How to Improve Reaction Time in Badminton

Badminton is the fastest racquet sport in the world. And hence, you need to have pretty good reflexes and reaction moves to excel in this quick sport.

So how can you improve your reaction time in order to play the game better? In this article, we will go through the various tactics and tips to improve your reaction time in badminton.

Without any further ado, let’s dive right in.

Warming Up

Before you start a match, make sure you warm up and hit some shots to get into the flow of the game. Warming up will increase your blood circulation and adrenaline level, which will eventually result in quick reflex actions.

Do not go for a match directly without any warm-up routines. There are several exercises you can do to warm your body up. Try to do a few exercises to let your body know that you’re going to use these muscles to play badminton. This will help your muscles to be ready for quick movements.

After that, go to the court and hit the shuttle back and forth with your friend/opponent. Hitting some shots will help you get a feel of the pace of the shuttle and the environment.

Warming up is very critical as it will make your body ready, and you’ll make fewer errors in a match. Also, it will help you avoid injuries, which is the last thing you want when you’re playing an important match.

So take proper care of your body by warming up before every single match.

Gripping Technique

It all starts with the right kind of gripping technique. There are different types of grips in badminton, and you need to learn how to hold a badminton racket properly in order to become good in reactions.

The two main types of grips in badminton are the forehand grip and the backhand grip. These grips are used corresponding to forehand shots and backhand shots. 

Since these two grips have some major differences, it is difficult to use them interchangeably if you don’t learn the right technique. Changing your racket from one grip to another is a really important skill that you need to master.

If the pace of the rally is too quick, the opponent might be hitting shots to your forehand and backhand area interchangeably. So, in order to take these shots, you need to quickly change your grip. 

If you don’t practice changing grips and using this skill, your reaction time to these shots will be high, and you’ll end up losing important points.

Do not hold the racquet too tightly. You need to have a loose grip so that you can change the grips quickly according to the incoming shots.

When your grip is loose, you might be wondering how you would generate power to the shots? For that, you can use finger power and do a very quick push.

If the rally is very flat and close to the net, you can use a kickback movement (the whip) after hitting the shuttle to get ready for the next shot.

If you want to improve your gripping technique, I suggest you check out the article we have on How To Hold A Badminton Racquet. In this article, you’ll learn the different types of grips used in badminton and how to use them.


Just like grips, footwork is a major technique in badminton, which you should master to improve your overall game. Learning the right kind of footwork will enhance your speed and reactions, and you’ll be able to take more shots covering more areas of the court.

The basic footwork in badminton is centered around the base position, which is the center of your court. For each shot, you move towards the shuttle from the base position, complete the shot, and come back to the base position to get ready for the next shot. This process is repeated for all the shots.

You can change the position sometimes according to the game situation. For example, if you’re sure that the opponent will hit a smash towards your court, then you can move a little backward to get more time to react to the shot. 

Also, if you hit a smash and you’re sure that the opponent will hit a weak shot in the air in the frontcourt, you can move a little forward and quickly finish the rally with a net kill.

It is also important to learn how to move to different corners correctly and come back within less time. For example, if you move towards the front corners, you need to make a split-step first. Then, take a step towards the corner with your non-racket leg. Then, lunge with your racket leg and hit the shuttle.

Similarly, you need to do the right kind of movements correctly to reach the different corners and hit the shuttle within the least amount of time. 

If you have no idea about the basics of footwork in badminton, I suggest you check out the article I’ve written on Basic Footwork In Badminton. Master the footwork technique as it is so important in playing high-quality badminton.

Training For Fast Reflexes

If you want fast reflexes, then the most critical thing other than technique is training. The more you train, the better your reflexes will be.

There are various kinds of training drills and practices you can do to improve your reflexes.

I’ll link a video showing you five exercises that you can do to improve your reflexes and reaction time in badminton. Check out the following YouTube video and try to implement these exercises.

Try to practice a lot with a tight grip and a loose grip and see the differences by yourself. Continuous practice will help you become better at reacting to a shuttle as soon as possible. Practicing these drills will help you understand the flaws in your technique, and you’ll be able to correct them.

If you have a friend or someone to help you, go to a badminton court and ask him/her to feed shuttles to various positions. As you can see in this video, try to react quickly to the shuttles coming at you. You might not be able to react to the shuttles as fast as that guy in the video.

Start at a slow pace and gradually improve the speed. If you practice enough times, you’ll be able to increase your speed level.

Having a friend or a coach who knows badminton will help a lot. When you do practice these, he/she will be able to point out any mistakes with your technique. If you are practicing in a badminton academy with proper coaching, then that would help a lot.

Even if you can’t afford to go to a badminton academy, try to practice with your friends, and you’ll definitely improve your skills with hard work and practice.

In badminton, just like any other sport, improving your hand-eye coordination will eventually lead to improving your reaction time.

Here are a few exercises to practice to make your hand-eye coordination better. Take a look at the following video and try these drills when you’re doing practice sessions.

Watching these videos will not help if you don’t practice these exercises. So go ahead and practice as much as you can to improve your game.

Final Thoughts

We’ve covered the various aspects of improving your reflexes and reaction time in badminton. Try to implement the things that you’ve learned from this article. I hope you would definitely make your game better.

I hope this article was helpful to you in learning something new about badminton. If you are a beginner in badminton, I suggest you check out the article I’ve written on How To Become A Better Badminton Player. That would help you improve the other aspects of your game.

If this article was helpful, do share it so that others can also find it. I would appreciate it if you do so.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy badminton!

Anushree Burad

Qualified as an MBA in Sports Management. A Sports fanatic and a passionate badminton player. My passion for sports drove me to foray into sports writing. This is my attempt at translating my thoughts into words. Looking forward to contributing to Sports through my writing.

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