If you’ve played your fair share of intense badminton matches, you know just how hard your forearms have to work to secure a win. And whether you’re a beginner or long-time player, it’s not uncommon to wind up with sore, achy forearms after a few rallies.
Luckily, the right exercises can help improve your forearm power and consistency in future matches. But what are the best movements to include in your workout routine?
In this post, we’ve compiled four of the most effective badminton forearm exercises for a faster, more explosive swing. Let’s dive in!
4 Best Badminton Forearm Exercises
As you build your badminton training routine, these are the four best forearm exercises to consider including in your workouts:
1. Wrist Rollers
Wrist rollers work two crucial sets of muscles in your forearms: your flexors and extensors. These muscles engage every time you move your hand backward or forward — like when you snap your wrist back and forth during a smash.
To do this exercise, you’ll need a piece of equipment called a wrist roller. (You can find one on Amazon for around $20.) Simply attach your desired weight to the roller, and then:
- Standing in an upright position, hold the roller out in front of you with your palms facing down. Your arms should be extended out at about shoulder-height.
- Rotate your wrists one at a time to start lifting the weight. You should feel the burn in your forearm flexors and extensors as you do so.
- Bring the weight all the way up. Then, repeat the process in the opposite direction.
- Repeat for 2 to 3 sets of 10 to 15 reps.
2. Dumbbell Wrist Extensions
The dumbbell wrist extension is another weighted exercise that helps you target and train the smaller, more active muscles in the forearms.
Here’s how to do it, step-by-step:
- Start by grabbing a lightweight dumbbell with your right hand.
- Kneel down near a weight bench, and rest your forearm over the edge, palm side down. (Your wrist should be about three inches past the edge here.)
- For extra support, use your left hand to hold your elbow in place.
- Then, slowly contract your forearm muscles to lift the weight up and back. You should mainly be rotating the wrist in this step — but you should feel the tension in your upper forearm muscles.
- Hold for a split second, and slowly lower the dumbbell back to the starting position.
- Continue for 2 to 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps. Then, repeat with the other side.
3. Weighted Wrist Curls
When it comes to badminton forearm exercises, weighted wrist curls are another incredibly effective movement to try. They work by challenging your muscles in the opposite direction as wrist extensions.
Here’s how to do them:
- Start by holding a lightweight dumbbell in each hand.
- Kneel near a weight bench, and rest your forearms across it with your palms facing up. Like with the wrist extensions, there should be about a 3-inch gap between your wrists and the bench.
- Slowly curl the dumbbells upward by rotating your wrists. Again, you should feel the burn in your forearm muscles.
- Gently lower the weight down, and repeat for 2 to 3 sets of 8 to 12 reps.
4. Figure Eights With a Training Racket
Doing figure eights with a training racket (or a regular racket with a heavy cover) is a powerful way to push your forearm muscles to the limit.
This exercise is fantastic because it not only trains the forearms, but it also mimics the motions that you’d use in an actual badminton game. Here are the steps:
- Holding the racket with your dominant arm, stand with comfortable yet upright posture.
- Start by pointing the racket diagonally down towards your right hip.
- Quickly whip the racket diagonally up and to the left.
- In one rapid, fluid motion, snap the racket down towards your left hip. Then, swiftly swing it up diagonally to the right.
- Finish the figure eight by moving the racket back down towards your right hip.
- Repeat the motion for 2 to 3 sets of 3 to 5-minute reps.
Tip: To get a visual of what this looks like, here’s an excellent tutorial by badminton coach Paul Stewart:
The Bottom Line
Your forearms are essential to a strong, consistent badminton performance. By incorporating the exercises we covered here in your training routine, you can create stronger smashes, boost your shot speed, and avoid fatigue in long rallies and matches.
Of course, your forearms aren’t the only muscles that make a difference in your game. To level up your training routine and become even more dangerous on the court, be sure to check out our training guides or join the Badminton Justin YouTube community today.