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The racket is arguably the most essential piece of equipment for a badminton player. While the court, shuttles and playing conditions are shared by all players involved in a badminton match, the racket is fully within the control of the player. The racket is commonly viewed as an extension of a player’s arm. As such, it should complement a player’s style and level.
Whether you gravitate towards pummeling your opponents with a flurry of powerful smashes or outpacing your foes with speedy exchanges of control and precision, a racket should work for you and not the other way around. When chosen properly, a racket can be your greatest ally on court, while carelessly settling for a racket can turn it into your biggest enemy. Learn about the different properties of badminton rackets below to discover which racket is best suited for you!
If you’re interested in other badminton products, I highly recommend checking out our Badminton Equipment page where we gathered all of our product posts in one easy place for you to access so that you can make an informed decision before any purchase.
The balance of a racket is determined by finding the position on the shaft in which the racket remains stable and completely parallel to the ground. The distance between the base of the handle to this position on the shaft is called the balance point. The balance point is used to categorize the balance of a racket. Understanding the traits of different balances will allow you to select a racket that boosts your gameplay.
|285 – 295mm
A head-heavy racket has a balance point that is over 295mm. They are suitable for players who favor an attacking style of play. Players who are smash-happy, enjoy powerful shots or prefer the back-court can benefit from choosing head-heavy rackets, as it adds extra force behind their shots. However, with great power comes decreased racket movement. Since the weight is concentrated at the head of the racket, it becomes more difficult for the player to swing the racket head quickly. Therefore, those who use head-heavy rackets may find it difficult to react to fast shots or play a solid defensive game. As the control of head-heavy rackets takes more effort and practice to master, these rackets are recommended for experienced players vs. beginners. Beginners who lack the experience to manage head-heavy rackets can suffer shoulder injuries from misusage or apply stress to the wrist from attempting quick drives or defensive shots.
Pros: Generates powerful shots
Cons: Decreased racket handling, Increased risk of injury if misused
Recommended for: Attacking players, Back-court play
Head-light rackets observe a balance point typically below 285mm. With head-light rackets, speed is the name of the game. The lighter frame gives players the ability to steer the racket to their will with more ease. These rackets are characterized as being superior at executing shots at the net, blocking smashes, controlling the shuttle and enabling players to have quicker reaction times. Players who enjoy games filled with fast drive exchanges and speedy rallies should look into playing with a head-light racket. Head-light rackets are suggested for doubles games, defensive game play and front-court players. While head-light rackets enable players with great speed of the racket, they give up power in exchange for it. With less mass at the frame, head-light rackets have less momentum transferred from the swing to the shuttle, making it more difficult to produce explosive shots.
Pros: Greater control of the racket, Improves reaction speed
Cons: Decreased explosive power
Recommended for: Defensive and doubles players, Front-court and fast-paced play
Even balanced rackets can be viewed as Jack of all Trades, as they are able to adequately execute all of the different shots. The balance point for even balanced rackets have a length between the range of 285-295mm. An even balanced racket allows you to blend the benefits of head-heavy/-light rackets while masking the drawbacks. It allows you to achieve precision in your shots while also giving you a degree of power. If you are a player who does not have a strong preference towards any particular play style, an even balanced racket would be a solid choice to support you in any situation you find yourself in on the court. Additionally, for beginners starting to play badminton, an even balanced racket can help you uncover your badminton play style. When you make the discovery on whether you are inclined to power-plays or speed-plays, you can switch to head-heavy or head-light rackets, respectively. The even balanced racket is sub-optimal for players looking for specialization, such as playing remarkably fast shots or supremely powerful smashes.
Pros: Capable of executing each shot well (though not exceptionally)
Cons: No specialization towards either defensive or offensive extremes
Recommended for: All around players, Beginners
Author’s note: Instead of purchasing or borrowing a racket with a different balance point to try it out, there are home remedies that a player can take to modifying the balance of point of the racket. To make a racket more head-heavy, a player can add lead tape to the head of the racket. Whereas to make a racket more head-light, a player can experiment with adding different types of grips to the handle.
Per Badminton World Federation (BWF) guidelines, the weight of a badminton racket should not exceed 100g. Most rackets have it broken down as follows:
|95g – 99.9g
|90g – 94.9g
|85g – 89.9g
|80g – 84.9g
|75g – 79.9g
|70g – 74.9g
Lighter weight rackets are easier to control and are more accommodating towards improper form or technique. They allow for quicker recovery from shots and fluid execution of a variety of shots. As such, lighter rackets are recommended for beginners.
Heavier rackets are able to generate bigger force at the cost of racket handling. As it takes more strength to move the racket, it can be an injury risk for players who are not equipped to use it properly. Beginners are not recommended to use heavy rackets when starting their badminton journey.
The grip of a racket is measured by the circumference of the handle. Typically rackets are made in G4 or G5 grip sizes. The table below details the grips and their respective sizes.
|4 in / 10.2 cm
|3.75 in / 9.5 cm
|3.5 in / 8.9 cm
|3.25 in / 8.3 cm
|3 in / 7.6 cm
|2.75 in / 7 cm
Smaller grips are recommended for players who enjoy keeping their opponents on their toes. They allow for a greater amount of racket manipulation and make it easier to make last second deceptions.
Bigger grips allow players to deliver power by using more of their arm rather than their finger and wrist strength. Power players tend to grip the handle tighter, making a bigger grip the more suitable choice.
If you are uncertain about the grip you should select, air on the side of a smaller grip. There is always the option to add overgrips to increase the size of your current grip. Read the following post we wrote to determine the right grip to complement your play style: The Complete Guide to Yonex Badminton Grips.
The flex (short for flexibility) of a racket refers to how stiff the shaft is. The stiffness of a racket’s shaft influences the racket stroke and recovery time of a player and thus is an important point of consideration when choosing a racket. By definition, when a racket is stiff, it does not bend as far back as a flexible racket would during a swing. This property makes it so a stiffer racket will return faster to its base position than a less stiff racket would (with all else being equal), giving the player a smaller time period to exert force onto the shuttlecock.
There is an excellent explanation of it in this forum post. While a stiffer racket recovers faster than a more flexible racket because of the decreased vibrations after a hit, it is more difficult to time shots. Flexible rackets are more lenient towards slower shuttle strikes but increases recovery time. This means that a player should use a stiffer racket if he/she can generate sufficient power very quickly and a more flexible racket if he/she takes more time to generate power.
Victor Thruster Rackets
Conveniently, Victor classifies its rackets into power, speed, and all-around. This way, players can easily select the type of racket that compliments their style, requirements, and habits.
If you believe in the idea that attacking is the best form of defense and the key to victory, choose Victor Thruster rackets. As Victor Thruster rackets are double reinforced, users can engage in full power play. This means that you can significantly increase the power of your smashes when using a Victor Thruster, especially since this particular product series from Victor is popular for its strong attacking features.
Victor Racket Technologies
Before we go into the Victor rackets, let’s take a look at the racket technologies that Victor has developed to give you the best possible experience in your games.
While these racket technologies are certainly cutting edge, they can also definitely be confusing and difficult to understand! Luckily for you, I did that research and listed them all out here for you to easily look up.
Aero-Diamond is a racket frame design that is a mix between the diamond-shape structure and the sword-shape structure. Its goal is to minimize air resistance while increasing racket handling.
Aero-Hex is a racket frame technology which helps increase the racket’s stability and easy of hitting. It does this by improving upon the traditional hexagonal frame to direct airflow in a more ideal manner.
Aero-Sword is a racket frame design that combines Aerodynamic and Sword frame structures together, both of which are great at reducing air resistance to help you swing your racket effortlessly.
The Anti-Torsion System is a racket shaft technology that Victor developed to prevent the shaft from twisting. Torsion is the action of twisting, which means that anti-torsion is the resistance to twisting. Victor claims that because of the anti-torsion system, they have created the best racket shafts ever and guarantees great performance and durability.
Catapult Structure is a frame enforcement technology that helps increase your power significantly. Victor claims that it can give you a power boost of up to 9.75%. The technology works by placing 2 hollow regions on the underside of the racket at the 5 and 7 o’clock positions, which is similar to the design of catapults. This set up is supposed to help convert potential energy into kinetic energy more efficiently for a better rebound effect.
Compound-Sword is a multi-part frame design that helps you strike the shuttlecock with more force and better control. This is done by giving your racket certain desirable properties in 3 different sections. The top 20% of your racket frame is designed to lower wind resistance so that the racket head can accelerate quickly and increase swing speed. The middle 60% is designed to maximize energy transfer and therefore optimize the rebound ability since this is where you will most likely be hitting the shuttlecock. The bottom 20% optimizes racket stability and reduces twisting to help stabilize the racket after a hit.
Core Shell Rubber is a nanotechnology that helps your racket with strength, shock absorption, and durability. It’s a widely used additive that is made of thermoplastic and rubber-based materials and in general is used to improve the toughness of an object.
Dynamic-Hex is a racket frame technology that puts a twist in the traditional hexagonal frame design to increase its flexibility, stability, and racket handling. It does this by modifying the hexagonal shape into a spiral arrangement which Victor has tested to help with swing speed.
Eighty-80 is a stringing pattern that uses 80 grommet holes instead of the traditional 72. In the Eighty-80, every string has its own whole to create a square network for a more even distribution of tension. Since the strings each have their own grommet holes, it makes it easier to string and also reduces friction between the main (vertical) and cross (horizontal) strings.
Energy Box Upgrade is a technology that improves durability and twist resistant capabilities of a racket. It is usually combined with the Ultra-Thin Frame technology to give great power transmission while still maintaining good durability.
Fiber Reinforced System, or FRS, is a multi-layered carbon fiber that helps the racket stay stable even when it’s strung at a high string tension.
Flash Shaft is a racket shaft design which blends together a mix of carbon fibers to produce higher durability and a smaller racket shaft diameter. Racket shaft diameters used to be between 7.0 to 7.4 mm (.28 to .29 inches) but technology like the Flash Shaft have made it possible to have diameters between 6.4 and 6.8 mm (.25 to .27 inches).
Free Core is a synthetic racket handle technology that increases control, durability, and comfort for the user. The Free Core technology took Victor 3 years to develop and is considered a breakthrough innovation in the racket handle space. Racket handles are almost entirely made out of wood, but Victor found a way to develop racket handles using synthetic material which they have proven to absorb shock by dispersing the vibrations more efficiently, ultimately increasing the user’s comfort and performance. Victor is quite proud of the Free Core technology and documented its development in its news article and first featured it in the DriveX-9X racket. They even have a commercial on the technology which you can see below.
Hard Cored Technology is carbon fiber combined with other composites that reduces the size of material in the racket while increasing performance and feel. According to Victor, it was inspired by military helicopter materials.
High-Toughness Kinetic Fiber is a shock-absorption technology that distributes pressure throughout the racket upon impact with the shuttlecock. The absorption of the impact helps keep the racket frame flexible and durable while efficiently transferring energy to the shuttlecock for powerful smashes.
Hybrid CN is a material made out of carbon and natural wood (hence the CN, C = Carbon, N = Natural Wood) that is used for your racket’s handle. It is designed to increase your precision and performance as it is lighter than regular wooden handles. Regular wooden handles are 18 grams (.63 ounces) while hybrid CN is 15 grams (.53 ounces), or around 16.7% lighter. The material is also water resistant – meaning that it does not absorb water well – which makes it more durable and resilient.
Nano Fortify is a racket technology that helps increase the bending strength of the racket so that it can generate more attacking power. It is created with tube-shaped carbon fiber which optimizes the racket’s toughness and durability.
Nano Fortify FR is an upgrade to the Nano Fortify technology that further increases the bending strength and durability of the racket by combining a new carbon fiber material into the racket. It’s unclear what exact material this is as Victor has not disclosed more information about it.
Nano Fortify TR is an upgrade to the Nano Fortify technology as the carbon fiber is sourced from Toray, a top manufacturer in Japan. Specifically, it uses the Torayca Prepreg carbon fiber material which enhances your racket’s repulsion, racket handling, and resilience.
Nano Fortify TR+ is an even further upgrade of Nano Fortify TR that uses an even more durable carbon fiber to increase the racket’s resilience and handling.
Nano Tec is a technology that fills particles into empty spaces between carbon fiber bundles. This is done on the near atomic scale which humans cannot see without special tools. The Nano Tec technology significantly increases the stiffness of the racket frame to help it stay in the correct shape and prevent distortion.
Nano Tube is a particular nanotechnology that Victor uses to increase the bending flexibility of their rackets when compared to conventional racket materials such as graphite.
Oval Head refers to the shape of the racket head to be an oval. Badminton rackets are usually oval shaped or isometric shaped (which is wider at the top and is more square-like) and the choice between them comes down to preference. An oval shaped racket head has a smaller sweet spot but gives you more power if you hit it correctly. Isometric shaped racket heads give you a bigger sweet spot and is generally considered to be easier to play with.
Power Box is a racket frame design that reduces twisting and increases stability. It can withstand high string tensions and is overall great for durability. The Tri-Formation takes advantage of the Power Box’s properties by using it near the T-section of the racket where it maximizes its stability benefits.
Pyrofil is a material produced by Mitsubishi and is made of carbon fiber and its composites. Mitsubishi boasts that Pyrofil is very strong yet light while also helps to reduce vibration and is heat resistant. This makes it ideal for badminton rackets which need to be light, durable, and have great shock absorption for better control.
Rebound Shield is durable glass fiber that is inserted into the frame to provide elasticity to your racket and comfort to your shots.
Rebound Transition Construction is a technology that adds so-called “rebound points” to parts of the racket frame which help increase the power of your shots. These “rebound points” are critical spots on the racket that have been proven through scientific studies to maximize the rebound performance so that shuttlecocks will explode off your racket strings.
Seven Six is a design on the grommet hole construction that reduces friction between the grommet and the badminton strings. This ultimately reduces the rate of string tension loss, increases the energy transfer rate from your strings to the shuttlecock, and extends the lifetime of your strings.
The Shaft Recovery System, or SRS, is a racket shaft technology that helps with racket recovery, force transmission, and adds to the foundation of the shaft. Victor claims that the SRS improves the shaft recovery ability by 3% and improves force transmission by 4%.
Sonic-Rebound Technology is a twist on Rebound Transition Construction where high-resilience carbon fiber is added to increase the rebound effect even further. With Sonic-Rebound Technology, you’ll maximize your racket striking speed’s potential.
The Sword technology is Victor’s base racket frame design, which is supposed to “cut through the air like a sword”. Its main goal is to reduce air resistance in order to create a faster swing speed. Victor has upgrades to the sword technology, which include the dynamic-sword, compound-sword, and aero-sword technologies.
Tri-Formation is a formation of 3 different racket frame technologies – which include Sword, Aerodynamic, and Power Box. Combined together, these 3 technologies give your racket desirable properties for your racket strokes. The Sword technology is implemented at the top 20% of your racket to give you better acceleration. The middle 60% of the racket frame uses Aerodynamic technology to increase the smoothness of your swing. The bottom 20% of the racket frame uses Power Box, which is used to increase stability and reduce twisting.
Twin Epoxy Resin System, or TERS, is a racket frame technology that increases the stiffness and elasticity of the frame. According to Victor, frame elasticity is increased by 9%, shock absorption by 2.9%, shaft flexibility by 7.4%, and resilience by 8.8%.
Ultra-Thin Frame is a racket frame design that is 7% thinner than traditional racket frames. This allows the racket to be that much lighter to increase the player’s swing speed.
The Whipping Enhancement System, or WES, is a technology which adds a soft material around the T-section of the racket shaft that helps you accelerate the racket head in a whip-like fashion. This results in a steeper and more powerful attack.
Thruster F C
The traditional Thruster F, which was introduced by renowned badminton player, Tai Tzu Ying, is making a comeback in the form of the Thruster F C. With its improved 6.5mm shank, the Thruster F C has more frame durability compared to its predecessor. Additionally, the Thruster F C’s new grip now comes with free-core technology, significantly improving its handling.
|84 grams (4U) / G5
Another exceptional racket from the Thruster series, the Thruster Ryuga boasts of improving the user’s attacking game. With the utilization of Power Box technology, the Thruster Ryuga’s characteristics make it ideal for offensive players.
|Advanced / Professional
|Head Heavy Balance
|82-86 grams (4U) / G5
|Yumo Pro Shop
Thruster K 12 M
The Thruster K 12’s head heavy balance and flexible shaft make this racket suitable for aggressive players. And, thanks to Victor’s Power Box technology, the Thruster K 12 has the accuracy to accomplish any powerful attack hits.
|Head Heavy Balance
|81 grams (4U) / G5
Thruster K 11 E
Another Thruster racket that has a slightly heavy head and flexible shaft, the Thruster K 11 E is created for attacking power and play. Its Power Box technology reduces a player’s torsional twisting, promoting a more powerful offensive shot. With its revolutionary frame, giving players a larger sweet spot, the Thruster K 11 E is beginner-friendly.
|Head Heavy Balance
|81 grams / G5/S3
Thruster 1H H
With its thin and flexible shaft, the Thruster 1H H is recommended for players who want more power in their playing style. The Power Box technology gives users more power transmission.
|86 grams (4U) / G5
|Yumo Pro Shop
|VICTOR Thruster F C
|84 grams (4U) / G5
|VICTOR Thruster Ryuga
|Advanced / Professional
|Head Heavy Balance
|82-86 grams (4U) / G5
|VICTOR Thruster K 12 M
|Head Heavy Balance
|81 grams (4U) / G5
|VICTOR Thruster K 11 E
|Head Heavy Balance
|81 grams / G5/S3
|VICTOR Thruster 1H H
|86 grams (4U) / G5
Without a doubt, Victor Thruster is a high-quality racket series that has something for beginner and professional badminton players. Generally, all models in this line are created using modern technology, which provides them with plenty of benefits.
At the end of the day, the type of Victor Thruster racket you go for is up to you. Nevertheless, you can rest assured that choosing a racket from this series is a good investment.
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