Yonex Nanoray Z Speed Badminton Racket Review – Fast and Powerful

The Yonex Nanoray Z Speed holds the smash record of 491km/h. The lightweight design and theoretical power makes it a very popular racket in my club.

But there’s something about this racket that makes it hard for me to play with. Here’s my Yonex Nanoray Z Speed review.

Summary

Power: 7/10

Speed: 8/10

Overall Rating: 7.5/10

Average Price: $230 CAD

Recommended for: Everyone!

Extras: Smash record, Stiff Shaft, Even balance, 3U

Where to Buy: Amazon.com

Review Model: 3U G4, Factory grip, Yonex BG66 Ultimax at 28lbs

Power – Theoretical?

Although the Yonex Nanoray Z Speed holds the smashing record of 491km/h, I just can’t seem to bring out that power. Compared to something like the Voltric Z Force II, smashes and clears just don’t feel as satisfying. I personally like heavier rackets with a combination of a very stiff shaft for power.

I have the 2017 3U, G4 edition of the Nanoray Z Speed. This racket’s power may not be the best for me, but it’s still very strong. I love the even balance with the stiff shaft. Stiff shafts always give the racket a solid feel especially when combined with weight for me. But unfortunately, the Nanoray Z Speed does not have this weight so does not feel as good for me.

Speed – Very Fast But Clunky

But what the Nanoray Z Speed does have, is speed. The even balance and weight allows for you to make quick shots with this racket. Drives feel really good and overall I move very fast with this racket. But there’s something wrong for me when I play with this racket.

When I play with this racket, I would often hit the edges. Shots I play are also less accurate, especially net shots. At least for me there’s some clunkiness when I play with this racket. Usually it happens with softer shots so drives, smashes, and clears are still relatively accurate and powerful.

Price and Extras

The average price of the Yonex Nanoray Z Speed in Canada is around $230 CAD unstrung. You can buy it here at Amazon.com. Some specifications of this racket is that it comes in 3U, G4 and 3U, G5. It’s a light, even balance racket with a stiff shaft.

The weight and the stiffness of this racket makes it a pretty good racket for intermediate and advanced players and it is great for all types of games. I see this racket being used in singles, doubles, and mixed doubles pro play all the time. The speed and power of this racket are great! This one is especially good for doubles because of its lightweight and even balance for defending against barrages of smashes but the power is also there for you to turn it around and unleash your own barrage.

For singles play, the speed and power is still great but I just couldn’t replicate the power that’s supposed to be there. Some of our strongest smashers in our club use this racket so the power definitely should be there but unfortunately I just couldn’t get the feel. Let me know if you have a similar or different experience with this racket!

Conclusion

The Yonex Nanoray Z Speed is definitely one of Yonex’s premium rackets. Priced at around $230 CAD, it’s a great racket with a good combination of speed and power. I gave it a 7/10 for power and 8/10 for speed and I recommend this racket for all types of advanced and intermediate players. The stiff shaft and even balance of this racket is great for singles, doubles, and mixed doubles. You can buy it here at Amazon.com.

So this is my review of the Yonex Nanoray Z Speed and as always, if you have any questions or comments feel free to leave it below. Good luck in your games and have a great day!

 

 

 

 

Badminton Drills and Exercises For Improving Footwork

Footwork is one of the fundamentals of badminton and I can tell you this, without good footwork, you will not be able to win because you can’t reach the shuttle. In this post, I will present various badminton drills and exercises for improving footwork.

Every badminton player will tell you that you need speed and stamina to win. Without speed, you won’t reach the shuttle and without stamina, you can’t keep up the speed. You’re probably wondering how to get faster with footwork and gain more stamina now, right?

I’ll walk you through a few badminton drills and exercises for improving footwork.

Pointing Footwork/Shadow

Pointing footwork is the most basic drill for improving footwork. This is great for improving stamina as well as refining technique. Let me explain how to do this.

1. With a Partner

One of the ways to practice this way is to move to wherever your partner points. There are 6 points that we point to; left in front of the net, right in front of the net, left and right middle of sideline, left back corner, and right back corner. Speed is not of the upmost importance so make sure your footwork is completely refined and secure.

2. By Yourself

The other way is to do footwork by yourself. This way is a lot more convenient and you can target specifically at what your not good at. In this one, you would move to the 6 points mentioned above but without the pointing. Again speed is not the most important but rather technique. What I like about doing this drill by yourself is that you can imagine you’re playing a game and do footwork based on what the opponent hits. You can also practice footwork that you specifically need work on. For example, moving back to the backhand corner.

Badminton Court Points

For both these variants, 3 sets of 12 is a good warm-up and 5 sets of 20 is if you want to push yourself and improve your stamina a lot more.

Speed Footwork

What the pointing footwork doesn’t offer as much help to is speed. Speed is very important in footwork and making sure you reach the shuttle. There are 6 variants that should all be practiced.

1. Front and Back (Straight)

In the straight front and back, you want to choose a half-court. Start in the middle. When the timer starts, do a smashing motion after quickly shuffling to the back and then run up to the front and make a net kill motion. Then keep going back and forth at full speed.

2. Front and Back (Diagonal)

This one is the same as straight except you move diagonal. Smash at the back and then net kill front after running diagonally. For both these drills, you want to switch sides after a few sets so you can practice both backhand and forehand movements.

3. Side to Side (Net Kill)

Start in the middle, slightly more towards the net, of a full court this time. Once the timer starts, forehand net kill at the net and then move back to the middle. Then backhand net kill and repeat at full speed.

4. Side to Side (Defense, No Jump)

For this drill, start right in the middle and then shuffle and touch each sideline. So just shuffle left and right at full speed.

5. Side to Side (Offense, With Jump)

This one is the same as defense except jump close to the sidelines. With this one, you should be able to shuffle, shuffle, jump, shuffle, shuffle, jump. Try not to bounce when you land so you can immediately shuffle when you land.

6. Corner to Corner Overhead Swings

This one is like the side to side net kill except you do it with a smashing motion at the back. Go to a corner at the back from the middle and smash and then move to middle. Then move to other corner and smash. Repeat at full speed.

In this drill, speed is very important so make sure you go as fast as you can. I recommend 3 sets of 1 minute for each of the variants. If it’s too difficult, lower it to 30 seconds.

Shuffling and Running

Doing actual footwork is great for improving your footwork as obvious as it sounds but what if you don’t have a court? Shuffling and running are great exercises for improving your stamina and speed and thus your footwork.

With running, I personally like jogging and suicides. Jogs are great because you can do them anywhere and your stamina gets a great boost. If you’re able to jog 30 minutes everyday then go for it. It’s great for your body!

Suicides are great for agility and speed. The quick turns and fast running are great for badminton’s quick reactions to shots. For suicides try to find a few lines and run to each. Start at the first line and touch the second line. Then run back. Run to the third line after and touch that and then run back. Then run to fourth line and run back and so on. Do about 5 lines and the distance between the first and fifth line should be around 50 to 100 meters.

Shuffling is also great for badminton because it’s a movement that you will be using. A basic drill you can do is shuffle side to side quickly. Do this for about 3 minutes.

You can also incorporate jumps into the shuffle as well. So use a pattern like shuffle, shuffle, jump as an example.



Fast Feet

Fast feet is a basic fundamental drill to improve agility. With this drill you can do the basic one where you quickly tap your feet for 3 sets of 1 minute. With this drill you can play around with additions such as split-step lunges, different fast feet variations, push-ups, jumps, and more.

An example of what you can incorporate is doing fast feet and then every once in a while, get down and do a push up. What many training facilities like to do is incorporate jumps and push-ups together as well. Those are great for improving your body fitness as a whole.

Different fast feet variations you can also try out are moving your feet front and back and side to side. With front and back, step over a line one foot at a time so lets say your right foot moves in, your left foot will then also move in, then when you have two feet over the line, step your right foot back and then left. Side to side is when you have two lines and you make quick movements moving your feet inside and outside the lines.

As you can see, there are many drills you can play with.

If you want more ways to improve your speed and agility check out this post:

Get Faster Footwork

If you do a combination of all of these every week, I guaranteed you that you will get a lot more fit and become much faster as long as you go all out. Most of these drills are done with other badminton drills too for overall improvement as a badminton player.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. Good luck on your games and have a good day.

How To Get Good At Badminton

How to get good at badminton. This is something that I would hear all the time as well as ask myself. So after learning and training all these years, I’ve built Get Good At Badminton for this sole purpose.

There are so many specifications in badminton for how you should play but let’s break it down into one article.

Proper Technique

For the sake of length in this article, I won’t be going in depth into how to do each specific part. You can check out other articles on getgoodatbadminton.com to learn specific things. For now, let’s jump into the technique.

Technique is the most important part of badminton. It’s also the most information dense. There’re all sorts of definitions on how you’re supposed to hold your racket, swing forehand, backhand, how you position arms, etc. If you don’t have the right technique, it will keep you down forever.

Look through our articles or get a private coach to refine your technique. Then practice it everywhere. Practice holding your racket at home, find an open space to practice swings, etc. Then when you go on an actual court, and practice with a shuttle. Be sure to check that your technique is correct while playing and that you don’t revert back.

The right technique must become second nature.

Footwork

Another basic of badminton is your footwork. Proper technique won’t matter if you can’t reach the shuttle in the first place. For footwork as well, you want to make sure you’re doing it correct. Are you taking lunges with your dominant for net shots? Are you shuffling towards the back?

Once again I recommend looking through our articles or hiring a private coach.

You may have the proper footwork but you want to build up speed and stamina. This is what’s going to separate your game from other people’s game. Having the speed allows you to reach all the shots and having stamina allows you to maintain that speed through your matches. You will become extremely tough to play against if you’re extremely fast and have stamina. You’ll basically become someone with impenetrable defense and also deadly offense with the speed and you’ll be able to maintain that with the stamina. Here’s how you can become like this.

Some training methods you want to incorporate are pointing, front and back, side to side, and many more. I have an article on this website all about getting good at footwork called Badminton Drills and Exercises to Improve Footwork.

Quality and Diversity of Shots

Your quality and diversity of shots will determine heavily on right technique. This why having the right technique is a must have to increase your badminton skill. Once you have good basics in footwork and technique, it’s time to perfect your drops, smashes, clears, net shots, drives, and more.

Having a diverse set of shots will allow you to play many different strategies. You don’t want to just keep clearing over and over again or dropping over and over again because your opponents will catch on and take advantage of that. Learning how to do different types of shots will come from technique and adjusting your power.

The second part is quality of the shots. As a beginner or intermediate player, you will likely have bad quality shots. For example, your drop might be too high and the opponent net kills, you hit your smashes out a lot, etc. The quality of your shots comes with time and practice. A drill that is very good is having a coach feed you shuttles and you play a specific type of shot. If you don’t have a coach or someone skilled enough to do feeding drills, you can just rally with limited shots with a friend.

Strategy

So you have good technique, good footwork, and good shots. Are you a good player now? Well yes but we can take you up to another level. In this world there are countless amounts of players who have good technique, footwork, and shots but what separates players from each other is strategy. No player is perfect and everyone has their strengths and weaknesses. It’s up to you to avoid their strengths and play to their weaknesses.

A few basic strategies, you can immediately apply to your games are diversified shots and pushing to the backhand. Diversifying your shots is the most basic strategy; this is also known as, make people run. This is extremely good for exposing people’s weaknesses at the start and it also tires them out which will weaken their footwork. But sometimes you also want to hit to the same place a few times because then they’ll start adjusting to that position which gives you other openings to strike on. Another strategy is pushing a shot towards a person’s backhand. This strategy is very good because people’s backhands will always be weaker than their forehands. Most of the time, players play a backhand drop which you can capitalize on.

There is only one way to practice strategies really. You first learn the strategy by watching people play or reading up on it and then you put it into practice by playing games. This will only come from experience and the more you play, the better you will become.

Badminton is not just a physical sport, but mental training as well.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Practice, practice, practice. You’ll hear this everywhere. The truth is that to get good at badminton (or anything really), you must practice and to get better fast, you must practice a lot. A good training amount for club players are about 3 times a week with 2 times being the bare minimum and 1 week being good for casuals. When you practice, make sure you consider all the above. I even suggest getting a private coach or take classes of some sort to make sure your technique and footwork is correct but also to give you an opportunity to practice seriously.

I highly recommend checking out the Badminton Skills Checklist for more information on what to practice.

There’s even more you can do such as play in tournaments but it all sums down to play a lot of badminton. So I’ll stop now and wish you luck on your journey. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below and good luck in your games.

 

 

 

 

Yonex Voltric Z Force II Badminton Racket Review – Swift Powerhouse

The Voltric Z Force II was my second ever racket and I loved it. I was smashing much faster and playing shots effortlessly. Honestly this racket was my first time ever playing with a premium racket and since then I have learned much about rackets and how to choose them. I have a post on how to choose badminton rackets but nevertheless let’s jump into the Yonex Voltric Z Force II review.

Summary

Power: 9/10

Speed: 6/10

Overall Rating: 7.5/10

Average Price: $240 CAD

Recommended For: Singles, Backcourt Mixed Doubles

Extras: Thinnest Shaft, Smaller Head, 3U and 4U

Where To Buy: Amazon.com

Review Model: 4U G5, Factory grip, Yonex NBG99 at 24lbs

Power- Best In Class?

Arguably the best thing about the Voltric Z Force II is its power. The Yonex Voltric series is one dedicated to head heaviness and power and the Voltric Z Force II embodies that completely. Clears and smashes are made effortless and they feel really good. This is because of its head heaviness, weight, and extra stiff shaft.

My Voltric Z Force II is the 3U, G4 edition. The weight is about 88g and it is one of the most head heavy rackets Yonex has made. I absolutely love the stiff shift on the Voltric Z Force II as well. I’m a personal fan of stiff shafts because they just seem to make your shots stronger and more accurate and that’s what the Voltric Z Force II does!

But at what compromise?

Speed- The Compromise

Due to the racket’s head heaviness, the Voltric Z Force II is slower in terms of moving it around. This makes it harder to defend. Another thing I have noticed with this racket is that my backhands are just not as strong despite it being a power racket so definitely beware if your backhand is especially weak.

Although the heaviness of this racket is a benefit to power, it brings down the speed category.

Another thing to note is that carrying a heavy racket brings down your stamina as well. Running around on the court and smashing will tire you out fast with this racket so it’s a good idea to build strength for this racket.

But even after bashing the racket’s speed, it still has some good qualities in this category. The thin and stiff shaft allows for the racket to cut through the air fast and allow you to bring your racket up at an above average speed so it’s all about getting used to it.

Price and Extras

You usually find the Yonex Voltric Z Force II for around $240 CAD and comes in 3U, G4 and 4U, G5. Some other features of the Voltric Z Force II is that it has the thinnest and stiffest shaft on the market. The head of the racket is also slightly smaller than other rackets making the sweet spot to hit shuttles smaller. The combination of the stiffness and the slightly smaller head makes this racket rated for advanced players. It will take a little time to get used to.

I recommend this racket for singles players and mixed doubles mens players, though not as much. Because singles usually has less smashes than a doubles game, this is racket is great because quickly switching to do quick blocks is uncommon.

As for mixed doubles mens players, I recommend it a bit less but it’s still okay. Mixed doubles is a bit slower paced than regular doubles and consists of a lot more net play and drop shots. As a guy, you will defend against less smashes too since mixed doubles players like to smash towards the girl. But since it’s doubles, it’s still faster paced than singles so the Voltric Z Force II may be harder to use.

Conclusion

With an average price of $240 CAD without the strings, the Voltric Z Force II is by no means cheap, but it is definitely worth it for its price. You can buy this racket on Amazon.com. As one of Yonex’s premium rackets, its ratings are exceptional. A 9/10 in power and a 6/10 in speed gives it a recommendation for singles players and mens mixed doubles players. The thin and stiff shaft also gives this racket a great feel. The Voltric Z Force II has been a favorite for some time. It’s like an old classic.

This is my review on the Voltric Z Force II and if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. I am always open to review suggestions and I hope to give you as much information as possible. Good luck in your games!

 

 

 

How To Improve Your Badminton Smash

Have you ever wondered how pro players manage to smash at 400km/h? It’s always extremely exciting to see a powerful and accurate smash ending the rally and game but sometimes we just can’t replicate it! To up your badminton game, I’m going to share the secrets of how to improve your badminton smash. The most important things are Technique, Contact Point, Accuracy, and Strength in that order.

Here’s how you can replicate the smashes of the pros.

Refine Your Badminton Smash Technique

If you follow pro play, you may have noticed that there aren’t any heavy lifters and body-builders playing badminton, yet pro players are still able to smash at amazing speeds. This is all due to technique.

To improve your badminton smash, you need to improve your technique. Let’s start with the grip.

Grip– The grip is one of the most important fundamentals for badminton. You can never get good with the wrong grip because your power will forever be limited. If you already have the wrong grip, do not fret. Just make sure to maintain the proper grip and only play with it. For smashes, we will be focusing on the forehand grip.

Step 1: Hold out your hand like you are going to shake hands and find the V between your thumb and index finger.

Step 2: Hold out the racket in front of you sideways.

Step 3: Put the handle into the V shape and close your grip loosely. Your thumb should be between the index finger and the middle finger and you should be holding the thin side.

To test that your grip is right, you should be able to wiggle the racket up and down effortlessly and the racket side should be facing forward.

A few common mistakes people have are having the racket face facing forwards, holding a backhand grip to swing, and having a grip in which the index finger is flat against the flat side of the grip. Beginners usually start off having the racket face facing forwards because it simply makes it easier to hit shuttles in the beginning but this is a horrible habit to maintain.

The main reason is that you will not have enough power and control to hit proper clears, drops, or smashes. This is the same reason we do not use a backhand grip to swing forehand shots. As for having your index finger straight up, this has the same reason of not enough power but it’s even worse because you can cause injury to your finger from prolonged straining. Once again if you have these problems, do not fret.

Just make sure to use the proper grip. It may feel weird the first few times and you will likely miss more shots but it will pay off. Try to check your grip after each rally to make sure it’s the proper grip.

Once you’ve got your grip, we can move onto the overhead stroke.



Overhead Stroke– Having the proper overhead swing is what’s going to generate the power in your smash so I’m going to teach you the steps for your swing.

Step 1: Stand with your right foot at the back and left foot forwards so that you are facing the side instead of the net. Put your weight towards you right foot. Hold up both arms so that your biceps are approximately 180 degrees to your shoulder. Then bend both arms up at approximately 90 degrees.

Make sure you do not rotate your grip while bringing your arms up. If you play left-handed, replace right foot with left foot and left foot with right foot.

Step 2: Reach up with your dominant hand and turn at the same time to transfer weight towards the front. When the shuttle is extremely close to the racket, squeeze your grip and swing while moving your right leg forwards. Follow through your racket arm towards your non-dominant arm and then return to ready position. Again if you’re left-handed, change right to left and left to right.

Practice swinging by finding an open room. Just swing step by step until you get hang of it and then move onto full speed swings. Then go to a gym with some friends and practice with a shuttle.

Contact Point and Accuracy

Have you ever smashed over and over again only to have each shot returned and then proceed to lose the rally? This is because your opponents are always ready for your smashes. Where you hit the shuttle will help solve this problem.

Before we get to where to smash on the other side, I want to talk about the importance of the contact point. The basic idea is that the higher the shuttle is, the steeper you can smash. This is the reason why many people jump smash. But for purpose of this article, you want to swing when the shuttle reaches the highest point that you can hit downwards without hitting into the net. The steeper the smash, the harder it is to return.

Now let’s talk about where to aim on the court. There are three main directions to smash; cross court, down the middle, and straight. There are all sorts of situations of when to use these smashes.

Cross court smashes are usually used less because smashing cross court requires more distance to be traveled and thus the smash is also slower. You also want to be wary of the opponent’s return. This is because an opponent’s return is often a straight return so if you smash cross court, you will have to run more distance at a faster pace too.

But there are times you would use this type of smash. Lin Dan himself has his signature cross court smashes that ends many rallies. Cross court smashes work when you try to play a variety of shots. So if you have been smashing straight most of the time, the opponent might adjust more to the side you’re smashing which allows you to open up the other side. These types of smashes usually occur in singles play.

The next place you can smash is in the middle. The main places to use these smashes are during doubles games and/or against tall people. If you’re aiming for their body, you have to specifically aim it at the armpit of their racket arm. That spot is extremely awkward to block, even more if you’re tall because of longer limbs.

As for doubles games, smashing right down the middle can confuse the opponents as to who is blocking the smash. This can lead to points from opponent’s miscommunication. We don’t use this smash too much in singles because players generally go back to middle so they’re already ready for these types of shots.

Finally, we have straight smashes. These are your common go to smashes. Usually you want to smash straight because traveling less distance means it will go faster and you can pressure on their block easier as most people block straight. However, this means players will start positioning themselves closer to where a straight smash would be so use the other smashes occasionally to diversify your offense.

So now that you’ve learned the right technique and where to smash, it’s time to put it into practice.



Drills For Smashing

Drill 1: This is the most basic drill for practicing straight smashes. I am going to explain two variants. For the simplicity of explaining, I am going to set two people as A and B. A is going to serve high to B on a half court, B is then going to smash, A then blocks, B lifts and repeat.

The other variant is A lifts, then B smashes, A blocks, B net shots, A lifts and repeat. Then swap.

This drill is great for practicing straight smashes and body smashes and it takes the least amount of skill but it lacks a lot for increasing strength and where you smash because you want to make sure you can keep the rally going. With this one just try to see if you can keep the rally going.

Drill 2: Drill 2 is having someone feed you lifts and then you smash. This is great because you can practice straight smashes and cross court ones and go full power as well. The downside of this one is it’s hard to find someone who can feed you really well. Try 3 sets of 16 for this drill.

Drill 3: This drill is 2 on 1. There are also two variants to this drill; one where the doubles stand side by side and one where the doubles stand front and back, defense and offense respectively. This drill is really great to practice defense or offense overall, you just need 3 people though.

Let’s start with side by side. With this drill the doubles pair is defending and the only shots they can play are clears, lifts, and blocks. The singles player is playing full offense so it’s a great time to practice smashes.

When you swap to front and back, the front player can only play net shots or lifts and the back player can play drops, clears, and smashes. The singles player in this case can only block, clear, and lift. With these drills make sure to rotate every 3 to 5 minutes so everyone gets a chance to practice. This drill doesn’t necessarily focus on smashing but it’s great for defense and offense so inevitably you get chances to smash.

Exercises To Improve Strength

I said that body-builders are not necessarily the strongest smashers but you still need to build strength as well; just make sure you have mastered the technique. Badminton is an intense sport and believe it or not, smashing requires use of your whole body.

Your forearm rotation and grip squeeze for when you hit the shuttle, your upper body rotation, your lower body steps; these all require strength so here are some exercises you can do.

Push Ups- These are all-around good for your upper body so it’s a basic core to badminton exercises. Do how much you can do but make sure you do them properly. Keep your back straight and have your arms bend to 90 degrees and then go back up. My recommendation is around 3 sets of 10 but increase it or decrease depending on your strength.

Plank- Your core is really important in badminton. One of my favorite core exercises is planking. When planking, it is extremely important to keep your back straight so you get the full work out. My recommendation is 3 sets of 1 minute.

Squats- Legs are very important in badminton, not just smashes. They are how you’re going to get around on the court. Squatting is one of the many exercises good in badminton. When you squat, make sure you bend your knees down to at least 90 degrees. My recommendation is 3 sets of 10.

Pull Ups- Finally pull-ups. These are pretty difficult but worth it. When doing pull ups, make sure you go all the way down and then back up. My recommendation is 3 sets of 5.

Your routine should look something similar to this.

  • 3 sets of 10 push-ups
  • 3 sets of 1 minute planks
  • 3 sets of 10 squats
  • 3 sets of 5 pull ups

Among these exercises there are many more but these are some basic ones to get you started.

Smash a Hole!

What this long article tells you is that the most important things to your smash are technique, contact point, accuracy, and strength. I hope you’ve got some ideas for how to improve your badminton smash!

Another thing you need is consistent practice so make sure you go out and practice your smash as much as you can so you can show off that fearful smash to friends and opponents!

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below and I wish for your best in your games.

Badminton Warm Up – Exercises to Prevent Injuries

As a badminton player, I often neglected warm-ups and stretching. Really lucky that I haven’t suffered from a serious injury but the times I where I skipped warm up, I played atrociously. I couldn’t move fast enough on the court and my shots were extremely weak and inaccurate.

Don’t neglect your warm up cause not only does it prevent injuries, but it ups your game as well.

Now you’re probably wondering, how do I warm up in badminton?

Half Court Rallying

What most players and I like to start off with is half court rallying, specifically drives. When driving, make sure you bounce on the balls of your feet and make quick taps by flicking your wrist quickly and not pulling back to swing. Driving like this starts to warm up your reaction speed, legs, and wrist as well. If you can add in offensive and defensive drives which is when one of the players is closer to the net and hitting it lightly down towards the other player like a fast drop, it will help a lot as well, especially if you’re a doubles player.

After driving for a little, usually you want to move onto clears because they are the most basic overhead swing. This will allow you to fully warm up your arms but also prepare you for other types of overhead shots. Make sure you clear all the way to the back line.

Then you move onto drop shots. To make it simpler explaining how you want to do these, I’m gonna list two players as A and B. When A drops, B wants to return with a net shot, and then A lifts the shuttle. Then B drops and A returns with a net shot and then B lifts and so on. This drill helps your front and back footwork and prepares you for your next type of shot, the smash.

After you have dropped for a little, it’s time to move onto smashing. With this drill it’s the same as the drops except you replace drops with smashes. When you are doing this drill, you can add in a little hop but I recommend not doing a full jump smash because at this point you haven’t stretched yet so it is quite easy to pull muscles by trying to do your hardest smash.

Generally after smashing, finish rallying with some net shots. This is really here to just warm up how you play net shots and the quality of them. By this time you should be pretty warmed up.

Let’s talk about some general information now. If you are warming up before a match, you generally get limited to 1 minute so stretching and jogging will probably happen before you are called up. When you start rallying make sure you keep aware of this time and not take too long on one drill! If it is before training or you’re with some friends, 3 minutes is really good. When you are doing these types of drills, don’t try to kill it! You want to keep the rally going as long as possible so try not to make a shot that your partner can’t return. You have to go easy too because this type of drill is mainly here to get your badminton game warmed up so don’t overdo it! Gotta stretch and jog!

Slow Jog

When I train, I usually start with half court rallying and then jog after. When jogging, make sure you keep yourself slow and steady so you don’t have any cramps. It happens way too often with me because I like to jog fast and feels extremely uncomfortable. Luckily it goes away fast. When doing these jogs, 2 laps around a court is good for a beginner, 5 laps for intermediate, and 10 laps for advanced.

In this slow jog, there are some things you can incorporate with it. Shuffling sideways, shuffling backwards, shuffling forwards, grapevine, and skipping are all great options to include in your jogs. This is because these movements are used heavily in footwork. Just make sure you don’t overdo yourself!

Stretching

Once you have done a few laps or so. It’s a good time to stretch. There’s a reason we don’t start directly with stretches and that’s because stretching a body that hasn’t done a warm up of any sort can lead to muscle pulling when stretching so usually you want to stretch after some warm up. This applies to every sport.

When we stretch in badminton, there isn’t a specific order. Here are some stretches you should include into your warm up. First sit down and put your legs out. Then reach towards your toes and try to touch them. This is a basic stretch for your calves.

After stretching calves for 20 seconds or so, move onto your hamstring. I like to stretch this by pulling one leg up and over the other leg and then giving it a hug. The tighter the hug, the stronger the stretch. Do this for 20 seconds as well for both sides.

Then move onto your shoulders. I like to stretch this by pulling on arm to the other side. Do this for 20 seconds both sides too.

There are a lot more stretches that you can and should do but I’m going to finish this off with what I generally do last which is stretch my ankles and wrists. Put your hands together and rotate them around. At the same time put one foot up on its toes and rotate it as well. Then do it to the other side.

As I said before there’s no real order to do these stretches and it’s also extremely flexible (no pun intended) with how you stretch. It’s as long as you feel warmed up and stretched your body. There are many more stretches that I haven’t included in here that people do so feel free to comment on your favorite stretches!

Footwork

What I do for footwork is something called pointing footwork. You have 6 points on the court, two in the front, two in the middle, and two in the back all next to sidelines. Then a partner (or you can just do it yourself) points to a point and you have to play a shot after going to that point with proper footwork. Do this 5 sets of 10 as a beginner, 5 sets of 15 as intermediate, and 5 sets of 20 as advanced. By this point you should be fully warmed up and ready for your intense match or training!

Warm Up Your Game!

Once again, I want to stress the importance of warming up. There are so many benefits to warming up that it’s just unwise to not do so. Preventing injuries and upping your game are just some of them. You may also feel less sore after intense playing as well! Good luck in your badminton games and if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below!

 

 

 

 

How To Choose A Badminton Racket

The first statement I want to disprove is that your badminton racket does not affect how good you are. While you can’t blame your own racket for personal skill, sometimes the racket can really change your game. So now that you are here, it probably means you are out to choose your next racket.

When I was choosing my first few rackets, I realized I knew nothing about choosing rackets. My first racket, the Yonex Muscle Power 7 became quite unbearable to use after a year or so. My upgrade to the Yonex Voltric Z Force II made me into a completely new player. I struck luck on this one because I chose my racket with no information about what I liked but ended up with a good racket. But instead of striking luck like me, here’s how to choose a racket so you don’t accidentally blow off $200. First one is your play style which will determine what kind of balance, weight, shaft and head size you are going to go for.

But let’s jump into the technical details of a racket first.

Weight and Balance

When you’re choosing a racket, probably the first thing you think of is the weight. The weight is one of the most important aspects of a racket because if it’s too heavy, you will be fatigued or if it is too light, it doesn’t have enough power. Generally a lighter racket is good for fast reactions and a heavier racket is good for power shots like smashes and clears. Most rackets weigh between 80g and 90g. When you are buying a racket, the labels tell you a lot. The number associated with the U is the weight of the racket and as the number goes down the weight increases. E.g. 4U is lighter than 3U which is lighter than 2U. Most players choose between 4U and 3U for rackets. Another quick note is that rackets don’t necessarily have multiple U variants. The 20-28 lbs is the recommended stringing tension for the racket. Usually the stringing tension gets higher the lower the U.

While weight is important, another thing to consider is the balance of the racket. Rackets can be split into head heavy, even balance, and head light. Head heavy rackets are associated with power and a good head heavy racket will make it easier to hit shots like clears and smashes but at the cost of slower reactions. Head light rackets are the opposite of head heavy rackets as they’re much faster but hit weaker shots. And even balance is a mix between them. Most people actually don’t consider the head light rackets because you lose pretty much all the power and even balance rackets still have around the same reaction speed.

Shaft and Head of the Racket

The next few details about rackets are shafts and heads. When I’m talking about shafts, I am referring to their slimness and stiffness. Generally you want a slimmer shaft because it makes your shots much faster and makes it easier to move on a court but don’t worry about this too much since most badminton rackets are around the same slimness anyways.

The stiffness does matter though. A stiffer racket allows for more accurate shots but requires a little more strength for your swings and the flexible is just the opposite; less strength, less accuracy. Most people determine their stiffness from their skill level. Beginners usually go for a flexible racket because it does not punish mistakes as much and then more experienced badminton players go for stiffer rackets.

When we consider head types, once again it’s split into two, isometric and oval. Isometric is pretty much better in every aspect and oval is mainly just used for practice. This is because isometric has a bigger sweet spot (best place to hit the shuttle) and faster shots. Oval has a smaller sweet spot so you can practice hitting the shuttle in the right spot. But I definitely would choose isometric over oval.

Play Style

Now we’re onto play style which will inevitably determine the weight, balance, and shaft of your racket. There are a few questions you want to ask yourself. Do I play singles, doubles, or both? Am I good at smashing and clearing, am I good at defense? Ask yourself these types of questions to figure out how you play.

So once you have decided what kind of player you are, the next question to ask is, do I want a racket to cover my weaknesses or boost my strengths even more? I personally would choose a racket to cover my weaknesses because it allows me to improve my overall game. Badminton is the type of sport that you need to make sure you can play all kinds of different strategies.

It’s also a good idea that you try different rackets from friends and other people. This way you can find out what you truly like to play with. For example, you might think that you like head heavy rackets but then you find out you like even balance. So get out there and try rackets out!

Budget

This one is self-explanatory. Don’t buy a racket you can’t afford. But I will mention that more expensive rackets do feel better than less expensive ones. This is the same thing with newer rackets. The top rackets are usually above $200 but between $100 and $200 also has some really nice rackets.

Choose Your Next Badminton Racket!

There are also some more factors that you can consider but these are the basics of choosing a badminton racket. What I absolutely recommend you to do is to play some rallies with different rackets and see what you like. This is extremely important because not everyone is the same. For example, most singles players play with heavier rackets but you may like a light racket but you will only know this is you tested different rackets. The last quick note I want to put in is brands to choose from. Yonex, Li Ning, and Victor are the three major brands that I recommend; Yonex being my favorite and my personal racket of choice.

After reading this article, you’ve probably taken in a lot of info that is a little hard to keep up with so if you have any questions please them below. If you want a certain racket to be reviewed please also leave that in the comments. I’ll try my best to get reviews out and help you any possible way.

But for now, good luck and have fun in your badminton life!

 

 

 

 

About Me

Hi, welcome to Get Good At Badminton. My name is Kevin and I am dedicated to help you out with anything badminton related. Whether you’re a beginner or advanced player, competitive or casual, there is something on this site just for you!

My Badminton Experience

As mentioned before, my name is Kevin and I am a provincial levels player in Alberta, Canada. I am extremely passionate about badminton and have acquired quite a lot of knowledge and experience with badminton as I started playing at the age of 9.

Throughout my journey with badminton there were many hardships that I faced. When I started in grade 4, I was known as some kind of “prodigy”. At that age I was able to beat middle schoolers, high schoolers, and even adults. But once I reached grade 6 and entered our school’s middle school team (our school was kindergarten to grade 9), I was completely destroyed at the tournament. I realized the world wasn’t so small and that there were infinitely more people that played better than me so I begged my parents to let me play provincially and train at clubs where other elite players trained. Unfortunately my parents took no notice of this and my skill remained constant while all the other people were improving.

When I reached grade 9, I didn’t make the school badminton team. This was devastating to me as I made the team all other years and was considered the number 1 player. The very first thing I did was blame my parents, saying that they never put me in good training places but then I figured out that I could have been doing much more such as training and researching by myself. But badminton being the sport I love the most, it wasn’t a time to quit. In fact with this defeat, I figured that I have to make a comeback.

So now I’m back to step 1 on my road to nationals.

Why I Want To Help You

One of the things I’ve learned is that in many parts of your life, it’s all about what you can do yourself. I know there are people in far worse positions than me, many people don’t even have rackets and shuttles to play with! If you’re one of those people, I wish you the best of luck and I want you to never give up to reach your dreams!

But if you are someone like me and have limited playing time on a court, I want to give you as much information as I know to help you get better at badminton. For me, I never have enough time to just be able to go out and play so lots of my time is spent on researching badminton topics and I want to share this information on a concentrated spot. From my experience, the information is just too spread out and sometimes you have to dig deep to find information.

But with Get Good At Badminton, I am dedicated to bring as much as I know all in this one spot and I hope you can learn things and bring it to your game!

Get Good At Badminton

Once again, here at Get Good At Badminton, I am dedicated to bring you as much information about badminton as possible. Some things you can expect to see on Get Good At Badminton are drills for improving shots, drills for personal fitness and stamina, tips and tricks for your game, or even how to choose a good racket and much more.

If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below in the comment section or email me at kevin@getgoodatbadminton.com and I will be more than happy to help you out.

All the best,

Kevin