The smash is one of the most powerful shots in badminton, and it’s also one of the most difficult to master. But with a few tips and tricks, you can improve your smash and take your badminton game to the next level.
A badminton smash is one of the most satisfying ways to end a rally, no matter how long you’ve been playing. But it’s much harder to do a good smash than just hitting the shuttle as hard as possible. It takes good timing, good technique, and a lot of practice. Even if you’ve done it for years, it can still be hard to pull off.
So, how can you get better at smashing in badminton? Here are some tips, tricks, and advice you can use to master this shot.
How to Improving Your Smashes in Badminton Guide
1. Master Your Racket’s Sweet Spot
It is also important to hit the shuttle at a high point and with your racket’s “sweet spot.” This area can be different depending on the shape of your racket’s head, the materials it’s made of, and how tight the strings are, but in isometric rackets, it’s usually a tiny oval right above the middle of the string bed.
Improving your Sweet Spot Connection
If you have trouble hitting smashes with your racket’s sweet spot, this exercise can help you get more control and accuracy in your swing.
Here’s how to do it:
- Hang a shuttle from your ceiling by tying it to a string. Set the string length so that the shuttle dangles about where the smash is.
- While standing behind the shuttle, pull your racket arm back and straighten your other arm out in front of you, just like you would before a smash.
- Then, do 3 to 5 sets of 15 reps on the shuttle to work on your swing. Try to hit it every time with your sweet spot.
If you’re unsure where your sweet spot is, bounce a shuttle off the string bed of your racket a few times. Your sweet spot is where there is the least shaking and the most bounce.
2. Don’t Overlook Your Footwork
If you want to get better at smashing in badminton, you need to be able to move your feet well. After all, your footwork gets you behind the shuttle quickly enough to make a great shot; without it, your speed, reaction time, and balance can suffer. So, what should you do if your footwork isn’t as good as you’d like it to be right now?
As a first step, it can be helpful to review some basic footwork moves again. Among these are:
- Getting ready
- Sidestep (or chasse step)
- Steps for Lunge & Recovery
Once you know the basics, you can do shadow footwork drills to improve your movement on the court.
3. Hit the Shuttle at Its Highest Contact Point
Aim to hit the shuttle at its highest point in front of you. If you hit the shuttle when it’s behind you or in front of you, you might lose the steep, downward trajectory that makes a smash such a powerful shot.
So, how can you learn to time your swing better? Most of the time, you need to practice, but a contact point drill is one way to learn faster. This is how:
- Find a friend who can feed you birds over the Internet.
- Every time they throw the shuttle, move like you’re about to hit a smash.
- Pull your elbow and racket back as the bird gets closer, but don’t swing. Instead, try to move so that the shuttle lands right in front of the foot that isn’t on the racket.
This drill will teach you where to put your body to make contact at the right time. Once this is down, you can use a standard smash drill to tie your swing, position, and movement together.
4. Time Your Shot Strategically
If you like to play offense, you might want to try to hit a smash shot every time you get the chance. But timing and strategy are everything when it comes to a terrific smash, so it’s best to use a variety of shots until the right moment comes along. For example, a smash might be a good move if your opponent:
- The lift is weak and floaty.
- Is out of place, shaky, or unstable.
Also, it would be best if you only hit a smash when you are stable, balanced, and able to control the shot. If you don’t have enough time to set up, you can choose safer shots like a flat return or drop shot instead.
5. Think About Your Body’s Rotation
Viktor Axelsen, a professional player, says, “Think of your body as a bow” to give your smashes more power. Imagine the smash as a single, fluid movement that comes together as you turn each part of your body.
Most of the time, the steps look like this:
- Once you’re in place on the court, turn your body to the side so your racket is behind your head and your other arm is pointing at the shuttle. (This is like being in a “throwing” position.)
- Pull your racket arm up and back as the shuttle approaches you. Your elbow should be bent at about a 90-degree angle. Before you swing, keep your muscles a little bit loose.
- When ready to swing, lift your feet off the ground and turn your hips forward. In a split second after that, turn your chest, torso, arm, and wrist into the smash. This chain of events gets power from the momentum of your whole body.
- Follow through to get the most power and accuracy. Don’t stop throwing as soon as you hit the shuttle and pull your arm back. Instead, let your arm finish the throw.
Improve Your Smashes in Badminton: The Takeaway
Badminton smashes have many moving parts, from how you move your feet to the speed of your swing. It’s not easy to figure out how to improve them. The tips in this post can help make things a little easier.
As you try to get better at your smash, don’t forget to:
- Hit the shuttle where it makes the most contact.
- Use the sweet spot of your racket.
- Plan how you’re going to shoot.
- Learn how to walk properly.
- Think about how your body moves.
In Short, by using your whole body, focusing on accuracy, timing your shots correctly, improving your footwork, and practicing regularly, you’ll be able to improve your smashes and take your badminton game to the next level.