Last updated on September 22nd, 2023 at 12:49 pm
Choosing the right badminton racket can significantly impact your game. With the multitude of options available in the market, finding the perfect racket that suits your playing style and skill level can be a daunting task.
In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to choose a badminton racket that will enhance your performance and improve your overall playing experience.
One of the most asked questions about badminton that we are asked is What is the best badminton racket for me?” or How do I choose the right badminton racket for me? So let’s get started on how to choose a badminton racket.
It seems a fairly simple question right? Just choose the one your favourite player uses right? Wrong! As it turns out this is actually a really tough question to answer.
It’s also one that many people have a different opinion on. Nevertheless I’ll attempt to tackle how to pick a badminton racket by bringing some clarity to the table or should that be court.
Key Factors To Consider
In order to this we will break it down into a few points such as skill level, type of player, price etc..
Have you played before? Your level of experience is going to play a key role in your choice of racket. Are you a regular player who is looking to upgrade to help take your game to the next level?
Let’s take a look in more detail at our buyers guide…
How To Choose A Badminton Racket
Consider Your Playing Style
Before delving into the technical aspects of racket selection, it is crucial to assess your playing style. Are you an aggressive player who enjoys powerful smashes and quick swings, or do you prefer a more defensive and controlled approach?
Understanding your playing style will help determine the racket specifications that align with your needs.
What is the best badminton racket for beginners? Like most people you will probably be introduced to badminton in one of these ways, at school, playing in your back garden or whilst on holiday.
The last two will probably result in the purchase of a cheap set including a couple of rackets and a few shuttlecocks. These will typically cost in the region of £3-5 / $8-9 / €3-6 and are great for a bit of fun.
However these would not be ones to take down to your local badminton club! They are great for introducing you to the sport but you should ditch them and spend a little bit more on one racket.
Which badminton rackets are best? Well that up to you and your budget but we would suggest you go for something up to say no more than £20 / $28 /€25.
If truth be told you can pick up a lot of excellent badminton rackets on sale for a half of their original RRP. In the UK for instance retailers such Argos, Sports Direct, Sweatband, Racquet Depot and Amazon all have great deals on slightly older models of rackets. The fact it’s no longer the latest racket makes no difference. All you care about is picking a really great piece of sports equipment for as little money as possible.
Let’s not forget Badminton Bay as they ship worldwide and have a great selection. Remember there’s nearly always going to be a selection of good badminton rackets on sale from these retailers. If you have decided on a particular racket time a little time to look at all of these retailers.
What About The Racket Brand?
Which badminton racket brand? Many people often ask, which is better Victor or Yonex? Again that is for you to decide. Head down to local sports retailer and have a look and try to pick one that feels comfortable. Both companies produce excellent badminton equipment as do the other suppliers featured.
There are lots of brands to choose from at this price point including these well known ones Wilson, Carlton, Victor, Dunlop and Yonex to name but a few. Don’t worry too much about brand just find the racket that feels right. Again you won’t go far wrong with any of these brands and there are always sales on, meaning you can sometimes get more for your money. You may find an £11 racket is fine for your needs.
A lot of people make the mistake of buying the best piece of equipment when starting out and think that it will turn them into a great player. If only it was that simple, of course it does not work like that.
The most important thing you need to do, more than having a great racket is to learn the game. Learn the basic badminton skills and techniques, improve your footwork and mobility around the court.
So that’s how to choose a badminton racket for the beginner and what you need to think about.
Think About The Following When Choosing Your Next Racket
The grip size of a racket plays a vital role in your comfort and control during gameplay. A grip that is too small may lead to a lack of control, while a grip that is too large can strain your hand and reduce maneuverability.
To determine the right grip size, hold the racket in your dominant hand and check if there is enough space to insert your index finger between your palm and fingertips. It should fit comfortably without feeling cramped.
The weight of a badminton racket affects your maneuverability, power and control. Lighter rackets (80-85 grams) offer enhanced maneuverability and speed, making them suitable for beginners and players who rely on quick reactions.
On the other hand, heavier rackets (85-92 grams) provide more power and stability, which can benefit players with a stronger swing and advanced technique.
Consider experimenting with different weights to find the optimal balance for your style of play.
The balance point of a racket refers to the distribution of weight along its length. There are three main types of balance points: head-heavy, head-light and even balance.
- Head-heavy rackets provide more power in your smashes, making them suitable for aggressive players.
- Head-light rackets offer increased maneuverability and quick reaction times, ideal for defensive players.
- Even balance rackets strike a balance between power and control, making them versatile for different playing styles.
Consider your preferred style of play when choosing the balance point that suits you best.
Choice of Head – Pros & Cons
A head heavy badminton racket means you will have more powerful smash and clear shots whilst more distance can be achieved when clearing.
Heavy Head Suits: Powerful Style
Meanwhile a less heavy head will allow you to be quicker in reacting or to put it another way, better swing speed.
Light Head Suits: Fast Attacking Style
Which is best for you will depend on your preffered style of play.
The flexibility of a racket affects its power and control. Rackets with higher flexibility generate more power but can sacrifice control.
Conversely, stiffer rackets offer improved control but may reduce power. Beginners generally benefit from a more flexible racket, while advanced players often prefer stiffer options.
It’s important to note that the right level of flexibility is subjective and may require personal experimentation.
Put very simply if you have a quicker swing style you will probably benefit from a stiffer shaft.
String tension greatly influences the feel and performance of a racket. Higher string tension provides increased control and precision but may sacrifice power. Lower string tension offers more power but may result in reduced control.
As a general guideline, beginners may opt for lower string tension, while advanced players can go for higher tension based on their skill level and playing style.
What’s Your Budget
Ultimately this will have bearing on your choice. All the manufacturers have different rackets with the different attributes mentioned above in several different price ranges.
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How To Choose A Badminton Racket For Intermediate Players
If you are an experienced player you should ask yourself the question “Why am I changing my racket?”
Simply choosing a more expensive racket or one that is perceived to be better might not be the right choice for you.
If you are at this level you know how to play the game and you are looking for something to give your game an edge. This is where a better racket tailored to the strengths of your game comes in.
A note of caution, at this level finding the best racket to suit your game can become challenging in more than one way.
Now we are not going to go into too much detail here on every aspect but here are a few things to think about.
Have you tried to re-string your existing racket? String tension can make a big difference to your game. Maybe that’s all your racket needs.
Many people will say you need the a heavier head weight. Maybe the shaft is too flexible or not flexible enough. As we said earlier it’s not straightforward as it all comes down to what feels right for you.
What you can of course do to help you choose the next one is make a note of the pros and cons of your existing racket.
Conclusion: How To Choose The Perfect Badminton Racket
Selecting the right badminton racket is a crucial step in improving your game. By considering factors such as playing style, weight, grip size, balance point, flexibility and string tension, you can find a racket that complements your skills and enhances your performance on the court.
Remember, personal preference and experimentation are key to finding the perfect racket that suits your individual needs. So, go ahead, explore different options, and enjoy the game with the racket that makes you feel confident and in control.
Now this information is all well and good but what is really important is to get a feel of your proposed new purchase. Unfortunately it is unlikely you are going have the opportunity to play before you buy. You are only going to know if it’s the right one for you having played a game or two.
This is especially important when moving to a heavy head racket as you will probably struggle with it to begin with and may decide it’s just not for you.
This could possibly be one of the biggest problems you will encounter. You could always ask to try a friends racket but unless they have the one you looking to purchase it may not be of much help.
Remember the person who is the best player at your school or badminton club doesn’t necessary have a racket that would suit your game. Having the same one that Lin Dan or Carolina Marin use won’t suddenly make you play like them.
Improving your all-round game techniques will see the biggest improvements. That said having better equipment may give you that little extra edge and in sport that can make a difference.
Well hopefully this article has gone some way to answering and addressing some of the main issues you need to consider when looking for the best badminton rackets that suits your style, ability and budget.
The best badminton rackets for beginners don’t need to be expensive.
What Criteria Do You Use When Choosing A New Racket?
Now you know how to choose the perfect badminton racket or at least what are the main considerations before committing to a specific piece of equipment.
Please let us know what criteria you use when purchasing a new racquet. We are always interested in other player’s opinions.
Hopefully I’ve answered the question, what badminton racket should I buy? The next thing to consider is the type of badminton string to use but we will leave that for future article.
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