In Asia, badminton is a game where families (especially fathers) bring their kids to badminton courts on weekends. Dad will teach their kids the very basic skills in badminton. Since young, kids would have picked up the basic techniques. When they grow up, they’ll find their group of friends to play badminton. With a solid badminton background, these kids explore further skills in badminton and start to develop new advanced techniques. Badminton is not only a national sport to some Asian countries; it is also an inherited culture where families and friends maintain relationships.
My point here is, you will only need to learn basic badminton skills at the beginning. Once you have mastered these basics, you won’t need to learn advanced techniques. You will naturally develop them! Executing strong smashes, performing quality deceptions, or diving to defend a smash… You’ll find badminton exciting when you are able to perform these techniques! Learn the correct basics in badminton and practise them. When you possess strong basic skills, you will eventually develop advanced techniques by yourself.
The most important basic badminton skills you should learn are:
Gripping technique: The correct way of gripping a badminton racquet enables you to transfer more power into your badminton strokes.
Basic badminton stroke (full arm swing): When you have mastered the basic badminton swing motion, you will be able to use it to perform a badminton clear, drop shot, and smash.
Footwork: Badminton is a game of speed. Effective and organised footwork plays an important role in enabling you to move faster around the badminton court. It’s simple! Just learn, practise, and master these 3 basics and you will find yourself exploring new advanced techniques by yourself.
A few examples of advanced badminton techniques are: Fast attacks (maximum wrist action). Attacking clear. Net kill. Deception.
However, I recommend you master the basics first before trying these new skills. Badminton basics are the most important techniques in the game and the key to master the game is to master the basics first. Pick these skills up and you’ll be well on your way to better game performance!
If you are playing badminton for fun, you can easily purchase a badminton set from either a supermarket or a large sports store. In some places, you can find badminton set sold in a hardware store or even a pharmacy. There are certain sets which are nicely packed together in a carrying case with a zip. These usually consist of everything you need in a badminton set and do not cost much but they are basically quite useless and can easily hurt your wrist. It is best to get medium cost rackets. You may need to purchase several packs of shuttlecocks as the feathers can easily be damaged or perhaps you can use the plastic types which are more durable. Lastly, a badminton bag would be helpful and handy to carry your badminton set around.
As for purchasing a badminton set for competitions or tournaments, it is advisable to obtain advice from badminton centers or refer to the sports specialist as to which set is appropriate. You can also consider purchasing the equipments online using search engine. The rackets used for competitions are usually of a higher quality than those used for fun and therefore the cost is heftier. You will need a minimum of at least two rackets just in case if the strings were to snap in the racket which you are using.
As for the shuttles, you will require at least two packs of the feathered ones. Get the high quality types of shuttlecocks which are packed separately. There are also synthetic nylon plastic types that can withstand the forceful hitting and last longer but ensure that the heads are made of cork and not plastic. Where the net is concerned, it is usually provided by the badminton courts, both indoor and outdoor. If you need to purchase a net, then look for nets with metallic poles. Also check for an all-weather net that can withstand both sun and rain if you intend to play on an outdoor court.
Drop Shot. This badminton shot is supposed to just go over the other side of the net. It is used mostly at the front part of the net and transferred to the side lightly to make the opponent run in getting it.
Drives. This power hit is used to aim at someone. This badminton shot is very low and is hit to the front of the body. In this shot, the opponent should prepare themselves with their racket up. This shot is very precise and quick, a good reflex is very useful to counter this shot.
Long Drops. Commonly used from a badminton shot done at the back part of a court. The receiver should hit the ball at high before it hits low and by then it is already too late. When you want to counter this shot, hit it low, you want it to land just over the net. Hitting it high would cause your opponent to smash it. You would not want that to happen, you want to hit it low to not give them the opportunity.
Cleass. This is the badminton shot you want to use when you want your opponent to move backward. This is a technique that one uses when they want to return to position them in the middle of the court. Hit this shot high making sure you got it before it starts falling. Hitting high means stretching your elbow to reach for the shot. This could drop at the back part of the court.
Smashes. This is perhaps the most popular or the most feared of all the badminton shots. Hit high shots quick and hard. This is a strategy one uses when they want to end the game quickly. It is best to aim at side part of the court to make your opponent run. And because this is designed to be hit high but land low, there is a big chance that your opponent would not catch the shot.
Serves. This is used every time a game starts. This is also the distinguishing factor between who is going to score on that game. The contact between the racket and the bird should happen below the waist. It should be nice and lot make for a good serve. The badminton shot is important in the game and it should only be aim in one direction.
The first item is a badminton racket. Just like squash or tennis, badminton is a racket game. Many people are unaware of the effect a badminton racket has on the game. The two factors that are different from each racket are its weight and size. This is mainly influenced by the material the racket is made by. For example, carbon fiber remains as the best material as it is both strong and light. The size of a racket shall not exceed the length of 680mm or 230mm while the stringed area shall not be longer than 280mm or 220mm.
A badminton racket needs its string. The tension of the string affects the velocity and impact of the shuttle when struck. Therefore, the tighter the string is tied onto the racket, the better as its tension increases. Another item that is essential to the game is the shuttlecock. The shuttles in the past were made out of feather which is the same ones used in all major tournaments. Now however, shuttles are also available in plastic form. It has become popular as it can be used for a long period of time. Feathers, on the other hand, must be changed very often as they wear out faster. Although a plastic shuttle may sound good to you, there is a vast difference in feel as they are heavier when compared to the feathered shuttles.
The last item that is essential in a proper badminton game is the net. Yes, the net is important as it sets a height to where the shuttle must go over. There is not much to it when choosing a net as it is simply an indicator of height. With all these items above, you are now ready to go out and have a blast. There are several other items which are ‘add on’ items in the badminton set such as badminton shoes, headbands, wristbands, etc. Prices of these items are based on its brand and material.
Badminton bags are commonly rounded on one end and then tapered on the other side, mimicking the shape of your racket. That way, you can also squeeze in your racket inside so you can carry everything in one go. They are also spacious enough to accommodate up to 8 rackets, depending on their size and the way they are designed. You can also find them in varieties that have separate areas to hold shuttlecocks, water bottles, food, and others.
The bag for you
Badminton bags can be chosen according to how you want them to look, how much equipment or things you need to fit inside, or how you want to carry them. There are over-the-shoulder bags that are lightweight, slim, and can be slung over one of your shoulders. These bags can accommodate one to two rackets and they can also have additional compartments on the strap or outside.
If you wish to carry your badminton bag like a tote, choose a duffel-type one that also has the capability to house a lot of rackets that can be secured inside along with other things like extra clothes, your tennis shoes, and others. However, not every duffel bag is tapered so some of them may resemble typical sports bags.
The right one
In choosing your badminton bag, make sure that you can fit inside all your essentials for playing. This includes your racket, shuttlecocks, and others like a water bottle, shoes, towel, etc. Make sure that you can also pick up and carry the bag easily. Cushioned handles can make lugging your bag easier and more comfortable.
Something you may notice is that very few professional mens singles players are much taller than 6 feet. This seems to be the height at which you start finding fewer and fewer players. Each inch taller seems to be something of a disadvantage on the whole. There are of course some advantages to that extra height like the extra reach it provides, but in a sport that demands so much agility, it proves to be more of a burden. Going the other direction you find very few mens singles players that are much shorter than 5 foot 6 inches, or perhaps even 5 foot 8 inches. At this point your court coverage is going to start being hindered compared to the other players. There are of course examples of players who have been outside this range, like Ong Ewe Hock who was 5 foot 3 or 4 inches tall, and Thomas Stuer Lauridsen who was 6 foot 3 (I thought he was much taller, but wikipedia argues otherwise). Thomas Stuer was a great player, but he also battled with injuries that were no doubt caused by his size.
If you go into the other events you start to see a lot more variation is the heights of players. In mens doubles you see small players like Yap Kim Hock player with a much taller partner, Cheah Soon Kit. Yap was a lefty, and Cheah was a righty. While Cheah was the big gun from the back, Yap was a force at the net. In mixed doubles Zhang Jun won the Olympics, and if you were to see him outside of badminton with no knowledge of his sporting success, you would assume he was terribly out of shape. He is a very stocky guy, and while he will never cover the court like Lin Dan does, he is ridiculously strong. I’m sure nobody looks forward to returning a smash from Zhang Jun.
So with these professional players in mind, what should an aspiring badminton player such as yourself do? How should you adapt your style to your build? Well if you’re like me, short stocky, you probably need to rely more on defense. You should focus on deflecting and absorbing your opponents attack in order to tire them out, and seek opportunities later in the rallies. To go too aggressively at your opponent will tire you out quicker than them most likely. Playing flat will eliminate their reach advantage over you, and since you’re shorter, you’re more likely to be able to steal the attack during flat play.
If you’re tall and lanky you want to take advantage of the extreme angles you can produce. Push the play deep to all four corners of the court, your opponent who is shorter than you won’t appreciate the extra steps they have to take. Also, from the back court your drops and slices will be a source of frustration for your opponent who’s standing too far back because they’re afraid of your smash.
Let’s start with the most fundamental of badminton skill, ie: Strokes, Steps/Footwork, Stamina, and Strategy.
- Strokes: The basic technique of badminton strokes includes Overheads forehand and backhand clear / smash / drop, drives, lifts, net shot. You are higher recommended to learn from the badminton demo video(see link at the bottom of this page). With the video, it will save you a lot of time learning all the basic strokes. After you have learn the basic strokes, the next step you have to do is practice and practise. Without the ability to execute all the different strokes, one will not be a complete badminton player.
- Steps/Footwork: Steps/Footwork is always comes together with stroke. A good badminton must have a good coordination of footwork and strokes. This includes foot, body, arms, swing coordination.
- Stamina: A badminton can last anything from 15 minutes to 1 hour plus and there can be more than one game within a day. A completed badminton match is best of 3 games, that means you got to play at least 2 games continuously. Without good stamina, a badminton player will be unable to successfully execute his/her desired strokes or even cannot finish the game. Again, stamina need to be build over the time via regular training, workouts or exercises. Regular workout will also help to improve your game by increasing your arm strength.
- Strategy: With good badminton skill and stamina is not enough, you must also have a good strategy to win a game. you have to make the correct shot at the correct time, either a drop-shot, smash, or clear? This is also important to identify the weakest point of opponent. This is especially crucial for doubles game, you should identify your opponent weakness and attack the opponent who is weaker. This is the most simple strategy. If your opponent is weak on his/her backhand clear, then you should hit the shuttle towards his/her backhand more. To go one level higher, it is also important to make the correct choice for a series of return and to lay out a game plan for whole match. This is so called the strategy of a badminton game.
Besides physical skill, a good badminton player must have good mental strength as well. Mental strength is the ability to make the correct decision even when under pressure or at the crucial moment. For example, when one is down to 5-19, or reaching the match point, 20-20. The player must stay focus to the game regardless whether he/she is leaving behind, leading, or under huge pressure due to the internal or external factor (eg: audience). A good badminton player must also be able to change strategy during the game on different situation. A good badminton player will not go down without a fight and should be able to keep his pace and the accuracy of his shots until the very last point in the game. A good example would be the game in between Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan during the Malaysia Open 2006. Lin Dan was already leading 20-13 in the rubber game and this was a really difficult situation for Lee Chong Wei, But he handled the pressure well and showed a great fighting spirit, slowly clawing back in to the game. And Finally, he won the game by 23-21.
You also have to keep yourself calm in the court and with high EQ. Many incidents, good or bad, can happen during a match either outside or inside the court. For example, bad line calls, umpires decisions or insulted by the audience or even opponent coach. See The Athlete’s Mind Guide(refer link below this page) .
Beside physical skill and mental strength, Sport Nutrition (refer link at the bottom of this page) is also important especially for the player preparing for the tournament. On a day-to-day basis, you have to take care of your nutrition by consuming a well balanced diet comprising carbohydrate, fat, protein, electrolytes, vitamins, minerals and water. A Nutritionist can extend help in achieving this. Water should be consumed in just adequate amounts before, during and after play, ideally at the amounts required to quench the player’s thirst.
Carlton badminton rackets are at the forefront of development and have been responsible for many of the innovations that have seen rackets develop into the shape and form they are in the present professional game. Many top players rightly entrust their badminton equipment to Carlton, inclusive of world beating doubles pair Nathan Robertson and Gail Emms.
Speed through the air is one of the paramount factors in developing the most effective and efficient rackets – reduction of drag and aero-dynamic performance are paramount and when Carlton introduced the first modern day metal racket this paved the way for the future of development for all the top brands and manufacturers.
Indeed, it was the advent of this type of racket that really put Carlton on the map on a global scale. The company also produced the world’s first synthetic shuttlecock and the first one piece graphite racket. In the 1980’s virtually all professional players used a 3.7s from Carlton – true testament to its amazing prowess.
Badminton rackets have to be able to deliver power, speed and control and the research and development team at Carlton have continued to deliver by utilising grommetless technology and creating faultless synergy between the strings and the frame of the racket. These innovations help to ensure leading edge racket control and feedback to help the brand increase its worldwide appeal and recognition.
Carlton won’t stand still and recognises that innovation and styling are key to ensuring they stay ahead of the game. Their mission in simple terms can be summed up in 2 brief but decisive points: Design and manufacture innovative equipment that drives elite players to success on the world stage. Produce equipment that maximises the enjoyment for recreational players at all levels.
Carlton badminton rackets have all their bases covered and will continue to dominate the sports racket industry for years to come. As their worldwide profile increases their market share will increase and they will compete with Yonex to gain the number one spot in the provision of top quality badminton equipment for professional, amateur and recreational players.
Racquet sports are largely games of skill. Not everyone can learn how to master the game. These games always offer you something to learn. Hence you are continually upgrading yourself.
While most sports focus on the exercise, racquet games target cerebral aspects too. In such games, a good playing strategy frequently scores over physical strength. Actually a smarter player can have a better likelihood of winning the game than a competitor who’s physically fitter. These games can be especially constructive for those making an attempt to stop smoking. They help distract your intelligence and deviate your attention from the pull of nicotine.
There are numerous health benefits of playing racquet sports. These sports not only look into your health and fitness, they improve your immunological system too. They make you stronger by strengthening your muscles. Therefore all the back stiffness sufferers must go for these sports to avoid back pain.
However, such sports are not just about physical or mental wellbeing. They also help you get that much needed adrenalin rush. Moreover, you are sure to enjoy yourself while playing racquet games with your youngsters and friends. And, even if you have to slow down a bit while playing badminton with your children, you will be adding a good deal to your general skill base nevertheless.
Preparing a racquet game is reasonably straightforward and you customarily need only one other partner to start. Unlike team games, these double player games are both entertaining and convenient.
Another benefit of racquet sports is the pricetag factor involved in the game. These games are not too expensive. It just takes purchasing a racquet, ball, shuttlecock and the sports shoes which aren’t really expensive. Therefore, your budget wouldn’t get imbalanced due to the expenses of these sports.