The punch clear, otherwise know as the attacking clear, or offensive clear is a type of clear that can be used in badminton for both singles and doubles. It is a deceptive shot that has a flat trajectory and aims to force a weak reply or win the point.
To hit an effective punch clear, it is essential to be in a good position and have the same preparation technique as your smash or drop shot. You need to be behind the shuttle, produce a fast racket speed, and keep your strings flat as you strike the shuttle
We’ll now go through everything you need to know about hitting the perfect punch clear, including…
You should only use the punch clear when you’re on balance and in a good, threatening position. If you don’t look like you can smash or play a good drop then this shot is NOT going to be effective!
The punch clear is generally used more in singles and mixed doubles, specifically when the male opponent is punch clearing cross-court to the female opponent. As a female, you have to be more ‘ready’ for the male smash since it’s likely coming to you, so the punch clear can be an effective alternative shot.
There will be times where you can use it in men’s and women’s doubles too, especially when you’re playing opponents who’s movement isn’t their greatest strength!
And as with any shot in badminton, remember not to over-play it! If you do, your opponents will begin to predict your shot, therefore making it less effective.
The punch clear is quite an advanced shot, so hopefully if you’re here you already know the basics of hitting a standard clear. As a quick refresher:
Now, there are two VERY important parts of your preparation for the punch clear, that if you don’t get right, then your shot will be much less effective!
This is because it’s an aggressive, and hopefully deceptive shot, and if it doesn’t look the same then it’s not going to work!
If you look threatening, your opponent will be waiting for the downwards shot, with their body weight leaning forwards. The punch clear then makes them completely shift their bodyweight in the opposite direction and this takes a lot of time and effort! So, this shot will then hopefully either force a weak reply or even be an outright winner.
As we just mentioned, it needs to look the same as your smash or drop.
As you strike the shuttle, you need to squeeze the grip to add power into the shot, which is what also helps create the deception.
Generating enough power is important because even if your punch clear is really deceptive, if it lands short, then it’s not going to work!
Now that you’ve learned when you should and shouldn’t use the punch clear along with the preparation and hitting action, we hope you can implement it effectively into your game!
And if you prefer to see more visual explanations of what we’ve discussed above, you can watch our YouTube video on how to play an attacking punch clear below.