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Badminton is quickly becoming a very popular indoor sport and in fact, badminton is even an Olympic sport now. If you’ve ever wondered why most badminton courts seem to be green, there is really no statutory or regulatory reason for it. In fact, the entire history of the badminton court is rather interesting, and we’ll explore some of its many traits and features in this article.

If you look at the history of the badminton court, you’ll find there is no “official” reason why the courts are historically green. There is no formal regulation that states that the court has to be green. Most experts believe that in the beginning when the mats used for badminton courts were first manufactured, this was the color of the materials used in the making of these mats. Because of this, and because no regulations have been made since then specifying otherwise, the courts have remained this color since the sport first came upon the scene.

Have Badminton Courts Always Been Green?

Historically, badminton courts have always been green, since that’s what color they were in the beginning. This is especially true for tournament and professional play. But keep in mind that this is not the only acceptable color for a badminton court. Many courts in low-level or non-tournament play are made in colors such as blue and even red. That being said, throughout time and regardless of how much badminton has changed in numerous other ways, the court they use is almost always green.

Even the Badminton World Federation (BWF), which has rules and regulations in place for tournament and professional play, has not specified that the courts have to be a specific color. It can also vary by country. For instance, badminton courts in Germany have to use lines that are green, which means their courts have to be a light color for those lines to be seen. In nonprofessional and low-level play, the regulations regarding the court colors are even more relaxed because in those cases, it really doesn’t matter what color the badminton court is.

However, the color of badminton courts need to be approved by BWF’s Flooring Certification Program to make sure that the color does not “alter the playing properties of the floor”. BWF does not state any exact guidelines publicly but they are able to reject proposals that they think are not appropriate for badminton play.

Badminton Court with Dimensions (U.S. customary units)

Have the Badminton Lines Always Been White?

Badminton lines have always been either white or yellow to contrast with the green color. Again, there is no regulation stating the court or the lines have to be in any certain color. But green is relaxing on the eyes and doesn’t call attention to itself, which means that the spectators can concentrate on the game and the players themselves only have to concentrate on the game. A green court with white or yellow lines simply makes playing badminton a little easier, regardless of the players’ level of expertise.

The Court Itself

A standard court for badminton is marked for both singles and doubles games. The court is 44 feet long for both singles and doubles. The width, however, differs. The width for singles games is 17 feet (5.2 meters) and for the doubles games is 20 feet (6.1 meters). There are two halves of a badminton court, and each half is 22 feet (6.7 meters) long. The net in the middle of the court is 5 feet, 1 inch (1.55 meters) high and dips down to exactly 5 feet (1.52 meters) in the middle. 

Further, the courts’ two playing areas are divided vertically down the middle, which indicate the service areas. In other words, badminton courts have four different service courts that measure 15.5 feet long (4.72 meters) and 8.5 feet (2.59 meters) wide for singles and 13 feet (3.96 meters) long and 10 feet (3.05 meters) wide.

Singles service court, odd score.
Singles service, left to right
Singles service court, even score.
Singles service, right to left
Doubles service court, odd score.
Doubles service, left to right
Doubles service court, even score.
Doubles service, right to left

Courts also have two service lines. The first one is the short service line, which is located 6.5 feet (1.98 meters) from the net. The second one is the long service line, which is located 2.5 feet (0.76 meters) in from the baseline. When playing singles, the serve has to be beyond the short service line but within the boundary lines. When playing doubles, the serve should be beyond the short service line, even though the long service line acts as a marker on the backcourt.

You can a full analysis of a badminton’s court dimensions and how you can use it to your advantage in badminton games over in What are the Dimensions of a Badminton Court?.

Courts for badminton are usually around 1/4 inch thick and consist of 4 to 6 different layers, which include:

  • Layer 1: A polyvinyl chloride (PVC) layer at the very top which is used to protect the court. The PVC can spans from layers 1 to 3.
  • Layer 2: Reinforcing Mesh: A fiber glass mesh to increase the strength and toughness of the mat.
  • Layer 3: Additional PVC for more durability.
  • Layer 4: Mesh fabric that is used to help stabilize the mat which helps players move on the court easily.
  • Layer 5: A foam layer helps with elasticity and shock absorption.
  • Layer 6: A bottom layer that is waterproof and has anti-mold material as well as sound dampening properties.

While the BWF doesn’t specify what color the court or lines must be, they do require that the badminton mats themselves be a certain thickness, a certain weight, and have the required six layers of different materials. In fact, if you visit the BWF website, you can look at dealers that have the right badminton mats in stock.

Some Final Thoughts

The approved wooden flooring and badminton mats can be expensive, so there are other materials that can be used if you’re not playing professionally or in a tournament. This includes floors made of vinyl, linoleum, or even composite materials. Since they are much less expensive than the flooring that is required for tournament and professional use, this is what is used for recreational centers and other facilities where people go to play badminton just for fun.

While no one knows for sure why badminton courts are almost always green in color, they do make for a game that is easier to play since this color is so easy on the eyes. Even today, the courts are usually found in either green or blue, although you’ll notice some of these courts coming in colors such as red, orange, gray, and even pink.


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