You’ve already received some very valuable answers, but often,
so I try to give my answers as well.
Like @phihag pointed out, it might be the correct strategy, trying to win the point early, but that seems to lead to more unforced errors on your side. It might be a focus problem, but I’ll get to that when answering “2.”, so for now another suggestion. Doubles are rarely won by one player alone, even if one of the players is weaker/makes a lot of mistakes.
What can you do to get your partner back in the game? Blaming won’t help, like @Budi (I think) pointed out. But helping to get the focus away from the mistakes, back to the next rally might help. Additionally, it might show your partner that you still trust him, giving him back some confidence. You might talk simple tactics/changes, suggest to focus the attack on the weaker player, remind him (and yourself) to remain patient and that not every shot has to be a winner, or you can say things like, “get the it [the shuttle/service] back” when he receives.
I think @phihag suggested here that practice/training might help. I agree. On top of that, it might (again) be a focus issue, pressuring yourself to play higher quality shots, because you’re opponents are better. That’s generally not true. Just play the same shots and if that’s not enough against those opponents, you’ll have to practice.
More common (in lower levels) than you might think. The problem here is that as soon as the pressure is off, you think that’s a sure winner, the focus is lost.
You need to learn to focus until the really is actually over.
It’s the same when getting a big lead and suddenly you let the opponents catch up.
It might help to just remind you of that constantly, it might also help to practice focusing on the shuttle. I know I suggested some exercises for that before somewhere… but just to mention one:
You play this on a half court.
- You serve high, get to your ready position, close your eyes.
- Your partner is allowed to either smash or drop
- When you hear his shot, you open your eyes, play a short return
- You partner plays short
- You lift, get to your ready position and close your eyes
You could also the partner the options of a smash and a clear, so it’s harder to hear the difference.
It doesn’t always look like that, but doubles is a game of patience. You might need to be patient to get the attack, but even when you have it, you need to stay patient. Play fast drop shots and half smashes (and rarely attaching clears) to move your opponents whole waiting until you’re in a good position to full smash. Chance the pace and the placement to make it harder for your opponents to anticipate. When you are in a good position to full smash, do it to set up your partner at the front to finish the point. Don’t expect to directly score from the back court. Keep that in mind for the placement of your smash!
50% sounds like a gamble. My assumption is that (unless it’s very unevenly matched) you will not win a doubles on defense. Attack and defense are two phases of doubles. The flat game and net play can be seen as the third one. The transition (phase).
The goal of that is too get the attack. You’ll “fight for the lift”. It’s not uncommon that the rally ends in this phase, especially the first 3 to 5 shots (including the service), but it shouldn’t be the goal. The goal is to get the attack, to get your opponents to hit the shuttle upwards. You want your opponents to get to the shuttle late. Often, both teams will be in attack position during this phase, so the net and drive shots are fairly well covered. A chance of pace can do wonders. It messes with the rhythm of your opponents. Just gently pushing the shuttle slightly behind the front court player instead of paying faster drives will often force a lift or at least an upwards trajectory of the next shot. Obviously, you’ll have to get past the front court player with a slower shot, but there’ll be chances during a “drive battle”.
I suggest to try to lose those 10kg again. It’ll do wonders for your speed while being more healthy for your joints (hips, knees, ankles, and due to better positions for shots maybe even shoulder, elbow, wrist…)
I don’t necessarily suggest to lose all of the weight, if you build up some leg, core and back muscles instead, I’m fine with that, too.
No need to do much (any) cardio only training, just make sure to eat healthy and maybe work on your stability in addition to playing badminton. (Interval) footwork drills won’t hurt, on court drills for your attack with a partner will give you the chance to work on your defense when switching it around. Do you work with a coach? That would best, of course, but if you want to train alone, feel free to check out my YouTube channel. Every view, like, comment, suggestion is much appreciated and I’ll upload be videos starting in October again, at least that’s my plan. Including some shoulder and back exercises and also some doubles tactics…
If you want to get to the next level, you will probably want to work on all of that.
I don’t think I have anything to add to what @phihag said.
Once you go feather, you’ll never go back, unless you’re @Alex82
Again, @phihag said it all. The game is different with feathers, but it’ll give you more options, more feedback, … just overall more enjoyment.
I don’t see any harm in changing between both, I just don’t think you’ll want to do that after getting used to feather shuttles.
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