and speed around the court. A correct stance will make a huge difference in badminton. There are different stances your need to remember in badminton.
- While receiving a service, you should stand with your non-racket leg in front and racket leg behind with your hand in front of your chest. Your body should be slightly bending forward.
- After a serve, you should quickly move to a ready position standing in the middle of the court with feet comfortably apart and slightly bending your knees to be ready for any shot that comes your way.
- Defensive stance: You need to be ready in a defensive stance when your opponent is likely to attack you with a full/half smash. So, stand with your feet wide apart and your racket at waist level facing the body at the net. Remember to stay on your toes and bend a little at this stance.
- Net stance: While hitting a net shot, you need to lunge properly with your racket side leg forward and your hands fully extended slightly above the waist level. Shift the body weight forward while receiving the shuttle.
- Attacking stance: In this stance, your body should be slightly inclined with your racket leg behind and both legs shoulder feet apart. To generate power, you need to raise your non racket as well as racket arm to attack the shuttle downwards effectively.
Efficient footwork is crucial in badminton. Without it, it gets difficult to cover the court. It is considered the most important skill in badminton. Footwork helps you play important shots as it helps you reach the shuttle better and faster.
Well, there are many footwork routines you can practice depending on your level of play. According to me, the most important and basic footwork is six corners. In this, you can place six shuttles on the six corners of the badminton court.
Collect every shuttle to one corner and place them back. Likewise, do this for all the six corners and record your timing. Eventually, try to improve your timing. It will help to improve speed as well as your footwork.
If you want to learn more about the basic footwork in badminton, check out this article.
A badminton rally starts with a serve. It is the most important element in your game. You must be very careful with your serves otherwise; it could lead to faults and you can lose points. Basically, there are two basic serves you should master at the beginning- short serve and long serve.
The high serve aims at the backend corner of your opponent and the low serve aims at the front of the court. A low serve is predominantly used in doubles and men’s singles as it prevents your opponent from executing a smash.
Get yourself accustomed to these serves properly and then you can advance to practice the drive serve and flick serve.
Click here to learn more about the different types of serves in badminton.
In badminton, your game is improved when you start playing a variety of shots during a game. Well, mastering these shots take time but just mastering them is not enough. You should know when and how to use them during a game. The basic shots in badminton are-
- The Lift
- The Smash
- The Net Shot
- The Drop Shot
- The Block
- The Clear
All these shots can be played forehand and backhand. Also, there are various static and non-static drills you can practice to improve your shots along with your footwork. Mastering these shots will strengthen your base as a badminton player after which you advance to variations using these shots.
There is a set of predefined rules set by the BWF. Every player whether beginner or professional should have adequate knowledge of these rules. Knowing the rules is a skill as it will help you to not lose silly points due to faults in the game.
You should know all the rules concerning the serves, singles and doubles and also the scoring rules.
This skill comes with experience and a lot of practice but yes, it is very important. It is the ability to intercept the next shot or style of play of your opponent. For this, presence of mind and extreme observation is required.
Being aware of your opponent’s weakness, strength, ability to identify when they are tired and many more factors help you to improve this skill. Moreover, if you have the skill to anticipate your opponent’s next shot, you have created an added advantage to your game.
If you observe matches of top players like Lin Dan, Kento Momota, Tai Tzu Ying, etc, you will observe that sometimes they have anticipated the opponent’s shot well in advance which helps them in taking it early and winning a point. Well, this is what I mean by anticipation.
Badminton is a complex game so you need to plan strategies on how you want to improve and win a game. Players and coaches use different strategies depending on the opponents in the long run.
For instance, a simple strategy for a doubles player should be to keep the shuttle at the net forcing a lift from the opponent so that you are on the attacking side.
Well, if you are on the winning side, there is not much change required. However, if you are on the losing side, there is something you need to change in your game and must strategize properly.
Visualization is a key skill that can help you to take maximum advantage of your skills and identify the weaknesses of your opponent. Moreover, you can analyze a video of your match and see where you went wrong and where you excelled.
Incorporate this list in your everyday practice and surely it will help to develop your game significantly. Keep practicing using different drills and above all, remember to have fun.
Enjoy while training as this will help to enhance your game even more. Skills are developed over time so be patient and dedicated to the sport and your body to see the results.
If you need some more useful tips to improve your game, check out the article that I’ve written on 10 Great Tips To Improve Your Badminton Game.
I hope this article was helpful. Thanks for reading!