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Badminton Scoring Rules and Regulations

Badminton, which is essentially an indoor activity, first appeared in the early 16th century. In this article we look at the basic badminton rules and regulations along with the scoring rules.

Last updated: 07.05.2022
Badminton Scoring Rules and Regulations

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Badminton, which is essentially an indoor activity, first appeared in the early 16th century. It's known as the world's fastest racket sport, and it's a simple game with simple rules. In badminton, there are three sorts of competitions: singles, doubles, and mixed doubles, each with their own set of rules and scoring systems.

To be a gnarly athlete, a player must be aware of these rules and regulations. We should know where to shoot, how to shoot, the many sorts of shots, and the fundamental laws of badminton.



Basic rules and regulations of playing badminton


1. Contact point: 

As you know this sport is conventionally played with a gutted racket and a feathered shuttlecock that has a rubber base. While playing your strokes, the player must avoid hitting the feathered part of the shuttlecock and should focus on hitting the rubber base. Furthermore, the player should make sure to not hit the shuttlecock twice, or let the shuttlecock hit the ground as that is considered as foul play.


2. Serve: 

One of the most important and game-changing shots of badminton, the serve. This shot is extremely difficult to master and a badminton player must be aware that a serve should always be done underarm and below the server's waist. If the player were to hit an overarm serve, the serve would be considered a fault. Moreover, the rules don't allow for a second serve, like in the game of tennis. Additionally, a legal serve must be hit diagonally over the net, and if it were to fall in the opponent's court after briefly touching the net, it is labelled as a 'let'. When this situation arises, the server is given the chance to serve once again.


3. Coin toss: 

The coin toss is the way to determine who serves first. However, the player/partners to win the game, are to serve first for the next game.


4. Net: 

As and when the shuttlecock hits or even touches the net the point is awarded to your opponent player. Furthermore, the player should make sure to also not touch the net with any part of their body or racket, as that results in the same consequence as that when the shuttlecock hits the net.


5. White Lines: 

While playing, players should ensure that their feet never touch the bordered white lines around you. Also, since your racket is your hand during the game, a hand touch too is considered as foul play. Moreover, during a point a player is allowed to return the shot from inside or outside the court.

6. Respect your opponent and your sport: 

Deliberately distracting your opponent while he/she is serving or trying to bully them by any means is highly offensive, and cannot be pardoned as the behaviour of a true sportsman.


7. Rest: 

A game must have two periods of rest. After the first game, there will be a 90-second break, followed by a 5-minute break.


8.Singles or Doubles: 

The player has a choice to select whether he/she wants to play a singles or doubles competition. However, the rules and scoring are slightly different in both these respective competitions. The most basic difference is that in a singles rally, there will be two







players, playing against each other. Whereas, in a double rally, the player has an option to pick a partner and play a game of four. The other differences in the regulations and scoring patterns are emulated down below:

Badminton Rules for Singles:


As already mentioned above, there will be two players playing against each other.



The match must be played indoors and the official court dimensions must be utilised. The score at the start of the game is 0-0. Before the match begins, the opponents must position themselves in diagonally opposite service courts. Moreover, it is important to note that the side to serve cannot be picked based on your own fancy or convenience but must follow the badminton rules. The rule is that when the server's score is even, the server is open to serve from the right service court, whereas, when the server's score is odd, he/she should serve from the left service court. Furthermore, the winner of the rally not only gets the point but also gets the opportunity to be the first server from the alternate side.


The singles competition is a "play-by-play" tournament, wherein the same rules are followed everywhere and all players are paired with an opponent for first-round matches.


Scoring system:


A match is made up of best-of-three games. Out of 3 sets of play you must win two. Each game is worth 21 points. A point is added to the score of the player who wins a rally. When the score is 20 all, the server who gains a two-point lead first wins the game. At 29 all, the team that scores the 30th point first wins the game. The previous game's winner will be a server in a new game.




Faults and errors result in a point for your opponent and surrendering your serve to them. Missing the shuttle when swinging on the serve is a serious flaw. Furthermore, hitting the shuttle out of bounds is a serious foul under badminton rules. Finally, touching the shuttle with your body or clothing is prohibited.

Badminton Rules for doubles:


The rules for doubles and mixed doubles are the same. Let's have a look at the rules for this game of four:




Because there are two players in a team who can serve, the structure in doubles can be a little perplexing. A general rule of thumb is that a badminton game always begins on the right- hand side.



One player from the team must serve inside the white lines on the diagonally opposite side such that the shuttlecock falls inside. Unlike a singles tournament, after the receiver returns the serve, the player can hit the shuttle wherever on the court.


Switching sides on the court:

Badminton rules and regulations for doubles require that players or teams switch sides on the court at the following times:                   

  1. At the conclusion of the first game

  2. At the conclusion of the second game, and if a third game is scheduled, 

  3. During the third game, if the first player/team scores a total of 11 points. Scoring system:

The scoring system remains the same as that in a singles play.


The shuttlecock, whether served or hit, must land within the service court. Any shuttlecock that strayed outside the white lines will not be counted, and the opponent will score. One side has only one attempt to retrieve the shuttle, and one of the players will hit it. It is still a flaw if the shuttle is mistakenly touched by hand. Another essential badminton regulation is that only the receiver can return the serve directed at them.


If a player consistently violates the following badminton regulations, the referee has the unconstitutional authority to deduct the player's point or remove the player from the game.



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