You can see what i mean by observing the reverse angle slow motion of Zhao's movement and racket technique. the Racket seem to move fast even in slow motion. And very little pronation by Zhao. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=om5nXnjvqxg
The skills and speed marriage into the game of badminton necessitate the evolution of cutting down unnecessary strokes which in turn cuts down on the time needed to execute a stroke, bringing more time for the player. More time equals more option.
Even though Master Tang was in Indonesia's battleship at the time of Zhao, the latter is one of the master who revolutionize this type of strokes with deceptive quality. If you notice Tang's manual of minimum step jump smash, Zhao and Yang Yang were already using it with full force, probably tutored by Hou Chia Chiang.
Even though we dont have much video of the thing and hao some said zjh resembles their style, stroke wise and the pace of the game. My late father had the chance to see some movie clips of both of these two legend in the seventies and when he saw zjh played in the eighties he said he was close but more refined!
Ahh Master Thing hien Hiow. Didnt see him play too young or wasnt not even born at that time. But at 16 years old he was known to have used that rear court net drop that caught Malaysian Juniors and back up Seniors of guard. You may read this at the national library of Singapore website and read the articles of the Straight times of the 50s, just type Sieble , Thing and badminton.
So Zhao's technique has its roots in Thing and How who in turn has its roots in the Islands of the East Indies?
At the moment, I am experimenting on Zhao's way of executing overhead strokes, netting and services. The video I have uploaded has a mimicry of strokes that use less of forearm pronation, racket head flat 'just before' contact with shuttle (I'm in white shirt with blue stripe).
The racket I'm using is a much heavier racket head, Yonex Carbonex 15 which is no longer in production. The reason I'm using such a heavy racket is no other than to strengthen my wrist for producing 'whiplash power' rather than 'brute force power'. You can also see that I try to have same movements for all strokes (as much I possibly can) so that deception is greater. The flat racket head just before contact also cancels out all presumptions of your opponents to which way your shuttle direction is going to. Of course 'double motion' can fool your opponents also, but the down side of 'double motion' is that is takes more time to perform 2 strokes instead of 1. So the flat racket head takes care of that. Also inculcated is Zhao's recommendation that middle, ring and and pinky finger is held loosely (relaxed) on the racket grip to allow maximization of wrist stroke to lessen dependency on arm stroke.
To begin familiarizing with wrist power, shoulder rotational power and body weight is not used (or hugely lessen) as can be seen from the video. When the wrist power is mastered then you can supplement with those powers. The grip I used is a towel grip as I sweat plenty. I also use grip powder a lot. Sometimes I wish I don't have so much sweat pores.
Results: My initial foray into Zhao's recommendations (both from his coaching videos and my own study of his stroke execution) yields a better control of the racket head, lessen time for execution of each stroke (due to less forearm pronation and 'double motion' strokes) thereby yielding more option for choice of angles, more relax grip, hence a less fatigued playing-hand. However, I can't jump as high as Zhao.
I'm also surprise to find that my backhand is more smooth sailing as compared to being tense, when following Zhao's instruction of 'not' using the traditional backhand grip of using the thumb power. The thumb position is placed somewhat in between the forehand thumb and backhand position. Additional efficiency realized includes more control of netting with 'crisp power' where a calculation of 'just enough' force is used so that the shuttle flies as close to the net tape as possible, even for defensive netting, as you will witness from some of the shots I made.
However, as always practice makes perfect and patience is of utmost importance. It can be frustrating at times especially when you are playing tired and your energy tank almost depleted.
Another thing is, the efficiency of the 'shooting lob'/ punch clear is more effective in the sense that the speed of the shuttle is faster with less dependency of forearm power, shoulder rotational power and body weight supplemental power. Overhead strokes that is coupled with a high jump like Zhao really utilizes a lot of your oxygen tank . I have yet to experiment training with weights on both my legs which is both dangerous and injurious.
For those who are inquisitive and a 'curious cat' of Zhao's flair and technique, I hope this helps.
Yes, thanks for the advice. I reckon swift footwork is a feat for everyone in late 30s
Originally Posted by pBmMalaysia
Thats great sharing . However, for better deception or smoother return or faster return, you have to combine those explosive footwork into it then its ngam ngam . The theory is 1..2.. and hit the birdie. Putting together your footwork and your fast wrist work, would get your opponent guessing or in defensive mode most of the time in order to do that a player must have his racket/arm/elbow slightly higher than normal to shorten all hitting strokes and most important is the racket should not be too near your face or body And yes, practice makes perfect .
For new BCers curious to know more about Zhao and also for those of us who are ever holding true to the notion that old is gold (also), nothing fails to excite more than reliving the past through actual viewing of videos and past media articles. (Unfortunately no video links this time).
Zhao was being labelled a rebel who has to be searched for high and low for (whether pulled by the ears or not, I don't know) and be called for training since early schooldays of training. Nevertheless the military-style badminton camp knew they had scouted an uncut diamond. In the beginning Zhao had emerged at a Scottish Open to defeat Morten Frost, which will be followed by another 2 consecutive defeats of Frost in later tournaments, namely the All England. Among the others scalped by Zhao on the way to the final were Hastomo Arbi (3-1), Steve Baddeley (2-0) and also surprisingly Lim Swie King with a scoreline of 15-10,15-5. When entering final, many reckoned that Frost previous defeat to Zhao was because of Frost playing too many tournaments and this final was to debunk that Zhao's previous victory was only a lucky one.
In another tournament, many do not know that Zhao had handed a 15-0 to another player before, and not only Frost who had also done the same thing to Icuk before. The player thrashed by Zhao was Syed Modi, Indian National Champion.
However, there were others who had beaten Zhao during those days and they were far and few, namely a player from Indon named Hendery Ho Jun Kie and Eddy Kurniawan. (Later Zhao would avenged his defeats). However these defeats only happened at the early encounters with Zhao. But more of Hendery and Kurniawan at another post as I have yet to find the articles.
Please enlarge the articles for easier viewing unless you have perfect 20-20 vision.
I think it was November 2011, when they had the 4 Hevaenly Kings invitational (exhibition) tournament that was played at the inaugural event of the new Li Yongbo Badminton School in Dongguan. Apparently, TXH was roped in to be the school's coach consultant or director or something... but I also remember reading somewhere else that he wanted to take things easy now. Short answer: still in China!