Badminton vs Tennis: Which One Is Better for You?

Badminton and tennis have much in common. In fact, the most common element seems to be that the players hate each other.

Well, maybe hate is a strong word. But I’ve never enjoyed the haughty stares from the short-shorts-wearing tennis players as I make my way over to the badminton net.

To be honest, I play and enjoy both games but there’s a reason that this blog isn’t called TennisLab. So, if you expected a fair and objective analysis, I’m sorry to disappoint. I’ll try not to be too slanted though so let’s start off easy with a general description:

Both tennis and badminton are played on very similar courts with a net in between. Both have players on either end trying to not drop either the shuttle or the ball. Players use rackets and hold a great spirit of sportsmanship throughout the game. Even the type of games, single or doubles are similar, and both sports started in England around the same time.

But with so many similarities, they have a good level of differences as well. So, if you are a sports enthusiast looking forward to joining either of the two, this article will help you a lot. 

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the fastest shot ever hit in a badminton game was as fast as 261.6 MPH (421 KM/H). Believe it or not, that light feather shuttle can travel faster than the golf ball. While tennis has recorded its fastest shot at 163.4 MPH (263 KM/H).

Badminton as a sport is way lot faster than tennis in terms of shot speeds and player movements. This might even go against the intuition thinking that how can a feather shuttle travel faster than a heavy tennis ball after being hit with a tremendous force? It is because in tennis, first, you can take the ball after one bounce, and the way you hit it, the heavier ball drops quickly. But in badminton, you need to hit the shuttle before it touches the floor. Players can leap to their highest point and reach out for the shuttle and hit blazing smashes at unbelievable speeds.

So, what does this mean?

On the righteous side of the tennis vs badminton argument, if you are a player who is more into reflexes and agility and loves a fast-paced quick movements game, badminton is perfect for you.

And if you want a little more time to see the ball and run around on a bigger court, tennis might suit you well. Although badminton courts are much smaller than tennis courts, the bizarre speeds make it very difficult for you to cover the entire court.

You have to be ready on your toes the whole time and try to reach the shuttle quickly in the minimum steps possible with lunges and a lot of stretching. While in tennis, with a bigger court to cover, you have to run a lot and slide and hit the ball with power to keep up in the game. 

Badminton leads the way in the amount of running you need to do in a single game. Even though a badminton match lasts around just an hour while tennis matches are played for an average of 3 hours, a badminton player runs twice as much as a tennis player and hits the birdie also twice as often.

This of course is not a vague statement, but a cured content and statistics from a tennis game of the All England Championship vs a badminton game of the World Badminton Championship. That means a badminton player has to cover a lot more and run a lot more in just half the time than that of a tennis game. So definitely, a badminton player needs to be very quick and needs to have a lot more stamina as there are not many long breaks between successive points and even the sets unlike in tennis.

But all this does not suggest that tennis is easy to play.

Tennis players need to take a longer stride and run a longer distance in a rally. If you are long-legged that might tip the scales when it comes to badminton vs tennis. But really, a badminton player takes a lot more steps.

Tennis balls and rackets are both, way heavier than a feather shuttle and a badminton racket. So, you need to have good strength to keep up your racket and hit the ball with immense control.

Honestly, in this matter, it depends on what game style you fancy more. Badminton is quick with a lot quicker steps and rapid movement. Tennis is a tad slower and requires running from one side to the other of the court, unlike badminton players who follow a stepping pattern instead of just running.

Doubles games in badminton are even faster and quicker than the singles editions. So, if you like such a fast game style and crazy stepping and smashing through the air, you are more suited to badminton. If instead, you fancy a more along-the-ground style of game with heavier rackets, tennis can bring you more joy. 

Even if it looks that badminton is a tough sport to play and even tougher than tennis, with the amount of money that is involved globally in the two sports, tennis leads the way by a very big margin.

If you win Wimbledon, you take home almost 3 million dollars. But then in the All England Competition and World Tour finals, badminton players receive prizes of around just half a million in total! So, it is very tough for badminton players to sustain their expenditures and keep up with their fitness and kit requirements.

They mostly depend upon their sponsors and endorsements to travel around and participate in tournaments and facilitate their training. On the other hand, tennis players have enough winning in their pockets to take care of themselves. But even they too have sponsors and endorsements and thus have no problem in maintaining their expenditures and their fitness requirements. 


To conclude, badminton is a sport that requires less lateral movement but a lot more leaping, jumping, and stretching and is quite demanding in terms of flexibility, agility and speed. On the other hand, tennis involves a lot more lateral movements and side stretching to reach the ball.

Before deciding which sport to pick up, it is necessary that you watch a good number of professional games in either sport. Once you do that, it will be a lot clearer to you between the dilemma of badminton vs tennis. Even if statistically badminton is a harder sport, tennis has its struggles and complexities.

So, just get yourselves up and running and without wasting your time choose the sport of your liking and have a good time!