Badminton Singles Vs. Doubles: Which Is Right for You?

Justin Ma - August 2, 2023 - 0 comments

In the past, we’ve done a deep dive into the differences between badminton singles vs. doubles. But if you’re just stepping into the world of badminton, you might wonder: Which version of the game is right for me?

While the scoring and rules are mostly the same, there are some key ways that these two versions of badminton differ. 

Luckily, if you’re trying to choose between badminton singles vs. doubles, we’ve compiled everything you need to know below. Let’s jump in!

Signs That You’d Excel in Badminton Singles

With a narrower court and different service rules, badminton singles is a heated one-on-one version of badminton. Your offense will be packed full of deadly smashes, drops, and punch clears, while your defense will mainly consist of blocks and lifts.

Because there won’t be an extra teammate to protect the court, your strategy not only involves speed and power, but also tiring your opponent out. This means choosing every shot (and shot location) with purpose. In other words, you’ll want to make it hard for them to keep up.

So, how can you know if you’d enjoy playing badminton singles? Here are two signs to look for:

You Want Full Control of the Shots and Strategies Used

As opposed to badminton doubles, singles players have full control of every shot they choose — whether they’re going for offense, defense, or deception. And if you’re someone who prefers high-risk, high-reward play, this can be an excellent reason to play more singles games.

You Want to Master Your Footwork and Technique

When it comes to technique, singles can be a lot less forgiving than doubles. For example, while speed is important for your doubles game, your actual footwork and shot technique is far more crucial in singles.

This is because you won’t have a teammate to back you up, and any misstep you make can (and often will) end up costing you points. But if you’re up for the challenge, singles can show you very quickly what your weak and strong points are. 

Signs That Badminton Doubles Is Right for You

With a wider court and lightning-fast rallies, badminton doubles is all about teamwork. 

You won’t be solely responsible for covering the entire court, which means it may not be as physically demanding as singles — at least not at the casual-to-intermediate level. But it still requires immense strategizing, collaboration, and the ability to think on your feet.

Overall, you’d be a powerful doubles player if:

You Love Explosive, Fast-Paced Teamwork

Much of winning doubles depends on paying attention to your teammate’s playstyle and developing a strategy around it. And this means you’ll have to be an excellent communicator and team player to win.

When you’re just getting started, chances are it’ll take a few matches before you and your doubles partner start to develop synergy. Synergy means being able to predict what shots your teammate is most likely to go for and planning your next move accordingly.

In addition, it’s important to build trust with your partner. This means knowing that they’re going to do their part, encouraging them when they hit a great shot, and staying supportive even if they make a mistake.

You Want to Try New Shots & Improve Your Flat and Net Game

The sheer speed of doubles rallies means you might choose slightly different shots than you would in singles. For example, protecting your court in doubles could involve lots of pushes, net shots, and deceptive lifts to open areas on your opponents’ court. 

Beyond that, many doubles games lead to heated drive shot exchanges. Drives are lightning-fast, flat shots that can be played either defensively or offensively — and they’re mostly used to speed up and reset the pace of a rally. 

The Bottom Line

In badminton singles, the sole outcome of your performance depends on you. And in some ways, this can make it a more physically demanding game than doubles. On the flip side, doubles goes at a much faster pace, involves a mix of new shot types, and will require stellar communication from both you and your teammate.

So, which one is right for you? It all boils down to whether you prefer a solo game or collaborative teamwork. But if you’re not sure what to choose yet, know that you don’t have to just stick to just one.

Whether you play singles, doubles, or a mix of both, you’ll undoubtedly sharpen your skills, get better at anticipating your opponents’ moves, and become all-around stronger on the court. Good luck!

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Justin Ma

I am passionate about helping people find joy in playing badminton, while also showing them how competitive the sport can be.

Justin Ma


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