Badminton vs Pickleball: What’s the Difference?


All over the world tennis is regarded as the number one sport that is played in an enclosed court with the help of a racquet and a ball. The sport is also known for its endurance and agility and it demands the player to put all of their strength and skills to master its strokes. But for those who have created a passion for playing tennis can also benefit from the other forms of the sport such as Pickleball, paddleball, racquetball, badminton, etc. Let us compare and contrast two major forms of tennis, namely badminton and Pickleball here by writing badminton vs pickleball review.

Pickleball Game in Brief

Pickleball Court
Pickleball Court

Pickleball is one of the fastest-growing paddle sport that is a combination of many other games such as ping pong, badminton, wiffle ball, etc. It is considered an all-round sport for optimal fitness and helps in improving the mobility, balance, and dexterity of the players.

The game is played with the help of hard wooden paddles in a standard pickleball court. This game is popular among people of all ages as its rules are simple and the game is easy to play.

Many people play this game for physical exercise and endurance training. Apart from being an excellent start-up game and helping people to burn additional calories, the game has a very low startup cost. It is relatively inexpensive to start playing the game as pickleball paddles and balls are pretty much cheap.

Women with pickleball paddle
Women with Pickleball paddle

The ball used in the Pickleball game is similar to Wiffle balls and is lightweight with holes. The game is played on a small version of a standard tennis court. The net lies just above the ground and is about 36 inches above the ground level. The rules of this game are simple and are easier to understand. It has been well said that you will only require 15 minutes to learn the game and take days to master it.

Badminton Game in Brief

Badminton Court
Badminton Court

In contract with other court games, badminton is played with a shuttlecock, also known as a birdie. The cork is hit with a netted racquet. The game can be played either by two or four people, both indoors and outdoors. The history of this game traces back to 2000 years and involves a series of rules, that people of present times have almost mastered.

The game is played in a rectangular court that has been divided into two halves by a net. The court for doubles is wider than the court for singles. The net is kept about 1.55 meters high above the ground and it is important to ensure that the ceiling of the court is high enough to not affect a serve.

Badminton Racket & Shuttle
Badminton Racket & Shuttle

The game is played for twenty-one points with badminton racquets that are made lightweight. The bats are made from graphite-reinforced plastic material or carbon fiber material with high performing strings. The cork as we all know is a projectile birdie with an open conical shape. Shuttles that are of feathers wear out easily and thus professional players have started to replace it with synthetic corks.

Similarities between Badminton and Pickleball

  • Both the badminton and the Pickleball games have similar rules
  • Both these games can be played either as singles or doubles that require two players and four players respectively.
  • Both the game requires hitting and tossing the ball or shuttle over the net with the help of a paddle or racquet.
  • Players are required to toss the ball only once over the net in both these games
  • The size of the court where these games are played is also roughly the same
  • The players of both these games are required to be fit and show an exceptional level of endurance.

Differences between Badminton and Pickleball

Though both these games are racquet sports with the same origin and similar set of rules, each of them varies from easy others in certain key concepts. Let us discuss how they contrast with each other here.

Equipment usedThe badminton game makes use of a stringed racquet to toss the cock.

Similarly, instead of a ball a shuttlecock or a birdie is sent across the net
Pickleball makes use of a solid wooded paddle to toss the ball. 

The game is played with a lightweight ball with perforations.
 Play zoneBadminton courts are a little wider and longer than the pickleball courts. The net is suspended higher and players are required to give a hard hit on the cock to send it to the other side of the court.The courts of Pickleball games are smaller and the net is suspended lower, touching the floor making it easy for the players to toss the ball across the net.
Scoring systemRally scoring is used in badminton. This denotes that the players score points on every round. The game is played for a total of 21 points.In the Pickleball game, only the service team scores points. Thus it is harder to score points in this game. These games are played for a total of 11 points.
GameplayIn badminton, the shuttle should not touch the ground at all.It is okay for the ball to hit the ground. The players should get the ball bounce once on the serve and again at the first return.
Game strokesTo win over the competition, the players need to hit a good mix of overhand and underhand strokes.In Pickleball players usually perform underhand strokes.
Origin Badminton has its roots from tennis.Pickleball has its roots and origins from badminton, tennis and ping pong

Final Words

If you wish to spend quality time with your friends and your social group, then you can indulge in both the Pickleball or badminton games. Both of them will also give a tough shot on your muscles and help you to shed a minimum of 300-400 calories per 30 minutes session. For more serious games, it is important to master their key differences, rules and scoring system to have effective gameplay. We hope we have all your doubts about both these games covered in this write-up.


  1. Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in the US. Badminton is the second most popular sport in the world after Soccer/football. Top speed of a hit in PB is around 40-45 mph.
    Top speed in Badminton is a blistering 360 mph/493 kph. Guinness book of WRs has it listed. You have to be extremely fit to compete in Badminton strictly played indoors. The outdoor pastime game is what I Feder to as goodminton. PB is a good sport for all age groups, easy to pick up, relatively inexpensive and is seriously multi generational.
    Also for that reason it’s very social but can be very competitive. It is played on a badminton size court measuring 44’x20’ exactly. The net is 34” on center and spans the width of the court at minimum. It does have elements of the others like tennis, badminton and table tennis (ping pong) although there are some others that are strictly PB. Those are more noticeable in pro matches when players are pitted against each other in serious competition. Fun to play and watch. Cheers!


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