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Badminton vs. Pickleball—All You Need to Know!

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By Jacob Jackson

Badminton vs. Pickleball: Are you looking to spice up your workout routine? Bid farewell to workout monotony and greet the excitement of badminton and pickleball, two enthralling racket sports that have taken the fitness world by storm. While they may seem similar at first glance, each possesses unique qualities that set it apart.

Badminton vs. Pickleball

Badminton vs. Pickleball: Origin and Equipment

Badminton traces its origins back to India, while pickleball has its roots in the United States. The equipment used in these sports highlights their differences—badminton involves rackets and plastic or feather balls, whereas pickleball employs paddles and wooden balls. Furthermore, the court sizes vary significantly, with pickleball courts measuring 8 feet by 12 feet and badminton courts measuring 24 feet by 18 feet. The methods of hitting the ball over the net also differ—badminton players use groundstrokes, while pickleball players focus on placing their shots into their opponent’s pocket using groundstrokes.

Skills Common to Both

Despite the contrasts, both pickleball and badminton demand agility, reflexes, and coordination. These essential skills come into play as you aim to hit the ball or shuttlecock into your opponent’s court, requiring quick thinking and rapid reactions. However, understanding the critical differences is vital in choosing the sport that aligns best with your preferences.

The Speed Factor

A significant distinction lies in the pace of the game. Pickleball adopts a slower pace compared to faster-paced badminton, providing players with more reaction time to counter their opponent’s shots. Moreover, pickleball restricts hitting the ball by hand only, while badminton allows the use of a racket or stick. This distinction minimizes the likelihood of mistakes in pickleball leading to point loss.

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Balls in Play

Another notable difference is the number of balls each player has during the game. Pickleball involves a single ball at a time, whereas badminton incorporates multiple balls, encouraging a more strategic approach. In badminton, opponents must meticulously plan their moves to avoid hitting each other, introducing an element of careful consideration to the game.

Choosing the Right Fit

Ultimately, the decision between pickleball and badminton comes down to personal preferences and the specific experience you seek. If you prefer a slower-paced game with ample reaction time, pickleball might be the ideal choice. On the other hand, if you thrive on strategy in a faster-paced environment, badminton could be more suited to your style.

Court Setup and Ball Attributes

Considering the courts and ball characteristics, pickleball courts are smaller and simpler compared to the more elaborate badminton courts. Additionally, the balls used in pickleball are smaller and slower than those in badminton. These differences make pickleball more accessible and easier to control, appealing to individuals of all ages and fitness levels.

Badminton vs. Pickleball: Techniques in Serving

Badminton vs. Pickleball Play

The serving dynamics in badminton and pickleball vary. Badminton demands spins and elevations to send the shuttlecock above your opponent’s court, while pickleball relies on power to score points. Understanding these differences can greatly influence your gameplay strategy and success in both sports.

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Advantages of Each Sport

Badminton provides an excellent cardiovascular workout and enhances arm-and-hand coordination. It’s also a social sport suitable for all ages and fitness levels, fostering mental agility as you strategize to win matches. On the other hand, pickleball is an enjoyable way to get exercise, being gentler on your back and shoulders compared to traditional tennis or badminton. It’s versatile, playable indoors or outdoors, and can be enjoyed by people of all ages and fitness levels.

Badminton vs. Pickleball: Embrace the Adventure Try Them Both!

In conclusion, both badminton and pickleball offer unique qualities that make them an exciting choice for staying active. Whether you seek a vigorous workout or a sport suitable for all ages, trying either of these sports will certainly inject excitement into your usual workout routine.


What are the main differences between badminton and pickleball in terms of gameplay and equipment?

Badminton originated in India and involves using rackets and shuttlecocks (plastic or feather) on a larger court, while pickleball, with roots in the United States, utilizes paddles and perforated plastic balls on a smaller court. Badminton is faster-paced, played with a shuttlecock, and allows the use of a racket or stick, whereas pickleball is slower-paced, played with a smaller ball, and involves hitting by hand only.

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Which sport is better for beginners or those seeking a less physically demanding option?

Pickleball is often considered more beginner-friendly and less physically demanding compared to badminton. The slower pace, larger paddle size, and easier rules make pickleball an excellent choice for those new to racket sports or seeking a low-impact workout. Badminton, on the other hand, demands higher agility and speed, making it more suitable for individuals looking for a higher-intensity workout.

Can both badminton and pickleball be played indoors and outdoors?

Both indoor and outdoor settings accommodate playing both badminton and pickleball. Pickleball, with its versatility, suits indoor gymnasiums or outdoor courts, adapting to weather conditions. While traditionally an indoor sport, badminton can be played outdoors under controlled conditions despite wind affecting shuttlecock flight. Each sport provides options for indoor and outdoor play, catering to varied preferences and environments.

Badminton vs. Pickleball: Conclusion

If you’re intrigued, I’m here to assist as a professional physiotherapist and a certified pickleball instructor. Having worked with athletes of all levels, aiding them in overcoming injuries and enhancing their performance, I possess over a decade of experience in pickleball. Let’s grab your paddles or rackets and embark on an exhilarating game of badminton or pickleball!

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