Thursday, February 15, 2007

Smashing On Court

“I’m a little late getting into the badminton craze. One thing I noticed is that most people seem to spend some time (and money) on making sure they are well put-together on the court. What should I wear to blend in?”
-- Rookie, Pasig City

The objective in any sport is to win, right? So, don’t be a total LOSER by spending a ton of money on your gear and outfit before you even learn to play the sport decently. The next time you play badminton, watch how the people you describe to be too “well put-together” play and, chances are, they suck big time! So, advice #1 is to first learn the basics of the game before you spend most of your time wanting to look like badminton’s Andre Agassi -- Nathan Robertson. Now, assuming you can already hit that shuttlecock without raising one leg while pursing your lips, here are a few helpful tips in putting together your badminton attire.


There are two things to consider in dressing for badminton: comfort and movement.

Most badminton courts are virtual gas chambers. The wind is the shuttlecock’s worst enemy, so most courts are designed to keep it out. And, this means it’s hot hot hot! So, dress light. For your shirt, opt for those made with Dri-fit material to keep your sweat away from your body during play. Light cotton shirts also work well. Oh, and please make sure you bring at least 2 change shirts so you don’t end up looking like you played under the rain.

Badminton, as you probably already know, is a sport that demands a lot of agility and quick reflexes; so what you wear should allow for flexibility and sudden movements. Your shirt should not fit too tight so you can move with ease. Wear shorts that are slightly above the knees in length to allow you to stretch and gather momentum for those jump smashes. Reserve your oversized or baggy shorts for basketball. These types of shorts cover your knees, making it difficult to lunge and go for those drop shots. Under no circumstance should you show up in cycling shorts! This does not need explaining.


No-show, ankle high socks (a.k.a. peds) are best. They not only keep your legs much cooler vs. wearing those shin-high crew sports socks, they also
do not make you look like you’re turning 40 soon.


Probably the next most important gear after a decent racket is your pair of badminton shoes. Ever since badminton grew in popularity, there are now more cool-looking indoor court shoes, like Mizuno’s Wave Smash SR model, which is made with high grade rubber non-marking gum sole for great traction and stability on
Taraflex courts. And, this shoe cares for your feet too by giving the right level of cushioning and leaving them cool and dry during play.

It is also important that you bring a pair of slippers or an extra pair of rubber shoes to change to after your game because wearing your badminton shoes outside the court will damage their rubber gum soles.

Combine looking good and playing well and badminton can change your life. It got me a wife!

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