Out of all the badminton shots, the net brush shot is one of the last ones you should be focusing on. Even though it has its uses and importance, you shouldn’t worry about it until you have mastered all the more typical shots, such as the clear, the drop, the smash, or the net shot.
If you have mastered them and you are looking to bringing your game to the next level, this post is for you. Here, we are going to clarify what a net brush shot is. We are also going to explain how to perform it. Lastly, we will cover when and why you would want to use the net brush shot.
What is a net brush shot in badminton?
A net brush shot is a shot that is performed from the front of the court and directed towards the center of the court. It is an offensive shot and has a flat or downwards trajectory.
In the image below you can see the trajectory of a standard net brush shot.
With a net brush shot, you are trying to attack the shuttle as much as possible. However, due to the proximity of the shuttle to the net, doing a net kill will probably end up with the racket hitting the net and the umpire calling a fault against you. With the net brush, that is avoided while still keeping an offensive intend.
What are the different types of net lift shot in badminton?
There are basically two types of net brush shots. In the case of the net brush shot, this is mostly done with the forehand. It can also be done with the backhand but it is much more difficult and less effective. The variants are as follows:
- Net flat brush shot
- Net offensive brush shot
Net flat brush shot
This is the defensive version of this shot. In this case, as you can see in the image below, the shuttle goes flat or slightly up before gravity plays its part and the shuttle goes down towards the court.
This shot is used whenever you hit the shuttle just at or below the net level. In this case, the shot aims to keep the pressure of the rally up and can be a winner if the opponent is out of position.
In singles, you can use this shot after a net shot from your opponent. If your opponent has stayed very close to the net, your shuttle will pass him/her and you will win the point.
In doubles, this shot can be used in the same situation. In this case, however, one of the two opponents will be able to reach the shuttle, so you shouldn’t use it unless you are sure you and your partner have the court covered. If you do have it covered, this will help keep the initiative going more than a net shot would.
Net offensive brush shot
This is the offensive version of the shot. By doing a net offensive brush shot, you make sure that you don’t commit a fault while at the same time managing to perform an offensive shot. In the image below you can see the trajectory of this offensive variant.
This shot is also used both in singles and in doubles. In this case, you have managed to reach the shuttle over the net height. However, due to the net being very close by, a net kill would be dangerous. So, both in singles and in doubles, with this shot, you are trying to finalize the rally without risking to commit a fault.
How to perform a net brush shot?
Step 1 – Your ready position
It is very important that your ready position is correct. You need to be located in front of the front service line. If your opponent is going to perform his or her shot from one of the two sides of the net, then you should be moving your center position towards that side as well. If you don’t know what the center position is, you can check our post “What Is the Central Base Position in Badminton?“, where we go in detail into the topic.
Your racket leg ( left leg if you are left-handed) should be forward.
Your racket arm should be raised so that your hand is roughly at the same height as your shoulder, with the racket pointing toward the net.
As far as your non-racket arm should also be raised in a position that can help you accelerate the jump.
Step 2 – Jump towards the shuttle
Once your opponent has hit the shuttle and you think you can reach it in time to perform a net kill, it is time to jump towards the shuttle. The reason behind jumping is in order to reach the shuttle as fast as possible, so it is still over the net and you can send it in a downwards trajectory. That is why it is also very important that your center position is so close to the net.
To jump towards the shuttle, you will jump with both feet, but the foot that is a bit more backward (the non-racket foot) will be the one making the most work. In order to help with the inertia, you can also bring your non-racket arm towards the back.
While jumping, you will raise the racket arm and the racket a bit more in preparation for the shot.
Step 3 – Hit the shuttle with a brushing or swiping hand movement
This is the trickiest part. You need to make sure that the racket head is parallel to the net and then hit the shuttle with a “swiping” movement where you mostly use your fingers to do the movement.
You should be landing on your feet at the same time that you hit the shuttle, landing with the racket leg in the front and the non-racket leg in the back.
Depending on how high over the net you can hit the shuttle, the angle of the racket will change and so will the trajectory of the shuttle. The higher the shuttle is at the moment of impact, the steeper the trajectory can be.
When and why would you use a net brush shot?
Now that we know how to perform these shots, it is time to have a look at when we want to use them. I have already mentioned it at the beginning of the post, but let’s have a look a bit more thoroughly now and with some examples to make sure the message is clear.
When and why would you use a net flat brush shot?
The net flat brush shot should be used whenever you are hitting the shuttle at about the height of the net. In this case, giving it a downwards trajectory can be dangerous so a flat one is a better option. You want to be using this shot as an answer to a net shot from your opponent, where you are well situated with an advanced base position.
In singles, the idea behind this type of shot is that your opponent will have just performed a net shot and, as a result, will not be in a good central position. By attacking the shuttle, you are giving your opponent no time to go back to the center position and to arrive to the shuttle.
In doubles, the same idea stands. However, in the case of doubles, the aim of the shot is not to finish the point. There is another opponent so most likely the shuttle will be returned. However, by performing this shot, you are really pressuring your opponents and you are likely to keep the initiative of the point.
When and why would you use a net offensive brush shot?
The net offensive brush shot should be used whenever you are hitting the shuttle above the height of the net. In this case, giving it a downwards trajectory is the best option since you will be more aggressive and you have a higher chance of finishing the rally. You want to be using this shot as an answer to a net shot from your opponent, where you are well situated with an advanced base position.
And with this, we have arrived at the end of this post. Do you have any lingering doubts about the badminton net brush shot? Let me know in the comments below.
If you enjoyed this post, you might want to check our Badminton Shots post, where you find a brief explanation and links to all the other types of shots in badminton.
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