So how do you tell if you are a beginner or intermediate player. Generally, beginners tend to be players who play once a week and have been playing the sport for less than 2 years. You are still developing your understanding of the game rules while having basic grasp of shots and technique.
Intermediate badminton players generally play around 2-4x a week and are active in their local badminton clubs. They have a good understanding of the game – awareness of position and how to move around the court with the right footwork. They also have basic fundamentals such as the correct grip and swing technique already in place.
If you feel you are ready for an intermediate racket, then please keep on reading! If not, we do have a wide range of beginner badminton rackets that might be more suitable for your current playing level.
How do you go about choosing an intermediate racket? Unlike beginner rackets which emphasize more on lightness and ease of use, intermediate rackets are designed to increase your shot power and also improve your game style.
In this quick guide we will delve into choosing the right racket for your game and you’re playing style. If you require a basic understanding on different racket qualities please check out the following guides – Beginner Badminton Rackets and How To Choose A Badminton Racket.
Intermediate Singles Player
Badminton singles generally require slower swing speed compared to doubles. This is because rallies are slower and players are therefore able to generate bigger swings and have more time to execute the right swing technique (assuming your footwork keeps up!). Therefore, the ideal weight for an intermediate singles racket will be between 3U(85-89g) and 4U(80-84g). A slightly heavier frame will allow players to release more power upon contact with the shuttle. As rallies are slower than doubles, players will generally have enough time to recover between shots despite the slightly heavier frame.
The next factor to consider is the racket balance. We generally do not recommend a head light racket for singles as the frame provides insufficient power. Intermediate players should consider an even balance frame or head heavy frame to maximise their shot control and power.
An even balance racket is designed for an all-round player who places equal emphasis on power and control. This will allow a player to easily transition between rear-court to mid-court shots with minimum negative impact. An even balance racket tends to feel lighter compared to a head heavy frame and this might be more beneficial for players who struggle with power and swing technique.
A head heavy racket on the other hand is designed for aggressive players who place a strong emphasis on smashes and powerful drives. While head heavy rackets do provide potent power a key downside is that it’s harder to recover between shots compared to an even balance frame. Players should only go for a head heavy frame if they have a strong arm and able to execute their swings quickly between shots.
The last factor to consider is racket stiffness. Generally, we would recommend a medium-stiff to slightly stiff racket for intermediate players as you would want a balance of control and power. With a medium flex racket there is sufficient assistance from the frame for intermediate players to generate power in their shots.
Intermediate Doubles Player
Doubles games tend to be played at a much faster speed compared to singles and therefore a rackets speed and dexterity is vital. There are two main types of players – front court and rear court players.
Front court players generally place a greater emphasis on speed over power. A lightweight frame will provide for quicker interceptions and create more chances to attack. Players can generally consider a lightweight frame (5U/6U/7U) that will allow them to generate rapid swings during rallies.
A rear-court player will generally prefer an even balance to a head heavy racket to deliver powerful smashes. You will need to find the right balance point that allows you to execute multiple smashes in a row during rallies. Generally, an even balance frame or slightly head heavy frame will be better suited for doubles compared to one that is extremely head heavy. This is because players will still want an arm-friendly racket that allows them to transition between rear to mid court with minimum issue.
Price point for an intermediate frame? For a good intermediate racket, you will be looking at between £80-£130.
Intermediate Singles – 3U/4U + Even Balance or Head Heavy
Intermediate Doubles Front Court – 5U/6U + Head Light or Even Balance
Intermediate Doubles Rear Court – 4U/5U + Even Balance or Head Heavy