How to improve footwork in badminton
Want to be fast on the Badminton court? Here is how to improve your footwork in badminton!
Footwork in badminton is one of the most important skills to master in order to reach the shuttle on time. Having good footwork will ensure that you're always in a good position and that you will be able to play your shots with accuracy.
If you're not able to reach or react to the shuttle fast enough it is safe to say that you will not be able to win a point. However good your hitting technique is, not having proper footwork can prove to be useless.
So, what does good footwork really mean in badminton:
- How you position your feet on the court
- How quickly you can react and reach the shuttle
- Doing all of this while maintaining good balance
Some key points to keep in mind while working on your footwork:
Always return to the center after playing a shot:
This is a common mistake made by many. Players tend to hit a shot and either wait there, or take their time to return to the base position. In order to have effective footwork, you must practice quickly coming back to the center as soon as you’ve hit the shuttle.
Remember to perform the split step:
The split step is a technique that you must perform just as your opponent hits the shuttle so that you can react as fast as possible to the shot. The split step improves your reaction time and you're less likely to get stuck.
Keep your centre of gravity low:
In badminton, especially singles, it is important for you to keep your center of gravity low. The lower your centre of gravity, the easier it is for you to stop the inertia of going towards a particular direction and change to another direction if needed.
Work on lunging deep:
In badminton lunging is important. To be able to lunge and come back without losing balance is a useful technique. There are times when the shuttle is out of your reach and lunging deeply is the only way to get to it. Here is where good footwork combined with deep lunges will help you return and reach the shuttle correctly.
Now that we know what good footwork entails, here are some drills that will help you to improve footwork in badminton.
- Shadow training:
Shadow training in Badminton is one of the best ways to improve footwork. Shadow badminton essentially is mimicking the actual footwork that is going to be performed while playing. There are many variations of movements that you can do while doing shadow training.
For instance: you can do shadow training where you cover all six corners of the court. There is also another drill where you can perform a drill that only covers the front two corners of the court. The same goes with the back to corners of the court and even the side corners. These drills are unlimited when it comes to shadow training.
Here a few drills you can try: 4 corner training
- On the spot agility:
On the spot agility or spot agility is basically doing short and quick movements with your feet. It is designed to make a player move and react fast on court. At first, this may be quite tiring and you might feel a burning sensation in your calves and feet, but this is quite normal.
Here is a drill you should follow: Spot agility
- Shuttle picking drills:
Shuttle picking drills helps you with good and quick footwork. It is similar to shadow drills but the main differentiator is, that it is performed using one or more shuttles. Also, in the shuttle picking drill you must perform the landing action just as they would while playing.
It can be said to be an advanced drill for footwork improvement, but doing basic versions for beginners is recommended.
Here is one way to do shuttle picking: Shuttle picking drill.
- Playing a two versus 1 game:
In a two versus one game, you should be the single player if you are playing with the intention of improving footwork. The reason why this sort of game is good for footwork, is because not only will it challenge you, but there are two people on the other side which means you must react faster to the incoming shuttle. This sort of game also prepares you to react to all sorts of situations in a proper match.