For a long time, cricket has monopolized India’s interest. However, in the past decade, there has been a rising interest in other sports. One such sport is badminton, also known as shuttlecock. Any player of the sport understands the need for a good racket to achieve that exhilarating smash. However, with a multitude of options available in the market, selecting the best badminton racket can be a daunting task. This article aims to assist you in making an informed choice.
Whether you are an experienced player seeking the best badminton racket in India or a beginner navigating through numerous options for beginners, there are important factors to consider before making your decision. Is the price of a Yonex badminton racquet justified by its quality? Are you a casual player looking for an affordable racket? Surely, you wouldn’t want to disappoint your doubles partner with a substandard racquet! In our comprehensive buying guide below, we will address all these concerns and more. Additionally, we have compiled a list of the top 10 badminton rackets currently available in India.
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|1. Victor Meteor X 80 B G5
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|2. Yonex Graphite Duora
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|3. Li-Ning Wind Lite Stealth Carbon
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Types of Badminton Racquets
There is no one-size-fits-all racket for every badminton player. The choice of racket depends heavily on your playing style. Let’s explore the different types of badminton rackets:
Isometric Badminton Racquets
The shape of a badminton racket significantly affects the power generated when swinging it. A regular racket is oval-shaped, while an isometric racket is slightly wider towards the top edge, often referred to as a “square-edge” racket. This shape allows for optimal power delivery over a larger-than-normal area called the sweet spot. Isometric racquets are ideal for beginners as the larger sweet spot makes it easier to hit the shuttlecock accurately.
Oval Badminton Racquets
Experienced players who have the skill to consistently hit the shuttlecock with the sweet spot often prefer oval badminton rackets, despite their smaller size. The oval shape results in shorter threads across the sweet spot, allowing for tighter stringing and generating more force. Most professionals use oval badminton rackets. Starting with an oval racket is not a bad idea, but it may require practice to achieve consistent shots.
As the name suggests, lightweight rackets weigh under 85 grams. They are suitable for first-time players to avoid excessive strain on the wrist and arm. You can determine the weight of your racket by horizontally balancing it on one finger. The point where your finger rests is known as the balance point. If the balance point is closer to the handle, the racket is lightweight, indicating that most of the weight is concentrated in the handle.
Heavyweight rackets have the majority of their weight concentrated in the head. These rackets are usually favored by skilled players who can handle the weight effectively. They generate more power compared to their lighter counterparts. If you are a beginner, it is best to avoid heavyweight rackets as improper usage can lead to wrist injuries.
High-tension rackets have tightly strung threads to generate additional force. These rackets are predominantly used by seasoned players who prefer powerful shots. However, the high tension makes the strings more prone to breaking. You can determine if your racket has high tension by pressing your palm down on the middle of the head and observing how much the strings sink.
Based On Type Of Grip
Synthetic grips are typically made of durable rubber, offering a smooth touch and requiring less frequent replacement. However, they can become uncomfortable during long practice sessions as they don’t absorb sweat effectively.
One popular synthetic product is the synthetic overgrip, available in rolls. It is thin and stretchable, often used to wrap around tears in synthetic grips. Avoid wrapping it over a towel grip.
A towel grip provides a similar feel to wrapping a towel around your racket’s handle. It is highly absorbent, helping to keep your palm dry and maintain a secure grip. However, accumulated sweat can become an issue, necessitating regular washing or replacement.
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Top Badminton Racquet Brands in India
China has long been dominant in the world of badminton, resulting in some of the best racket manufacturers being Chinese. Let’s explore some of the top brands available in India.
Li-Ning is a sports goods company offering a wide range of badminton rackets, catering to both budget-friendly options and those used by professionals. They also provide shuttlecocks, nets, sportswear, and kit bags. Li-Ning sponsors numerous top players, including India’s P. V. Sindhu.
Yonex, a Japanese company, has established a reputation for selling high-quality badminton equipment. Their product lineup includes a diverse range of rackets and accessories such as shuttlecocks, grips, apparel, and bags. Players like Saina Nehwal prefer this brand.
Victor is another prominent brand in the badminton world. They offer a notable line of aerodynamic shuttlecocks and top-notch rackets that cater to both performance and budget-conscious players. Interestingly, the brand’s name is derived from the word “victory.”
Cosco, an Indian sporting goods manufacturer, offers equipment for various sports, including badminton. They are well-known for their association with tennis-ball gully cricket. Cosco provides quality badminton products at affordable prices, making their racquets a great choice for casual players and beginners.
Silver Sports is an Indian company that produces high-quality equipment for badminton and a range of other sports. With over fifty years of experience, they are one of the oldest companies in the industry. Their products are not only reasonably priced but also maintain excellent quality standards.
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Review – Badminton Racquets
The Victor Meteor X 80 B G5 racquet is a stunning piece of high-tech craftsmanship. Its graphite shaft, manufactured using Victor’s PYROFIL technology, and the Nano Fortify technology employed in the frame, make it a top-notch choice. With the ability to handle tensions as high as 31 pounds and the freedom to string it according to preference, this racquet offers unparalleled versatility. The G5 handle, slightly smaller than standard, combined with a stiff shaft, allows players to execute precise and powerful shots. In our opinion, this is the ultimate badminton racket for professionals.
For those seeking the best badminton racket under ₹13000, the Yonex Graphite Duora is a remarkable choice. Made from lightweight graphite, it strikes the perfect balance between power and weight. The comfortable G4 size grip suits most players, while the head-heavy balance caters to aggressive playing styles.
The Li-Ning Wind Lite racket utilizes Li-Ning’s Turbo Charging technology, offering immense power to players’ shots. With a tension range of up to 30 pounds and a weight balance favoring the head, this racket is designed for aggressive play. The shaft strikes a balance between flexibility and stiffness, providing versatility. Undoubtedly, this is the best badminton racket under ₹5000.
As the best badminton racket under ₹3000, the Li-Ning G-Force 3600 Superlite features a special polyurethane grip that quickly becomes comfortable. The handle offers flexibility, making it suitable for beginners. Weighing 78 grams, slightly more than the average beginner’s racket, it requires attention during purchase. Once accustomed, this racket brings joy and proves its worth.
APACS may be lesser-known in the badminton world, but the Z-Ziggler racket dispels any doubts. Boasting a string tension of 38 pounds, this racket delivers exceptionally crisp shots and makes blocking easier. The entire frame is constructed from high modulus graphite, complemented by a stiff shaft, creating a refreshing alternative to established brands.
For the best badminton racket under ₹2000, the Yonex Nanoray Light is an excellent choice. Crafted from a unique high-modulus graphite and tungsten hybrid, this racket caters to intermediate players. Weighing a mere 77 grams, it compensates for any lack of power with a string tension of 30 pounds. The head-heavy balance makes it ideal for aggressive players.
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The Victor Artery Tech 8800 is designed for players who rely heavily on wrist movements. With a grip size of just 3 inches, skilled players can effortlessly handle this racket. The graphite-resin combination in the frame and shaft provides durability and flexibility. While the company claims a string tension of up to 34 pounds, this has not been tested extensively.
As the best badminton racket under ₹2000, the Yonex Graphite Badminton Plus offers a string tension of 30 pounds (adjustable down to 19) and weighs 77 grams. It is an excellent choice for beginners, thanks to its sleek graphite and carbon fiber frame. The slightly stiff handle allows for fine-tuning shots.
Silver Sports maintains its reputation in the budget category with the Silver’s Graphic-21 racket. Featuring an aluminum head and a graphite shaft, it concentrates more weight in the head. This makes it suitable for beginners to practice their swings. Undoubtedly, this is the best badminton racket under ₹1000.
Last but not least, the Cosco Alloy badminton racket is lightweight and ideal for recreational activities. It serves as an excellent choice for beginners who love to practice and enjoy the game.
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Buying Guide – Badminton Racquets
When purchasing a badminton racket, it is essential to consider various factors to ensure you find the one that suits your playing style. Here are the key aspects you need to take into account:
The weight of the racket is a critical factor that affects your performance. A heavy racket can be challenging to control and may strain your muscles. Conversely, a racket that is too light may lack impact in your shots. Manufacturers often use classification systems to indicate the weight range of their rackets. For example, Yonex follows the following system:
2U: 90g – 94.9g
3U: 85g – 89.9g
4U: 80g – 84.9g
5U: 75g – 79.9g
F: 70g – 74.9g
It is generally recommended for beginners to start with a lightweight racket and progress to heavier ones as they gain experience.
The material used for the frame of the racket contributes to its weight and performance. Cheaper rackets often have frames made of heavier materials like steel, which lack outstanding properties. Aluminum frames, found in slightly better rackets, offer a more comfortable handling experience. Professional-grade rackets are often made from materials such as carbon fiber, which are lightweight and transmit power effectively. Manufacturers may also use different materials for the head and shaft to adjust the weight balance.
The balance of the racket is influenced by your playstyle. If you prefer powerful shots, a head-heavy racket, with more weight concentrated in the head, is suitable. On the other hand, if you prioritize control and precise placement, a handle-heavy racket is preferable. A perfectly balanced racket offers versatility for various situations. Experienced players may experiment with adding extra materials to the head or handle to adjust the weight balance, but this is not recommended for beginners.
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String tension is an important factor that affects the performance of your shots. It is typically measured in pounds. Beginners usually benefit from lower string tension (around 18-24 pounds) as they may not generate heavy shots. Intermediate players can use tension around 24-26 pounds, while expert players can go up to 30 pounds or higher. However, higher tension makes the strings more fragile and may require a racket capable of handling it. Additionally, higher tension reduces the size of the sweet spot, making it more suitable for experienced players.
The stiffness of the shaft significantly impacts your gameplay. A flexible shaft allows you to generate power with less effort, but it may limit your ability to increase shot power beyond a certain point. In contrast, a stiff shaft provides immediate rebound and precise placement, but requires more effort for powerful smashes. Flexible shafts are generally suitable for beginners, while stiff shafts are favored by experienced players with a developed swing. Keep in mind that all rackets experience wear and even the most rigid shafts will become slightly flexible over time.
The shape of the racket’s frame influences the size of the sweet spot, which is the optimal area for hitting the shuttlecock. Conventional oval-shaped frames offer a smaller sweet spot compared to isometric frames, which are oblong. Isometric frames are beneficial for beginners as they provide a larger sweet spot, but they may sacrifice some power. Oval frames are more suitable for seasoned players who can consistently make precise shots.
The grip size of a racket is measured using various codes. For example, Yonex employs the following system:
G1 = 4 in
G2 = 3 3/4 in
G3 = 3 1/2 in
G4 = 3 1/4 in
G5 = 3 in
Standard rackets typically have a grip size of G4. A thicker grip allows for a tight hold during powerful smashes, effectively transferring power. On the other hand, players who prioritize precise placement may opt for thinner grips, as the smaller size provides better control.
Price is an important consideration when purchasing a badminton racket. For beginners, it is advisable not to invest too much until they have gained some experience. Beginners often start with more affordable rackets and replace them as they progress in skill level. Additionally, premium rackets are often designed for indoor use, and using them outdoors may shorten their lifespan. If you intend to use the racket for casual outdoor play, choosing a more affordable option would be suitable.
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Badminton Racquets – Frequently Asked Questions
Here, we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions about badminton racquets.
What Is String Tension In Badminton Racquets?
String tension refers to how tightly the strings are strung in a racquet. Higher tension generally results in greater power.
Do Badminton Rackets Come Pre-Strung?
Most beginner to intermediate-level rackets come pre-strung, as these players typically do not restring their racquets. However, professional players often prefer unstrung rackets to accommodate their personal preferences.
Where Can I Get A Badminton Racquet Restrung?
Stringing machines can be found online or in sports stores at various prices. Many major sports stores also offer racquet stringing services.
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What Are The Types Of Grips For Badminton Racquets?
There are two main types of badminton racket grips: synthetic (rubber) grips and towel grips.
How Do You Change The Grip Of A Badminton Racket?
When your original grip wears out, you have two options: you can either leave it on and wrap a thin overgrip over it, or you can remove the old grip and replace it with a new one.
Are There Badminton Rackets Without Joints?
Lower-end rackets typically have separate head and shaft pieces that are joined using a T-joint. More expensive rackets are made as a single piece and do not have joints.
Which Badminton Racket Is Best For Me?
Several factors come into play when determining the best racket for an individual. We recommend reading our review and guide above for more information.
Which Badminton Racket Is Best For Beginners?
For beginners, it is advisable to purchase cheap, lightweight rackets with an isometric shape. Based on our review, we recommend the Silver's Graphic-21 racket for beginners.
Are There Junior-Size Badminton Rackets?
Yes, junior-size badminton rackets are available. However, they may not have the same standard features as regular-sized rackets.
What Are The Measurements Of Badminton Rackets?
Badminton rackets can vary in length up to 68 cm, width up to 23 cm, and weigh up to 150 g.
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Overall, it is quite clear that choosing a good badminton racket involves a lot more than selecting the racquet with the best specs. Hopefully, this guide was able to help you through the process of choosing your dream racquet. Finally, from the ten rackets listed in the review above, the best value for money option is the Yonex Graphite Badminton Racket . For less than 2000, you get a racket that is both durable and competent.
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