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Top 10 tips for beginner badminton players

Improve your badminton game

Are you a badminton beginner or looking to improve your game? Here are 10 badminton hints, from cross-training through to tactics and mental awareness, that may point you on the way towards badminton success.

Make sure you warm up before playing badminton

Warm-up for badminton

Ensure your body is properly prepared for the badminton game ahead. As badminton involves both stamina and agility you need to concentrate on these areas in your warm-up. Ideally you could start with a gentle jog around the court or some skipping. Once your pulse is raised and you body is feeling warmer, stretch the major muscle groups, particularly focusing on legs, back and shoulders to get fully prepared for all the lunges ahead.

The badminton grip

When choosing a racket, the grip is crucial. Small grips are best for small hands and large grips for large hands. When holding the racket, don’t grasp it tightly, have a relaxed grip. Having a flexible wrist will help you to perfect both your forehand and backhand shots.

Check the shuttlecock flight

Beware of shuttles which 'wobble' in flight. A wobbly shuttle indicates that it is on its way out, is of poor quality or faulty and should be returned or disposed of.

Keep a central base position

It is good advice after playing a shot to return to a central base position. By sneaking back to the middle of your area of play you are more likely to reach all possible opposing shots.

Play badminton indoors

The shuttlecock is designed to be lightweight and the slightest breeze can whisk it away. So if you want to avoid forever retrieving your shuttle, find a place to play indoors.

Be prepared for any outcome

As badminton is a fast-paced, unpredictable game you must be prepared to move in any direction at any given time. So it is important to know your body’s limits. You don’t want to reach for that all important shot only to find yourself on the floor with a painful injury.

Badminton game planning

Just because you are a beginner, it does not mean you can’t incorporate some strategies into your game. When starting out with minimal skill, the best game plan to follow is to discover your opponent’s weakness and play to it as much as possible! Cruel — but effective!

Cross-train around your badminton

As badminton requires stamina and agility it is good advice to get involved in other activities that can benefit your game. Brisk walking and jogging are ideal for providing good all-round knee strength, allowing your knees to cope with the impact during a fast paced badminton game. Also, an effort to increase your flexibility and range of motion through other flexibility-focused activities such as yoga will also benefit your game.

Use your head when playing

Don’t be fooled by badminton, it is quite a workout for the mind. The game requires constant thinking and planning, but as a novice these things may take a while to develop. So when starting out, the best way to develop these skills is to make sure every shot has a purpose and try to keep an eye on as much of the court as possible at all times. Soon your strategy will fall into place.

Cool-down after playing

As with any exercise or physical activity, make sure you round off your game with a period of cool-down. Finish as you began, but this time with a gentle walk around the court. You can then focus on some light stretching. Focus on the major muscle groups but you may wish to concentrate on other areas depending on how the game went! Hold your stretches for around 30 seconds (a little longer than in the warm-up) to ensure a really deep stretch.

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