Table of Contents
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Quick Comparison
- 3 Types of Badminton Racquets
- 4 Top Badminton Racquet Brands in India
- 5 Review – Badminton Racquets
- 6 Buying Guide – Badminton Racquets
- 7 Conclusion
Cricket has held a monopoly on India’s interest for quite a long time. However, in the past decade, interest in other sports has been on the rise. One of these sports is badminton, or as people call it, shuttlecock. Also, anyone who has played the sport knows they need a good racquet to perfect that exhilarating smash. However, the sheer number of options on the market can be confusing. As a result, choosing the best shuttle bat can be hard. This article will help you make an informed choice.
Whether you are a veteran looking for the best badminton racket in India or struggling to choose from the numerous badminton rackets for beginners, there are certain factors to consider before making your decision. Is the Yonex badminton racquet’s price justifiable given its quality? Are you simply a hobbyist looking for a cheap badminton racket? You surely don’t want to let your doubles partner down because of a sub-standard racquet! We have explained all this and much more in our buying guide below. Also, we have compiled a list of 10 of the best badminton racquets you can buy in India right now.
Also check out Swami’s take on the The Best Cricket Bats That You Can Buy In India
Types of Badminton Racquets
There is no single racket that every badminton player can use. The choice of racquet depends a lot on your playing style. We have taken a look at different types of badminton racquets below.
Isometric Badminton Racquets
The shape of a badminton racquet plays a big part in how power is delivered when you swing it. A regular racket is oval-shaped, while an isometric racket is slightly wider towards the top edge. Because of this, it is sometimes called a ‘square-edge’ racket. This shape causes optimal power to be delivered over a larger-than-normal area. This area is called the sweet spot. Isometric racquets are great for beginners, as it is easier to hit the cock properly due to the large sweet spot.
Oval Badminton Racquets
Oval badminton racquets are most used by experienced players who have enough skill to consistently hit the cock with the sweet spot even though it is smaller. Because of the oval shape, the threads across the sweet spot are relatively short. Due to this, they can be strung tighter and hence create more force. Most professionals use oval badminton racquets. It is not a bad idea to start with an oval racket. However, it will be hard to make consistent shots.
Its name explains this kind of racket. Lightweight racquets weigh under 85 grams. They are suitable for first-time players so that too much stress isn’t placed on the wrist and arm. One way to check how heavy your racket is is by balancing it horizontally on one finger. The point where your finger is is called the balance point. If this point is closer to the handle, most of the weight is in the handle, and the racquet is lightweight.
Heavyweight rackets have most of their weight concentrated in the heads. These are usually favoured by the best players who know how to handle the weight. They produce a lot more power than their lighter counterparts. If you are a beginner, it is best that you avoid these as the wrong usage can lead to wrist injuries.
In high-tension rackets, the threads are strung very tightly to produce extra force. Again, these are mostly used by seasoned players who like to make powerful shots. However, the high tension makes the threads prone to breaking. You can find out if your racket is high-tension by pressing your palm down in the middle of the head and seeing how much the threads sink.
Based On Type Of Grip
Synthetic grips are usually made of durable rubber. They are smooth to the touch and do not need replacement too frequently. However, they can get uncomfortable during long practice sessions as they do not absorb sweat at all.
A standard product is synthetic overgrip which you can purchase this in a roll. It is very thin and quite stretchable. Players usually wrap it around tears in their synthetic grips. Do not wrap it over a towel grip!
A towel grip pretty much feels like a towel wrapped around your racquet’s handle. It is as absorbent as one. Thus it helps you keep your palm dry and maintain your grip on the handle. On the other hand, the accumulated sweat can pose problems. As a result, towel grips have to be washed or replaced regularly.
Top Badminton Racquet Brands in India
China has long been dominant in the world of badminton. Naturally, some of the best racket manufacturers are Chinese. Let’s take a look at some of the best brands available in India.
Li-Ning is a sports goods company that manufactures a wide range of badminton rackets, ranging from budget-friendly variants to the kind only used by professionals. Besides, they offer other necessities like shuttlecocks, nets, sportswear and kit bags. They sponsor many of the top players, including India’s P. V. Sindhu.
Yonex is a Japanese company that has earned a reputation for selling high-quality badminton equipment. Their lineup includes pretty much every type of racquet available. They also sell accessories like shuttlecocks, grips, apparel and bags. Players like Saina Nehwal prefer this brand.
Another prominent brand in the badminton world is Victor. Their most exciting offering is a line of aerodynamic shuttlecocks. Their rackets are also top-notch while also appealing to the budget-conscious. Interestingly enough, the name of the brand is derived from the word “victory”.
Cosco is a sporting goods manufacturer that sells equipment for a plethora of sports, one of them being badminton. They are based in India. They are probably best known for being the soul of tennis-ball gully cricket. Also, they offer quality badminton products at very affordable prices. Their racquets are economical and are great for casual players and beginners.
Silver Sports is another Indian company that makes good quality equipment for badminton, in addition to a host of other sports. They are one of the oldest companies in the game, having come into existence more than fifty years ago. Since they are indigenous, their products are also quite easy on the wallet. Moreover, they do not compromise on quality either.
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Also check out Swami’s take on the Best Badminton Shoes In India
Review – Badminton Racquets
The Victor S 10-Q G5 racquet is a high-tech beauty. The shaft is manufactured from graphite using Victor’s PYROFIL technology while the frame is made using their Nano Fortify technology. The frame allows for tensions as high as 28 pounds. The racket also comes unstrung so that players can string it how they want. You get high-quality string free too. The handle is a G5 make, one size smaller than standard while the shaft is nice and stiff. This racket is great for players looking to execute crisp shots. In our opinion, this is the best badminton racket for professionals.
If you are looking for the best badminton racket under ₹10000, look no further than the Yonex Voltric Z Force II. This racquet is made from lightweight graphite, which ensures that the racket can produce good power without making it too heavy. The grip is the standard G4 size, which is comfortable for most players. The balance is also towards the head, so this racquet is aimed at aggressive players.
The Li-Ning Turbo Charging 08 racket is made using Li-Ning’s Turbo Charging technology that promises to provide immense power to the player’s shots. That is evident as the tension can go all the way up to 30 pounds. The weight balance lies towards the head, which is again an aggressive feature. The shaft is neither too flexible nor too stiff and is quite versatile. This is easily the best badminton racket under ₹5000.
The Li-Ning 60 II G-Tek is the best badminton racket under ₹3000. It features a special polyurethane grip which you get used to quite quickly. The handle is very flexible. This makes the racquet suitable for learners. Besides, it weighs in at 95 grams which is slightly more than the average beginner’s racket. So take care while purchasing this. Once these difficulties are out of the way, the racket is a joy to use and well worth the money.
APACS is a relatively unheralded name in the badminton world. But the Vanguard 11 is enough to erase any doubts you might have. The company claims it boasts a string tension of 38 pounds which is massive. This means that any shot you play will be extremely crisp and blocks will be notably easier. The whole frame is made of high modulus graphite. The shaft is also quite stiff, which complements the string tension. This is an excellent choice if you want a refreshing change from the established brands.
If you are looking for the best badminton racket under ₹2500, then the Yonex Astrox Smash is the right choice. Made from a unique high-modulus graphite and tungsten hybrid, this racquet is perfect for intermediate players. It is exceptionally light, weighing just 73 grams. However, any lack of power is made up for by the 28 pounds string tension. The racket is head-heavy. So, true to its name, it is one of the best racquets for aggressive players.
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The Victor Artery Tech 8800 is designed for players who put their wrists to use a lot while playing. This is evidenced by the grip size, which is just 3 inches. As a result of this, skilled players can handle the racket very easily. The frame and shaft are made of a graphite-resin combination. The company also claims that the string tension can be pushed up to 34 pounds. However, this has not been tested. If you were to try it, proceed at your own risk.
Taking the title of best badminton racket under ₹2000 is another offering from Yonex, the Carbonex 8000 Plus. With a string tension of 24 pounds which can be reduced to 19 and a weight of 85 g, it is an excellent choice for beginners. The sleek graphite and carbon fibre frame ensures that intermediate players can also comfortably use this racquet without feeling slowed down. The handle is a tad stiff – perfect for fine-tuning your shots.
Silver Sports has excelled in the budget category for long, and this time, it’s no different. The Graphic-21 has an aluminium head and a graphite shaft, ensuring that more weight is in the head. The string tension clocks in at 22 pounds. Moreover, it weighs a mere 75 grams, which makes it suitable for beginners to practise their swings. This is by far the best badminton racket under ₹1000.
Last but not least is the mummy-shaped sleeping bag offered by RhinoKraft. At a slightly heavier weight of 1.8 kilograms and non-waterproof nature but with a budget-friendly price of under 2000, it makes an excellent trekking and camping companion at temperatures above zero degrees.
Buying Guide – Badminton Racquets
As mentioned before, you can’t simply walk into a store and buy the first badminton racket you see. Every racquet has its characteristics that suit a certain kind of player. Below, we have examined the various factors you need to take into account.
The most noticeable and probably the most crucial factor is the weight of the racquet. If your racquet is too heavy, then you will have trouble controlling your shots. Besides, your muscles stand the chance of getting overstressed. On the other hand, if your racket is too light for your skill level, your shots will lack impact. To help buyers, racquet manufacturers follow classification systems as. Each company has slightly different systems, but they are mostly comparable. This is the system used by Yonex:
2U: 90g – 94.9g
3U: 85g – 89.9g
4U: 80g – 84.9g
5U: 75g – 79.9g
F: 70g – 74.9g
The categories under 85g are all classified as lightweight. It is best to start with a lightweight racket and work your way upwards as you gain more experience.
The material used for the frame of the racquet also plays a role in its weight. Cheaper rackets often have frames made of heavier materials like steel which doesn’t have any outstanding properties. On the other hand, slightly better rackets are made from aluminium. Moreover, aluminium is more comfortable to handle, which is a plus. The truly top-notch racquets used by professionals are manufactured from materials like carbon fibre which is light but still transmits power well. Also, manufacturers often use different materials for the head and the shaft to alter the weight balance.
The balance of your racket depends on how forward your playstyle is. Overall, do you like aggressive smashes or do you prefer control? If making powerful shots is your style, then you will need a head-heavy racquet, meaning a majority of the racquet’s weight is in the head. If you prefer having more control so you can get that perfect placement, choose a handle-heavy racquet. On the other hand, a perfectly balanced racket is a jack of all trades and lets you use it according to the situation. Also, experienced players often tinker with the weight balance by wrapping extra material around the head or handle. We do not recommend new players try this, however.
Another important factor is the string tension. It s usually measured in pounds. For beginners, a string tension of 18-24 pounds is suitable, as they are less likely to execute heavy shots. Moreover, the more the tension, the stronger your shots. So intermediate-level players can use a tension of around 24-26 pounds. Finally, expert players can use anywhere up to 30 pounds of tension. You can use higher tension, but it renders the strings very fragile. Also, lower-end rackets usually cannot handle high tension. Therefore, it is always a good idea to get the proper knowledge about your racket if you’re planning to re-string it. Higher tension also tends to reduce the size of the sweet spot. So this is one more reason its suitable for experienced players.
The stiffness of the shaft of your racquet affects your gameplay a lot. A flexible shaft can produce a decent amount of force without requiring too much effort. However, you will find that beyond a point, it becomes difficult to increase the power of your shots. On the other hand, a stiff shafted racket produces immediate rebound, which means it provides excellent placement. But players will have to swing harder if they want to make smashes. Flexible shafts are suitable for beginners, while stiff shafts are useful if you are experienced and have developed a good swing. All racquets wear out, however, and even the most rigid shafts will become a bit flexible with use.
As explained earlier, the shape of the frame affects the size of the racquet’s sweet spot. The conventional rackets are oval and offer a smaller sweet spot than their counterparts, the isometric rackets. Isometric rackets are oblong and are helpful for beginners due to their larger sweet spot. However, they offer less power. On the other hand, oval rackets are suitable for seasoned players who can make precise shots consistently.
Grip size of a racquet measured by manufacturers using various codes. For example, this is Yonex’s system:
G1 = 4 in
G2 = 3 3/4 in
G3 = 3 1/2 in
G4 = 3 1/4 in
G5 = 3 in
Standard rackets have a grip size of G4. A thicker grip lets you hold it tight during smashes, effectively transferring power. On the other hand, players who prefer precise placement can choose thinner grips, because the smaller size lets you control it better.
Price is an important factor when buying any product. When it comes to badminton rackets, our advice would be not to invest too much until you have gained a little experience. Moreover, beginners rarely start with the best rackets. When they move past the skill level of their first racquet, they replace it. Besides, most premium rackets are for indoor use. Thus using them outdoors will reduce their life. In conclusion, if you are only buying a racket for casual outdoor play, choose a cheap one.
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 measures how tightly the strings are strung in a racquet. The higher the tension, the more will be the power produced by the racket.
Do Badminton Rackets Come Pre-Strung?
Beginner- to intermediate-level rackets are typically pre-strung because these players are not likely to string their racquets. However, professional players often buy unstrung rackets as they have their personal preferences.
Where Can I Get A Badminton Racquet Restrung?
Stringing machines are available online and also in sports stores at varying prices. You can also get your racquet strung at most major sports stores.
What Are The Types Of Grips For Badminton Racquets?
There are two kinds of badminton racket grips – synthetic(rubber) grip and towel grip.
How Do You Change The Grip Of A Badminton Racket?
After your original grip has worn out, you can choose to leave it on and then wrap thin overgrip over it. In contrast, you can also remove it and replace it with a brand new one.
Are There Badminton Rackets Without Joints?
The head and shaft of lower-end rackets are usually made separately and then joined using a T-joint. The more expensive ones are a single piece and hence don’t have joints.
Which Badminton Racket Is Best For Me?
Several factors affect this. So read our review and guide above!
Which Badminton Racket Is Best For Beginners?
For beginners, it is best to buy cheap, lightweight rackets that are isometric in shape. Moreover, from our review above, we recommend Silver’s Graphic-21 .
Are There Junior-Size Badminton Rackets?
Yes, junior-size badminton racquets are available. However, they lack the standardisation of features which is present for regular rackets.
What Are The Measurements Of Badminton Rackets?
Badminton rackets can measure up to 68 cm in length and 23 cm in width and weigh anywhere up to 150 g.
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 Carbonex 8000 Plus . For less than 2000, you get a racket that is both durable and competent.
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