The sport ‘Badminton’ is all about speed and agility.
A player playing on the court must be agile and use the correct hitting technique with effective footwork to reach the shuttle on time and prevent himself from losing a point.
Footwork is also one of the fundamentals of this sport and in these many years of my badminton career, I have seen many players facing difficulties with their footwork on the court, especially beginners.
And this article is generally for those players who need to work on their footwork or want to improve it.
Here we will discuss some helpful exercises and drills that can help you improve your footwork.
But first of all, let me give you an example of a player with excellent footwork: Lin Dan.
Lin Dan is a Chinese professional player, who is very well known for his excellent footwork, speed, relentless attacks, and explosive power that he generates with his racket while playing a shot.
And in case you want to know more about Lin Dan, then you can also check out the video given below:
5 Effective ways to improve your footwork
These 5 exercises and drills are efficient and are surely going to help you with your speed as well as your stamina:
1. Split step and mental aspect of moving faster on the court
Many believe that 50% of the match and winning depend on the player’s footwork.
And unfortunately, we can see many beginners and intermediate players struggling on the court with footwork.
But don’t worry; I am here to help you improve your speed and footwork.
If you are also a beginner, you need to begin with a split step, which refers to a little jump the player takes just before the opponent hits the shuttle.
A split step usually widens your stance and lowers your centre of gravity.
But you also need to remember that if you want to move faster on the court with correct footwork, you must also train your mind and your body.
Also, check out: How To Play Badminton: A Complete Beginner’s Guide.
To learn how to perform a perfect split step, check out the video given below:
2. Pointing footwork
Pointing footwork is another basic drill for improving footwork and stamina as well.
Now let me explain to you how to do this:
(a) With a partner
If you are performing this drill with your partner, then all you need to do is move to wherever your partner points.
And usually, there are 6 such points where he can point to:
- Left in front of the net.
- Right in front of the net.
- Left middle of sideline.
- Right middle of sideline.
- Left-back corner.
- Right back corner.
Also, remember: Speed is not only one thing you need to worry about; you also need to make sure that your footwork is refined and secure.
(b) Without a partner
If you are performing this drill without a partner and on your own, you need to target those moves you could be better at.
Here you need to move to those six points mentioned above, but without the pointing.
The best thing about that drill is that you can imagine playing a game and performing the footwork based on what the opponent hits.
You can also practice the footwork you think you need to work on, like moving back to the backhand corner.
To learn how to perform pointing footwork in the correct order, check out the video given below:
3. Speed footwork
Speed is an essential factor that affects your footwork and allows you to reach the shuttle in time; the pointing exercise does not help enhance your speed.
So to increase your speed, you need to perform some drills that include:
(a) Front and back (Straight)
While performing this drill, you must start from the middle of the court and complete a smashing motion after quickly shuffling to the backcourt.
Then run to the front court and perform a net kill motion.
And keep moving back and forth at full speed.
(b) Front and back (Diagonal)
This drill is similar to the first one, but the only difference is that you need to move diagonally instead of driving straight.
And for both these drills, you need to switch sides after performing a few sets to achieve both backhand and forehand movements.
(c) Side to side (Net kill)
In this drill, you have to start from the middle of the badminton court, then slightly move towards the net of the entire court this time.
Set the timer, perform a forehand net kill at the net, and then directly move back to the middle.
Then backhand net kill and repeat at full speed.
(d) Side to side (Defence, no jumps)
Here you need to start from the middle of the court and then shuffle and touch each sideline.
So shuffle left and right at full speed.
(e) Side to side (Offense, with jumps)
It is similar to defense, except it jumps close to the sidelines.
Here in this drill, you should be able to shuffle, shuffle, hop, shuffle, shuffle, and jump.
And try to avoid bouncing so you can immediately mix when you land.
(f) Corner to corner overhead swings
Corner-to-corner overhead swings are similar to side-to-side net kill, except you do it with a smashing motion at the back.
To perform this drill, you need to go to a corner at the back from the middle, smash, and then move to the centre.
Then move to the other corner, smash, and repeat the same at full speed.
In this drill, speed is essential, so make sure you go as fast as possible.
4. Shuffling and running
Shuffling and running is one of the best exercises for improving your footwork, stamina, and as well as your speed on the court.
If you are a beginner, you can even go jogging instead of running.
Or else you can add suicide drills to your warm-up routine, which enhances your speed and agility.
You must find a few lines in this drill and run to each.
Then start at the first line and touch the second line; you need to run back.
Now run to the third line after and touch that, and then run back.
Then run to the fourth line and run back and so on.
Do the same till 5 lines, and the distance between the first and fifth lines should be around 50 to 100 meters.
Talking about shuffling is also suitable for enhancing your game because it refers to a movement you will be using.
A basic drill you can do is shuffle side to side quickly.
Do this for about 3 minutes and see the changes in your speed.
5. Fast feet
Fast feet is a basic fundamental drill to improve your agility.
This drill helps you to go for the basic one where you quickly tap your feet for 3 sets of 1 minute.
Also, with the help of this drill, you can play around with additions such as split-step lunges, different fast feet variations, push-ups, jumps, and more.
You can also try different fast feet variations by moving your feet front and back and side to side.
With front and back, step over a line one foot at a time, so let’s say your right foot moves in, your left foot will also move in, then when you have two feet over the line, step your right foot back and then left.
Side to side is when you have two lines and quickly move your feet inside and outside the lines.
So these are the top 5 exercises and drills that can help you improve your badminton footwork, speed, and agility.
And you do the combinations of all these exercises together twice a week; then I can bet you that you will see many changes in your footwork and speed while playing on the court.
Also, I have included some videos in the post to help you perform these drills and exercises ideally and in the correct order.
And in case you face any problem or is there any question going on in your mind regarding these drills and exercises, then feel free to ask us or pin it up in the comment section below.