What is badminton

What is badminton?

- by Margit Klein -

Badminton is, according to the official definition, a setback game that is played with a small shuttlecock and one badminton racket per person. The players try to hit the ball over the net in such a way that the other side cannot hit it back according to the rules. Badminton can be played by two players as singles and by four players as doubles or mixed. It is usually held in the hall and requires a high level of physical fitness due to the speed and high intensity of running. Counting is based on points and sentences. The game is usually played with a 'natural shuttlecock' made from goose or duck feathers.

Everyone knows badminton as the competitive variant of the leisure game 'badminton'. In contrast to badminton, however, this aims to keep rallies as long as possible. Badminton is somewhat similar to tennis, but differs from it in fundamental technical and tactical aspects. The playing field is comparatively small, the badminton racket is much lighter, and the cue ball must not touch the ground.

Shuttlecocks were played with in many parts of the world and in many cultures a long time ago: in India with flattened woods, with the Incas and Aztecs with their hands, in Europe during the Baroque period by the courtly nobility ('Battledore and Shuttlecock'). Today's game owes its name to the English country residence of the Duke of Beaufort, where in 1872 the 'Poona' brought from India by the British colonial officer was presented. The first 'All England Championships' took place as early as 1899. The new sport was very popular, but often had to be played in unusual places. The only unrestrictedly suitable rooms at that time were churches: the high central nave offered the shuttlecock a free flight path and the pews served the spectators as box seats.

The first badminton club in Germany was founded in 1903, the first German championships took place on January 17th and 18th, 1953 in Wiesbaden. On the same weekend, the German Badminton Association (DBV) was launched. Badminton has been integrated into school sport since the 1990s and has been an Olympic discipline since 1992. The German Badminton Association currently has 16 regional associations with around 218,000 members in 2,700 clubs. In addition, there are around 4.5 million recreational players who do not belong to a club who practice badminton more or less regularly. Badminton is very popular in its European and Asian strongholds of Denmark, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, India and Korea. In these countries, large badminton events are as important as football or athletics in our country, and the winners' lists of major international tournaments therefore mainly contain names from those countries.

Badminton places high demands on reflexes, basic speed and stamina and also requires the ability to concentrate, play wit and tactical skill. The fact that changes in the direction of strike can be achieved with the light racket without significant back-up movements makes badminton a very sophisticated and deceptive game and the change between hard hit attack balls, faked feint and precise, soulful play on the net makes badminton so fascinating out. But also for hobby players who want to play badminton at their respective level and for the fun of movement, it is a varied sport with little equipment.

Finally, an excerpt from a specialist book, which perhaps should not be taken so seriously and which is probably valid for every championship in one area:

A badminton player should have the stamina of a marathon runner, the speed of a sprinter, the jumping ability of a high jumper, the arm strength of a javelin thrower, the power of a blacksmith, the dexterity of an artist, the responsiveness of a fencer, the ability to concentrate of a chess player, the knowledge of human nature of a vacuum cleaner the psychological hardness of an Arctic explorer, the nerve strength of a demolition master, the ruthlessness of a colonial ruler, the obsession of a mountaineer and the intuition and imagination of an artist.

PSV Saarbr├╝cken badminton