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Second Edition Badminton STEPS TO SUCCESS Tony Grice Human Kinetics Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Grice, Tony. Badminton : steps to success / Tony Grice. -- 2nd ed. p. cm. ISBN-13: 978-0-7360-7229-8 (soft cover) ISBN-10: 0-7360-7229-2 (soft cover) 1. Badminton (Game) I. Title. GV1007.G72 2008 796.345--dc22 2007032476 ISBN-10: 0-7360-7229-2 (print) ISBN-10: 0-7360-8520-3 (Adobe PDF) ISBN-13: 978-0-7360-7229-8 (print) ISBN-13: 978-0-7360-8520-5 (Adobe PDF) Copyright © 2008, 1996 by Human Kinetics, Inc. All rights reserved. Except for use in a review, the reproduction or utilization of this work in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now known or hereafter invented, including xerography, photocopying, and recording, and in any information storage and retrieval system, is forbidden without the written permission of the publisher. The Web addresses cited in this text were current as of November 2007, unless otherwise noted. 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Box 300 226 Albany North Shore City Auckland 0064 9 448 1207 e-mail: [email protected] Second Edition Badminton STEPS TO SUCCESS iv Contents Climbing the Steps to Badminton Success vi Acknowledgments viii The Sport of Badminton ix Key to Diagrams xvi Step 1 Racket Handling and Footwork 1 Step 2 Serve 17 Step 3 Forehand and Backhand Overhead 37 Step 4 Clear 49 Step 5 Drop Shot 62 v Step 6 Smash 78 Step 7 Drive 90 Step 8 Advanced Techniques 102 Step 9 Tactics and Strategies 130 Step 10 Doubles Play 149 Step 11 Conditioning 161 Glossary 181 Additional Resources 183 About the Author 184 vi Climbing the Steps to Badminton Success I wrote this book to accomplish several goals. First, it has given me the opportunity to describe, demonstrate, and analyze my style of teaching and playing badminton. It is a book for players at all skill levels; for classes offered in high schools, colleges, clubs, and recreational programs; and for people who are learning to play on their own. It is a step-by-step process designed as a manual to teach you the game of badminton. This is also a book for people who have played some badminton before. Badminton: Steps to Success, Second Edition, will help you examine your game and make corrections where you need them. The emphasis on fundamentals and strategy will allow you to analyze what you are doing on the badminton court. This book will be helpful in learning new skills, evaluating old skills, and improving what you are already doing. If you want to reach the next level, you must read, ask questions, observe, imitate more ex- perienced players, and most of all, practice and play badminton. Badminton: Steps to Success, Second Edition, provides the recipe for success. The only other elements you need to add are your talent, desire, and personality. I hope this step-by-step process helps you accomplish your goals and have fun as well. The 11 steps in this book allow you to move from basic skills into game-like situations. There are more than 100 drills in this book to help you improve your skill, practice effectively, and re- cord your progress. Suggested ways to increase or decrease the difficulty of the drills let you self- pace your progress to match your ability level. Missteps identify typical problems experienced by players learning badminton and provide sug- gestions for correcting those problems. You can apply the suggestions either during practice or during a game. The 11 steps follow a learning sequence that I have developed over a long playing and teach- ing career. Each step prepares you for the next one and moves you closer to becoming the best badminton player you can be. Racket-handling skills and footwork precede learning to serve and are followed by the forehand and backhand overhead strokes. These basic skills are the foun- dation for more sophisticated strokes, such as the clear and drop shots; the smash; the drive; and more advanced overhead strokes, such as the around-the-head stroke. Step 9, a new chapter on scoring strategies, discusses the first major change in the rules for badminton in over 150 years. Steps 10 and 11 focus on success in doubles play and conditioning, respectively. I hope this book will promote the sport of badminton to new heights around the world. Badminton is a wonderful game for all ages, truly a lifetime sport. It is great exercise and fun to play. As an Olympic sport as well as an extremely popular sport worldwide, badminton has a tremendous future. Get ready to climb a staircase—one that will lead you to become a more skillful badminton player. You cannot leap to the top; you get there by climbing one step at a time. Each of the 11 steps you will take is an easy transition from the one before. The first few steps of the staircase provide a foundation—an understanding of the fundamental skills and techniques. As you progress, you will learn the elements you need in order to experience success on the badmin- ton court. You will learn to combine the proper stroke production with game tactics during play to begin to make instinctive and accurate deci- sions in game situations. As you near the top of the staircase, your climb will become easier, and you’ll find that you have developed confidence in your badminton abilities that will ensure fur- ther improvement and make playing the game more enjoyable. To prepare to become a good climber, famil- iarize yourself with this section and The Sport of Badminton section for an orientation and to understand how to set up your practice sessions around the steps. Follow the same sequence each step of the way: 1. Read the explanation of what the step covers, why the step is important, and how to execute or perform the step’s fo- cus, which may be a basic skill, concept, tactic, or combination of the three. 2. Study the figures to learn exactly how to position your body to execute each basic skill successfully. 3. Review the missteps, which note common errors and corrections. 4. Perform the drills. Drills help improve skills through repetition and purposeful practice. Read the directions and record your score. Drills are arranged in an easy- to-difficult progression. This sequence is designed to help you achieve continual success. Pace yourself by adjusting the drills to either decrease or increase the difficulty, depending on which best fits your ability. Drills appear near the skill instruction so you can refer to the instruc- tions easily if you have trouble with the drill. At the end of each step, have a qualified observer, such as a teacher, coach, or trained partner, evaluate your basic skill technique. This qualitative evaluation of your basic technique, or form, is vital because using correct form can enhance your performance. You are now ready to begin your step-by-step journey to developing your badminton skills, building confidence, experiencing success, and having fun. vii Climbing the Steps to Badminton Success viii Acknowledgments I want to thank Human Kinetics for the oppor- tunity to share my badminton experiences with others. I particularly want to thank two ladies— Elma Roane and Virginia Anderson of Memphis, Tennessee—for all the lessons they taught me. They were instrumental in introducing the game of badminton to me when I attended Memphis State University. Dr. Charles “Red” Thomas and Northwest- ern State University of Louisiana also provided support for me in badminton as well as unique opportunities to learn. I am also grateful to Louisiana State University in Shreveport for its continued assistance and support. I also thank the United States Badminton Association for its cooperation and promotion of badminton. A special thanks to Bob Roadcap for his friendship and interest in badminton. Also, I particularly wish to thank three colleagues who contributed to the second edition of this book by providing their thoughts, ideas, and drills. Soohyun Bang, the 1996 Olympic gold medalist in women’s singles from South Korea, provided several drills and suggestions, especially in ref- erence to singles play. Dr. Curt Dommeyer of Hermosa Beach, California, and California State University at Northridge provided valuable in- sight and comments relative to how the new rally scoring rules will affect strategy during badmin- ton competition. Mike Gamez, a member of the USA Badminton board of directors and president of the Southern Badminton Association, offered his thoughts about advanced techniques and coaching. He also has a keen interest in promot- ing badminton at the junior level, especially in the southern United States. I wish to thank the models who gave their time and talents to participate in the photo shoot: Soohyun Bang, Daniel Haston, Murthy Ko- tike, Jason Gills, Ty Moreno, and Cheryl Crain. I would like to dedicate this new edition of Badminton: Steps to Success to my four children: Tony, Jr., David, Casey, and Curtis. And finally, I wish to express special appreciation to Mona Martin for her encouragement and understand- ing of my interest as a player, coach, teacher, and writer. ix The Sport of Badminton Badminton is one of the most popular sports in the world. It appeals to all age groups and vari- ous skill levels, and men and women may play it indoors or outdoors for recreation as well as competition. The shuttlecock does not bounce and must be played in the air, thus making a fast game requiring quick reflexes and some degree of fitness. The badminton participant may also learn and appreciate the benefits of playing badminton socially, recreationally, and psychologically. Badminton is a sport played over a net using rackets and shuttles with stroking techniques that vary from relatively slow to quick and de- ceptive movements. Indeed, shots during a rally may vary from extremes of 1 mile per hour on a drop shot to over 200 miles per hour on a smash. When played by experts, badminton is consid- ered to be the fastest court game in the world. In the 2007 All-England Open Men’s Doubles Final, one rally consisted of 92 shots, but lasted only one minute and eight seconds. A shot passed over the net in every three-quarters of a second. However, both singles and doubles play may be controlled to meet individual needs and abilities for physical activity throughout your life. BADMINTON HISTORY Several games were forerunners of modern bad- minton, but the game’s exact origin is unknown. Records describe a game with wooden paddles and a shuttlecock being played in ancient China, on the royal court of England in the twelfth cen- tury, in Poland in the early eighteenth century, and in India later in the nineteenth century. A game called battledore and shuttlecock involved hitting a shuttlecock with a wooden paddle known as a bat or batedor and was played in Europe between the eleventh and fourteenth centuries. The participants were required to keep the shuttle in play as long as possible. Battledore and shuttlecock was played in a great hall called Badminton House in Glouces- tershire, England, during the 1860s, and the name badminton was soon substituted for bat- tledore and shuttlecock. The playing area of the hall was an hourglass shape, narrower in the middle than at the two ends. This suggested the need for playing the shuttle at a minimum height to keep the rally going. Badminton was played on this odd-shaped court until 1901. A string was added across the middle of the hall to make a rudimentary net. The original rules for badminton were standardized in 1887 and later revised in both 1895 and 1905. These rules still govern the sport today with the rally scoring system, effective January 2007, constituting a major change. BADMINTON TODAY Today, the Badminton World Federation (BWF) governs the game of badminton worldwide. The BWF, originally the International Badminton Federation (IBF), was founded in 1934 with nine member nations. In January 2007, the IBF adopted its new name, Badminton World x The Sport of Badminton Federation. The BWF has grown to over 156 member nations and claims over 50 million members. The Thomas Cup for men and the Uber Cup for women are the most prestigious world bad- minton competitions and are held in conjunction with each other. Both are organized on a two- year cycle in the even years. Players compete for the World Individual Championships in the odd- numbered years and for the Thomas Cup and the Uber Cup Championships in the even-numbered years. The World Mixed Doubles Championship, or Sudirman Cup, began in Jakarta, Indonesia, in 1989, and it coincides with the World Individual Championships. The major tournaments of the world make up the World Super Series. Players win points by competing in each tournament, and those accumulating the most points are invited to compete in the World Super Series Finals at the end of the year. Badminton has been relatively unknown and unappreciated in the United States. Following its introduction in New York in 1878, the sport developed slowly. The American Badminton Association (ABA), the first national badminton organization in the United States, was formed in 1936. The ABA held the first U.S. National Championships in Chicago in 1937 and the first national junior tournament in 1947. The U.S. men’s team played very well throughout the 1950s, making the final round of the Thomas Cup several times. The U.S. women dominated Uber Cup competition from 1957 through 1966. The first national intercollegiate championship was held in 1970. Interest and money in pro- fessional sports increased geometrically during the 1970s, but the general public’s perception of badminton as a slow-paced, leisurely game was and is a misconception. In recent years, interest has increased sub- stantially. The ABA was reorganized in 1977 and became the United States Badminton Associa- tion (USBA). In 1985, badminton was adopted as a full medal sport for the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain. Badminton was a demonstration sport in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, Korea. The inclusion of badminton as an Olympic sport encourages optimism for its future popularity, recognition, and success. The USBA is currently the national governing body representing badminton on the United States Olympic Committee. Currently, the best players in the world come from China, Europe, Korea, Malaysia, and Indo- nesia. However, U.S. players Tony Gunawan and Howard Bach won the men’s doubles gold medal at the 2005 World Championships in Anaheim, California, becoming the first ever world men’s doubles champions from the United States. Re- ports indicate there are approximately 50,000 active badminton players in the United States. Badminton is currently the number-one sport in Great Britain, with almost two million registered badminton players. The Republic of China claims to have over 10 million badminton players. The BWF increased to 156 member nations in Janu- ary 2007. In 2007, prize money for the World Super Series and final will exceed three million dollars. The future for both competitive and rec- reational badminton seems very bright. COURT DIMENSIONS AND MARKINGS The badminton court for singles play is 44 feet long (13.4 m) and 17 feet wide (5.2 m) (figure 1). The court for doubles play is 44 feet long and 20 feet wide (6.1 m). The net should be 5 feet and 1 inch (1.5 m) at the net poles, sloping to 5 feet at the top in the center of the net. There is no official or standardized surface for badminton courts. A court may be indoors or outdoors; it may be concrete, asphalt, clay, grass, synthetic, or wood. However, most competitive badminton is played indoors, and because of the existing hardwood floors available in most university and school gymnasiums, wood is the most often used surface. xi The Sport of Badminton EQUIPMENT AND GEAR headbands, wristbands, and towels help keep perspiration from the face, eyes, and hands. A soft, leather glove is often used to provide a bet- ter grip and also to cushion the hand. Newer, lighter rackets of boron, carbon, or graphite are often one piece in design and can be made of varying degrees of stiffness. There are also wide-body and oversize rackets for less Doubles service and receiving area Singles long service line Baseline or back boundary line Doubles e Doubles sideline Alley Singles sideline Net post Net Right service court Left service court Short service line Singles service and receiving area 1'6" 1'6" 2'6" 2'6" Centerline 17'0" 20'0" 13'0" 44'0" 13'0" 6'6" 6'6" long service lin Figure 1 Court lines, areas, and dimensions. The cost and quality of what you wear, what you play with, and where you play varies greatly. Shorts, shirt, tennis shoes, or court shoes and socks are recommended, with a warm-up suit in cooler weather. White reflects heat better than darker colors and is cooler. Many players wear nylon, cycling shorts, or a cotton pant liner under their shorts for support and comfort. In addition, xii The Sport of Badminton air resistance and less torque. Strings are usually nylon or synthetic gut. Grip size is a personal preference. In the correct handshake grip, the thumb of the racket hand should touch the first knuckle of the middle finger. A good medium-priced racket is suggested at first. It is a good idea to try hitting with several types of rackets before buying one. If possible, borrow one from a friend. Some stores have demonstration models that they will allow you to sample. Compare and choose the racket that feels the most comfortable to you. The shuttle may be made from natural or syn- thetic materials. Nylon and feathered shuttles come in designated speeds. The speed of nylon shuttles are usually designated by the color of the band around the head of the shuttle. Red indicates fast, blue is medium, and green is slow. Physical education classes mainly use the nylon shuttle. The feathered shuttle is designed more for tournament play. The feathered shuttle must have 16 feathers attached to its base and must weigh between 4.74 and 5.50 grams. The weight of the feathered shuttle determines its speed. The lighter shuttle is designed for play in higher elevations, such as Mexico City. The heavier shuttle is for play in hotter, more humid climates nearer sea level. To test the speed of a shuttle, use a full underhand stroke, making contact over the back boundary line. A shuttle of correct speed should land not less than 1 foot, 9 inches (0.5 m) and not more than 3 feet, 3 inches (about 1 m) short of the opposite back boundary line on the opposite side of the net. GAME RULES AND SCORE KEEPING Decide who will serve first with a coin toss, a spin of the racket, or a toss and hit of the bird into the air to see toward who it points to when it lands. If you win the toss, you may choose to serve or receive or you can choose the side of the court you wish to start on. Whichever choice you make, your opponent gets to choose from the remaining options. Both opponents begin the game by serving from the right court with zero or love-all. Any- time you are serving from the court in which you started, your score should be even. An il- legal serve results in loss of serve and a point for your opponent. Hit the serve diagonally across to your op- ponent. The feet of the server must be in the proper court and in contact with the floor until the serve is made. When the receiver is ready, the server has only one attempt to put the shuttle into play with an underhand (below the waist) serve. The receiver can stand anywhere in the proper court but must keep both feet in contact with the floor until the serve is delivered. The receiver is considered to have been ready if an attempt is made to hit the serve. After each rally or exchange, the server initiates the serve from the appropriate side depending on whether his or her score is odd or even. The score should always be announced before each service with the server’s score given first. If a serve hits the top of the net and continues into the proper court, it is legal and play continues. In both singles and doubles, the first serve is always made from the right side. This is because the server’s score or serving team’s score is zero, which is an even number. Anytime after the beginning of the game that the server’s score or serving team’s score is even (2, 4, 6, 8, and so on), the service is delivered from the right side. If a point is made and the score is odd (1, 3, 5, 7, and so on), the server serves from the left side. The server’s score dictates which side he or she serves from. In doubles, one partner starts on the right side and one partner starts on the left side. Where you start is your even court. If the score is odd, partners should be opposite of where they started. If a point is made, the server changes courts and serves diagonally across to the other side. Your score dictates which side you serve from after your opponents have lost their serve. If one partner loses her serve, it is called service xiii The Sport of Badminton over or side out. Your opponents now have the chance to serve. Just as in singles, all doubles games are played to 21 points. In singles play, the service court is long and narrow. The side alley is out of bounds; the back alley is in bounds or good. The serve must carry past the short service line, which is 6.5 feet (about 2 m) from the net, and must not carry beyond the back boundary line. The lines are considered part of the court and in bounds. A bird that lands on a line is considered to be good. Read step 9 to learn the strategy involved in returning the singles serve and winning the singles rally. The service court in doubles play is short and fat. The side alley is in bounds and the back alley is out of bounds on the serve. However, once the bird is in play, the back alley is good. The serve must carry past the short service line and must not carry beyond the doubles long service line. Step 10 explains strategies involved in return- ing the doubles serve and winning the doubles rally. Games normally are played to 21 points in all events. During the early 1990s, the IBF experimented with a new scoring system for singles, doubles, and mixed doubles, in which games were played to nine points and the winner of the match was the player who won three out of five games. There was no setting or extension of a tied game as defined in the original rules. Also there was no requirement of winning by a minimum of two points. That attempt at changing the scoring was temporary and only slightly successful so the older method of keeping score was retained for the next decade. The WBF now supports the elimination of the older scoring method that included games to both 15 and 11 points along with the unique concept of setting. At its annual general membership meeting, the former IBF voted to adopt the rally point system for all IBF sanctioned events. The USAB Board of Directors voted to adopt this policy for all USAB national ranking tournaments. Nonranking tournaments that wish to be sanctioned by USAB would not be required to use rally scoring at this time. The rationale for this suggested change was to make the sport more marketable to spectators and television, as well as to improve the sport’s acceptance and understanding by the general population. Preliminary observations indicate match time may be reduced by as much as 25 percent. The rally scoring system requires play- ers to be more alert and to score quickly in these abbreviated games. Athletes will be required to adapt to a new strategy for winning matches, but they will also benefit from this exciting and potentially pressure-packed format. The simplified new rally points scoring sys- tem as amended and adopted by the WBF and USAB effective August 2006 is summarized in the sidebar “Simplified New Rally Points Scor- ing System.” In summary, you win the rally and a point if your opponent • fails to deliver a legal serve; • fails in attempting to return a legal serve; • hits the shuttle outside the proper bound- ary lines; • hits the shuttle into the net; • hits the shuttle two or more times on a return; • touches the net with his or her body or racket while the shuttle is in play; • lets the shuttle hit the floor inside the court; • deliberately carries or catches the bird on the racket; • does anything to hinder or interfere with your return; • encroaches under the net with his or her feet, body, or racket; • reaches over the net to hit a return; • touches the bird with anything other than his or her racket; or • fails to keep both feet in contact with the floor while serving or receiving. Any point that has to be replayed is called a let. These should occur very rarely and are usually the result of some outside interference. xiv Simplified New Rally Points Scoring System Scoring System • A match consists of the best of three games, each game played to 21 points. • The side winning a rally adds a point to its score. • At 20-all, the side that gains a 2-point lead first wins the game. • At 29-all, the side scoring the 30th point wins the game. • The side winning a game serves first in the next game. Intervals and Change of Ends • When the leading score reaches 11 points, players have a 60-second interval in order to change ends of the court. • A 2-minute rest interval between each game is allowed. • In the third game, players change ends when either side scores 11 points. Singles Scoring • At the beginning of the game and when the server’s score is even, the server serves from the right service court. When the server’s score is odd, the server serves from the left service court. • If the server wins a rally, the server scores a point and then serves from the alternate service court. • If the receiver wins a rally, the receiver scores a point and becomes the new server. The new server serves from the right service court if his score is even or from the left service court if his score is odd. Doubles Scoring • There is only one service opportunity per side in doubles. Both partners no longer get a chance to serve. Your score dictates which partner will serve. When the serving team commits a fault, the service changes to the opposing team. Their score then determines which side the next serve will be delivered from. • At the beginning of the game and when the server’s score is even, the server serves from the right court. When the server’s score is odd, the server serves from the left court. • If the serving side wins a rally, the serving side scores a point and the same server serves again from the alternate service court. • If the receiving side wins a rally, the receiving side scores a point. The receiving side becomes the new serving side. • The player of the receiving side who served last stays in the same service court from where he or she last served. • The players do not change their respective service courts until they win a point when their side is serving. • If players commit an error in the service court, the error is corrected when the mistake is discovered. xv The Sport of Badminton WARM-UP AND COOL-DOWN A good warm-up should prepare you for strenu- ous activity without tiring you out. A general warm-up to increase your blood circulation might begin with light calisthenics or jogging around the court. Combine running toward the net with backpedaling away from the net, along with shuffling sideways across the court while facing the net. After you have warmed your muscles and in- creased your circulation, you are ready to stretch your upper body, shoulders, back, and legs. Move through a series of basic stretches slowly with little or no bouncing before playing. Research indicates passive or static stretching is better for you and less likely to cause injury. Hold each stretch for approximately 20 seconds. Now you are ready to hit. Include about 5 to 10 minutes of easy hitting while practicing spe- cific shots. Start in the midcourt with controlled, easy exchanges with your practice partner or op- ponent. Begin with overhead strokes on both the forehand and backhand sides to further warm- up and stretch your shoulders, upper body, and legs. Next, move laterally, reaching to hit returns from either side of your body. Move from the backcourt near the baseline toward the net, al- ternating returns with your partner to move each other from frontcourt to backcourt. Alternate roles with your partner to practice clears, drop shots, and smashes. Practice drop shots from backcourt, while your partner returns them with underhand clears from up at the net. After strenuous activity, cool-down by allow- ing your body to gradually return to a normal pace. Walk the perimeter of the court for about 5 minutes or until your heart rate returns to around 100 beats per minute. Then repeat your stretching exercises. This cool-down helps to get rid of lactic acid built up during vigorous exercise and helps to prevent muscle soreness. Recent research indicates drinking sports drinks before, during, and after strenuous physical activity may also prevent muscle soreness. Dehydration is the primary cause of muscle cramps so an adequate amount of water should be consumed as well. Badminton requires a certain level of fitness. In close matches, fitness usually is a factor in the outcome. Important considerations in your conditioning program are exercise, a sound diet, adequate sleep, rest, and practice. Step 11 discusses the need for the more advanced player to adopt a more rigorous and structured training program. RESOURCES This section lists additional resources you can use to find out more about badminton. Organizations such as the BWF and USA Badminton list tourna- ment locations, state organizations, and local bad- minton clubs that have leagues and weekly recre- ational play. Both the BWF and USA Badminton have Web sites, e-mail addresses, and telephone numbers where they can be contacted: USA Badminton One Olympic Plaza Colorado Springs, CO 80909 719-866-4808 [email protected] Badminton World Federation Batu 3 1/2 Jalan Cheras 56000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Tel: +6-03-9283 7155 FAX: +6-03-9284 7155 [email protected]