Best Badminton Shoes in 2018
The game of badminton is very quick-paced. The user remains on their toes as they stride side to side to return the shuttle cock to their opponent. This form requires large amounts of lateral movements and quick body shifts, calling for proper footwear to counter these movements. Taking the court in any athletic shoe will not only damage the court, but it can present heightened injury risks to the user. To best avoid injuries and court defamation we have created an in-depth buyer's guide into the makings and components of badminton shoes.
We have also carefully chosen 10 products that would suit the user best, detailing their aspects and prescribing usage for the different playing and experience levels. Finally, we answer some of the burning questions that may arise during your search, helping to cover badminton shoes from all angles.
Yonex Power Cushion Aerus 2 Men's Badminton Shoes
Yonex Power Cushion SHB CFAX Men's Badminton Shoe
Asics Men's GEL-Rocket 7 Volleyball Shoe
Yonex SHB01LTD "Lee Chong Wei" Women's Badminton Shoe
Yonex PC F1 NEO Women's Badminton Shoe
ASICS Women's Upcourt 2 Volleyball Shoe
5 Best Men's Badminton Shoes
Yonex Power Cushion Aerus 2 Men's Badminton Shoes
When it comes to badminton shoe production, Yonex has eclipsed the marketplace as the top seller in the industry. Their years of service to sport have lead to incredible advancements in the footwear space and their Aerus 2 model is nothing short of these claims. This shoe combines three popular materials: leather, fabric, and mesh. The leather aspect brings intrigue into the notion of durability. It is both abrasion resistant and built to outlast the test of time. The fabric portion covers most of the shoe, giving the user the flexibility they need to perform lateral and adverse movements. The mesh design is known as Double Reussel, which is a finely threaded mesh. This mesh also helps to wick away moisture and create positive air flow, bringing the breathability aspect full circle.
Moving from the material build we have the msLite midsole. This build is much lighter than previous Yonex models, which helps lower the total weight of the shoe. It features a reinforced, layered construction, which helps the user glide across the surface effortlessly. Power Cushion technology is introduced at the insole, which has properties of a memory foam. This helps mold and adjust to the foot and doesn't compromise on individual foot shape. The outsole is made purely of rubber materials, which helps to create a positive friction between court and shoe. This construction helps reduce slippage and keeps your pivoting crisp. The rise at the midsole also helps benefit the flat foot user, making this a model that appeals to all types of feet. It comes in many different colors and design patterns, suiting your style with ease.
Yonex Power Cushion SHB CFAX Badminton Shoe
The SHB CFAX shoe is made up of nappa leather. This is a softer leather that is treated to become smooth to the touch. Its resistance properties are amongst the highest in the footwear field, making it a proper candidate for increased durability and strength. The Power Cushion is once again utilized as a staple of the midsole, absorbing shock and reducing the pressure to the bottom of the foot. A leather treated upper provides the proper hold on the ankle, creating a lockdown force that positively limits your range of motion in this area.
The rubber outside is comprised of gum rubber, which is the proper fit for hardwood courts. Gum rubber is non-marking and won't damage the court. Aside from the shock absorption features, the shoe also helps to reverse this impact. The impact is converted into positive energy that gives the user a boost to their push-off and makes their shifts agile. The heel counter is another important feature of this shoe. It extends slightly from the back of the shoe, helping to keep the user both locked down and operating in the correct positioning. This notion allows the user to keep centered on the court and keep balanced when performing a direction change. This low-cut build features the proper cushioning at the upper to reduce slippage and keep the foot fully housed within the shoe.
Asics Men's GEL-Rocket 7 Volleyball Shoe
While the title lends the user to believe this shoe is intended for the sport of volleyball, it relates to the type of surface it is intended for. The Asics Gel-Rocket 7 marks for the perfect competitor for the indoor badminton space. This model is home to a gum rubber outsole, which is perfect for the indoor space. Gum rubber limits streaking and provides an ample amount of traction for travel across hardwood surfaces. This model is comprised solely of synthetic materials, helping it mold to a proper true-to-size fit. This eliminates the guessing games for the user and keeps them at bay knowing sizing is not an issue. The name helps introduce the technology used at the insole. Gel technology is used to seed the insole with small extensions to greet the bottom of the foot. This small lift helps target pressure points on the foot and directly reduces the shock they receive from ground contact.
The midsole is of a molded EVA build, which helps produce a proper host for any foot size. The cushioning system introduced at the midsole is also designed for court specific action and movements, making it the proper fit for the badminton space. The rubberized outsole is both marking and treated with different undercarriage patterns for increased traction. These patterns heighten reinforcement at the pressure points, smoothing the ride for the user during play. The sides of the shoes also feature this rubberized build, heightening the resistance to abrasions and holding the proper form for a comfortable fit.
Babolat Men's Shadow Team Badminton Trainers
The Babolat brand has had close ties to the sport of tennis for decades. Their commitment to excellence extends its reach to the badminton space with their Shadow Team Trainers. Comprised from synthetic and mesh materials, this shoe creates both breathability and durability. The dual design helps cater to a wide toe box with the mesh covering and the synthetic border and a snug insertion point with the mesh upper and inner padding. The duality of the shoe doesn't stop at the outer coverage and continues at the midsole. A dual-density insole helps create the correct form of shock absorption and keeps the shoe as a responsive representation of the user's movement. This keeps shifting crisp and effortless to the user and makes lateral movement a breeze.
Continuing the dual fashion of the shoe, the outsole features dual treads. These treads help create differing designs that relate to better grips on the surface and fluid shifts with directional changes. It also keeps the surface from wearing under the pressure of the shoe, keeping the properties of the badminton court working towards the user's benefit. A think tongue greets the top of the foot, providing ample coverage to lockdown. The insertion padding is also thick in nature, which helps create a proper hold on the ankle. This helps to reduce ankle twists and keeps the foot from sliding around within the shoe.
Adidas Performance Men's Barricade Club Tennis Shoes
We finish up the men's selections with the Adidas brand. Adidas is widely known across the sporting community, making it a fitting company to take on the badminton space. The Barricade model was originally designed for club tennis, but the court properties making up this space extend similar properties to that of a badminton court. Featuring a textile material construction, this shoe keeps the weight light and the protection strong. This textile material is tacked upon a mesh undercovering, which brings both breathability and reinforcement to the exterior of the shoe. The outsole features much intrigue with a back-tailing design that starts small at the toe box and thickens as it reaches the heel. Directly underneath the heel and the rear of the midsole is a thick gel layer that reduces shock and absorbs pressure. This absorption technique is extremely effective as midsole, the main shock absorber in most shoes, is located directly above it. This makes this shoe model a smooth ride for all users.
Adidas also infused their Adiprene technology into this shoe. This is an outsole top-layer that works with shock and directional change. It helps you keep your footing while establishing a flat base. The build is classified as a low-rise, but it covers almost half of the ankle when inserted, keeping it a top contender for proper lockdown and stability.
5 Best Women's Badminton Shoes
Yonex Aerus 2 LX Women's Badminton Court Shoes
The Yonex brand also runs deep into options for women, with the Aerus 2 LX being a fitting option for the badminton court. Utilizing the main three materials (mesh, leather, fabric) this Yonex model is able to check many different options of the user's wish list. Starting with the leather treatment at the upper and the edges, this keeps wear and tear in the back of a consumer's mind. This afterthought is kept safe with the ability to resist abrasions. The mesh keeps the total weight of this unit low and allows the user to stretch the toe box and sides for proper footing upon directional changes. It also works to keep breathability at an all-time high with a greater percentage of air flow than many other comparable material counterparts. The midsole features the Yonex Hyper msLite technology, which is their most durable and lightest midsole to date.
Power Cushion technology is exercised at the insole. This technology works hand-in-hand with power development and lateral movement control. Heading these two main tendencies of sport, the Power Cushion technology also produces a soft foot bed that keeps comfort at a high level.
Yonex Power Cushion 35 Women's Shoes
The Yonex Power Cushion 35 Women's Shoes was the first model to implement this revolutionary technology. This insole treatment helps extend the control for the user to cover the entire base of the foot. Most control technologies are limited to a specific area, so a technology that takes all into consideration greatly increases the amount of controlled movement a user can exercise. This technology also works to help increase power development. This power extends from push-off, pivoting, and other such stop-and-go tendencies.
The shaping of this shoe is also something badminton users can get behind. It utilizes Ergoshape technology in the molding process to produce an applied fit. This fitting refers primarily to the toe box and forefoot area, producing that comfortable, snug feel we desire out of a badminton shoe. This applied fit also helps increase durability and stability streams. The outsole is comprised of gum-rubber, making it a safe fit for any court surface. The fabric build that Yonex is known for stretches to create a wall of covering on the outsides, producing an abrasion resistant frame that stands up to the test of time.
ASICS Women's Upcourt 2 Volleyball Shoe
The women's crossover in the Asics brand is the Upcourt 2. This is termed a volleyball shoe, but we have already determined that those properties were in reference to court type, making them a proper fit for the game of badminton. This model extends the gripping and stability technology with the introduction of gum rubber at the outsole. This outsole rises up the outer shell, which makes lateral movement more controlled. This model also features the same gel insole technology that the Asics brand has become synonymous with. This provides an ample base for reducing shock and providing comfort to the user.
This model is made from synthetic, textile and fabric construction. The combination of these materials is spread evenly throughout the shoe, with the stronger elements extending at the sides and with the logo implementation. This produces a small abrasion shield and reduces wear over time. The upper posses a thick padding that provides lockdown upon insertion. The back of the heel also features an extension for keeping the user operating in the correct form and posture.
Yonex PC F1 NEO Women's Badminton Shoe & The Yonex SHB01LTD "Lee Chong Wei" Edition
We searched and searched for different brands to introduce, but we were lead back to the Yonex models. With that being said, we can up with two affordable options for women extending from the top brand in the badminton market. The PC F1 Neo model features all of the bells and whistles previously associated with Yonex. Power Cushion technology, msLite midsole for lightweight functioning, and leather mixed with fabric build for protection. This model also introduces the Tough Guard upper, which produces an inclusive wrap that covers more of the foot than previous designs. This relates directly to lockdown and stability, increasing both with this extra material inclusion. Most of the outer shell is designed from P.U. and nappa leather, giving it that smooth and durable finish the user desires. Aside from these inclusions, it houses most of the features associated previously with the Yonex brand.
Yonex SHB01LTD "Lee Chong Wei" edition
One of the cool inclusions to our list is the Lee Chong Wei exclusive model. Lee is the world's top ranked badminton player. His longest span of title reign extended beyond 4 years, making his career a legacy for new users to strive for. The design of this women's model features some of Lee's favorite color combinations. They are backed, supported, and worn by Lee, making them a proper fit for our list. This model adopts many of the main strategies that Yonex has been known for, with a little different expertise being extended in the graphic design space. For a model that is worn and backed by a professional player, the price tag is within reach of the other brands on the market, making them a fun fit for anyone who is passionate about the game.
Badminton Shoes Buyer's Guide
With all footwear options, it is important to break apart the game to prescribe the different areas of usage. We know that the game involves a lot of lateral movement from both the feet and the body. Since most of these movements require effort from the upper extremities, torso, and legs, the feet will be a primary location for support, stability, and stamina. The heel is the primary location of push-off and braced landing, calling for increased support within the footwear to absorb some of this contact. The quick pace leads to increased stamina drains, calling for an increase in air flow to keep the feet breathing comfortably and not bunching up within the shoe. These mentions also draw attention to the toe box, forefoot area, midsole, outsole, and rear shaft. Below we will introduce key areas of importance and back them with information that can help the user make an informed decision when buying.
Due to the prescribed movements, a lightweight fit is a good starting point. Shoes made from mesh and canvas materials represent the two top targets. These materials allow for a better, breathable design due the penetrability of the fabric. This allows for small holes to cover the outer shell, allotting the foot the proper breathing space. These materials also make for a light feel on the foot and keep the user quick on their feet. With reinforcement, these materials can operate as durable means that will withstand the test of time.
Synthetic and fabricated materials are also popular with keeping the lightweight title. Synthetic blends can work with all sorts of materials to gain the lowest possible weight and they have the ability to be shaped into the proper mold. Synthetic means benefit the user who enjoys a true fit. Mesh and canvas materials will give the user flexibility in the fitting aspect. Fabricated materials such as textiles work well with the proper reinforcement. This material is rather stretchy, giving it similar properties to the canvas and mesh options mentioned previously.
The lightweight notion is continued at the outsole, where this build can play an ample role to proper weight. Badminton shoes will feature a thinner sole that keeps the user closer to the surface. This will help the user gain the proper feel for the surface and be able to fixate their movements based on its properties. A thin sole is the ample fit for hardwood, PU, and clay surfaces alike. The benefits of a thin sole relate directly to quick movements, agility, and foot responsiveness. A thicker sole will allow less flex from front to back, which limits the agility of the user and could limit the effectiveness of push-off.
Supporting the Forefoot at the Midsole
During the game of badminton, you will be putting a lot of pressure on your feet, calling for a counter. The main area of intrigue for countering these pressures is at the midsole. It often rests between the outsole and the insole. The prescribed material build is of rubberized components, with special attention to absorption properties. The absorption piece is important due to the consistent pressures we are placing on the heels and toes. These pressures amount over the course of a contest and can lead to ailments that irritate these areas. Since the midsole lies directly below the bottom of the foot, it plays an important role to resisting these pressures.
An EVA build is common, introducing levels of memory foam that form-fit the bottom of the foot. This helps the foot rest into a pocket that is surrounded by material. Think of it as a shield that rises to protect from all angles. The midsole should extend from front to back. You also want to ensure the midsole doesn't protrude too much into the space occupied by the insole. This will produce a fit that is often too tight, rendering the properties of the midsole useless.
Movement Control and Fitting
Adhering to lateral movements is accomplished through the correct design. This starts at the front of the shoe with the toe box. The toe box should be wide and forgiving. The wideness allows the toes to splay naturally. This emits natural movements from this area and can relate directly to proper balance and footing during play. The forgiveness relates to the ability of the fabric to flex. During a contest, you may require some additional space to pivot your direction. The stretch from the fabric keeps your movements fluid and calculated. As we extend to the forefoot area, the shoe should start to narrow its shape. You want the sides of the shoes to be in contact with the sides of the feet. You don't want this contact to cause increased pressure. This area is used as a control more than it is a gripping area.
You want to keep the sides of the feet from shifting when you plant or push-off. If this area is to tight, it will cut of circulation and can blister the sides of the feet. A molded shaping works best to keep this area narrow yet comfortable. As we work to the back of the shoe, we should notice some sort of heel cup. This pocket keeps the heel from extending to improper rotations. It can also play a telling piece in keeping you centered and square to the court. This area acts as a holding unit that works with the entire body. Too much room or space in this area contributes to sloppy movements and can off-set your balance. You want to obtain a snug fit, but too tight can attribute to some of the ailments mentioned previously.
After going over these areas of fitting, it is clear to see that a molded or form-fit is the best option for the user. These options run true to size and can still feature the mesh, textile, canvas, and synthetic builds we prescribed earlier. The flex comes at the toe box, but the function doesn't have to be limited as we extend to the other areas of the shoe. With proper reinforcement, the shoe can cater to your movement. A forgiving shoe keeps the user centered and in balance, which are two components that relate directly to the full body movement. Snug is the preferred fit in all categories but compromising for a tight fit or loose fit can pose additional problems for the user. Give the shoe the push and pull test with your foot. Push down with your toes and your heel. If you feel the shoe give in and return to form after pressure, the internal workings will be to your liking. If you twist with your ankle and the shoe doesn't move with you, it is too loose and could lead to a heightened injury risk at the heel.
The proper cushioning is one of the final areas of consideration. Since this category is measured on a preference basis, we will present a few options that will work for the user. The first is the use of a memory foam insole. Memory foam is both responsive to movement shifts and pressures. It returns its shape after pressure is placed and form fits almost any foot. Some people shy away from memory foam components due to the shifts in stability and center of gravity. This makes it a candidate for preference.
The second inclusion that makes for an excellent foot bed is gel technology. Usually containing rubberized balls or extensions, gel technology is very responsive to shock absorption. It takes a blunt of the blow at the source, severely reducing any additional aftershock that the user would be aware of. It also makes for a smooth fit that won't irritate the feet. It often lies under a bed of coating, avoiding direct contact with the material, which is something that memory foam struggles with.
The last cushioning form is through prescription orthotics. Most doctors can analyze your feet, drawing areas that may cause to trouble with pressures. They combat these pressures by prescribing an insert that suits your foot on a direct basis. These options can be pricey, but they are effective. The problem that arises with orthotics is making up the room to fit them in. Most shoes house removable inserts, but you could be out of luck with this route if they don't.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are the best badminton shoes for outdoors?
The main factor in deciding what a pair of shoes are intended for is the outsole build. If an outsole is made from gum rubber, it is best suited for the indoor space. Its properties associate with the surfaces, affording the user increased grip and traction. The best outdoor shoes would be those comprised of other rubberized components and compounds. The gum rubber also attracts debris, making it a prime candidate for routine maintenance, which could make the outdoors a headache. With that being said, anything other than gum rubber makes for the proper outdoor usage.
What are the best badminton shoes for hard court?
This question was basically answered with the first inquiry, but we'll detail why gum rubber is better for indoor surfaces. Most indoor surfaces are treated with a special substance in the wax, the way they are cleaned, and other such comparisons. Gum rubber creates an increased friction when striking this surface, allowing the user to stop and go with ease. It also increases the grip on the surface, reducing sliding and slippage.
What are the best badminton shoes with cushion?
Cushioning is always an important component to add to the badminton inclusion list. This question is best answered on a preference basis when it comes to the insole. Most prefer memory foam. Others prefer a gel-based insole. Some prefer to be handed a calculated prescription from the foot doctor. None of these answers are wrong and all make a fitting inclusion to the shoe. You always want to strive for increased, lightweight padding at the insertion point. This relates directly to the proper lockdown of the foot. The midsole can also emit some cushioning, which again reverts to the preference discussion.
What are the best badminton shoes for ankle support?
The properties of a shoe that provides increased ankle support starts with the heel cup. The heel cup is known as the area where your foot rests in the shoe. It should fit snug and is should surround the sides of your heel and ankle with some sort of padding. If your foot falls into place, almost as if it were a pocket for your foot, then you have found a model with increased ankle support. Other ankle support measures with be a covering that rises at least halfway up the ankle, an encompassing tongue that wraps around the front of the foot, and other such holding and placement devices.
What are the best badminton shoes for beginners?
When it comes to footwear for beginners, you don't need all the fancy bells and whistles. You need a solid support in the cushioning category. You want the foot to feel comfortable and supported, no matter your level of play. You also want to begin to adopt the right form, so a mesh, fabric, or other such lighter material build is fitting. The novice user still has a lot to learn in the footwork category, so a forgiving fabric is fitting. A solid outsole is also something that doesn't provide for a bad starting point. This can be upgraded to the thin layer as play progresses and advances.
What are the best badminton shoes for wooden court?
Since hardwood is specifically treated for the activity at-hand, prescribing wooden court shoes can be difficult. If this surface is untreated and rough, you want to start by addressing the outsole. Thick extensions that highlight the pressure points of the foot are a proper starting point. This covers the bases into push-off, landing, and pivoting. The outsole links directly to your movement, so a thick one to combat the force of an unknown surface is a proper start. You also want to utilize the reinforced fabric with the build. You don't really know if there are increased abrasion risks, so better to be safe than sorry.
As we can see from our discussion, no brand quite compares to Yonex. Their product line is made almost exclusively for badminton, which is the main discussion point. Each of their models includes some sort of additional feature or new inclusion, which keeps the brand advancing as the game progresses. They are ahead of the curve with their exclusive designs and their knowledge of sport is showcased from head to toe of the shoe. To afford any one model the title would be blasphemy to the brand. The only gripe would be the price tag most of the newer models carry, but they have also released exclusive types that level the playing field with the other comparable brands. This brand leaves us speechless in the way they counter any issues and competitors, marking them as the clear-cut winners of our discussion. If you can obtain a Yonex pair of shoes, at a reasonable price, it would be silly to look elsewhere or think twice about that decision.