Badminton shoe advice
A badminton shoe should perfectly match your playing style and support your feet in the most important areas. Pay special attention to fit, stability, cushioning and grip. Don't skimp on a good pair of sports shoes!
Why are badminton shoes important?
In badminton, agility, endurance and insight are central to moving around the badminton court and in doing so, many people underestimate the high intensity of this wonderful sport. Many novice badminton players start with different types of sports shoes, but this can be quite risky. Are we exaggerating? No we are not!
The soles of your sport shoes determine how well you have contact with the ground and the cushioning, stability and fit should fit your body. A badminton player often has to stop suddenly, change direction, jump and react quickly, which makes it especially complex foot movements. Good badminton shoes can save your feet from injury and reduce the risk of wear and tear on your joints.
Ultimately, it goes without saying that you are not going to play badminton with a tennis racket, so it should also go without saying that you should choose sports shoes that match the sport in question.
What is the difference between sports shoes and badminton shoes?
If you compare a badminton shoe and a normal sports shoe during a training session or match, you will immediately notice differences. Feet which perform fast footwork and specific movements in badminton deserve the right footwear and therefore badminton shoes are designed especially for this purpose. You want to have enough grip on the court with the sole and for that you need non-slip material and a wear-resistant rubber. In addition, the midfoot area requires perfect shock absorption and resilience, which is usually achieved by a carbon plate.
The many lateral movements must also be taken into account, which requires a lot of stability from the shoe and the foot. The upper of the shoe should feel comfortable and be made of a breathable fabric, so that the shoe can ventilate and 'breathe' enough. Many badminton players 'drag' their foot along the ground to maintain the right balance and therefore the fabric near the inner toes wears hard, therefore it is very important that a wear-resistant material is used.
Normal athletic shoes often do not incorporate these specific features, as they have to be for general use or are designed for a different sport. The most commonly used sport shoe is the running shoe. This type of shoe is designed fo this sport and therefore a forward motion and therefore shock absorption in the heels and breathability. Due to the softer midsole, higher heel (cushioning) and different materials, there is an increased risk of sprained ankles and other injuries.
We therefore strongly advise against using running shoes while playing badminton!
Important properties of badminton shoes
There are many different brands of shoes for sale. At KW FLEX you can buy shoes from Yonex, Victor and FZ Forza. These are all real badminton brands, which give a lot of attention and research to the right technologies and developments of badminton shoes. There are some important points that characterize a badminton shoe:
Weight of the shoe
As a badminton player, you need to move quickly across the court and be able to react quickly to your opponent. Therefore, it is very important that your badminton shoes do not slow you down too much in speed and agility. A light weight badminton shoe can help you with this, which is why we always take this into account during the development of our shoes. Yonex has developed the ultra light Yonex Aerus Z badminton shoes in different colors for men and women. These shoes weigh only 250 grams and are therefore the lightest shoes on the market.
Badminton can be a very injury prone sport so it is extra important to use the right gear to minimize this. The cushioning of a badminton shoe is mega important to absorb as much vibration and shocks as possible. After all, you are constantly sprinting, getting out, jumping or stopping. In an explosive sport like badminton, this often causes injuries to ankles, knees, feet and other joints. You want to maintain mobility comfortably and without the 'stress' of possible injuries.
Without fully realizing it, the cushioning in your favorite pair of athletic shoes is reduced and they absorb less shock than your joints were used to. Did you know that the cushioning even gets worse if you leave the shoes in your badminton bag and don't wear them? The elasticity of the material slowly decays, reducing the cushioning. You only really notice the difference when you have bought a new pair of shoes. That is why it is important to replace your shoes with some regularity.
KW FLEX recommends that you buy a new pair of shoes once a year (if you play badminton once a week), so that you can continue to make optimal use of all the positive properties.
Our advice is:
- 1x per week badminton = new shoes every year
- 2-3x per week badminton = new shoes every 6-9 months
Read more about when to replace a badminton shoe in our blog: Replace your badminton shoes on time!
Support / stability
If you look at all badminton shoes, you will notice that they have a relatively thin sole. This allows you to move faster on the court in an agile way and you have a lot of contact with ground and therefore more feeling while running. Because of the agile movements, it is very important to wear stable and supportive sports shoes. The shoes are made more stable by the different technologies applied around the foot. The special feature of badminton shoes is the lateral support in the shoes. This is applied because of the many sideways movements you make during matches and training sessions. These technologies allow you to make these moves with less risk and better position yourself to hit the shuttle back.
The heel of a badminton shoe is in most cases fully encapsulated by harder materials, which reduces the risk of spraining the ankle. The reinforced heel pieces provide more stability and ensure a correct landing to prevent strain and injury.
The more luxurious badminton shoes are often designed with a carbon plate (see photo below, grey plate) in the sole, which reduces the torsion of the shoe and gives the shoes tremendous stability. Just like a shaft ban a badminton racket that can give catapult effect, the carbon plate gives a pleasant suspension. So more protection and performance!
The right fit that fits your feet is extremely important. Why? As with all other features, it can prevent injuries or reduce their severity. Make sure your badminton shoes feel wonderfully comfortable and fit your feet well, so you can react, jump, stop and step out quickly without stress. At KW FLEX we have made a distinction between narrow, normal and wide fits, so there is a suitable shoe for every foot. Also check to see if a wide round nose (U-shape) or pointed nose (V-shape) is ideal for you.
It's nice that more and more badminton brands distinguish between men's and women's shoe models, which of course take into account the type of foot of men and women. When you go to try on a fresh pair of shoes, keep in mind to leave about 1 cm space to prevent a blue toe. It is usual to buy about 1 size bigger than your leisure shoes.
Badminton shoe with narrow fit
During an intensive badminton match, you walk a lot and you get warm or even hot. Your body will generate its own natural heat and will want to get rid of it through your feet. Well ventilated shoes allow this heat to evaporate and your feet remain dry or at least drier. The result is less chance of blisters, more comfort (wet shoes are uncomfortable) and less sweaty feet. Therefore, always look at the materials used or ventilation methods applied.
In the basics, the first thing you'll need to determine is what surface you'll be playing on primarily. Some of the materials used are slightly more suitable for a particular type of floor. But in principle, a lot of shoes today are suitable for multiple surfaces, such as a wooden floor or a PVC floor.
A pair of shoes with good grip, should prevent you from slipping and injuring yourself. Without hesitation, you should be able to move quickly across the court in all directions. Your sole naturally wears out through frequent use in the sports hall, but they are also subject to wear and tear through "improper" use. Some players put on their sneakers at home, get on their bikes or into their cars and step onto the badminton court. Please do not do this, as it greatly increases the risk of injury. Dirt gets into the grooves under the sole, which reduces your grip and makes the shoe wear out faster.
Only wear your badminton shoes in the sports hall!
By wearing sports shoes specially designed for badminton, you greatly reduce the risk of injuries. The applied technologies offer your feet the right support and protection, reducing the chance of slipping or twisting your ankle. If you choose a badminton brand then you don't have to worry about this. The outsole is a bit soft for optimal grip just like car tires. The floor is often also made of rubber, which should feel somewhat rough.
Footwork is essential for a badminton player, so you should perform this without hesitation. Jump into the air, quickly step out to the net and make a sideways step to hit the shuttle back. Not only should the shoe be comfortable, but most importantly, the feet should be firmly packed without slipping. Firm but not squishy is the rule. The faster and more intense a player runs, the more important that it is firm. Buy the right badminton shoe to take as much pressure off your feet as possible!
Upgrade your current badminton shoe
Do you need to save up a bit more for your dream badminton shoes or are you sliding around too much in your shoes? Then replace your current insole for a fresh new pair. At KW FLEX online badminton store, you have the choice of different types from different brands:
By replacing the insoles on time, you can also extend the life of your shoes a little. The grip on the inside of your shoe will increase again and the cushioning will be a little better. Good insoles count as half a shoe, so replace them regularly. If you play once a week, we advise you to replace the insoles every six months. However, you should not forget that a lot of shock absorption is determined by the shoe itself, so after a while you really need to buy a new pair of badminton shoes.
Women and men badminton shoes
As mentioned earlier, the development of badminton shoes takes into account different fits. Women and men usually have a different type of foot, because both are built differently. A woman's foot is generally smaller and narrower, which means that men's shoes give too much space and the female foot will move around too much. With all the risks that this entails. Therefore, there are shoes that have a narrow fit, normal fit and wide fit. Nowadays, the top models are also designed with separate women's shoe and men's models, so that everyone can move on the court with the absolute top badminton shoes. This allows everyone to order the right shoe for their feet.
Differences and similarities between Yonex and Victor shoes
Yonex badminton shoes generally feel a bit smoother and more comfortable. Victor especially has more sturdy durable shoes and also more choices in wide models. Also, Victor shoes often feel a bit more stable and provide a bit more cushioning.
Both brands have 3 series:
- Speed series: Yonex Aerus, Victor S-xx and A-xxx.
- Allround series: Yonex 65z series, Victor S-xx series
- Stability series: Yonex Eclipsion, Victor P-8xxx - 9xxx series
A speed series is meant for optimal performance. It is lighter and has a thinner sole for faster response. Not suitable for weaker individuals or badminton players with weak ankles.
A stability series has a name that speaks for itself. It provides maximum cushioning and support. The disadvantage is that it is a bit heavier than a speed series.
The all-round series also speaks for itself, these shoes have something of all characteristics.
When do I replace my badminton shoe?
Depending on how often you play badminton and the quality of your shoes, you will need to replace them regularly. The more expensive the shoe, the better the materials used and the longer they will last in terms of cushioning, stability, grip and ventilation. For players who play badminton 3x or more per week, we recommend using 2 pairs of shoes. By alternating shoes, the cushioning gets time to "recover".
Have you left your shoes in your sports bag for several months or years and not worn them? Even then, the properties of the shoes deteriorate, because the materials lose their resilience, absorption capacity, etc. Therefore, keep in mind that badminton shoes in the sale may not last as long, since they were produced longer ago.
Our advice is as follows:
- 1x per week badminton = new shoes every year
- 2-3x per week badminton = new shoes every 6-9 months
Wear the right socks
Wearing the right socks is underestimated by many players. Why are they so important? The socks determine for a big part the comfort of the shoes. The right socks ensure that you do not slide too much in your shoe and maintain grip. The socks should also absorb enough sweat, ventilate and provide support. Do you prefer high or low sneaker sport socks, with or without ribbing? Test it all to choose the perfect sock for your foot.
Because we at KW FLEX think it's super important that everyone wears quality sports socks, we have designed KW FLEX badminton socks in different sizes and colors. Of course you can also find socks of other brands in our badminton webshop:
Are you looking for badminton shoes and do you need more information or advice? Our badminton shoe specialist can give you all the information about the different shoes and advise you. When in doubt call us / send a message via whatsapp to:+31 616501686, email your questions to [email protected], send a message via Facebook or visit our badminton store in Rijen.