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Coaching and Badminton Books

Discussion in 'Techniques / Training' started by bsmith, Oct 30, 2011.

  1. bsmith

    bsmith Regular Member

    Nov 30, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Engineering software developer
    College Station, Texas USA
    Last night my family and I had the pleasure of playing badminton and receiving instruction from Tony Grice. He is the author of, Badminton: Steps to Success, and has been a professor of health, physical education, and recreation at numerous universities in the U.S. including Texas A&M University. Besides being an author and professor, Tony is an accomplished player and still competing in the Senior Masters division of USA Badminton. Read more about Tony by clicking on the Author tab at this web page

    Tony graciously agreed to play on my backyard lighted grass court and played a number of games with us. It is only by chance that I know him as his son is a good friend of one of my sons.

    No one in my family had ever played with a high level badminton professional and it proved to be quite enlightening. I have been reading badminton websites and watching countless youtube videos for nearly a year now and thought I understood the basics of badminton fairly well.

    But it turned out that a number of concepts I thought I had down pat, I didn't really understand as deeply as I should have. I'll give a couple of examples. While playing doubles on Tony's team, I saw Tony go back to receive a high and deep perfectly placed clear in the right hand corner of the court. I naturally assumed he would return it with his own clear and thus I backed out from the net and went to a side by side position. Tony hit a fast drop shot and I was not at the net to defend the return drop shot well and had to lift it which was not ideal.

    Tony said to me, "You know where to be when we are attacking right?" I said, "Of course, if you are hitting offensively, I stay at the net." Tony said, "Well, why did you drop back then on my last shot?" I said, "The clear you were receiving was so deep and perfectly placed that I was sure you had to return it with a clear yourself." Tony said, "If I was playing singles, I would very likely have made a clear on that shot. But we are playing doubles, and we both should be hitting down whenever possible because we have a partner at the net to cover for us. So even though I couldn't hit a sure winner in that situation by hitting down, my downward shot would make sure our opponents had to lift or drop their return of my shot, and if you had stayed at the net you could have taken their return drop offensively or forced a poor lift from them."

    It was then that I realized for the first time in a year of playing that you should rarely ever make an overhead clear shot in doubles. I have probably read something to that effect before, but it had never really registered with me. I had been assessing clear shots in the same way for both doubles and singles and no one had ever corrected me on this. It took a professional coach to notice that error.

    Tony also pointed out that I was lifting too many of my service returns. I asked what I should do differently since I was receiving many well placed low and short serves. He demonstrated how to make "push" returns that still had to go upward over the net but would quickly turn downward once past the net.

    Once again, even though I had read many times that you hit upwards and lift the least amount possible, I had never really understood how to maximize downward travel of the bird in all aspects of the game against my opponents.

    In this forum, the benefits of coaching above and beyond reading and watching videos has been mentioned many, many times. I have never doubted those statements, but until I had experienced it myself, I didn't appreciate just how true those statement are.

    At the end of our playing session Tony gave me a copy of his book and said that all the things he told me were in the book as well. Like many computer savvy people, I had never thought of buying a badminton book because, afterall, isn't there plenty of current badminton information on the internet free for the taking?

    As I read through Tony's 184 page book, it was nice to have something so comprehensive and well organized all in one document that I could read anywhere. I didn't have to be sitting in front of a computer or have internet access. And besides all the basics on how to perform all the different types of shots, I enjoyed the information on tactics the most. There was even an analysis of what to do when you win the coin toss in a match.

    Since I am still so new to badminton I am not qualified to perform a critical review of this book in the same way that Gollum could for example. I can only tell you that I found it extremely helpful. But even more importantly, what Tony's book did for me is open my eyes to the benefits of adding even more badminton books to my collection.

    This forum and other badminton websites will still be the foundation of my study of badminton, but I think the different perspectives offered by authors of some of the popular books like Basic Skills of Badminton by Han Jian and Advanced Badminton Techniques by Vip Malixi and Butch Oreta will be very helpful indeed.

    The books mentioned above and Tony Grice's book Badminton: Steps to Success are not very expensive. Han Jian's book can be ordered here for $19.95 USD Butch's and Tony's book can be found at numerous web sites and often ebay is the cheapest. Butch's book is $27 when ordered here On ebay, a new copy of Tony's book can be bought for as little as $12 USD or for $19.95 when ordered from here

    I think the above three books are pretty sure things on being both beneficial and a good value. There are a number of other badminton books I am considering purchasing as seen here but they will have to wait until I finish the first three books mentioned.

    In summary, the main point of this very long winded post is that I think professional coaching and badminton specific books are very worthwhile purchases for those who want to improve as fast as possible.
    #1 bsmith, Oct 30, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2011
  2. ben_carter

    ben_carter New Member

    Dec 3, 2011
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  3. gerald1994

    gerald1994 Regular Member

    Feb 2, 2012
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    Hmm i'm interested to know what's in han jian's book? Could you share what's it about with us pleasee? Thanks :)
  4. Rob3rt

    Rob3rt Regular Member

    Sep 5, 2012
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    Can somebody recommend me a book about deception? Like performing sliced Drop shots and stuff. I also would like to know, how to perform a reverse sliced backhand, but I don't have an idea how to even attempt it...

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