What are some common shots played in badminton?

Just like any other racquet or paddle sport, badminton too features a serve, return of serve, forehand and backhand shot. The forehand is the shot where the racquet is driven from the dominant to the non-dominant side of the player. The inverse holds true for a backhand shot. Forehands and backhands simply represent the drive shots but do not explain the type of shot projected through them.

The common shots executed in badminton through a forehand or backhand are described below.

Clear Shot
This is a routine defensive shot played from the back of the court that has a high trajectory and is targeted towards the back of the court of the opponent’s side. The shot is hit when the player wants to buy some time to gain control over his or her court position.

Drop Shot
This is an attacking shit which requires great precision and skill. It can be played from any part of the court and is targeted in close proximity to the net of the opponent’s court. It is played when the opponent is at the back of the court or is often used as a surprise tactic when the opponent is least expecting it. Players often disguise this shot by leaping in the air that would make the opponent presume am incoming smash but eventually witnesses a gentle contact of the shuttle and racquet making the birdie loop close to the net.

This is the most lethal shot in badminton and is often used to finish off the point. This aggressive shot barely gives the opponent any time to return. The player who hits a smash executes it from either the mid-court or back of the court. An immense skillset needs to be developed in order to return a smash.

The drive is a shot whose trajectory is flatter than a smash and is targeted at the opponent’s body. It is better executed from the mid-court. It can be deemed attacking or defensive depending on the situation of the rally.

Net Lift
The answer to a drop shot is either a counter drop shot or a net lift. The net lift is played eerily close to the net. The shuttle is intended to loop high and is targeted towards the back of the court of the opponent. It is one of the most difficult defensive shots to master in badminton.

Net Kill
This attacking shot is played when the shuttle is looped poorly near the net and the player has plenty of time to get to the shuttle. The net kill has a flat downwards trajectory and is almost always a finishing shot.

These are some of the most commonly executed shots in badminton. Details on the serve and return of serve shall be shared in separate articles.

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