Don't overlook your warm up! It is important to get your heart pumping and get your muscles activated to prevent injury and also increase your mobility.
• At rest, the muscles have a temperature of around 36 °C. However, in order for it to reach its full potential, the temperature has to rise to 39 °C.
Hence, you will risk injury when you demand maximum performance from a muscle at rest.
• A good warm-up lasts between 20 and 30 minutes. Only then can you move on to using your muscles to the maximum.
• The first exercises serve primarily to increase your heart rhythm, which is often neglected during the warm-up. However, too much effort can be harmful.
Therefore, an increase in heart rhythm is particularly important.
Before moving your body, prepare your major joints (ankles, knees, hips, shoulders, wrists, and cervical vertebrae). To do this, loosen them up with the following exercises:
1. Rotate all your joints twice in each direction for ten seconds each. For the hips, do pelvic twists and also stretch your back (gently and not too fast; bring right hand to left leg and vice versa).
2. Rotate your legs inside-out and outside-in. Doing this will provide deep relaxation.
3. For a deep warm-up of the muscles that help support your ankles (the most stressed joints in badminton), stand on one leg at a time and balance for 15 seconds.
If this exercise seems too easy, close your eyes or have your partner help you with light taps on the shoulders and in all directions to try to throw you off balance.
Before you start running and get your cardiovascular system going, you'll also need to gently warm up the muscle groups most involved in your movements on the field (quads and hamstrings).
To do this, you can perform the following stretching exercises with contractions that will gradually warm up your muscles:
1. Six seconds of gentle quadriceps stretch, then contraction in stretch position with a hand on the ankle. Repeat three times on both legs.
2. Stretch your hamstrings by placing your heel on the floor or a bench. Then tense the muscles by pressing the floor with your heel.
After you've loosened up your joints and started warming up your muscles, you can now do more intensive warm-up exercises and get your cardiovascular system going.
Begin your warm-up with a five-minute easy jog.
During this slow jog, gently roll your shoulders and swing your arms.
You'll then run for two minutes at a slightly increased speed.
Now, for the remaining three minutes, perform some exercises at an increased speed and intensity along the length of the badminton court :
- 2 x knee lifts
- 2 x heels to buttocks
- 6 x sidesteps right and left (three on each side and Forward and reverse hop run)
- 2 crossovers (both sides)
- 2 increase runs (with a sprint at the end) with a ten-second rest between each set
Of course, you can add more exercises, but you just have to pay attention to the right intensity. For example, you can do sidesteps with jumps or straddle jumps, as well as back exercises, the choice is almost unlimited.
All in all, it's about preparing your body as gently as possible for the upcoming exertion.
After these warm-up exercises for the lower body muscles, you can now grab your racket and do more exercises on the field. The following exercises are recommended:
• Begin by playing drives with your partner for two minutes. These hits are less "painful" and "hard". Make sure to keep your elbow up at all times.
This can be followed by two minutes of baseline-to-baseline clear punches. Thanks to the drives, your arm is already warmed up. Don't start your warm-up with clears, as they would put too much strain on your arm muscles and shoulders.
• During this racket warm-up, where you hardly walk across the court, you can continue to warm up the rest of your body by hopping to the rhythm of the shot and moving slightly from the baseline to the center of the field after each shot.
• Finally, perform intense smashes (smash balls) for two minutes to finally get your muscles up to game temperature. Practice example: Long serve, smash, stop and lob so both players can take turns smashing. Don't hit too hard so the ball doesn't hit the ground every two minutes.
Now you are perfectly warmed up and can start playing without fear of injury.