Badminton clear is one of the basic shots used in badminton and it is very important for you to have a clear understanding of these shots and also where to use them in a match to score a point.
What is badminton clear?
It a shot in badminton which is made by one player to his opponent’s backcourt area.
it is mostly used in a singles game as it helps the player to generate some to get into position.
In today’s trend, badminton playing style is more of attacking than playing the rallies but a player like Lee Chong Wei, Lin Dan is still using these clears to get points in matches.
Types of badminton clear
- Forehand Clear:- Clears which are played from forehand side of backcourt( defensive and attacking)
- Backhand Clear:- Clears which are played from backhand side of backcourt(defensive and attacking)
- Forehand Clear:- Clear(lob) which are played from net area to backcourt with a forehand
- Backhand Clear:- Clear(lob) which are played from net area to backcourt with a backhand
Forehand Clears Meaning
A forehand clear is a shot made from back of the court using a forehand grip
How to perform Forehand clear
Before we go into detail about the body position first lets learn the grip for a clear shot
hold a racket using forehand grip which you can learn more about in this article of mine
From the above picture you will get an idea of how to perform clear in badminton, so let’s talk these step one by one
- Get yourself in a position which is ideally behind shuttle turn your body so that it is vertical to net it means your chest should not be facing your opponent where are both of your arms as shown in picture 1, Most players get confused how much behind the shuttle should i be? An position to be is when you leave the shuttle it should land in front of your non racket leg , this is how you can check whether you are standing at a optimum position.
- Shift your body weight to your dominant leg and take your racket arm and stretch back as much as you can but also be comfortable and your non-racket arm should be straight pointing towards the shuttle.
- As soon as you see shuttle in front of you start off by pushing your right leg forward and extending your arm over the shuttle, perform action with your racket arm like you are throwing a ball to someone., don’t try to add any extra power just be with the motion , More your technique become crisp more is there it will be for you to play full length clear.
- After finishing off arm movement follow through the motion as shown in the last step.
Drills to improve clears
When you are at home, You will be needing a thread, shuttle and racket first step is to tie a thread to the ceiling if there is a hook then good if not then you can also use cello tape. If your roof height is too much then try to find anything from where you can hang shuttle so that the height will be equal to the contact point when Your arm is fully extended.
Now all you got to do is mimic the whole technique of hitting clear shot try to do 20 reps of 3 set.
Doing high length wall practice is also a good exercise to do when you don’t have court and players around you.
When you are in court, In court it can be a very simple process ask your Partner to do 100 clears with you or another drill can be feeding shuttle.
Mistake to avoid
One of the most common mistake which beginner make is using his shoulder to generate power or using too much energy to hit shuttle.
Instead what you should focus on is using your wrist more then your shoulder, at the beginning you should focus on hitting clear with just wrist and when you master that aspect move on to full swing of racket
Another mistake which even i did as a beginner is hitting shot not with a flat racket face, If you want to utilize all the energy of your swing you should make contact with shuttle with a flat face of your racket
To correct this what you can do is find a racket which you no longer use and now stand close to a wall with your face towards that wall, now follow these steps
- Raise both your hand
- now using proper wrist movement hit your racket on the wall (lightly)
The main objective of this exercise is to make sure that your racket face stay flat every time making clear shot
Backhand Clear Meaning
Backhand Clear is a little difficult and requires more power than a forehand clear.
It refers to the shot which is played using a backhand grip and combining this with your backhand arm pronation as shown in the above picture.
An overview of how to perform backhand clear learn more in detail
Step 1 For executing a backhand clear is to know how to hold badminton racket for backhand,
You wanna turn away from the V grip and a little bit move towards a panhandle grip now this is for the backhand from the back of the court.
Step 2 After holding the racket with the backhand grip now drop the racket to you back side so that there is a gap between your palm and racket, the motive of this is to hold the racket with the fingers and not with your fist.
Step 3 is to keep your arm very loose if you are tensing your arm you are not going to be able to hit the backhand shot
- now as shown in the picture raise you elbow parallel or above the chest
- Bend your knees little
- Keep your non-racket arm raised (always remember), it provides you accuracy (it keep mind alert) and balance
Step 4 in the backhand clear is to hit the shuttle
Drills to Improve Backhand Clears
Drill number 1
Mimic the steps which I told you above do this whole movement from step 1 to step 4
20 times (5 sets), 4 days/week.
Drill number 2
Tie a shuttle in your home with your ceiling using a thread and keep the height of the shuttle to your racket height(highest contact point of your racket while you are in step 4).
Now start hitting the backhand shot to the shuttle this will improve your timing and contact point.
20 times (5 sets), 4 days/week.
Drill number 3
Wall practice helps you to improve power in your wrist movement.
Drill number 4
This one is my favorite, cover your racket face with sometihng so that air cannot pass through it ( i use racket bag) and now start imitating the backhand swing
15 time (3 sets)
Both backhand and forehand clear have two types which are
Types of overhead clear
- Attacking clears
- full length clears
The attacking clear is used to make your opponent out of position so that you can make the final shot to win the rally!
As you can see in the above diagram the clear is having a sharp angle which gives less time to an opponent to react and is very effective in singles and doubles for making the opponents out of position.
Use of Attacking clear
Suppose you are playing with a slow player and by slow I mean that his footwork is more relaxed, he is able to reach your shots but not moving with much explosive power, now a normal player will think that I should increase my footwork speed to beat this player. It is a good strategy if you have good endurance but in my opinion, it will be more efficient to increase the speed of your shots instead of moving faster, seems good.
Full length Clear
In full length clear the player hit the shuttle with more height and length the objective of this shot is to get yourself in position and be ready for next shot(Height gives time to a player for getting back to base position).
Uses of Full length clear
The full length clear is only effective when you make them land on the back service line of singles because if you clear length is short the opponent is going to make a smash to finish the rally which will be hard for you to return.
You can use clears to force your opponents to make a loose shot. For Example, if your opponents backhand side area is weak now you can use full length clear to exploit his weakness and forcing him to make short backhand clear which you can then finish it with a smash.
But using full length clear is not always a wise option especially nowadays as rallies are becoming more and more aggressive.
Racket Technology is also increasing which resulting in fast shots so unless you are fully confident about your full length clear, playing fast shot will be a good idea.
- Forehand Clear
- Backhand Clear
The underarm clear(Or called net lift) is usually played from the frontcourt area to your opponent’s backcourt.
Whether to play it high and deep or a flatter, cross court clear will depend on the situation at that time and your opponent’s positioning on the court.
In any case, try to reach the shuttle as early as possible so that you can have various shot options. Your wrist action is the crucial element in creating a deception for your shots.
Use of underarm clear
It might seem a simple shot but if used proper it can create chances to win a rally
- When you are underpressure or off balance then using underarm clear can help you to get back in netural situation
- If your opponent has weak smashes then by constanly giving him shuttle at back court can be effective because it will force him to make loose shot
Backhand Underarm Clear
It is made using the backhand grip same grip used in overhead backhand clear
Step 1 use a backhand grip start in ready position shuffle forward and lunge towards the net with racket leg.
Step 2 as your lunge draw the racket back and take the forearm so the palm is facing downward extend the racket arm and more the racket as your hitting the shuttle snap the wrist at last movement to generate power also extend your non-racket arm away for balance.
Step 3 once you have placed shuttle push back and get back to ready position.
Drills to improve backhand underarm clear
When you are at home, tie a shuttle to stand and hang it at your eye level now take a racket and start performing the same process which I told you earlier step by step.
When you are in court, ask your partner to stand near the net area and then as you start moving he will feed you shuttle and your objective is to hit the shuttle to the backcourt with proper technique.
Forehand Underarm Clear
In badminton Underarm clear in this type is made by using a forehand grip same grip used in overhead forehand clear
When you lift the shuttle from net area to the backcourt of your opponent using forehand grip than it is called forehand underarm clear.
Step 1 use a forehand grip start by doing a side step as soon as the opponent hit the shuttle, shuffle forward and land on the racket leg.
Step 2 extend the racket arm snap your shutter and direct it where you want to hit play shuttle also keep your no racket up to keep body balance.
Step 3 once you have put the shutter Deep push off of and shuffle back to base position.
Your main objective while practicing under arm clear should be the length of shot because most beginner player lift always stays shot which opponent will take advantage and make a smash.
So keep practicing until your left become more Deep try to AIM for landing shuttle behind the double service line and single server sign in the backcourt.