31 thoughts on “Badminton Doubles — 2 common mistakes for beginners/non-professional

  1. Sorry, I wrote you a long email about two weeks ago. I guess that's not how I'm suppose to respond.
    The short answer is; the distance of the reply off a smash or drop from the back court is shorter than it whould be if you hit a straight shot from the back court.
    Coaches like to use the term "angles" to explain why you should not hit a cross court shot from the back court. When you hit a cross court shot from the back court it makes it difficult for your partner to cut off anything at the net.

  2. Technically, the two angles are the same. If you hit straight and the reply is cross or if you hit cross and the reply is straight. It's the shorter distance of the reply that the front person has to deal with.

  3. In my playing days II was so damned slow at the net both in terms of foot speed and reactions that I rarely made the first pair of mistakes. Problem is that I rarely cut off the cross-court return either.

  4. about the first mistake, if you see the professionals play, they tend to move in front of the partner to cut the return shot

  5. Julian, thank you for your comments.
    The professionals or regular folks will move in front of the back person for the purpose of pressuring the defender NOT to cut off the straight return. This point is often LOST in communication from coach to player.
    Take a closer look at the professional games and look carefully at the back player. You will see that the back player is in a much better position to take the straight return (off the net) because there is more space to swing the racket.

  6. Julian,
    When you are in the front position, you are both covering a part of the court and exposing other parts of the court. I try to make this point clear in the Badminton Doubles part 6 — front person coverage.
    Of course nothing I've said here matters when you add athleticism, experience and split second judgment.
    What I give you is practical, logical theories. As my coach says "the coach coaches but the player must play" or the player wins the game the coach can only watch and advise.

  7. From what ive noticed from The Chinese and Korean Mens doubles is, they do the mistake 1 you mentioned as part of their rotation.

  8. Chummy Chime — Julian notice the same thing from the professionals.
    Basically, they "stack up" in front of a defender to "pressure" a cross court reply. They (the pros) do this because they can "jump" and catch the cross court reply — forehand or backhand. BUT — the savvy defender knows the remedy to that and it has to do with deception. Look at "net play part 1 or 2" — focus on the shoulder turn and zones of the badminton court.
    It's not perfect — it's "art" — does this make sense?

  9. Never, have I ever seen "mistake" number one pointed out as a mistake. I agree that you shouldn't go ALL the way over, but you must bias your position towards the side of attack. One foot should be roughly on the centre line though:


    There's a simple principle, you should always be looking to be covering the fastest shot; in this case it's a straight drive. You will have more time to cover the short block or cross drive than the straight drive.

    Mistake 2 is bang on the money… unless you and your partner are attacking a weaker player, but this requires both partners to have agreed to do that before hand as well as a decent level of skill from the forecourt player. In general, don't do it.

  10. Hi Ving, First of all, sorry about replying via a post. I don't know any other way. I'm not tech savvy.
    In regards to mistake #1, "stacking up". There are two issues when players ask coaches what they should do in this situation; one, there is no definite answer to this question. The best way to handle this question is to show the reasons why one should stand in the middle and/or why one should stand over to the side and let the player choose when and where to stand. If a player insist on an answer, there maybe underlining psychological issues — like not wanting to take responsibility for ones own action. This type of player might say something like, "I loss because I did exactly what you told me to do."
    Two, by giving a definite answer, coaches fall into a coaching "pit-fall or trap." That is to have an answer to every question. The player and coach must realized that coaches can only give logical, prove information about the game, HOWEVER, the player must make the "split second" decision themselves and live with the consequences.
    I tried to explain this situation better in Badminton Doubles PART 6 — front person coverage.
    I thank you for your comments. Again I apologies for responding via a post.

  11. this is explaining for kids??? its obvious u can't cut ur partner…HELLO!! he has the frontΒ  od HIS SIDE…

  12. about mistake 2, i don't know about amateurs, but i see a lot of pros (and top ranked ones at that) do it.. in fact they prefer what you call the outside hit because it'll be on the opponent's weaker backhand side.. on an inside hit, it's the player's forehand and you yourself will be in trouble most of the time.. same as mistake 1.. i see a lot of pros do it

  13. Hello,
    On #1 I agree for rotation purpose, however, if you smash at player (because perhaps they are weaker) the partner should step in and get that mid-court counter. Unless I smash an inch away from the side lines I would expect my partner to reach the stright counter return. Of course, it really depends how much you trust your partner, how hard you can attack their defence etc etc.

    #2 I wouldn't call it mistake, I would call it high risk shot personally, it opens up the angles for the opponents to pick on in exchange for a surprise/alternate move. Saying this, I would play this shot in mix quite often from overhead smash (or drop) cross-court, anticipate the straight drive return from the lady and drive it even harder back, the lady is forced to the rear. My drives does not need to be neat so long as its in, the lady should be out of position if they are right handed. There are ways to counter this and it does take more energy to win the point but its a "play" in my book, not a mistake.

  14. Thanks Coach for the sharing. I like your video very much; however, when you mentioned "outside of V". Could you please elaborate further on the "V"? Why "V" shape?

  15. for tip 1. i was taught the front person should step into his or her partner's side one step in an attempt to cut off the most likely straight returns. if my opponent return a cross, both front or the back person will attempt to get it. that's why after the back person smashes, he should take one step towards the center (after the smash) just in case the front person can't cut it off. However if the front person failed to intercept the straight shot and the return wasn't deep, the front person should move one step to the other side (never center). it will be easier for your partner to follow through his attack and initiate a rotation while u will be responsible to cut off any cross shots. for tip #2. i would not say never do it. just do it only if u have a very good reason and that it will be relatively safe to do so. but if u do, u must move one step towards the center to anticipate cross lift and drives. i agreed that the more common choices are down the line or right between the two opponents

  16. Literally, thanks. My partner always moans at me for not running in to the net after he has smashed. I knew I was right all along, I shouldn’t doubt myself

  17. I always tell my double partner to position himself in front of me! 99/100 times I will smash or drop in such a way that my partner is able to dominate any return. However: Depending on my balance and where I hit the shuttle ( if its not played on the rearline but inside our court) I will make a follow-up to the net! and expect my partner to make way for me and take over my position in the rear court.


    I think you should keep these things in mind:
    1) Is the shuttle deep in your court? or not?
    2) are you well balanced playing the smash? lets say: is your body , after hitting the smash, falling towards the net?
    3) am i playing from my backhand side of forehand side.

    Otherwise i would say: the netplayer follows the rearplayer in positioning himself " infront" of the backplayer!

    note: 1) a diagonal smash will ruin (!) your attack!
    note 2) when smashing try to aim your shot in such a way you can predict the angle of your opponent return.
    note 3) make use of the reach of your partner at the net.
    note 4) the rearplayer sets up the frontplayer for the kill.

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