Coaches work as motivators, teachers, counselors and even as close friends to their players. Badminton Europe spoke to several coaches and players during the BWF Para-Badminton World Championships and below are some of their remarks on para-badminton.
Head Coach of the Norwegian Para-Badminton National Team
´I started working in the federation a few years ago and at that time, I worked only with Helle Sofie (2015 World Champion in WS, SL4) and now we are three para-badminton players. My coaching style emphasizes a lot on the players. I like to encourage my players and give them a lot of positive feedback. I like them to focus on themselves and try to work more on themselves. One of the key that drives me when I coach is to see the players have fun on court and when they get the results that they are working for every day in practice.´
Head Coach of the Russian Para-Badminton National Team
´I am engaged in coaching for about 20 years after after playing at the national level. Last year, after receiving Paralympic status for para-badminton, our National Badminton Federation was engaged in its development across the country and they offered me to become the head coach of the National Para-Badminton Team. For me it is a new experience and a professional call. It is interesting and very responsible. I have a huge desire to bring para-badminton to a new level in our country. Our team has a lot of skillful players, who have won medals in the World and European Championships. They are enthusiastic and courageous people. Being the head coach, my team of coaches, specialists and I want to help them raise their professional level. We work together to help them carry out their new dream – participation in the Paralympic Games 2020 in Tokyo. Other than that, one of the main goals for our team together with the National Badminton Federation of Russia is to create para-badminton preparation system for players. We want to provide opportunity for any group of disabled people to engage themselves in sports through para-badminton.´
Head Coach of the French Para-Badminton National Team
´Since the inclusion of para-badminton in the Paralympic Games, it has given us a huge boost for para-badminton in France. Being in Dortmund (2013) and Murcia (2014), I can see that the players have improved a lot with increase of quantity and quality of training. The coaches have also become more experienced. We are improving but we need to pay attention and reduce the gap between the Asian players and us. They are coming in very strong and we, all the European countries need to work together and be able to beat the stronger players from other continents. That being said, the most important thing now for us is to develop para-badminton in general in France.´
Players´ insight of para-badminton
Abbigale Loude Richards
SU, England Para-Badminton National Team
´Everyone is cool and friendly here (at Stoke Mandeville). Playing para-badminton is good fun and non-judgemental. Furthermore it improves my self-esteem so you might as well join it as there is nothing to lose.´
Dan Ala Frojd
SL, Norway Para-Badminton National Team
´Para-badminton is a demanding but fun sport. The thrill and competition keeps me wanting to play more para-badminton. I feel good when I win on court especially in close matches. So, join us!´
WH, Finland Para-Badminton National Team
´It is a good feeling to see how I improved on court since I started playing para-badminton a few years ago. In para-badminton, we can play with anyone, even able bodied players and this is a great way for me to meet new friends. To top that, para-badminton is good for my body balance and playing it regularly improves my health.´
Once again, huge congratulations to all the teams which took part in the BWF Para-Badminton World Championships 2015 in Stoke Mandeville. To all the medalists, keep up the good work and for those who did not make it this time, try again next time! When there is a will, there is a way.
In case you are interested or know someone who might want to take up para-badminton and join the para-badminton family in Europe, contact your local badminton federation. As soon as you are a registered player, you will have the opportunity to take part in Badminton Europe and Badminton World Federation sanctioned tournaments after being classified into the Sport Classes.
To view the European badminton federations, click here
To view the BEC para-badminton page, click here
For more information on para-badminton in Europe, contact Tania Teoh at firstname.lastname@example.org