[This is one of the original emails from my Badminton Secrets Newsletter, now freely available on badmintonsecrets.com!]
Welcome to the next installment of the Badminton Secrets
So far we have looked at a number of techniques and ways
of thinking that really differentiate between champion
badminton players and average badminton players.
This week I’m going to be getting a bit tougher.
We’re going to be talking about the reason we both are
It’s time to make sure that you are approaching your
badminton game in the right way, respond to what happens
the right way and thus work towards getting you to think
like a champion!
Hold on tight, I’m going to shake you up a bit and by the
end you should come out with a whole new approach to your
“Four Things A Top Badminton Player MUST Do”
by Robert G. Johns
1. Take Responsibility.
The first and foremost trait that you must learn to
develop if you want to reach the top in badminton is to
By that I mean accept the fact that whatever happens from
today onwards in your badminton career is down to you.
I don’t want to sound like a nagging coach/teacher/captain
etc, because as you know, I’m here to help you, not tell
you what to do!!
So I will say this – losers always have an excellent
reason why they never made it to the top.
Let me repeat that:
LOSERS ALWAYS HAVE AN EXCELLENT REASON WHY THEY NEVER MADE
IT TO THE TOP!
Ask any player who never quite reached their potential in
badminton, and they will be able to tell you precisely and
accurately why they didn’t.
And it will be so convincing that you will buy into their
thinking, and even (and this is the dangerous bit), file
it away as a possible excuse if you don’t make it.
Many players’ approach to the game is try their very
hardest to do well. They come up against a few setbacks
but decide to soldier on, because they can’t give up
Then comes the big injury, or the new boy or girlfriend.
Or they have to work longer hours at work, or school.
Or they didn’t get on with so and so, or they never had
this chance, or that chance, or weren’t picked for this
team, or so and so didn’t like them and never gave them a
This is all RUBBISH!!
The reason they didn’t go as far as they hoped to was
because they didn’t take responsibility for the specific
results in their own badminton game.
Once you decide that you want to achieve something in the
game, you have to take the responsibility for achieving
It’s no good saying you want to beat your rival and then
sitting back and expecting it to happen.
That is REACTIVE thinking – letting the world come to you.
Many people are like that and are perfectly happy dealing
with whatever the world throws at them.
But they are not champions – they are not the players who
go on and achieve all that they desire in the game,
winning day after day.
These people are PROACTIVE thinkers, and that is what you
need to be to get anywhere in badminton.
What sort of person is a PROACTIVE thinker?
Someone who doesn’t wait to be asked to play for a team,
but goes to the captain and expresses their interest.
Someone who knows their serve needs work, and spends time
trying to improve it instead of hoping that it will
eventually get better.
Someone who has a major setback in the sport, but who
comes back from it stronger and more determined, instead
of using it as an easy excuse to quit.
Someone who admits when they make a mistake and learns
Someone like you?
2. Have Hunger.
We talked about why you play badminton in the very first
email – well, to be honest I don’t really care why you
want to play the game.
All I care about is that whatever the reason (and you
should know the reason by now), it has created enough
drive, enough hunger that you are now desperate to
Hunger in its purest form is the biggest human driving
force. If you are starving, you will do anything to get
And taken into a badminton sense, the level of appetite
that you have for the game will determine how far you go.
So how can you develop this hunger?
By doing this:
Come up with a reason that you MUST succeed in badminton.
DECIDE that you will go for it, make a firm COMMITMENT to
yourself that whatever happens, you will never lose sight
of what it is that you want to achieve.
Which brings me onto the third point…
3. Set Clear Goals
Ah, goals, yadda yadda, yawn yawn.
No! Not yadda yadda or yawn yawn, but your secret to
People set goals all the time, sometimes they work,
sometimes they don’t, conclusion, goal setting doesn’t
Goal setting is one of the most powerful ways that you can
I remember when I was about 14 and was away at a Badminton
One of the other guys there was talking about his ‘goals’
and what he wanted to achieve.
Now I had always been firmly in the ‘reactive thinker’
camp – what was he talking about, ‘goals’?
Surely you just played the best badminton that you could,
and if you were good enough you got picked for the best
Now I think the fact that his first goal was to play for
the England Schools team whereas I wasn’t even in the
County first team for my age group shows you who was
showing the best way of approaching the game!
Every top player, whether they are stated specifically or
not, will have goals in their game.
It helps to focus the mind, helps to keep you on track and
stops other worries and thoughts preventing you from
getting where you want to go.
In fact goal setting is so important that I think I’ll put
in the next email a special goal setting workshop, that
will help you decide just what it is that you want to
achieve in badminton.
4. Utilise The Power of Visualisation
This is another secret that has been handed down through
generations and is phenomenally powerful in a fast game
If you can consistently visualise in your mind what you
want to achieve as though it’s already happened, your mind
will do whatever is necessary to make it happen.
Now does THAT sound juicy to you!!
If you were to visualise yourself playing perfect
badminton, slowly, bit by bit, your mind will adapt this
into your game and you will become a better player!
You may have heard of top sports psychologists who have
used visualisation techniques on top players to great
Well, you don’t have to be a top player to get the
If you consistently keep an image of the goals that you
will create in the goal-setting workshop in your mind, you
will immediately sky-rocket your chances of achieving
Again, this is a massive subject that I won’t go deeply
into here, but what I hope I’ve done is give you the
basics of the techniques that you can use to really make a
difference to your game.
I hope that they are helping you to realise that badminton
is so much more than a game of going out and hitting a
shuttle, where the fittest and strongest wins.
We both know that’s not true!
It is about who plays the SMARTEST, who takes what they
have already got and uses it in the best way to get the
best results in the shortest amount of time.
Now THAT is the secret to badminton!!
I do feel that we are getting somewhere now, the fact that
you are still listening to me in part 5 shows that you
are hungry for success, so I’ll remind you again that next
time we’ll do a Goal-Setting Workshop to really get you
moving fast in the right direction.
Until then, keep enjoying enjoying playing the greatest
sport in the world!