A teams positioning in doubles is determined by both teams shots, however there are certain times in a match when both teams should be in specific positions. Here we explain doubles positioning as well as some top tips to give you and your partner an advantage.

On Serve: When a player is serving both the server and receiver should be in the up position just behind the service line. The other player on each team then takes up the back position near the mid court. This happens because both teams want to gain an early advantage in the rally and try and force their opponents into hitting a defensive stroke.

Receiving a high serve: When receiving a high serve, the receiver should move to the back of the court to return the serve and their partner should go to the front of the court, because a high serve gives the receiving team a chance to attack.

Hitting a high serve: When hitting a high serve switch to the side by side formation because the shuttle has been hit up giving the opponents a chance to attack.

When attacking: The up and back system is usually used because having a player at the front is intimidating, and they can angle the shuttle down more from that position to make it difficult for the opposing team to return the shuttle. A team should go on the attack when their opponents hit a shuttle up.

When defending: Players move into a side by side system because if the other team are attacking they are more likely to aim the shuttle down at the mid court. So being side by side each player on the defending team only has to defend one side of the court instead of the whole width of it, if they stayed in the up and back position. A team should move into this position when their opponents hit the shuttle down or they play an upward shot themselves.

Top tips

The following points are important to master if a team wants to be successful in doubles matches.

  • Always believe the team can win. If a team goes into a match thinking they will lose they almost certainly will.
  • Play to the teams strengths
  • Remember which position each player is supposed to be in within the team.
  • A short and accurate serve is vital.
  • Always keep an eye on the shuttle
  • Try to find weaknesses in opponents as early as possible and continue to exploit them.
  • Keep the opponents guessing and moving
  • Keep playing and trying until the end, anything could happen.
  • Use deception wherever possible
  • Practice, practice, practice
  • Keep calm at all times do not encourage the opponents with signs of disappointment or anger.
  • Test the team against better players, the team should raise their game.
  • Communicate with each other as much as possible

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