10 Best Core Exercises For Badminton Players

Written by

Reviewed by

Reviewed by

Man doing a Plank on a badminton court

A strong core, and core exercises in general, are often under-utilized and under-appreciated when it comes to training for badminton players. 

When thinking about how to supplement your training off the court most people think of going for a run or working out in the gym to strengthen their legs or arms.

Whilst these are no doubt fantastic ways to train and improve your game, we are here to tell you all about how training your core might have a much greater bang for your buck than other exercises.

Core exercises are a very important part of badminton training. A strong core helps in everything from generating power and transferring energy efficiently to maintaining stability and control when moving quickly around the court.

In this article, we’ll emphasize the significance of core strength in badminton training. We’ll show how it enhances agility, stability, power, and endurance on the court. You’ll discover the key role of core strength, its impact on your game, and a list of ten effective core exercises for badminton players, helping you improve your performance.

Understanding Core Strength

In the world of badminton, core strength is fundamental to everything you do on the court. But what exactly is core strength?

Core strength, in essence, is the foundational power and stability residing in the muscles of the body’s core.

Think of your core like a wall when you’re swimming. Just as a wall provides a solid surface to push off, your core muscles give you the stability to lunge forward and retrieve a drop shot in badminton. They have to tense up first before other muscles can perform any action.

underwater picture of young swimmer in goggles exercising in swimming pool

Your core is more than just a set of abdominal muscles; it’s a dynamic network of muscles that includes your abdomen, lower back, pelvis, and hips. These powerhouses form the central hub of your body, working in unison to maintain stability, support your spine, and keep you upright.

They’re the first muscles to engage when you want to move and the last muscles to engage to stop and reverse that movement. Without a strong core, your body wouldn’t have the stability to perform any action effectively.

A strong core ensures your body moves efficiently, reduces the risk of injury, and enhances your overall performance in the game.

Does Core Strength help in Badminton?

Badminton is a game of speed, agility, and precision.

This is where core strength can help, as your core muscles are your body’s foundation for movement, strength, and balance. They are the anchor for every powerful shot, each lightning-fast movement, and every rapid change of direction on the badminton court.

A robust core can help enhance your agility, reaction time, and stability on the court all aiding in amazing movement, which can be the difference between winning and losing. And crucially, your core is also the powerhouse behind your powerful smashes, efficiently transferring energy for precise shots.

A robust core can help enhance your agility, reaction time, and stability on the court all aiding in amazing movement, which can be the difference between winning and losing. And crucially, your core is also the powerhouse behind your powerful smashes, efficiently transferring energy for precise shots.

How does Core Strength help in badminton?

Here are some of the ways in which improving your core will improve your game:

Movement and Agility

As we have already said, your core muscles are essential for pushing off to lunge or move around the court. They provide the stability and support necessary for agile and efficient movement on the court in any direction.

A strong core also stops your upper body from collapsing when you arrive at the shuttle, which is essential for control over your shots.

Control over your Shots

For example, when lunging toward the net, having your core engaged will stop the top half of your body from collapsing. If your body doesn’t stay strong, when you come to play your shot, you will not be in control of your body or your racket when you come to hit the shuttle, meaning that your shot will be poor. 

If your core is strong, then your body will remain upright, strong, and in control, enabling you to play the best possible shot you can.

Rapid Recovery

In badminton, it is essential to get back into position after playing your shot in order to be able to get to your opponent’s next shot. A strong core aids in rapid recovery to the center of the court after each shot, ensuring players are ready to respond to their opponent’s next move.

If your core is weak, this will lead to a slower, worse recovery, leaving you out of position for the next shot.

Increased Shot Power

Core strength plays a pivotal role in executing powerful and attacking shots like smashes and drops. A strong core helps generate force from the lower half of your body and transfer it through the torso to the upper body, resulting in more powerful and accurate shots.

Rotational power, generated from your obliques, specifically helps create rotation, crucial for a powerful smash.

If you want to generate even more power in your smash, check out our other articles to improve your smash 7 Badminton Smash Drills: To Improve Your Smash, How Fast Is An Average Badminton Smash And How To Improve Yours and One Exercise to Improve Your Smash: Pull-Ups.

Extra Endurance

Core strength contributes to overall endurance. As badminton matches can be physically demanding, a strong core helps players maintain good form and performance throughout a game, leading to better movement and stronger shots.

As shown here by all the advantages a strong core provides, core exercises should be a fundamental component of a badminton player’s physical conditioning.

It not only enhances movement and agility but also contributes to shot power, accuracy, and overall performance on the court. A strong core can be the difference between being an average player to becoming a skilled, competitive badminton athlete.

Where can I do core exercise?

This is where core exercises can give you such a good return on your investment compared to other exercises because core exercises can be done literally anywhere. All you need is a flat surface and away you go.

Therefore, core exercises are often performed at home, making them easy and accessible for everyone. They don’t even require any equipment so you can get started today. 

You can also do them on a badminton court at the end of a training session or a game, so no excuses!

A woman and a man on an exercise mats performing a forearm plank to improve core strength

How Often Should I Exercise My Core?

Another great thing about core exercises is that it doesn’t take that long to achieve an effective workout. So you never have an excuse to not fit them in!

Just by exercising 5-10 mins 2-3 times a week, you will see significant improvements straight away.

Then, you can increase the amount you do as you become more familiar with the exercises and your core gets stronger.

10 Best Core Exercises For Badminton Players

1) Sit-ups

  • Begin by lying flat on your back on a flat surface, bend your knees, and keep your feet flat on the ground, hip-width apart. 
  • Place your hands behind your head, fingertips gently touching or lightly clasped, without pulling on your neck.
  • Curl your upper body off the ground, lifting your shoulders, chest, and upper back off the floor until your torso is almost vertical
  • Slowly lower your upper body back down to the starting position
  • Keep your core engaged to control the descent and prevent your back from arching off the floor.
A schematic image demonstrating how to perform a sit-up

2) Russian Twists

  • Sit on the floor with your knees bent and heels on the floor 
  • Lean back slightly, keeping your back straight
  • Clasp your hands together or hold a weight
  • Rotate your torso to the right, then to the left, tapping the ground beside your hip 
  • For an extra workout, keep your feet off the floor
  • This works your obliques and enhances rotational core strength
A schematic demonstrating how to perform a Russian twist to improve core strength

3) Leg Raises

  • Lie on your back with your legs straight
  • Place your hands under or next to your hips. Placing them under will make it easier
  • Lift your legs off the ground while keeping them straight
  • Lower them back down without letting them touch the ground 
  • This focuses on lower abdominal muscles.

4) Flutter Kicks

  • Lie on your back with your legs straight with your hand either under or next to your hips
  • Lift your legs slightly off the ground 
  • Alternate kicking them up and down in a fluttering motion
  • This exercise targets your lower abs and improves core endurance
A woman on an exercise mat doing Leg raises to improve core strength

5) Bicycle Crunches

  • Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place your hands behind your head 
  • Lift your head, shoulders, and upper back off the ground
  • Bring one knee toward your chest while simultaneously twisting your torso to touch your opposite elbow to the knee
  • Alternate sides, mimicking a pedaling motion
  • This works both your upper and lower abs
A woman on an exercise mat doing bicycle crunches to improve core strength

6) V-Ups

  • Lie on your back with your arms extended overhead and legs straight
  • Simultaneously lift your upper body and legs off the ground
  • Reaching your hands toward your toes, forming a V-shape with your body
  • Lower back down and repeat
  • This is an advanced exercise that engages both upper and lower abs.
A man on an exercise mat performing V-ups to improve core strength

7) Mountain Climbers

  • Begin in a push-up position.
  • Alternate bringing your knees toward your chest in a running motion.
  • Keep your core engaged and your back flat.
A woman perfoming plank mountain climbers on an exercise mat

8) Standard Plank

  • Begin in a push-up position with your hands directly under your shoulders
  • Maintain a straight line from head to heels 
  • Engage your core 
  • Hold this position for as long as you can.
A woman perfoming a standard plank on an exercise mat

8) Plank Shoulder Tap

  • In a standard plank position, lift one hand and tap the opposite shoulder
  • Alternate sides, keeping your hips stable and minimizing rotation
  • If love plank exercises and want more, check out our article, Boost Your Badminton Game with Plank Exercises.
A woman perfoming plank shoulder taps on an exercise mat in a gym

10) Hollow Hold

  • Lie on your back with your legs straight and arms extended overhead
  • Lift your head, shoulders, arms, and legs off the ground, creating a “hollow” shape with your body
  • Hold this position, engaging your core muscles to maintain the balance

This is a list of 10 of the best core exercises that I have come across and used in the course of my badminton training, from various Strength and Conditioning coaches and personal trainers.

This is by all means not an exhaustive list. For example, I have chosen to include only exercises that can be done without the use of any equipment to make the exercises accessible to all. Please go out and find more exercises that you can use to develop your core.

I have also made a massive list of 64 Core Exercises if you want to delve further into the rabbit hole of core exercises. I have split them into two lists, Core Exercises Requiring Equipment and Core Exercises Using Only Body Weight. Enjoy!

The Key Takeaways

  • Core strength is often overlooked in badminton training but plays a crucial role in enhancing your performance on the court.

  • Your core is more than just your abdominal muscles; it includes the lower back, pelvis, and hips, providing stability and support for your movements.

  • Core strength improves agility, reaction time, and stability in badminton, enabling you to move smoothly and maintain control.

  • Strong core muscles aid in rapid recovery between shots, ensuring you’re always ready for your opponent’s moves.

  • Core strength is essential for generating power in shots like smashes and drops, improving shot accuracy and overall performance.

  • Regular core exercises can be done anywhere, requiring minimal time and no equipment, making them accessible and effective.

  • A strong core contributes to better movement, shot power, and overall endurance on the badminton court.

  • Ten effective core exercises are provided in the article, specifically tailored to benefit badminton players of all levels.

  • Incorporating these core exercises into your training routine can help you become a more agile, stable, and potent badminton player.

If you want to dive deeper into the world of core exercises for badminton players, make sure you check out our other articles, One Exercise to Improve Your Movement: Sit-ups and Best Plank Exercises: Improving Your Badminton Movement.

As you’ve learned, core strength is your secret weapon to excel in badminton. Now, it’s time to put this knowledge into action.

Start incorporating these core exercises into your training routine and witness the transformation in your game. Whether you’re a casual player or aspire to compete at the highest level, a strong core is your ticket to success on the court.

If you are struggling coming up with a training routine, why not check out our article Core Circuit Training Program For Badminton Players.

Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions, suggestions, or simply want to connect.

Your journey to becoming a better badminton player begins today, and we’re here to support you every step of the way.

Share the Post:

Related Posts