Like many of today’s most loved games, the simple badminton set has roots in early English history. Badminton sets have since leaped across several centuries and many borders, and appear everywhere. Now among the most played, watched and competitive of all games, badminton keeps increasing numbers of families and friends entertained and fit, with many Americans among them.
Badminton has some similarities to tennis: it’s played by singles, doubles or male-female mixed pairs, uses a net, and points are gained by landing a shot into the opponent’s court. However, the court is smaller than a tennis court, and the action occurring sometimes makes tennis games seem glacial by comparison, due to close playing proximity and the required dexterity to return shots quickly.
Instead of a ball, badminton set use a projectile known as a “shuttlecock” (or “shuttle”). A plastic or feathered object designed to travel more quickly than almost any sports object, it also slows and drops in a moment. To play well, badminton players must get to the shuttlecock in milliseconds, with cheetah-like speed and stunning power bursts. Competition badminton is explosive!
A player must simultaneously spot and beat the shuttlecock’s rapid drop, then bat it back with a racquet that’s smaller than a tennis racquet. Cork-headed plastic shuttlecocks come in most badminton sets, as they provide a premium of power and accuracy, and are most popular with badminton players.
Badminton racquets, once made of wood, now usually consist of lightweight alloy materials for quick handling. Some racquets are single-piece units, others use separate head and shaft construction. Still popular today for its sturdy steel shaft and superior design, one famous model was created in 1950 by John Jaques IV, of Jaques of London. Since 1795, Jaques of London, the world’s oldest and most influential sports and games manufacturer, has been making quality outdoor, indoor and table games and sports equipment. Jaques has been owned and run by the same family for eight generations.
Often played indoors (as are all serious competition games) to offset wind blowing the shuttlecock, a badminton set’s net is easy to set up. It requires simple rope-supported steel poles, with a good net strung between them. Badminton’s played outdoors by countless friends and families in backyards, on beaches, in parks and fields. Teens and youngsters particularly love the game for its quick moves, demanding agility and easy setup.
Invented by British Military Service officers stationed in India during the 1800s, the game got its name from Badminton House, the Duke of Beaufort‘s quarters, where it became popular after returning officers introduced the game to the English gentry. After English domination for years, Denmark and several Asian nations have produced many recent world-class badminton players. They can often be seen carrying badminton sets in airports, ready to practice anywhere.
Don’t wait any longer to see what all the excitement and fun is about. Get your own Jaques badminton set today. Choose from simple 2- or 4-player badminton sets with all the basics, including alloy racquets, sturdy steel poles, all-weather nets and shuttles, lightweight canvas carry bags or a sturdy pinewood box. A badminton set makes a perfect gift of fun and fitness.
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