Badminton Clear (Baseline Shot)

Badminton Clear (Baseline Shot)

Badminton Clear (Baseline Shot)

In the clear, the shuttlecock is hit right to the opponent’s back boundary line, and there are two types, the attacking and the defensive clear. It is the trajectory that determines the type of clear. The attacking clear is hit fast and low, while the defensive clear is hit high. An experienced player should be able to hit from his own back boundary line to the opponent’s. A prerequisite for an efficient hit is that it should be hit as high as possible and in front of the body.

The overhand clear is the most important shot in badminton, as other basic shots (smash, drop) can be derived from its backswing action, (see Fig. 33 # 1-6). The opponent only realizes at the last minute which shot is going to be played. The clear can also be played both as a forehand and a backhand from the front of the court to the opponent’s back boundary line, in which case it is an underhand shot. This chapter deals with the forehand clear. The backhand clear is described in Chapter 12 “The Backhand”. The movement sequences are can be seen in the photos and description below.

In the first phase of the clear from the back boundary line, the player watches the shuttlecock and prepares to hit it as soon and as high as possible and in front of the body. The player’s bodyweight is initially over his left foot, and the left foot is almost parallel to the back boundary line. The body on the other hand is parallel to the sidelines.

In the second phase, the full bodyweight shifts to the slightly bent right foot, and the right foot moves parallel to the back boundary line, while the racket is brought back. The player continues to watch the shuttlecock while the left hand is also raised for balance and aim. The player jumps off his right leg as he hits the shuttlecock.

In the third phase, the player takes off and turns his upper body forwards as he hits the shuttlecock so that his upper body ends up parallel to the back boundary line. The racket is swung through from behind the back, as though the player were pulling the racket out of a rucksack. In this action it is the elbow that moves forward first, and only then is the shuttlecock hit at the highest possible point.

In the fourth phase, the player lands on the floor after the shot, left foot first. This brings the body directly again in the forward motion toward the center of the court. In order to avoid overloading the Achilles tendon, the toes of the left foot should point to the side as they absorb the entire bodyweight on landing.

In the Overhand clear . . .

  • the player runs back to the back boundary line.

  • the bodyweight is initially on the left foot, while the left hand is raised to help

    target the shuttlecock.

  • before the shot, the bodyweight shifts onto the right, slightly bent leg (block step), where the right foot is parallel to the back boundary line and the body is again parallel to the sideline.

  • the racket is raised behind the head.

  • the player jumps into the air and the body is arched.

  • the hitting arm elbow moves forward and is accelerated with the forearm.

  • the player lands on his left foot, while simultaneously pushing his right leg forward.

  • the shuttlecock is hit in front of the body at the highest point with a straight arm.

  • an attacking clear (Fig. 33 # 2, 3) is played when the trajectory is flat and the shuttlecock is hit very hard (this flight quality is achieved by hitting the shuttlecock far in front of the body).

a defensive clear (Fig. 33 # 1) is played when the ball has a high, slow trajectory (this is achieved by the racket head pointing backward when hitting the shuttlecock, this often happens unintentionally when the player hits the ball behind his head).

In the Underhand clear . . .

  • the player lunges into the right corner of the court.

  • the left foot stays where it is so that the player can move back again as fast as


  • the movement sequence is very similar to that of the high-long serve.

  • power come from the wrist.

  • the player can choose either a high (defensive clear) or a low (attacking clear) trajectory.

Drill 1: Double trouble: clear with two shuttlecocks in order to practice hitting harder.

Drill 2: Clear with drop pause: player A plays a high serve, player B responds with a clear. A then plays a dropshot and B plays an underhand clear. Then A starts again with a clear, and so on.

Drill 3: Shuttle machine: the coach hits every shuttlecock into the player’s back boundary line area, who plays the shuttlecock as a clear into the coach’s back boundary line area. The coach lets the shuttle fall and takes a new one to hit to the player.

Drill 4: Breakout: two players hit forehand overhead clears; after each shot, one of the players runs to the center line and taps a box that has been put there.

Drill 5: Clear with scissors jump: the player runs one step back each time he plays a clear and performs a scissors jump. If he makes a mistake with the step sequence he must repeat the movement sequence 3 times without a shuttlecock.

Drill 6: Throwing technique: two players throw a shuttlecock hard to each other; the throwing technique should resemble the stroke action of the racket.

Other related blogs

Badminton Hitting Areas

Types of badminton Stroke

Badminton Serve

Author: Charles Yin

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