April 24, 2022
First of all congratulations and welcome to what we hope will be an amazing experience for you! This post will cover all the things you and your parents need to know about getting started on a high school badminton team.
As with any competitive high school sport, you should expect a structured and difficult yet rewarding experience during your time on the badminton team. A common misconception that we see far too often is that students and parents see badminton as an inferior sport and even as just a recreational game vs anything competitive. This could not be farther from the truth!
Yes, there is a large recreational aspect to the sport due to its fun and easy nature. However, you have just joined one of the most popular and most highly competitive sports in the world. As such, it is important for you to take your commitment seriously and treat the sport, your teammates, and your competition seriously and with respect.
While each school is certainly different, having been a coach for multiple schools here in Phoenix and San Diego, there are a few common things you can expect:
As with any sport, badminton has its share of specialized equipment. A very common misconception that we see is that any old racket or pair of shoes will do because…well, it’s just badminton. Again, this could not be further from the truth. You (and your parents) should think of badminton just as you would any other competitive sport. The most common parallel is typically tennis and this is a good comparison to use here.
Just as with tennis rackets, there are a huge variety of badminton rackets to choose from made with different materials, quality, characteristics, and designs. Take a look our how-to guide for selecting a badminton racket or simply reach out to us for personalized recommendations! The point being, racket selection is probably the most important step in your journey as the wrong racket could significantly affect your play experience and enjoyment.
Some schools do provide team rackets and these are typically just fine for most students. However, we do highly recommend that you purchase your own racket as each player has a particular style that should be matched with that style of racket. Additionally, having your own equipment fosters a level of seriousness and respect for your sport that should be the norm.
While our how-to guide does a good job of providing details, here is a quick overview:
The single most underrated piece of badminton equipment are proper badminton shoes. Please, please, please, for the sake of your safety, please purchase the right kind of badminton shoes! We can’t tell you how many students we see sliding all over the court, twisting their ankles, or tripping over themselves because they think that Chucks or Sketchers make for good competitive badminton shoes.
Good badminton shoes have rigid soles, flex at the toe and not the arch, are slightly wider in the toe box for lateral stability, have enhanced ankle support, and are made with special rubber soles for better grip on the court. Not even tennis shoes would work all that well for indoor court badminton play. We offer a number of different badminton shoes for sale. Alternatively, the next best kind of shoe to use would be volleyball shoes. We do not recommend basketball shoes due to their heavy weight and cross-trainers don’t tend to have the proper shell support and soles for grip on indoor gym floors.
After you or your parents have invested in quality gear, it’s very important to maintain and protect that gear. We highly recommend you get a bag dedicated to storing your badminton gear. Just like tennis or softball gear, having a proper badminton bag that is designed to store your sport’s equipment is important. A good badminton bag will have dedicated compartments for storing two or more rackets, shoes, shuttles, and misc pockets for things like keys, grips, ankle/knee braces, etc. At Sunset Badminton, we have a selection of REALLY nice badminton bags to choose from.
Badminton shoes should never be worn outdoors! If you take our advice and purchase a quality badminton bag, you will have the perfect place to store your shoes. Because the soles of badminton shoes are designed to work indoors, you don’t want to ruin that by wearing them outside!
Finally, badminton rackets are a weird combination of super-strong yet also kind of fragile. It’s important never to intentionally hit two rackets together or to intentionally hit your racket on the ground. Many students hit their rackets together as a replacement for shaking hands after a match or to congratulate each other after a good point. Please don’t do this. You will very likely chip your racket’s expansive paint and could even crack the frame. You should always store your racket in racket bag that is designed for badminton. Most rackets will come with a full cover racket case and these should always be used, even if you elect to purchase a larger badminton gear bag.
As always, we are more than happy to answer any questions you, you parents, or coaches may have about badminton strategy, equipment, or best practices. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
We’re here to answer any questions about badminton! Friendly, responsive, and pressure free.