There are many things that you could do when first picking up or trying out a new sport especially if you didn’t want to invest heavily into the proper gear.
But if you’re looking to either play badminton or tennis seriously or to the best that you can, then you need to consider having the right equipment.
So, should you be wearing tennis shoes for badminton or vice versa? In a perfect world, no, but it depends. Maybe you’re playing badminton for the first time socially with a few friends and you have a pair of tennis shoes you can utilize. Why not?
If you’re going to consider this as an option, make sure you adhere to the rules of the stadium for shoes. If your shoes are non-marking then you’re good to go!
But let’s say you want to take badminton or tennis a little bit more seriously or you’re switching from one sport to the other and you want to know what’s the difference between the shoes, then you’ve come to the right place.
What’s interesting is that despite what sport you play, there are recommended equipment or gear designed for that sport and that’s no different for tennis or badminton. Even within the sport, sometimes you’ll have shoes that aren’t suitable for certain environments. Let’s take for example clay courts and hard courts in tennis. These two courts require shoes that can provide different traction and these surfaces also wear down your shoes at different rates. So, it should go without saying that it’d be ideal to have shoes for clay courts and shoes for hard courts if you play on both surfaces as a tennis player. But not all of us are professional tennis players or aspire to be and some of us just might not have that much money to spend on that many pairs of shoes.
Let’s be honest, sometimes we just don’t necessarily require the gold standard just to have a hit.
If you’re the kind of person that’s just playing badminton socially once every blue moon, then maybe having the right shoes isn’t what you need then you can stop reading now. But if you’re reading this article, maybe you want to take it a bit more seriously and want to know what the additional benefits of wearing proper shoes are and even the downsides of not wearing them.
First things first with tennis shoes in a badminton stadium. Not all tennis shoes are designed to be non-marking and this might mean that you can’t play wearing tennis shoes already, sorry! If that’s the case, get some badminton shoes!
Key Points for Why Tennis Shoes Aren’t Recommended for Badminton
As mentioned above, these are the key reasons why you shouldn’t be wearing tennis shoes to play badminton. You might be thinking about the last point of badminton being an indoor sport and realize that there are some other indoor sports such as: Squash, Basketball, Indoor Volleyball, Netball etc.
Of the sports above, the closest you’d get to having suitable shoes for badminton is squash and volleyball, with squash being slightly more suitable. The reason being is that squash has a lot of similar movements like badminton and is played on a similar/same indoor surface depending on the courts you’re playing on. Whereas for volleyball shoes, the key differences are that they tend to have a thicker gum rubber sole and are often slightly heavier (even though they are still very light).
Lastly, running shoes. Like I said earlier, if you’re playing badminton once in a full moon then this can always be an option. The caveat I would leave you with is that running shoes are designed for running! Go figure. When running, you’re moving forwards and backwards in relation to the shoe. There just won’t be enough support for the various movements required to play badminton seriously. You might be thinking, I’m not that serious about it anyway but sometimes it’s during a competitive social game that forces you to play the way the sport is intended to be played and there goes your ankle! I know this firsthand as I’ve done this myself.
To recap, if you consider yourself a badminton player, then get badminton shoes. If you don’t and you play rarely, then at least consider getting badminton shoes!
Main image source: Kwun @Badminton Central
Body image source 1: Volant Wear
Body Image source 2: Wikipedia
Body Image source 3: Wikipedia