6 Basic Badminton Shots For Beginners

Playing badminton takes a significant level of skill and whilst you may be able to learn the basic rules of the game in a relatively short amount of time, some of the intricate shots might seem a little more intimidating.

That being said, it is perfectly viable to think that even as a beginner, you will be effectively able to learn some of the most important shots of the game; each one having its own benefits and a time at which it should be used.

In this post, we are going to be looking at six basic, yet essential shots that beginners can start practising today to get their game to a more elite level.

An Introduction To Badminton Shots

Some people may be of the mindset that playing badminton involves nothing more than mindlessly belted the shuttlecock from one side of the court to the other, but this could not be further from the truth.

This is a sport that requires quick reactions, agility, focus and stamina. Each shot you take could mean the difference between winning a point and walking away as the loser – and since so many people who play this sport are super competitive, it is vital that you get your shots right from the off.

In the main, you will hear badminton shots being referred to as defensive and offensive and there are three main types of each. So, without further ado, let’s take a look at each of the shots in a little more detail.

Defensive Shots

In badminton, one of the main aims of the game is to trick or confuse your opponent and stop them from having enough time to react to our shot. You will undoubtedly find yourself on the receiving end of this, and so it is important to be able to defend yourself and gain control of the game, putting your opponent out.

1. Clear Shot

If you have noticed that your opponent is spending most of their time by the net, this is a prime opportunity to take advantage of the clear shot. This type of shot will force a change in position and ultimately could see you winning a point; if you manage to pull it off correctly.

The clear shot is done by hitting the shuttle right in the centre of your racket – or as close as you possibly can. This will cause it to fly upwards and hopefully land near to the back of your opponent’s court. An opponent who is in a fixed position near the net will stand very little chance of returning this.

2. Drive Shot

The drive shot is one of the most basic shots in the entire game, but that is certainly not to say that it isn’t incredibly effective. A drive shot can be used when you find yourself in a tricky situation and is very effective if you want to shock your opponent, which might cause them to be unable to react. In this instance, you would win a point.

The idea of this type of shot is to deliver the shuttle directly across the net, whilst keeping the shot low and straight. It should be smooth and just clear the net, and when done properly, can be a very useful tool.

3. Net Lift Shot

In this shot, you are aiming to hit the shuttle high so that it lands near the baseline of the opponent’s court. To execute this effectively could see you score a point but it will take some practice, and if it is not done correctly, you may be faced with having to deal with a smash that could be virtually impossible to react to.

The net lift shot should be hit so that it just clears the net, but the most crucial aspect of this shot is making sure that the power is spot on. If you hit it too hard, you will clear the perimeter of the court, whereas hitting the shuttle too gently will almost certainly mean that a smash is coming your way.

Offensive Shots

In contrast, if you are in control of the game, you will need to make use of some offensive shots. Knowing how to execute these shots perfectly is a great way to ensure that you achieve one of three things;

  • Winning a point
  • Maintain the serve
  • End the exchange

Once again, there are three main basic shots that can be used in these situations, and the most important thing is to remain unpredictable so that your opponent will not know what is coming next.

1. Smash Shot

We mentioned the smash while talking about defensive shots and these are super effective and perhaps one of the first things that you should think about learning when getting started with badminton.

It is widely accepted that the smash shot is the most common in the whole game and many pro tournaments have been won thanks to this shot.

If the shuttle comes towards you at a height, then this is the perfect opportunity to take a smash shot since this type of shot is done with a powerful downwards motion. Hitting the shuttle in this way means that your opponent will have a hard time reacting and be very unlikely to return the shot. You have two choices, you might aim the shuttle straight towards your opponent or alternatively, ping it as far away as possible from him or her whilst keeping it within the lines of play.

2. Drop Shot

If you are standing on the front part of your court, then the drop shot is a great go-to reaction. This is relatively similar in nature to a drive shot but far less powerful; that being said you do need to exert enough force to successfully get the shuttlecock across the net.

You will need to aim for the forecourt of your opponent’s side, especially if he or she is expecting you to take a shot towards the backside of the court.

However, it is vital to keep in mind that this shot must be executed perfectly because if it is not, then you may lose a point. For this reason, we would suggest spending a lot of time practising this before using it in a match.

Net Kill Shot

If you are near to the net and the shuttle comes flying in quite high, then this is the perfect time to throw in a net kill shot. One of the best things about this type of shot is that you do not need to prepare for it so you can pull it out of the bag at any time. The only thing that you will need to do is be sure that your racket is in front of your body ready to take the shot.

Some might compare this shot to the smash, but there is a key difference; the net kill shot is a lot faster so will certainly stand to confuse and stun your opponent. If you get this right, you will almost certainly win a point.


There are many things that you will need to work on when you first start your badminton journey; this might include finding the right equipment, joining a badminton club and getting a good grasp on the rules of the sport.

However, one thing that is extremely essential is knowing a variety of badminton shots that could stand to help you win a match.

There are a lot of badminton shots, but we have discussed six of the most basic that can be used in either an offensive or defensive situation. These are excellent for confusing your opponent or delivering a shot that is so unexpected; they do not have time to react.

In any case, it is important that you practice these shots and ensure that you are prepared to execute them on the court.