This might be a friendly little backyard game, but don’t let that fool you....
This might be a friendly little backyard game, but don’t let that fool you. Anyone who’s picked up a racquet and attempted to volley the shuttlecock around – yes that’s its proper name – knows that this is a game that requires some serious eye-hand coordination and agility. Former athlete? Weekend warrior? Individual looking to test old skills, or develop new ones? This game is for you.
The game is more popular and prevalent in Eurasia where it was developed into its current iteration in the mid-19th century. While its origin is a bit unclear, it is theorized that the game may have been developed by expatriate British officers in India. The International Badminton Federation was founded in 1934. Eurasian countries, notably China, produce many of the world’s most successful professional badminton players. As for the United States, the sport has largely remained a recreational or backyard pursuit.
Quality varies pretty widely, so it’s important to know the reputation of the company from which you are purchasing badminton equipment. A few specialize in the stuff, or at least have a reputation for making higher quality products.
Recreational players looking to get involved in badminton often buy the products in a complete set, which isn’t a bad way to go considering the low cost. You can buy a decent set consisting of racquets, netting installation, and shuttlecocks for around $70 bucks. Look for steel racquets, nylon shuttlecocks, and anchoring stakes when you purchase a set.
The badminton court is a rectangle that varies in size depending on whether it will be used for singles or doubles play. In singles play, the court should be 17 feet in width and 44 feet in length. For doubles play, this extends to 20 feet in width while remaining the same length. In both styles of play, there is a service court that divides the court in half and measures 6 feet 6 inches from the net. The top of the net should measure 5 feet and 1 inch from the ground.
A point in badminton can be won regardless of who is serving. Each game is played to 21 points and a match consists of a best-of-three games format. In the event of a 20-20 tie, the game continues until one player/team gains a two-point advantage.