It might seem biased for me to say this, running a badminton website. But badminton is an important sport. Why? Let me count the ways!
Badminton is important for being one of the best forms of total body exercise. The resulting health benefits aren’t worth sneering at either. More than the physical health benefits the sport confers, badminton is also excellent for mental health. Don’t underestimate its social benefits either. Being a sport that takes two to play, badminton is an excellent avenue for socialization. It’s also the best way to learn the value of sportsmanship and teamwork — if you play doubles!
Sure, you can do this in just about any other sport. But reading this, you’ll likely already be nodding your head in agreement. Join me as I preach the importance of badminton!
It is a Total Body Workout
Badminton is the fastest racket sport on the planet. And players don’t smash shuttlecocks at 493 km per hour just with their wrists. Power comes from the toes to the hips, to the hands, then towards the head of the racket. Even recreationally, effective shots are full-body efforts. It’s for this reason that badminton is a killer workout for the whole body!
Badminton is a total body workout that works all major skeletal muscles, particularly the lower extremities and the core. The shoulder gets rotational work as well with multiple strikes of the shuttlecock. With all of the major muscles firing, it’s no surprise that badminton is also an excellent form of cardiovascular exercise.
In short, badminton challenges the body on multiple fronts. In greater detail, here’s how:
A Workout for the Lower Body
In badminton, there’s a lot of leaping and jumping going on. As a result, the calves and the quadricep muscles fire, causing them to develop with enough time on the court. The quadriceps, in particular, contract multiple times both to jump and leap and to control your descent. It also contracts in unison with your core whenever you make a sudden stop.
You might not get the legs of a weightlifter. But with enough court time, you’ll have enough muscular definition in your quads and calves to wear shorter shorts with confidence!
One Workout that Develops Muscles You’ve Never Heard Of!
When we talk about muscles, everyone says the same thing: bis, tris, glutes, and pecs. Badminton works out these muscles as well.
But have you ever heard of muscles like the adductors and abductors? Are you familiar with the muscles that cradle your shoulder girdle? These lesser-known muscles are key muscle groups in badminton. And they take center stage with many of the sport’s movements!
The abductor and adductor muscles control how far your legs move towards your sides. These muscle groups are crucial for lateral movement. Because they’re key muscle groups for badminton, they’re developed, allowing you to move side to side quickly. These muscles aren’t very visible. Nonetheless, developed well, these muscles protect your hips from severe injuries. Who wouldn’t want bulletproof hips, right?
The muscles around your shoulders also get toned as you smash, strike, and perform backhand strokes. If you’re curious about the benefits of developing the shoulder girdle muscles, check out my post where I mention how badminton achieves this and more.
Badminton HIITs Calories!
The fitness world is all about HIIT when it comes to burning calories. And badminton is a fun way to do HIIT without torturous burpees.
HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training. It’s a form of cardiovascular conditioning wherein you perform a movement intensely and then rest. You repeat this a certain number of times. In badminton, it’s the same thing. Even better, the movements won’t be the same, so it’s never stale or boring.
One moment, you’re leaping to the side and delivering a backhand. Then, you get a few seconds to recover before your next stroke which can be a smash or a clear.
That results in your heart and lungs pumping and your metabolism firing. If you’re looking for a fun way to work your cardiovascular fitness and torch that last cheesecake, badminton is where it’s at!
It Improves Your Mental Health
Badminton is great for more than just getting a good sweat going. Like many other fast-paced sports, it’s an excellent panacea from the stresses of day-to-day life. In short, it gets your mental health into shape too!
Badminton improves mental health in two ways. First, it enables you to relieve stress. As a form of exercise, badminton’s physical movements are rigorous enough to have a calming effect on the body and, of course, the mind. Second, the sport’s rigorous movements and fast pace provide the right stimulus for the secretion of endorphins. Endorphins are feel-good chemicals secreted in response to an intense stressor like exercise. The more intense the physical activity, the more endorphins are secreted. And the more endorphins that are flooding your system, the better you feel and think.
Badminton’s endorphin-secreting capability can be useful in lifting the blues. According to WebMD, numerous studies have confirmed the importance of endorphin-releasing activity as a non-pharmacological treatment for conditions like anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem.
So not only does badminton give you a workout. It’s a pick-me-up that doesn’t require a prescription. Just a racket, the itch to play, a shuttlecock, and a buddy.
This brings us to the next importance of badminton for the casual enthusiast.
It Promotes Socialization
Badminton is a bit like chess in two ways. First, it involves strategy and skill. Second, and most importantly, it’s unthinkable to do it without someone to play with!
It’s through competitive play that badminton promotes socialization. Badminton is a sport that requires at least two people to play. As a sport for more than one person, badminton provides the perfect avenue for socialization — whether this occurs as a result of play or playful banter. The social benefits of playing badminton come to the fore especially when you become a member of a badminton club under the different member associations of the Badminton World Federation (BWF).
The other ways in which badminton develops socialization is how it gives you a community and builds family bonds. I mentioned these as part of what makes badminton a magnificent stress-buster. You can check out that article for more details.
All in all, badminton confers numerous benefits that keep you in one piece. Most importantly, it’s a competitive sport that allows you to reach out and keep your relationships with other people intact too!
It Promotes Teamwork and Sportsmanship
Badminton is as much a cooperative sport as it is a competitive one. This is especially true if you play doubles — not that you’d miss out on a lot by playing singles.
Due to its competitive and cooperative nature, badminton can promote teamwork and sportsmanship. Even better, badminton can do this simultaneously. When you play doubles, you learn how to pick up after your teammates, striking whenever they miss the shuttlecock. Also, you learn to strategize to get your team — not just you — the big W. Besides teamwork, sportsmanship develops in badminton with the victors not gloating and the losers seeing the game as a learning experience.
A big part of sportsmanship is knowing the rules and following them. In badminton, many rules govern play. These rules, collectively known as the Laws of Badminton, govern everything from service to receiving and how points are scored. Any violations of the laws will lead to a fault — something players avoid like the plague.
Players cannot begin a game without fully understanding the rules. Hence, when you and your friends head to the badminton court, you’ll be playing knowing the rules. Following them, each of you will be holding ourselves accountable for how smooth, fun, and fair the game becomes.
Now if that’s not sportsmanship, then I don’t know what is!
Badminton is Important, and Here’s Why
Badminton is a sport just like any other. But for those of us who have a knack for whacking a shuttlecock across the opposite end of a court, it’s essential to our lives for the following reasons.
Badminton is an excellent form of exercise that conditions the entire body. This is a benefit not to be overlooked since it’s experienced by all players — new, seasoned, or professional.
Beyond the physical benefits it confers, it’s a sport that improves mental health. From flooding your system with endorphins to taking your mind off what bothers you, its mental health benefits make it an important part of our active lives.
Let’s also not forget how well the sport teaches us to interact and cooperate. As well, we should also remember that, as a sport with rules, we play it recognizing the value of integrity and sportsmanship.
I can go on and on about what makes badminton an important sport. What impact has it made on your life? You can either reflect on the answer or post it in the comment section below this post.
In the meantime, the next time someone asks you where you’re going as you head to the badminton court, don’t say you’ll be playing badminton. Instead, tell them that you’re doing something important!
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