With so many badminton rackets available , it can be difficult to know which is best for you. What follows is a brief overview of the factors that can affect the performance of your racket, and how best to relate this to your ability and playing style.
There are 3 main factors to consider.
FACTOR 1 - FLEXIBILITY
All badminton rackets bend when you swing for a shuttle, but the degree of this bend has a significant impact on the outcome of the shot. More bend equals more power, while more stiffness results in more accuracy. Typically the flex of a racket will be defined as one of four categories - flexible, medium,stiff and extra stiff.
FLEXIBLE - PLAYER PROFILE - BEGINNER/SLOW HEAD SPEED
Rackets with very flexible shafts bend through your shots to help ‘slap’ the shuttle thus the racket generates power by adding to your existing swing speed. Ideal if you struggle to hit the length of the court.
MEDIUM - PLAYER PROFILE - CLUB/MEDIUM HEAD SPEED
The most popular flex type, Medium shafts offer power thanks to a reasonable level of flex, but they are stiff enough that most club players feel they have control of the racket head placement. The best of both worlds
STIFF - PLAYER PROFILE - ADVANCE/FAST HEAD SPEED
If you can comfortably clear the length of the court & have a good level of power, a stiff racket offers you greater control. A stiff shaft means you can position the racket head precisely without excess shaft movement.
EXTRA STIFF - PLAYER PROFILE - PRO/VERY FAST HEAD SPEED
Very little help with power here. Extra stiff shaft users need good technique as well as physical speed. The rackets are designed for precise head placement & accuracy. Unforgiving for less experienced players
FACTOR 2 - BALANCE
Badminton rackets split into three main balance categories. These have a large bearing on how a racket plays. Balance is a personal preference so consider what will suit you best.
HEAD LIGHT -
PLAYING STYLE Short reaction times & fast head movements. A game typically based on touch. Popular with doubles players
PLAYING STYLE Enough weight for powerful shots but not so heavy that your reactions are impeded. Ideal for all-rounder’s
HEAD HEAVY -
PLAYING STYLE Head weight provides power for smashes & clears. Ideal for power players. Beginners also benefit from the extra power.
FACTOR 3 - WEIGHT
The final factor to consider is the over all weight of the racket. Whilst we would advice not to get to hung up on this factor, it is worth being aware that badminton racket weights are categorised as per the list below. In general a heavier racket will offer a more powerful shot, whereas a lighter racket will feel more mobile.
6U - 70-74.9 g
5U - 75.79.9 g
4U - 80-84.9 g
3U - 85-89.9 g
2U - 90-94.9 g
U - 95-99.9 g