In the sport of badminton, there isn’t a skill as basic as hitting
clears. Most novice badminton players usually start learning the sport
by learning how to clear. One can often evaluate the skill level of
another player by looking at how well he/she hit clears.
From playing recreationally ourselves to watching high level
badminton competitions, did anyone notice that there are two different
swings for hitting the clear? Can anyone detect the minute differences
between the two?
For example, is the swings of the world’s best female players the same or different than the swings of the best male players?
There are two ways of hitting clear, which means they involve
different swings. The first type involves a big swing, while the second
type uses a smaller swing. Both have their unique characteristics.
When hitting with the big swing, after the player has reached the
best hitting position on the court, he/she will lift the upper part of
his/her racket arm very high, with the elbow pointing upwards, wrist
bent backwards and the head of the racket almost touching the lower
back. Then the swing happens as the body, arm and wrist rotate, giving
the swing a large arch. The distinguishing characteristic of this swing
is the long preparation.
When hitting with the smaller swing, the player won’t lift his/her
upper arm as high. The arm is about parallel to the ground, while the
wrist is bent so that the palm is pointing straight up. When hitting,
this type of swing uses mainly the power of the forearm and wrist in
addition to the body rotation. Therefore, its distinguishing
characteristic is the short preparation.
In reality, female players and male players who lack the strength
usually use the big swing to compensate. The big swing can be very
effective when there is enough time for preparing the swing. In a real
game, however, you usually don’t have the luxury of time so therefore
using a big swing would be ineffective, since you don’t have enough time
to complete the whole action. In these situations, it’s usually better
to use the smaller swing to hit clears.
Article was written by Tony Jiang