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Is Badminton A Cardio Workout?

There is an image of badminton where a family plays casually in a field after a picnic or young children gently bat a shuttle back and forth in the backyard – this would suggest that badminton is nothing more than gentle physical exertion. But could the opposite be true?

When played at a professional level or as a serious hobby sport, badminton could be far more demanding than one might first imagine.

Is Badminton A Cardio Workout?

Is Badminton A High-Intensity Sport?

For all intents and purposes, badminton is what you would refer to as a high-intensity activity. In other words, despite what you might think, there is much more involved than the casual nature of the game may suggest.

Players are required to exert a great amount of physical strength, stamina and endurance and after a game, usually need a good sit down.

In short, one must be extremely fit in order to be a successful badminton player.

What Level Of Fitness Is Required For Badminton?

If you want to be the best in any sport, a decent fitness level is a must, and this is particularly important when talking about badminton.

An intense training regime is needed for players to be successful, and this requires multiple training sessions each week, each of which can last many hours.

What’s more, professional players are getting an intense cardiovascular workout every time they get on the court. In a single game of badminton, players can be expected to move around far more than in a game of tennis. The agility and speed that is required in mind-blowing and only the best will get to the top.

A badminton player should be able to run continuously for 45 minutes in order to be able to maintain their performance throughout a single game. This easily demonstrates the cardio nature of the game. But there’s more.

Whilst badminton is a great way to keep your cardiovascular system in great health, there are many other demands that must be met by would-be badminton superstars.

You will also be getting an intense flexibility workout – this is owing to the fact that players are required to move quickly and nimbly around the court. There is a lot of jumping involved and short, sharp movements that must be taken at the drop of a hat.

Furthermore, your level of stamina must be at its peak in order to succeed in this demanding sport. A game of badminton usually lasts for around 45 minutes, but it could go on for much longer. Having to stay active for this amount of time takes some intense training.

It is safe to say that badminton is one of the best high-intensity cardio workouts you will ever have, even if you are playing at an amateur level.

What Level Of Fitness Is Required For Badminton?

What Are The Health Benefits Of This Type Of High-Intensity Workout?

It goes without saying that a cardio workout like this will deliver some incredible health benefits and if you are looking to stay in shape by taking part in a sport – badminton is, without a doubt, a great choice.

Let’s explore some of the many health benefits that you can expect to gain from playing badminton.

Cardio fitness is vital for your circulation and can mean much-improved heart health. According to the American Heart Association, playing sports that involve a cardio workout will reduce your chances of heart disease significantly.

Furthermore, those with low blood pressure will notice a vast improvement in their condition when engaging in regular cardio exercise.

And of course, an important sub-effect of this is that cholesterol will be reduced. At present, this is one of the most significant health problems worldwide, with more than 39% of adults suffering from it.

One of the major advantages of a cardio workout is that it can help to reduce your blood sugar. This is important for reducing the risk of diabetes and getting it under control if you have already received a diagnosis.

Many people around the world struggle with pain, but a high-intensity workout such as badminton can actually get this under control. The reason for this is that it can improve your muscle tone, and this will have a knock-on impact on the pain.

People who take part in regular cardio exercise will benefit from improved sleep, something which is a big problem for many people in this modern day and age.

Maintaining a healthy weight is immensely important for many reasons, one being your heart health. The intense physical demands of the sport mean that you can easily keep to a healthy weight at the same time as building good muscle mass.

A research study in the USA showed that those who took part in intense cardiovascular activity saw an improvement in their immune system. This is a result of an increase in certain antibodies which would suggest that playing badminton could improve your overall health.

Finally, a cardio workout can vastly improve your mood, and there are studies that prove this. It is evident that those with symptoms of depression see a drastic improvement and that even just playing a single game could be sufficient.


Badminton has something of a reputation among those who aren’t familiar with the sport as being slow-paced, far from intense and not providing much in terms of physical exercise. However, quite the opposite is true, and this is a physical activity that requires a lot of physical input from the players.

This cardiovascular workout provides many benefits, and it is not difficult to see why so many people work their way towards a pro-level in the game.