6 Best Badminton Rackets for Intermediate Player 2021 – Reviews and Buying Guide

Why spend your money on a high-end badminton racket when an ordinary one would do? Start with the improvement in your game. The best badminton rackets for intermediate players have a bigger sweet spot that reduces the frequency of mis-hits in your play.

Such models are also incredibly lightweight and therefore put less strain on your shoulders. The majority of them have an air-friendly design as well. This reduces the drag these rackets experience during swings and makes them easy to maneuver in your hands.

Want to know more about them? Read on.

Let’s take a look at 5 of the best intermediate badminton rackets today.

Product Grip size Weight Best for
Yonex Voltric Z Force II G4 5U Smash
Yonex Nanoray 600 G4 4U Speed
YONEX Duora 10 G4 3U All-round doubles
Yonex Arcsaber 11 G4 4U All-round player
Victor Brave Sword 12 G4 5U Front court
YONEX Astrox 88D G4 5U Back court

Best Badminton Rackets for Intermediate Players: Our Picks

Yonex Voltric Z Force II – Best for Smash

Best Badminton Racket for Intermediate Player - Yonex Voltric Z Force II
  • Material: Graphite, Nanometric
  • Grip size: G4
  • Weight: 3U/4U
  • Length: 675mm
  • Shaft Flex: Extra Stiff
  • Strung tension: 24LBS – 26LBS

Yonex has always been one of the most trusted badminton racket brands. Models like the Voltric Z Force II are the reason why. It has a relatively thin shaft when compared to its predecessor and thus steers well clear of all the framing issues that plagued the original Voltric Z Force.

This model also provides a unique combination of head-heavy balance and lightweight frame. The former helps it impart more power to your shots while also allowing good handling. The latter, meanwhile, makes the Z Force II a cinch to maneuver.

You can also count on this racket to face minimum air resistance. That’s because Yonex has included the tip of its grommet inside the frame. This minor-looking adjustment has provided this model with an air-resistant shape that doesn’t experience much drag during swings.

Pros

  • Provides fast swing
  • Air-resistant shape
  • Controlled frame flex

Cons

  • Smaller head shape requires higher hitting accuracy
  • Need more power and physical strength

Final Verdict

The Yonex Voltric Z Force II isn’t the most inexpensive model on the market. Nobody can deny that. But it does have the features – air-resistant shape, faster swing speed, controlled frame flex and excellent handling – to justify its asking price.

Yonex Nanoray 600 – Best for speed

  • Material: Graphite, Nanometric
  • Grip size: G4
  • Weight: 4U
  • Length: 675mm
  • Shaft Flex: Flexible
  • Strung tension: 24LBS – 26LBS

The Yonex Nanoray 600 offers many excellent features. Foremost among them is its head-light construction. It allows this model to boost lightning-fast swing speeds and equally quick repulsion. Those of you who have an offensive playing style would do well not to miss it.

It boasts G4 grip size and 4U (80 -84g) weight – the standard dimensions offered from Yonex these days. The flexible shaft of this model helps make returns crisp and easy. It also has a positive impact on the timing of your shots and therefore makes mis-hits less likely.

Yet another notable aspect of this model is its aerodynamic design. Yonex has made that possible by manufacturing it with a combo of epoxy resin and foaming agent. Their combination has resulted in a model that is as lightweight as it is quick.

Pros

  • Quick and controlled swing
  • Cuts through the air faster
  • Delivers more power

Cons

  • Astronomically expensive

Final Verdict

Provided you came here in search of a badminton racket that could help take your game to the next level – and won’t mind paying the bucks it demands for its offerings, the Yonex ’13 Nanoray 600 Badminton Racquet most certainly won’t disappoint you.

YONEX Duora 10 – Best for all-round doubles

  • Material: Graphite, Nanometric
  • Grip size: G4
  • Weight: 3U/4U
  • Length: 675mm
  • Shaft Flex: Extra Stiff
  • Strung tension: 24LBS – 26LBS

Those of you who have already played with Duora Z Strike will find this model slightly lighter and easier to use. This model is best used as an all-round doubles racket as its box frame has provided it with an unbelievable ability to deliver solid smashes from close to the backline.

It also has the ability to throw off your opponents. Both its front and back side are equally strong and smashes from each might catch your rival off-guard. This characteristic also makes this badminton racket suitable for women’s and men’s players alike.

To further sweeten the deal, Yonex has provided this model with a broader frame. This means a bigger sweet spot and fewer chances of mis-hits during the game. It also means that those of you with an advanced technique would be able to deliver fast responses at every shot.

Pros

  • Excellent for powerful hits
  • Lightweight and easy to maneuver
  • Fast backhand drivers

Cons

  • Not that good at defense

Final Verdict

The Yonex Duora 10 badminton racket is designed for offensive players. It would work best for those of you who aim to get the best of their opponent at every shot.

YONEX Arcsaber 11 – Best for all-round player

  • Material: Graphite, Nanometric
  • Grip size: G4
  • Weight: 3U/4U
  • Length: 675mm
  • Shaft Flex: Extra Stiff
  • Strung tension: 24LBS – 26LBS

Three features of the Arcsaber 11 differentiate it from other models in this review. It has an incredibly stiff shaft that allows for precise shuttlecock placement. The stiffness of the shaft also makes your drop shots powerful and extremely difficult to return.

Its ISOMETRIC frame performs two hugely important but directly conflicting tasks. On the one end it has enhanced the space between this model’s horizontal strings. This has made the frame’s flat surface bigger and has also increased the racket’s sweet spot.

Another thing that the frame has done is to keep the vertical strings at a similar length, thereby helping the racket maintain its shape and last longer. Its CS Carbon nanotube, meanwhile, has improved this model’s repulsion power while having no adverse impact on its controllability.

Pros

  • Large sweet spot
  • Reasonably stiff shaft
  • Ideal for advanced players

Cons

  • Not the best for those with a rudimentary technique

Final Verdict

Aside from offering a larger-than-usual sweet spot, the YONEX Arcsaber 11 imparts greater repulsion to your smashes and lasts for a long time. Its availability in a budget price means that it won’t blow a hole in your pocket either. All these features combine to make it a must-have for all-round players.

Victor Brave Sword 12 – Best for front court

  • Material: Graphite, Nanometric
  • Grip size: G4
  • Weight: 3U/4U
  • Length: 675mm
  • Shaft Flex: Extra Stiff
  • Strung tension: 24LBS – 26LBS

The Victor Brave ‘Sword’ 12 is everything its name implies. Its diamond-shape aerodynamic design helps this model whizz through the air and improve your swing speed. The minimal air-resistance encountered by this model will also have a positive impact on the speed of your returns.

Victor has embedded shock resistant models in the head of this racket. Their positioning at 3 and 9 o’ clock positions helps this model absorb shocks better and deliver predictable shots. Also inside the racket are nano-sized particles that make it stiffer and enhance the precision of your shots

On top of everything else, the Brave Sword 12 has an eye catching design. Its stunning blue color and the presence of white and black decals on the racket have added to its appeal. Brave Sword also supplies this model in a subtle red version for those of you who prefer something shinier.

Pros

  • Stunning design
  • Evan balanced frame
  • Faster response

Cons

  • Not the best for back court

Final Verdict

Thanks to its diamond-shape aerodynamic design, shock-resistant frame and stiff head, the Victor Brave Sword 12 has everything that front court players may ask for. Little wonder then that its popularity is going strong more than seven years after it was released.

Yonex Astrox 88 D – Best for back court

  • Material: Graphite, Nanometric
  • Grip size: G4
  • Weight: 3U/4U
  • Length: 675mm
  • Shaft Flex: Extra Stiff
  • Strung tension: 24LBS – 26LBS

What is it that makes the Astrox 88D the best racket for front court? For starters it has huge flex in its upper part which allows this model to transmit huge power to your shots. The long length of its frame – which is 10 mm longer than 88 S – also contributes towards the launch of powerful attacks.

Yonex has further upped the ante by applying counterbalance theory in this model’s design. It has done that by distributing the weight evenly through its joint, frame top, and the grip. This arrangement means that you can easily transition between different shots.

We were relieved to note that this racket isn’t as heavy as other back court models that you see on the market. You can play with it for hours and still won’t feel any tightness or stiffness in your shoulders or back muscles.

Pros

  • Stunning design
  • Evan balanced frame
  • Faster response

Cons

  • Not the best for back court

Final Verdict

The Yonex Astrox 88 D has everything that back court players look for in their racket. That includes more flex in the upper part of its frame, even weight distribution throughout its frame and lightweight construction.

Best Badminton Rackets for Intermediate Player: What to Consider

What is it that separates the best badminton rackets from the riffraff? The answer to this question can be found in the features of these models. Badminton rackets that sell like hot cakes have qualities that meet the requirements (and expectations) of their potential users.

That that remain unsold do not. That’s why in this section we’re going to identify features that almost all high-end badminton rackets possess.

Your Gaming Style

Here’s how your gaming style might influence your choice of a badminton racket:

Defensive Style

Those of you with a defensive style would do well to go for models that are head-light. These are models whose weight is shifted away from the head and in the direction of their handle.

Such models are easy to maneuver in your hands and therefore make it easy to pick opponent’s smashes. Their excellent maneuverability also makes them a must-have for playing doubles.

Offensive Style

Do you regularly clear the court with your powerful shots? Have the ability to land smashes from the back of your area? Then you’d do well to land a head-heavy badminton racket. Here’s why we’re saying that.

Head-heavy badminton rackets complement the power of their holder by adding strength of their own to the shots. This makes the smashes that they land incredibly speedy (and effective).

What do you want?

What is it that you want from your racket? Do you want it to help cover your weakness? Or are you after a model that could complement your strong points? The answers to the previous two questions should play an important role in your selection.

Help Your Weakness

Assume for a moment that you struggle at returning rebounds and delivering quick serves. Both these weaknesses can be alleviated by a lightweight racket (one that weighs between 3U and 5U).

Provided you’re good at both these elements of your game – but are unhappy with the unpredictability of your shots, then you may want to go for a model with an even balance.

Promote Your Strength

Do you have an advanced playing technique that you want to take to the elite level? That you could do with a ‘stiff shaft’ racket that plays well in the hands of players who are close to the epitome of their game.

Similarly, if you’re one of those players who never mis-hit the shuttle, you might want to go for a racket with higher string tension. Such models have a small sweet spot but they compensate for it with an incredible return speed.

Doubles or Single

Following are the key differences between both these rackets:

Head weight: Rackets that are made for doubles’ games tend to have a lighter head weight than singles’ rackets. That’s because you have to swing them quickly to react quickly against opposing smashes and at the net.

Balance point: Singles’ rackets have a more moderate balance point (the point along the shaft where you can balance the racket on your finger) than doubles’ rackets. This makes them relatively difficult to swing.

Racket weight: Singles’ players generally prefer 3U rackets as they provide more stability (but less speed). Those who regularly play in pairs, meanwhile, go for 4U rackets as their lightweight construction helps decrease the reaction time.

Final Verdict

All the rackets that you saw above won’t just take your game to the next level. Their lightweight construction and stable frame would also reduce the risk of injury during sets. You can therefore play with them for hours without feeling any strain in your shoulders.

Having said that, there is one model that stands head and shoulders above the rest: Yonex Voltric Z Force II. Its flexible frame allows for accurate placement of your shots and the new shape of this model minimizes air drag to reduce the chances of shaft twisting.

What is more, this model is also one of the budget-ones on the market. That is to say that you won’t have to rob a bank to afford its asking price.

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