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About this Article
Written by: Zhongjie Cai
Written on: December 11th, 2013
Tags: physics, sports & recreation
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About the Author
Zhongjie is a student majoring in Chemical Engineering at USC. He has been playing badminton for over 11 years with 7 years of training experience and 2 years being the President & Team Captain of the USC Badminton club. This is his first essay about badminton.
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Volume XVI Issue II > Fast & Furious: The Science behind Badminton Smashes
Badminton Smash is a shot that demonstrates the player’s ultimate power and control. There are certain things that can help nonprofessionals smash like professionals. These things will be discussed in detail in this essay.
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The Engineering behind Badminton. (Flash)

Introduction


Badminton is a racket sport like tennis, except that a bird (also called shuttlecock, shuttle, or birdie) is used rather than a ball. Because of the extreme power and speed, a smash is probably the most exciting moment in a game.
A smash is a shot hit with power and speed downward to the opponent’s court, similar to a tennis serve [2]. But how much power can a smash generate? A group of people in Beijing did an interesting experiment: A watermelon was put on the table without a holder (so the watermelon could freely move when hit) and a badminton player hit a bird as hard as possible at the watermelon from about 10 feet away. The watermelon was cracked [1].