images of Badminton

Paralympic Sports


Badminton will join the Paralympic programme at Tokyo 2020, showcasing one of the world's most exciting racket sports.


In September 2017, the International Paralympic Committee announced a programme of 14 events - seven men's, six women's and one mixed - for Tokyo 2020, where Badminton will make its Paralympic debut. A total of 90 players (44 men and 46 women) will compete in singles, doubles and mixed doubles events.

The sport's inclusion in the Games is a recognition for its global growth. International tournaments have been held since the 1990s and the first world championships were staged in the Netherlands in 1998. More than 230 athletes representing 35 countries competed at the tenth world championships in 2015, while the game is now played in more than 60 countries across five continents.

International Federation: Badminton World Federation (BWF)(Open in a new window)

Event Programme

  • Singles WH1 (Men/Women)
  • Singles WH2 (Men/Women)
  • Singles SL3 (Men)
  • Singles SL4 (Men/Women)
  • Singles SU5 (Men/Women)
  • Singles SS6 (Men)
  • Doubles WH (Men/Women)
  • Doubles SL/SU (Women/Mixed)


Subtle serves and spectacular smashes

Badminton players

Athletes are divided into six classes (two wheelchair classes and four standing classes) with the rules of Badminton followed except for minor modifications. All events use best of three games, each of 21 points. The height of the net is the same for all classes.

Singles events in the two wheelchair classes use half the court, with shuttles falling between the net and a service line placed close to the net considered out of bounds.

Matches in these classes can be tactical and strategic, with the players skilfully controlling their chairs as they engage in sustained rallies.

In the four standing classes, look out for the lightning-fast smash hits that are a feature of the sport. All are played on a full court with the exception of one class for standing athletes with lower limb impairments where half the court is used. The Tokyo 2020 programme will include a class for athletes with short stature.


Vying for the Paralympic podium

Badminton players

Players compete in BWF-recognised international tournaments, where they earn points that determine their international ranking.

The sport is strongest in Europe and Asia, with countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand dominating the upper tiers of the rankings. Chinese athletes are moving into contention while players from the Republic of Korea have proved particularly strong in the men's wheelchair classes.

Korea's Lee Sam Seop won gold medals at the 2015 world championships in men's singles, doubles and mixed doubles and was chosen as the most outstanding player that year by the BWF. By winning the singles gold medal as well as the doubles silver medal at the 2016 Badminton Asia Championships, he proved age is no barrier - he is still among the world's top wheelchair Badminton players in his mid-40s.

Among the leading women, Cathrine Rosengren of Denmark's debut as a Para Badminton player at the European Championships in the Netherlands in 2016 could not have been better. She claimed gold in the SU5 singles category by beating teammate Astrid Lilhav Riis in the final, then won silver in doubles to round off a memorable week.



The competition chairs used in the wheelchair classes incorporate a number of modifications to aid players. What modifications to the backrest and wheels allow players to twist backward when they return the shuttlecock?


A:A low backrest is used to avoid interference with a player's movement. In addition, extra caster-wheels added to the rear of the wheelchair prevent it overturning when the player reaches backwards to hit the shuttlecock.

As of 1 Dec. 2018

Competition Venues

  • Yoyogi National Stadium

Olympic Sports

Paralympic Sports