As a teenager, I played badminton to a fairly high level.
I enjoyed it and played many tournaments as a singles and doubles player.
It’s a great sport to play, and requires quick reactions and fast decision making to become a competitive player.
Since taking up tennis in 2017, I’ve noticed my experience in playing badminton has some benefits to my tennis game.
My volleying and net play is fairly strong and I put this down to my fairly quick reactions from playing badminton.
My baseline playing though is considerably weaker 🙂
I thought for this blog post, I would compare the 2 sports looking at the pros and cons of each, as well as some similarities and differences between them.
What Is Tennis?
Tennis is a competitive game during which opposing players or pairs of players compete with rackets to hit a ball over a net.
It is generally played on a hard court, although you can also play on clay and grass courts.
It’s usually played outside but there are indoor courts which is useful if you want to play during the winter, or when it’s raining or too windy.
What Is Badminton?
Badminton is also played by two to four players who use rackets to hit an object over a net. Aside from this, the sports are quite different.
Badminton uses a shuttlecock, not a ball, and it is not allowed to hit the ground before being returned to the other side of the net. Additionally, the net is higher than in tennis and players can enjoy playing this game on almost any surface as they don’t have to worry about controlling the bounce. Badminton is only really played indoors, because the shuttlecock is so light and can be dramatically affected by even the smallest of breezes!
History of the Two Sports
Tennis can actually be traced all the way back to the 12th century.
It was originally played in France but the use of rackets wasn’t made popular until the 16th century. While it was only played indoors at first and the players used to hit the ball against the walls, similar to modern-day squash, tennis was officially recognized in 1571 by King Charles IX.
Badminton was believed to have started in India in the mid-1800s. British soldiers played a game using rackets and tried to keep an object, or a shuttlecock, off of the ground. When badminton reached England in 1877, players used the rules established in India. While these rules have changed and undergone some revisions, they were the framework for the rules used today.
Pros and Cons of Tennis
One of the main reasons why tennis is such a popular sport is because players don’t have to invest in a lot of expensive equipment in order to play it. All players need is a racket, a ball, and comfortable shoes that will allow them to run during the match.
Since tennis courts are so common, it’s generally fairly easy for tennis players to find courts in their communities that they can use for free.
This is a social game that allows players to meet up with each other and spend time with family or friends on the court. This is great for an active social life and also helps players keep in good shape.
One problem that some players run into when playing tennis is that it’s physically demanding. It puts a lot of strain on the body and it is easy for players to injure themselves, especially if they are not in great shape.
While the equipment needed to play tennis is fairly basic and is often easily bought for very little, players may run into financial constraints as players improve their game and want better equipment as tennis equipment, especially rackets, can tend to get very expensive.
Pros and Cons of Badminton
Badminton is a great physical activity and has the same social benefits of playing tennis. It’s also known for helping reduce stress and anxiety and improving spatial perception. Players only need rackets and shuttlecocks and can often easily set up nets in their backyards.
While it is a little more difficult to find a badminton court to use, as they’ll always be indoors, players can enjoy playing badminton almost anywhere because they can set up nets at their homes. This is a major advantage as any relatively flat piece of land can be used for badminton without worrying about any bounce.
Unfortunately, playing badminton does come with some cons. There are a few common medical problems that can occur when people play badminton and these include shoulder pain, knee injury, sprained ankles, and tendinitis.
Playing on an uneven surface can greatly increase the risk of an injury, which is why many badminton players look for professional courts to use even though they may not be as convenient.
Which game is faster?
Many people are surprised to learn that badminton is actually a much faster game than tennis.
It’s normal for tennis to take around three hours to complete a whole match while badminton only takes around one. This is because players must move quickly to hit the shuttlecock while it is in the air, causing the game to fly by.
Which requires a larger court?
Tennis courts are twice the size of badminton courts. This means that it is easier to find space for a badminton court and is a common reason why this is a popular backyard game for some families to enjoy together. Just play it on a calm day!
Which equipment is easier to use?
In general, tennis rackets are around four times heavier than badminton rackets. This means that players need to improve their strength in their arms and shoulders to be able to easily move and handle a tennis racket.
Additionally, badminton shuttles tend to be around 11 times lighter than tennis balls. They don’t require nearly as much force to hit across the court.
Both tennis and badminton rackets need regular maintenance in order to function properly and both the balls and shuttlecocks need to be replaced regularly as the balls will lose pressure and the shuttlecocks will lose their feathers.
Who can play each sport?
The great thing about both badminton and tennis is that any player who can move around the court and is able to hold a racket can play the sport. This makes these sports great for players at home. However, there are limits to who can compete in tennis and badminton if the player wants to play competitively.
Badminton competition only features five categories while tennis features the same five categories as well as a few others, including categories for players in wheelchairs and for three players.