Last Updated on 07/01/2024 by Kriss
Have you ever wondered what all the different badminton racket grips are for? Using the correct grip is essential for a flawless technique. The wrong grip can not only limit your power and shot control, but also increase the risk of injury. This blog post aims to educate you on the four main badminton grips – and the shots you can play with each. Mastering these grips will enable you to seamlessly switch between them and improve your overall game.
Importance of Choosing the Right Grip in Badminton
There are four main grips that we use in badmitnon:
- Forehand Grip
- Backhand Grip
- Panhandle Grip
- Bevel Grip
Each grip is used in different situations and shots and choosing the right one significantly improves your game. Not only does it influence your shot control and power, but using the correct grip also minimizes injury risks.
In my years of playing badminton, I’ve noticed that players often use the wrong technique, and especially beginners hold their racket in the wrong grip.
Different Types of Badminton Racket Grips
All of the four basic grips are used in different situations on the court. Understanding what shots use what grip is important – so let’s dive right in:
The Forehand Grip
The forehand grip, also known as the shake-hand grip, is essential for executing powerful and precise forehand shots in badminton. You hold it just like you would shake someone’s hand with fingers wrapped around the handle while the thumb rests against the back.
Grip Technique: Imagine shaking someone’s hand. Place your palm on the wider part of the handle, creating a ‘V’ shape between your thumb and index finger. The racket handle should rest in the groove created by this shape.
Finger Placement: Keep a small space between your index and middle fingers for extra control and leverage. Wrap your remaining fingers around the handle for support.
Grip Pressure: Maintain a relaxed grip to enable smooth transitions between grips and enhance shot quality. Adjust grip pressure depending on the shot type, e.g., slightly tighter for net kills or drives, and relaxed for delicate net shots. In general – your grip will be relaxed until the last second when you “snap” your hand to create extra power if needed.
Shots with the Forehand Grip: The forehand grip is used for various shots, including:
- Forehand clears, smashes, and drops
- Forehand drives
- Forehand lifts and net shots
The grip is also explained in this video.
A lot of shots from your forehand are attacking shots like drops or smashes. It is important to nail down the correct technique for them. So practice the forehand grip diligently to improve power, control, and precision in your badminton game.
The Backhand Grip
The backhand grip is crucial for executing accurate and stable shots from your backhand in badminton. Here’s an overview of how to achieve and utilize the perfect backhand grip:
Grip Technique: Place your thumb on the wider part of the handle, with the racket strings facing the same side. Your remaining fingers should wrap around the handle, slightly spread apart for extra control.
Grip Pressure: Maintain a relaxed grip, allowing for wrist flexibility and quick grip changes. Adjust the grip pressure based on the shot type; for instance, apply a firmer grip for backhand drives or defensive shots, and a looser grip for delicate backhand net shots.
Shots with the Backhand Grip: The backhand grip is used for a variety of shots, including:
- Backhand drives
- Backhand lifts
- Backhand net shots
- Backhand serves
- (Doubles) defense
Note: For rear-court backhand shots such as the backhand clear, use the bevel grip instead to achieve better control and power.
By mastering the backhand grip, you can enhance your overall badminton game and execute a wide range of shots with increased accuracy and stability.
The Bevel Grip
The bevel grip is essential for executing powerful and controlled rear-court shots from your backhand in badminton. Here’s an overview of how to achieve and utilize the perfect bevel grip:
Grip Technique: Starting from the backhand grip, rotate the racket head so that the strings face diagonally, positioning your thumb on the ridge or bevel.
Grip Pressure: Maintain a relaxed grip to ensure wrist flexibility and quick grip changes. Adjust the grip pressure based on the shot type; for instance, apply a firmer grip for powerful smashes, and a looser grip for controlled drops or clears.
Shots with the Bevel Grip: The bevel grip is used for various rear-court shots, including:
- Backhand clears, drops, and smashes
- Stretched singles defense
Adapting to Shuttle Position: Change your thumb position based on the shuttle’s location to achieve optimal control and power. Use the bevel grip when the shuttle is behind you, allowing for accurate and powerful shots from this position.
By mastering the bevel grip, you can enhance your badminton game, optimizing control and power for various rear-court shots, and boosting your overall performance on the court.
The Panhandle Grip
The panhandle grip is essential for executing late backhand shots and adapting to challenging situations in badminton. Here’s an overview of how to achieve and utilize the perfect panhandle grip:
Grip Technique: Place your thumb on the side of the racket, pinching the sides with your thumb and fingers. The position should resemble holding a frying pan by its handle, hence the name panhandle grip.
Grip Pressure: Maintain a relaxed grip for wrist flexibility and quick grip changes. Adjust grip pressure based on the shot type, such as a firmer grip for powerful overhead shots, and a looser grip for delicate net shots.
Shots with the Panhandle Grip: The panhandle grip is used for various challenging shots and situations, including:
- Some net shots with spin
- Some net kills or drives (depending on position and preference)
Adapting to Shuttle Position: Use the panhandle grip when the shuttle is far behind you or when you need to maximize your reach, as it allows you to play powerful and accurate shots from challenging positions.
By mastering the panhandle grip, you can enhance your badminton game, maximizing power and adaptability for various challenging situations, and boosting your overall performance on the court.
Sizing Up Your Grip Technique
A word about size here too—it matters just as much in badminton gripping technique. A good rule of thumb (pun intended) is this: If you keep your hand relaxed, you should still be able to wrap your fingers around the grip. In general, a smaller grip isn’t such a big issue because you can make up for it with an additional overgrip.
It is hard to describe the correct grip size. You just know it when it is right.
Techniques for Switching Grips during a Badminton Game
Last but not least, let’s talk about grip changes. In the heat of a badminton game, being able to switch grips fast can mean the difference between landing that winning shot or letting it slip away.
With time and practice, you’ll be switching from forehand strokes to backhand shots like a pro in no time—like flipping pancakes on Sunday morning.
Making Grip Changes Unconscious
To start, remember that practice makes perfect when changing grips in badminton. The more shots played using different grip techniques, the quicker your hand will adapt to switching seamlessly from one grip type to another.
The first technique involves keeping your racket gripped only by your thumb and index finger while allowing other fingers to relax lightly on the handle until needed for specific strokes like forehand or backhand ones.
This ‘loose’ holding style lets you transition smoothly between forehand and backhand grips without wasting precious seconds. A tight grip makes it harder to switch smoothly between all the grips.
If you a still struggling here are a few extra tips:
- Start without a shuttle, visualizing shots and their corresponding grips.
- Add movement, still without hitting a shuttle. Switching grips should become second nature before incorporating different shots.
- Practice with a shuttle using conditioned routines, switching grips after each shot. (such as drives played to the forehand and then to the backhand)
- Incorporate random shots, forcing quick grip changes and decision-making.
- Test your skills in open routines or match play.
If you have developed bad habits, it might be worth recording yourself and comparing it to other players. A coach might also be a good idea to look over your game.
Common Mistakes to Avoid
When you are just beginning your badminton journey – there are some common mistakes when it comes to the grip you are using.
Mistake 1: Using Your Index Finger
Some players start using their index finger to support the grip. This is a big mistake since you will lose a lot of control that way. Generating power through rotation also becomes an issue when you use your index finger. Put simply: there is no grip where you should use your index finger as a support.
Mistake 2: Gripping The Racket Too Tight
A common error that many players, especially beginners, make is gripping the racket too tightly.
Firstly, a tight grip increases the tension in your arm. With increased tension comes less control and it also reduces the range of motion for rotation and therefore leads to less power in your shot.
Secondly, you won’t have the ability to “snap” your fingers in the last second. This plays a huge role in power generation, and also last millisecond changes to the stroke that are important for deception.
To avoid this mistake, you should focus on a relaxed grip, adjusting the tightness intuitively as the situation demands. You can also actively practice the “snap” that requires a loose grip before you tighten your grip.
So, you’ve journeyed with us through the world of racket grips in badminton. You’ve explored all the essential badminton racket grips that you need to perform on the court.
Remember – the best players have internalized grip transitions, making it an unconscious part of their game. By mastering the four main badminton grips, you can improve power, control, and prevent injuries. So, get out there, practice, and watch your game soar to new heights!
FAQ Related to Badminton Racket Grips
In badminton, you’ll find four main grip types: Forehand Grip, Backhand Grip, Bevel Grip, and Panhandle Grip.
The forehand grip is ideal for executing powerful smashes.
Practicing grip transitions without a shuttle, visualizing shots, and incorporating random shots can enhance your grip-switching speed.
The backhand grip is used for backhand serves, and it’s also essential for defensive shots in doubles.