Why not consider the impact on your opponent?
This will improve the effectiveness of your badminton practice
Too often players & coaches consider what is happening only on their side of the net
Recently I asked a player what they had been working on in their badminton practice. This is what they said….
“I want to improve my backhand in singles, especially when it’s pushed deep behind me”
The reply sounded like they had given some thought to what they wanted, so I asked what specifically it was about their backhand that they wanted to improve
The replies included some technical elements and general thoughts (here is a selection)
- I keep getting caught and can’t take the shuttle early – I think it could be that my elbow is too low
- It’s just too loopy when I play it – maybe my grip is bad
- My footwork is bad – I’m not taking up good positions
Elements of the reply sounded like a coach analysing technique, not the type of reply I’d expect from a player.
After reflecting on what the player had said I realised that all the points concerned what they were doing not the effect on the opponent.
They certainly didn’t mention what they would like to do with the shuttle that would limit what the opponents could do. Surely that’s a key element to any racket skill. Plus isn’t that one of the major things that players try to do in a game – limit what their opponent could do?
Ok, you could argue that each opponent could be different, but I’d expect players to talk about the opponent and not just a list of technical aspects. Any badminton practice should include what is happening over the other side of the net. To only consider yourself must be limiting, do you agree?
Next time you think about what you are trying to improve …
- Consider the effect on your opponent – would that change your thoughts?
- Imagining a positive outcome of the stroke or movement – how different would your thoughts be?
- Is there a ‘tactical’ fix to your perceived ‘technical’ problem – technique isn’t all you need to think about
- Understand that focusing on only technical aspects can be limiting, even detrimental – do you agree?
- ‘It’s not all about you’
Remember, there is someone on the other side of the net
You need to influence how they play
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As always, I’m very grateful if you have read this far 🙂
Hopefully, these ideas may cause you to change your view on what to practice and to consider the effect on the opponent.
I’m asking you and your coach to look over the net more as there is plenty to see and think about.
Why not send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org
This is part of a series of conversation starters.
Although not in detail, the posts are written to get you thinking and talking with others.