Written by Amir Bashir | 15 April 2022
A badminton drop shot is when you hit the shuttlecock so softly it lands just after clearing the net. It either wins a point or creates space for you to exploit in the middle or the back of the court.
This article will cover everything badminton drop shot-related. We will discuss various types of drop shots, how you can execute each of them to perfection, and much more.
Let’s jump into it.
A backhand drop shot is usually played from the back part of the court with your backhand. It has a curved trajectory and is aimed right next to the net, at the front of the court of your opposing player.
Follow these steps to perform a backhand drop shot:
A backhand drop shot is usually played from the front part of the court. Your goal here is the same as it was with the backhand drop shot: either win a point or create a space for the next shot in the back and mid-court to exploit.
Here’s how you can execute a forehand drop shot:
Deceptiveness is one of the key attributes of a good drop shot in badminton. You need to make the shot look as if you’re about to hit a smash or perform a clear until the moment the racket meets the shuttle, giving your opponent no time to react.
This might sound easy on paper, but keeping your drop shot under wraps until the final second is one of the most difficult skills to master.
For, while a smash shot or clear requires you to hit the shuttle hard, a drop shot needs you to hit the shuttlecock softly.
There are various practices you can regularly perform to improve your drop shot. Some of these skills are for beginners. Others are for pros. Yet all of them have one thing in common: they will help make your drop shot (almost) unplayable.
Here’s how you can defend a drop shot in badminton:
There are primarily two drop shots in badminton: slow drop shots and fast drop shots. Both of them can be executed with the forehand or a backhand.
A slow drop shot would cause the shuttlecock to land just after clearing the net, in your opponent’s forecourt.
It is executed with the aim of moving your opponent as close to the net as possible, ideally forcing them into a weak return.
A fast drop shot travels much steeply and lands in the midcourt, preferably by the sides.
Unlike the slow drop shot, which intends to force the opposing player to leave the mid-and back-court vulnerable, a fast drop shot is meant to catch them off-guard.
Still, whether it is slow or fast, a perfectly hit drop shot will have the shuttlecock just clearing the net.
When it comes to drop shots, “myths” rule the court. However, as we’re going to explain, these myths are just what their name implies.
They have no real basis and believing in them might force your game to suffer. To save you from meeting this fate, I have come up with this list:
Slowing down your swing might cause the shuttlecock to land near the net.
But it will also decrease the speed of the shot, giving your opponent enough time to react and reach the shuttle.
By contrast, a steadily hit drop shot will leave your opponent in a double whammy.
They will not only have to react to a drop shot but also react quickly, increasing your chances of winning the point.
This myth stems from the name. Many badminton players believe that the term ‘drop’ means the drop shot must land as quickly as possible after clearing the net.
However, that isn’t the case. Some of the most-effective drop shots I have seen over the years were aimed at the mid-court.
They helped players win points as well as force their opponents into a weak return.
Aiming your drop shot at the short service line — the line right next to the net — might look pretty, but it rarely, if ever, helps you win a point against a professional badminton player.
See the video below where many mid-court drop shots can be seen:
To prepare for a drop shot in badminton, shift your body weight to the rear foot, bend the racket-holding elbow and keep the racket just above the shoulders. All the while maintaining a firm grip on the racket.
You might generally want to use a drop shot in badminton when your opponent is expecting a smash or a clear or they have gone so back to the court that you feel that a drop shot will catch them off-guard with little to no time to respond.
The short service line — the line that is right next to the net on both sides of the court — is an excellent target area for drop shots.
Don’t try to aim your drop shots too close to the net, especially if you are a beginner.
In most cases, you’ll either end up hitting the drop shot into the net (gifting your opponent a point) or looping it into the air (giving them everything they need to perform a killer smash).
When played with deception, drop shots can be one of the most effective shots in badminton. Just make sure to rely on them sparingly and there’s no reason why drop shots can be one of the most potent tools in your kit.
Now I’d like to hear from you:
Feel free to reach out to me in the comments section below, I’d love to answer your questions and hear your feedback. We are also on Instagram @healthyprinciples_.
Amir picked up his first badminton racket at the age of 4 and fell in love with the sport. He joined Healthy Principles to help his fellow badminton enthusiasts get better at the game. In his spare time, you'll find him watching long rallies on YouTube. Learn more about Amir Bashir.