How to Score and Regulations
Badminton is the 2nd most popular sport in the world, it is fun, exciting and brings us a lot of benefits. It is a great idea to understand the badminton rules and scoring system so we can enjoy this game even more.
Basic Badminton Rules and Scoring
Starting the Game
Usually, a coin toss will decide which side will serve first in a more formal tournament.
In a casual game, we usually just throw the shuttlecock up in the air or at the net and see where it points. The pointing side is the side that serves first.
General Badminton Rules
Modern badminton tournaments will usually apply the best of three sets and 21 points system. In 21 points system, the “best of three sets” will be usually used.
To win, you need a 2 points lead. For example, if the score is no 20-20, you can’t win the game even if you win 21 points. It has to be 22-20, same rules apply in other cases until 30: you can’t win with 24-23, 26-25 or 28-27, you need to have two points in a row, also called “2 clear points”, like 23-21.
Do note that when the game reaches the 30 (upper limit of a game), you will win even the score is 30-29. Such a rule exists because the BWF is trying to prevent a game from dragging too long, especially at top-level tournaments, a long game may lead to injuries of the athletes.
Interval, Change, and Scoring
For a 21 points system game, an interval means players of both teams have 1 min for rest when one team scores 11 points.
Changing courts will happen 2 times during the best of three sets.
During the 3rd game, the changing court will happen when either side’s score reaches 11.
Badminton Rules – Service and Scores
8 Basic Serving Rules:
1. Both server and receiver need to have both feet in contact with the floor
2. For even score, we always serve from the right side of the court, for odd scores, we always serve from the left side of the court
3. A serve must carry diagonally across the court
4. The server should hit the shuttle with the badminton racket pointing downwards, and should hit the shuttles underarm and below waist height and cannot touch any of the court-lines
5. The server has to hit the cork first and not the feather
6. It has to be a continuous forward movement until the service is delivered, which means no unclean hit, double hit, or any struggles
7. When you serve, the shuttlecock cannot bounce
8. No second serves are allowed.
Another badminton rules
• You will win a rally when you strike the shuttles and touches the opponent’s court floor or when your opponent committed a fault
• It’s considered as a fault when you failed to hit the shuttle over the net, or it lands outside the boundary of the badminton court or hit the ceiling
• No player should touch the net with any part of their body or racket
• A player can return the shuttles from both inside and outside of a badminton court during a point
• No player can hit the shuttlecock twice
• The shuttle cannot be carried on or rest on the racket
• A player cannot reach over the net for hitting the shuttle
• A player should not deliberately distract their opponent(s)
• The referee may call a ‘let’ if an accidental issue occurs
How do you win a set in badminton?
To win a set in badminton, you need to score 21 points before your opponent does. However, if the scores are tied at 20-20 then it comes down to whichever player manages to get two clear points ahead ( i.e. you can only win when it’s 22-20 or 25-23).
The upper limit of a set is 30 points, if it reaches 29-29 then whoever scores the next point would be the winner of the set.
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