You are playing the game, and you notice that your opponent always attempt to catch you off guard. You take more steps than usual, which makes you easily lose your balance, and worse, your energy. It is as if your opponent is directing the overall segment, and you cannot forbid it as you cannot direct the shuttle as he/she does up to your advantage.
Badminton Footwork 101
Now, a question may come to mind, and that is “What can I do?” It may seem hard and trivial, but all it takes is your attention to your badminton footwork, which makes your balance, and learned the technique to come along. If you do not know how to, worry no more, as the text will provide you with the knowledge that can step up your game!
Benefits of footwork
Attaining initial good footwork can improve your chances in scoring a point. Your goal is not to let the shuttlecock hit the ground on your side, which is why you would need stable footwork to support you. Some of the advantages in knowing the appropriate footwork for you are the following–
Fast recovery for the return shot
One of the goals your opponent needs to make is to land a shot where you would most likely not reach on time. Having excellent footwork can aid the usual slow recovery of footwork, especially for beginners. Specifically, knowing where to position every time can cause you to do only a few movements than the usual, and your footwork also supports the delivery of technique that you execute.
Eliminating the possibility of injury
Not attaining proper footwork may lead to injuries, as you would often stumble to reach the shuttle, and if unlucky, in a wrong position. It can be prevented if your foot is properly placed and that you would always know where to move it, this prevents you from twisting your foot primarily when your opponent aims far away from your position.
Having a balanced position when hitting
The correct footwork supports your balance, especially when having the contact of the shuttlecock to your racket. It gives you the best chance to control your shot, and aim it to the direction that you would most likely want.
If you are unbalanced due to not being attentive to footwork skills, it will cause for your hit to direct in any direction since you would not be able to control it. Keep in mind that the more your body moves, the harder it is to compensate for your techniques.
Different elements of footwork
With enough practice, you can find yourself gliding effortlessly as you move in court. It is because most players aim to master the art of fluid footwork, wherein their movement are all precise and is made without hesitation.
As you go and be exposed in the badminton industry, you can keep in mind the appropriate footwork patterns that can be used in a given situation, which would also help you in your game. It may take a long period, but the important thing is that you achieve the level of comfort-ability that you are aiming while doing the different elements of footwork. To familiarize yourself, these are the elements to consider–
It is mostly known as an alternative to a step movement. Though, most players ask “which is better? Chasses or step?”, But what most do not know is that excellent players may use both at a given situation. Always remember that in badminton, you do not achieve to execute techniques just because it looks cool, but because it would make you earn points.
To do this, step a foot out and bring your other foot to the same direction without crossing your feet. To achieve this, you may observe that a leading foot will always be ahead of the following foot.
When doing this movement, keep your pace long and low, for not doing so may make it useless to do so. The leading foot will mostly point to the direction of travel, such as a backward chasse keeps the leading foot at sideways, not backward.
Then, the other foot should be in a right angle from the leading foot or direction of travel. If your leading foot is at your right, then the other foot should be close to forward.
It is the easiest element in the movement of the sport, for everyone knows how to do it, but some does not know its fundamentals properly. Keep in mind that you should be aware of stepping in any direction possible, which means that you should always be attentive to the shuttle.
Most people find it difficult to step backward rather than forward, and it is at your advantage to practice it effortlessly. Also, it is best to step as little amount as possible but covers the distance as to where it should be. Most also classify steps as cross-over to differentiate it with chasse.
It is a short movement that uses the ankles. To achieve this, push both of your angles so that you lift yourself lightly from the ground, and this helps you cover the distance needed without moving your legs that can be helpful energy wise.
It can also be classified as hops and shuffles. Some overlook it in terms of technique, but it can be handy especially in times of need.
It can be used and is beneficial in any direction of the court, but is mostly done at the front. You should always remember to lunge in the same direction that you are moving. It allows you to reach the shuttle early, and achieve a central position that is up to your advantage.
It is common to do a jump smash in badminton, to add volume to the force of travel in the shuttlecock. It can be done by using one or two feet and can be at any direction to your liking.
When doing overhead forehand shots, it is advised to use both feet off the ground for added control.
Most beginners find that doing a lot of movement can be entertaining, especially when they reach a shuttlecock from one side of the court to the other. Though, it may seem impractical and is energy consuming to do so. To achieve professionalism in the sport, keep in mind that the fewer steps you do, the more productive you can be.
After you hit a receiving shot, always remember to go back at the center of the court for the next shot your opponent makes would typically be far away from the initial spot that you are in as much as possible. Also, it is advised to only take at most three steps at front and backcourt, while a step at each side. This would help you return more easily and prevents you from being caught off guard by your opponent.
The Final Say: Take a step ahead of your opponent!
Knowing what footwork works best can be a benefit, as it promotes your balance and supports your technique. Most beginners neglect its importance, for they think that the primary goal is to hit the shuttle with their rocket. Knowing where and how to aim can help you to get the leading card in your game, as you pawn your opponent and let them move the way you want them.
In footwork, the most important thing is to be aware of your position. Let the shuttle move for you, instead of you moving for it. Knowing the basic steps can be a step ahead from your opponent!