Baddy fit!


“Play to be Fit, Be Fit to Play” – Yours truly

This January, I saw hundreds march out of their cozy homes to participate in variety of athletic events at my apartment complex. Sports have always motivated and brought people together – it’s fun, it’s competitive, it’s social and a great way to be fit.

Badminton is hugely beneficial towards improving your health and fitness and can lead to stronger muscles, a better cardiovascular system and a flexible body.

And if you aspire to play this game well, beat your opponents; you will need to achieve high standards in your game and play without fatigue hour after hour. So read on …

A simple analysis of this game reveals the following:

  • Average rally length is 6-8 secs with rest periods of 15 secs. The short span of individual rallies place a high demand on anaerobic energy system.
  • The match is of at least 45 mins duration on the average – which whatsapps for aerobic endurance.
  • Many shots are played overhead and players rely a lot on wrist flexors for generating power. Common moves in badminton are jumps, lunges, lateral moves, kicks, forward, backward and lateral bends.
  • Flexibility and Agility play a crucial role in Badminton to control, place and return shots.
  • Strength and explosive power should form the fundamental part of the training program to maximise court speed and smash power.

To address these, the player needs on-court training coupled with extra off-court training, such as resistance exercises in the gym and other cross training activities. Following are the areas that need training –

1. Strength training and Muscular Endurance : Resistance training exercises should focus on those areas which are actively involved in playing badminton, such as the wrist, elbows, shoulders, neck, chest, abdomen, back, thighs, knees and ankles.

Beginners should do a full body workout twice a week that targets the upperbody, core and Lower body with dumbells, barbells, resistance bands, kettle balls etc. Target 15 reps, 3 Sets for endurance.

2. Interval training for Endurance: Interval training taxes the aerobic system and builds the cardio vascular system by alternating between High Intensity and Low Intensity.

Cross court drill are effective. Do the sequence for 60 sec and then rest for 1 – 2 minutes. Repeat.

3. Agility drills : are meant to increase speed and quickness. Figure runs, Lateral run drills and T drills are few ways to build agility.

Perform these after light warm up and before the workout sessions.

4. Flexibility : Static stretches of each body part post the workout sessions will improve flexibility.

5. Training for Speed strength or Power: Speed strength or Power is nothing but application of the same force in less amount of time. Ex. Hitting a smash or jumping high to return a serve. Speed training focusses on reaction time and acceleration with maximum strength that can be exerted. Plyometric drills like jump squats, overhead throws should be performed at advanced level Important: Speed strength training are very advanced form of training and you must consult with a certified Fitness Trainer before embarking on these forms of exercises.

In sports and fitness!


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