How to Play Badminton

Well, let’s get to the basics first. Badminton is a game played with a racket and a shuttlecock (known as shuttle birdie in some parts of the world), between two or four players. It was introduced into the Olympics in 1992 as men’s singles, women’s singles, men’s doubles, women’s doubles, and mixed doubles. Badminton is an indoor game. There are several similarities between badminton and tennis; and also an equal number of differences. However, playing badminton is considered easier than tennis; though many will disagree. Here is brief information about playing badminton that will be helpful for beginners.

Badminton Tips for Beginners

Apart from the racket and the birdie, there are several other terms used in badminton that you need to be aware of before beginning to play. The movement of the birdie is affected by the wind, and hence, badminton is always played indoors. Similarly, the most basic thing to remember is to use proper technique and strength to hit the shuttle back, and score points. Now that you know the terms, let us see how to play and score in badminton.

Game Play

  • Both, the server and the opponent should stand inside their service courts during the serve.
  • In singles as well as doubles, the serve is always done diagonally from one’s own right corner to the right corner of the opponent.
  • Now, unlike tennis, the birdie should not bounce on the opponent’s court before he hits it. It is a direct shot between the server and the opponent.
  • The serve should always be done underhand. You can either serve forehand or backhand. However, you should make sure that the serve is underhand.
  • The opponent should try to hit the birdie back to the server, without touching the net.
  • The back and forth hitting continues until the birdie falls on the ground.
  • The lift, the push, and the drive are the common shots that are used while hitting the birdie back to the opponent.
  • If the birdie is below the height of the net, you need to lift the birdie upwards to send it back to the opponent’s court.
  • Secondly, you can push very slowly to the opponent’s court too. Thirdly, you can drive it flat to the opponent’s court with full strength.
  • Lastly, you should note that you can hit the birdie only once in order to defend / attack and send it back. No double shots or hitting the birdie twice (by the same player) is allowed.

Scoring

  • The professional game of badminton is a match of best of three games. A single game comprises 21 points, with a minimum difference of 2 points to win.
  • The player gains a point if the opponent fails to hit the birdie back, hits the birdie into the net, if the birdie lands out of the court, if the shuttle touches any of the body part of the opponent.
  • If the person serving loses the point, the service is immediately changed, and the opponent serves next.
  • Now, in case of a doubles’ match, if the serving team scores, the same person serves, but to a different opponent.
  • On the other hand, if the opponent team wins the point, and the new score is in odd number, then the player in the left service court serves. Secondly, if the new score is in even number, then the player in the right service court serves.

These are the rules, tips and techniques on playing badminton for beginners. Note that mastering these basic techniques and using them in the right manner can help in playing the game in a better way. Good luck!

How to Grip a Badminton Racket

Badminton is a very popular sport amongst many people from all around the world, and this is a game that comes naturally to many people. Learning the game is not that difficult at all, and the rules are also very simple to understand. All you need to do is hit the shuttlecock between the players with the help of a badminton racket. Official games have a net that needs to be scaled, and unofficial games between friends and family members can be played pretty much anywhere.

When someone is looking to play badminton for the first time, or even when someone is looking to improve their game, the first thing that they should do is learn how to grip the racket properly. The right grip can affect one’s game majorly, so it is absolutely essential to learn the correct technique involved. Anyone who is experiencing difficulties with gripping the racket will definitely have a hard time playing the game properly and learning other aspects of badminton as well.

The Badminton Racket

Badminton rackets have traditionally been very light, and they typically weigh anything between 70 and 95 grams. The materials used for manufacturing these rackets are varied in nature, but they are typically composed of carbon fiber composites, graphite reinforced plastic or even solid steel. In the beginning, badminton rackets were made of wood or aluminum. The shape of the rest of the racket is oval, but some new rackets are also shaped isometrically. The head has many taut strings that are pulled tight so that they can transfer kinetic energy easily, and some rackets even have materials like carbon nanotubes or fullerene in order to increase the transfer of this energy.

The strings (which are generally made of nylon) generally have a thickness of about 0.62 – 0.73 mm and the tension at which they are tied makes a big difference in the shots that a player makes. Strings with lower tension provide more powerful shots, whereas strings with higher tension improve the control and the direction of the shots. When it comes to the grip of the racket, it is the personal choice of the player that gains importance. Sweaty palms can affect the grip in many different ways, so the player must choose between a towel-like material grip or a polyurethane synthetic grip.

Gripping the Racket Right

The shape of the grip of the badminton racket is octagonal, and each of these sides are known as bevels. You should also be aware that when you hold the racket, you should relax your forearm muscles. Gripping the racket too tightly will spoil the shots you make, and this is something that most people do not realize. You should only tighten your muscles when you are actually hitting the shuttlecock, but at other times you should hold the racket in a flexible manner so that you can shift it around in your hand easily.

In order to learn the proper grip, you must hold the racket so that the face is perpendicular to the ground. Now you must extend your right hand towards the grip as if you are shaking hands with the racket. Now simply wrap your fingers around the racket, and move your thumb so that you feel comfortable. You can further adjust the thumb and the index finger to get to the most comfortable position. Now move the racket around and see if you can do so freely. This is the best way to grip a racket in order to play a forehand shot, and even to play a backhand shot in most cases. Many experienced players say that the best way to see if your grip is right, is to check if there is a V-shape between your thumb and your index finger when you see the back of your hand. If this position fits the V-shape then the grip is absolutely correct.

While this orthodox forehand grip is great for playing backhand shots, you can also use the common backhand grip for playing such shots. In order to do this you will have to break the V-shape of the thumb and the index finger, and move the thumb higher up the grip than the index finger. The biggest benefit of this grip is that the individual can exert greater leverage on the racket by pressing the thumb downwards. A third grip known as the frying pan grip is also commonly used and in this case you will need to grip the racket in the same manner as in the forehand grip. The only difference here is that the face of the racket should be parallel to the ground, rather than perpendicular to it. This grip allows one to freely play forehand shots and backhand shots without changing the grip in the middle of the game.

All these tips are commonly known to many players, and anyone who is starting to play the game should also be well aware of this. You can try experimenting with a few grips before you settle on one that you are comfortable with, and this is something that you should never forget. It is far more important to grip the racket in a manner that comforts you, rather than just blindly follow a predetermined grip.