How to Light a Badminton Court

Date April 23, 2019
Categories Design Tips

Badminton is a racket game using a shuttlecock which two or four players must bat across a net by turns.

A comfortable playing environment is very important, which will directly affect the performance of athletes. Lighting is the most important external factor that affects badminton players’ performance on the field of play: the glare can “blind” players’ eyes. Therefore, reasonable lighting configuration is an important factor to ensure the quality and fairness of the game.

Due to the standard trajectory of shuttlecocks when playing badminton, it is particularly important to observe glare limitation, which means luminaires should not be arranged directly above the playing area. Badminton is affected by this more than any other sport, due to the high shuttlecock hits, the hang time of the shuttlecock, and the shuttlecock being white.

Lighting Design Objectives

The fundamental aim of a lighting installation for a badminton court is to provide visual conditions which will enable badminton to be effectively played. The main lighting objectives are as follows:

  1. Provision of Appropriate Backgrounds Contrasts.
  2. Control and Restriction of Glare.
  3. Adequate level of Illuminance, both in horizontal an vertical planes, appropriate to the activity.
  4. Uniformity of Illuminance.
  5. Satisfactory Colour Rendering.

Getting the Right Background

The colours and reflectances of interior surfaces should be selected to:

  1. Minimize the contrast in brightness between the light fittings and the ceiling; and
  2. Maximize the contrast in brightness and/or colour between the shuttle and the background surfaces. With shuttlecocks being white, a darker background is desirable.

The use of a high reflectance ceiling, or directing additional lighting onto the ceiling to increase its luminance, may have adverse affects in badminton. 

Interior Surface   Minimum Reflectance   Maximum Reflectance   
Ceiling0.60.8
Walls0.30.6
Floor0.20.5

Glare Control Measures

Badminton requires significant upward viewing, therefore a high degree of glare control is necessary.

With a Direct Lighting System, glare can be controlled by using significantly lower light outputs, or glare shields. And where ever possible, the light fittings should be positioned away from the normal line of sight (outside the playing area). This prevents the shuttle being seen against the light source, temporarily blinding the player.

With an Indirect Lighting System, the surfaces should have a matt finish and not exceed the reflectance values in the table.

Uniformity of Illuminance

For sports like badminton, where players are required to observe objects well above the floor level, even illuminance should be achieved both on the playing surface and in the space above the surface to the height of the trajectory. Uneven illuminance can cause poor judgement by the players.


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