Intermediate Drills for Badminton

by Michael Monet
The way you hit the shuttle matters more in intermediate games.

The way you hit the shuttle matters more in intermediate games.

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Once you master basic badminton skills, you have the opportunity to experiment with intermediate techniques. Unlike beginner badminton skills, intermediate skills allow room for creativity and flexibility. By practicing these drills, you'll learn to hold the racket for maximum power, attack with intermediate skill and perform intermediate shot styles.

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Attacking Clear

In badminton, a return shot is usually more of a lob, especially if the hit you're returning was difficult to meet. In intermediate badminton, players use return lobs as attacking clears, an attack meant to be an offensive move. The goal is to hit the shuttle to the very back of the court but in the lowest and most-direct trajectory possible, so that it's harder to return. To start the drill, stand at the back of the court. Get into an athletic stance with your feet staggered and knees slightly bent. Hold your racket in an overhead-swing position. Have a partner hit the shuttle to you and smash it to the back of the court with an overhead swing. If the shuttle floats too high to get to the back of the court, hit it again until you get five low-flying attack clears. When you master this skill from the back of the court, do it from the middle of the court and then up at the front of the net.

Drop Shot

A drop shot in badminton can occur cross court, or diagonally from one side of the court to the other, and while jumping to achieve a more severe angle. Mark a large X on one corner of the opposite side of the court with black or white tape so that it's easily visible. Stand on the opposite side of the court diagonal to the X. Drop shots have you practice a technique called slicing. Practice first by holding the racket up and tilting the head slightly. When you swing, hit forward while sliding the racket down the shuttle, "slicing" it. The desired affect is a severe, downward angle that is nearly impossible to return. Start with 20 to 30 shuttles next to you. Once you master slicing, attempt to slice while hitting the X on the other side of the court. Finally, practice jumping drop shots by having a partner hit the shuttle over to you. Jump up when the shuttle is about a foot away and slice it across the court as you practiced.

Deception

Deception in badminton means prepping to execute one type of shot only to switch at the last moment and complete a different shot. This delays your opponent's reaction, making her less likely to return the shuttle. To perform this drill, remember the shot techniques commonly used, such as overhand, underhand and lob. Have a partner stand on the opposite side of the court and hit shuttles over to you. Hold your racket as though you're performing a basic overhand, underhand or lob hit. At the last minute, practice slicing the shuttle, smashing it, or clearing it to the back of the court. Practice concealing your move until later and later in the return, until your partner can no longer tell what shot you're doing for.

Tumbling Net Shot

A tumble involves hitting the shuttle gently enough so that it just barely makes it over the net. Once it does, it drops to the opponent's side so close to the net that she often doesn't have time to run up and return it. Tumbling takes control, as you both direct the shuttle and hold back on the power so that it drops close to the net. Start this drill by learning to grip your racket more loosely. Hold on with slightly less of a grip than normal so that you exert less power. Have a partner hit a shuttle over and practice using less and less power until the shuttle falls directly on the other side of the net. This will take time to master. Focus on the angle of your wrist and how this affects where the shuttle lands. Try different positions to acquire different styles of tumbling.

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