How to Teach Badminton – Badminton 101
So, you want to teach badminton, do you?
Yes, you heard that correctly – teach badminton, not learn badminton. Because chances are, you are already beyond the just curious or interested level. It may be assumed that you know the basics of this sport by now. Rules, scoring, tactics, etc. Or else you wouldn’t be reading up to this point. You are now capable of instructing the uninitiated how to play this great game.
Table of Contents
How to teach badminton to a beginner
Join me as we explore the other side of Badminton 101 – how to teach the game to a beginner. First, let us assume that our pupil is virtually a greenhorn. The badminton he or she knows is the street variety.
This is where you and a friend tried to keep a plastic shuttle or an impossibly worn out feather shuttle in play as long as possible. You didn’t care whether you used a two-piece racket or the one-piece type, remember? You enjoyed this somehow until someone showed you the way to the real thing.
It’s a big help we now have several badminton courts/centers even in the provinces. This makes our job a bit easier in showing our beginner friend how an actual court with lines and a net looks like. But the easy part ends there. Next on our lesson plan is to explain how these lines and net figure in an actual match with rules and scoring.
Teaching the basics
If we were to start talking to our trainee, the following could be our monologue.
Where do we start?
Well, there are lines used for a singles match and another set of lines for doubles. The baseline (back boundary line) and sidelines for singles and doubles are the same in the rally phase.
What’s a rally? It’s the exchange of strokes starting after the serve and ends when someone commits a fault and a point is awarded to his opponent.
What is a serve in badminton?
Now, for the serve… You know, at the start of a game the player serves from the right service area and aims to place the shuttle diagonally within the right service box of the receiver. The service box area where the shuttle must land to be a good serve is longer in singles than in doubles.
In doubles, only the designated receiver should return the serve. There’s more… You continue to serve as you win points. When your score is even (0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, …) you serve from the right service area. When your score is odd (1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, …) serve from the left.
How to win points?
When you lose the rally, your opponent gets the point and also gets to serve. When you receive the service, you must decide if the shuttle is going in your service box. You must return the serve or else you will lose the point. But even if the shuttle is apparently going to land outside the box and you still decide to return the serve, play will continue.
In short, if it’s going out, don’t hit it. Now, if a shuttle that is obviously landing out of the service area happens to hit you, your clothing or racket, it will be considered a fault… your fault. Again, if it’s going out, get out of the way!
How to serve the right way?
Hold the shuttlecock by the tip of the feathers with your free hand. Hold it in front of your body. With your other hand, hold the racket behind the shuttle. This is the backhand serve and it’s the most common type of service practiced nowadays.
In the old days, the forehand serve was king. The racket head from below waist level rule was strictly enforced. In this day and age, it is common to see backhand serves from pros from waist level or even a little above the waist.
When serving, stand in the designated service box (right when your score is even, left when odd, remember?) near the T (where the horizontal line meets the center line) taking care not to step on any line. After the service, you may step on any line during the rally, but try not to do it on purpose.
You can read more on how to serve in badminton.
Different types of badminton serves
By the way, did you know that there are low serves and high serves, flick and drive serves? And that the serve is good even if it grazed the top tape of the net and still landed within the designated service box? Oh, did I mention that when the shuttle lands on the line, the shot is good? And yes, we gotta work on that grip.
We are just starting to scratch the surface. And we’re still on the serve! Anyway, we’ll continue this tutorial next time. For now, it’s practice, practice and practice.