Badminton is one of the five major racquet sports, the other four being racquet ball, table tennis, tennis and squash. The badminton matches are either singles (played by a couple of opposing players) or doubles (played by a couple of opposing pairs). A badminton court is always rectangular in shape with a net positioned in its middle; each of the two opponents (may be two players or pairs) playing a badminton match takes positions on the opposite halves of the court.
To score points in a badminton match, players need to strike a shuttlecock using their racquet to allow it cross the net and land in the other half (the half that belongs to their opponent) of the court. The players need to stop once the shuttlecock hits the ground. Another important rule of this game is that to make the shuttlecock cross the net, a side (player or pair) can hit it only once.
For those who wondering what this shuttlecock is all about, here’s a brief explanation. Shuttlecocks, which are also often referred to as shuttles, are feathered projectiles. They possess unique aerodynamic features that allow them to move in a manner that is completely different from movements of balls used in other racquet sports. The feathers are capable of creating higher drags and this allows the shuttles to decelerate at greater pace than any ball.
In addition to all these, shuttlecocks defeat balls used in other racquet sports by a distance when it comes to its top speed.
Competitive badminton is never played outdoors; it’s always an indoor game and there’s a valid reason behind this choice of venue. The flight of shuttlecocks is strongly affected by wind; playing the game indoors help in reducing the effects of wind on a shuttle’s flight. Badminton definitely often gets played outdoors, but only as a recreational activity.
The year 1992 saw badminton becoming an Olympic sport. The Olympics have a total of five events of the game, men’s singles and doubles, women’s singles and doubles and finally the mixed doubles.
Badminton, although is a sport originating in England, has been dominated by players from countries like Malaysia, South Korea, Indonesia, China and Denmark.