Badminton Core Exercises - And Why This Training Is Important

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Many people think that the reason for doing core is just to try and get a six-pack. However it is actually a very important component of badminton and this article will explain why you need a strong core for badminton! We also give you badminton specific exercises that you can do to get a stronger core. 

Core exercises are a very important component of badminton training, helping to improve movement efficiency and power whilst also minimising injuries!

You will hear us say many times that badminton is a brutal sport on the body. The demanding nature of the sport means that you can’t have any fundamental weaknesses in your physicality. This is unlike some other sports!

Why You Need To Develop Your Core Muscles For Badminton

In short, a strong core is important for badminton:

  • For lunging
  • For attacking shots
  • To minimise the risk of injury

We’ll now discuss each of these further.

For Lunging

When lunging at the net, having your core engaged will prevent your trunk and upper body from collapsing. This is critical for two reasons.

1. Control of your body and racket – If your upper body is collapsing as you are playing the shot, you will be less in control of your body and racket. This will lead to a lower quality shot, and therefore meaning you are more likely to lose the rally! 

As you are more in control of your body, this allows you to keep upright. This will also mean that you can track the shuttle and where your opponent is, giving you the best opportunity to play a good shot.

2. Recovery – Secondly, if you have collapsed whilst taking the shot, then you are going to have both a slower and worse recovery. Even if you have managed to play a good quality shot, your recovery will be negatively impacted and you will not be in an optimal position on court. Again, this will mean you’re more likely to lose the rally!

For Attacking Shots

Oblique strength is another key component of badminton physicality. When you are preparing to hit an overhead shot by raising your racket, you are using your obliques to create rotation in your trunk. 

And then when you hit the shot (a smash, drop or clear), you need to use your core to generate the rotational power. Using your core will create more force, leading to a more powerful shot. 

It’s important to note that the engagement of the core needs to be in synchronisation with other areas of your body to maximise this rotational power. Areas such as your hips, shoulders and forearm should all be working together to achieve maximum power.

Lastly, your core provides you with stability when you are off-balance. This will help when you are late in the rear court and need to recover quickly after playing your shot!

To Minimise The Risk Of Injury

Having a weak core can lead to poor posture and lower back pain. 

When playing badminton with a weak core, your lower back will have to work harder to support your spine. This therefore increases the stress through your lower back, which can cause injury.

In addition to this, the abdominal muscles are some of the biggest muscles in the body. As we mentioned earlier, the power in your overhead shots can be drastically improved by using your core to generate the rotational power.

If you have a weak core, your body will try to use other areas such as your back to generate some power. This will therefore increase the stress on these areas and make them more susceptible to injury. 

Badminton Core Exercises

There are core exercises that are specific to badminton, helping you to improve on-court:

  1. Plank shoulder taps
  2. Sit-up and twist
  3. Side plank rotations
  4. V-sits
  5. Russian twists
  6. Double leg lowers

If you’re not sure on how to do any of these exercises, we would recommend watching our YouTube video which includes a demonstration for each of these 6 exercises.

The video also highlights why each exercise will help you on the court:

The recommended volume for the above core circuit depends on how much core work you have done before! We would recommend 3 levels: 

  • Level 1 – 6 repetitions
  • Level 2 – 8 repetitions
  • Level 3 – 10 repetitions

This should be repeated 3x. Keep building up your repetitions each week. Core is definitely something that you can see quick improvements in if you consistently do the work!

We have also released a ‘follow-along core circuit’, which you can see here: