The badminton net is a mesh of dark-colored cord and is held in position by posts placed on the outer sideline (doubles sideline). The net is 5 feet, 1 inch tall at the posts and 5 feet tall at the center of the court; it should measure at least 20 feet wide. The top of the net is edged with approximately 3 inches of white tape doubled over a cable.
Badminton rackets were originally made out of wood. With the use of composite materials, such as aluminum, graphite or titanium, today's rackets are rigid and have a lightweight frame. Rackets usually weigh between 85 and 100 grams (less than a quarter of a pound). The strings on the racket, made of synthetic threads, must be flat and form a uniform pattern. The entire stringed area can't be larger than 280 millimeters in length and 220 millimeters in width.
The shuttlecock, also known as birdie or shuttle, is made of a cork-rounded base. Sixteen goose feathers are glued in the base, forming a cone shape. Shuttles vary in length from 2.5 inches to 2.7 inches and weigh less than a quarter of an ounce. In an Olympic caliber match, it is not unusual for several shuttlecocks to break.
Badminton shoes are short and flat. They provide a strong grip to the floor, preventing the athlete from sliding. The shoes have cushioning for jumping and landing and give enough ankle support to stabilize the feet in side-to-side movement.
Badminton athletes wear shorts and short-sleeved shirts. It is mandatory in Olympic competition for players to have their name printed on the back of their shirt. Doubles partners are also required to wear the same color uniform, and that color must also be different than that of their opponents.