Category Archives: Badminton Training

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Why You should Join a Competition this Holiday

Once again the holiday competitions are back right after the big exams! And to many of you(or your kids, I’ll use you & your kid interchangeably from now on) who are not in tip-top shape, you’ll be wondering should you even join this competition.

So I’d like to shed some light on what are some of the common concerns & fears people have about competing in a national tournament. (And why you really should take part!)

CONTENT:

> Common Concerns
> Key Information for Pilot Pen
> Key Information for Alpha Age Group
> Key Information for Rich Badminton Challenge

Common Concerns (And the problems with them)

  1. They don’t stand a fighting chance

    Yes, that may be true in some cases, but winning 1 national competition doesn’t make you all special either. In my opinion, I feel that the process is just as important than the outcome because, if you get the process right, the results will come. And even if you don’t win, the habits and traits learnt are applicable to other areas of our lives too.

    If you stand to learn any skill, strategy, attitude, passion by competing and while so, give yourself a compelling reason to watch and analyze your competitors to beat them, it’s worth competing.

    #PRO TIP 1: You’ll get to meet some really great players/coaches and you can ask for a tip or two in developing your game(or your child’s)!

  2. Pricey

    National Championships are really expensive! Yes, I know and can totally empathize with that. With the high fee comes the biggest prestige, the best teams, players & coaches so would it make sense then?
    I’d say it’s worth the experience if you haven’t done so already because playing in front of your class versus a 1,000 or 10,000 people crowd feels Very different!

    #PRO TIP 2: Schools and sports academies usually send their players for this competition, and if you ask, you may get sponsored for the registration fees and get to compete for free! (Plus a free T-shirt too!)

  3. No Transportation

    Sometimes the holidays are just meant for parents to de-stress and unwind (Parent’s get really stressed up over exams too!) and now we have to send them for this competition instead of going for a nice vacation?
    Who’s going to send them there and pick them up? Moreover, the competition schedules are so unpredictable and clash with my work?

    Fortunately, most coaches and schools send a team of players to compete, and with that being said, you can arrange for your kids to travel (or even stay over) together with his best friend to compete, it’ll feel like an overseas competition trip that’ll be both fun & exciting for your child and we’ll be able to unwind for a little while too!

In a Nutshell

Healthy competition is good for kids (and everyone), it opens up the mind to see what’s going on beyond the school badminton hall and although it can be inconvenient, the benefits from the experience would outweigh the cost, but do think it through everybody’s situation is different!

So here is some key information on the upcoming competitions

Pilot Pen Championships 2016 (National Championship)

Key Information

PIlot-Pen-Championship-2016 Poster Holiday Competition

HOW TO REGISTER?

  1. To view the full details of the tournament, download the Tournament Prospectus here:  Pilot Pen Championships 2016 PROSPECTUS (90 downloads)
  2. If you are registering on your own, please download and fill in this Registration Form here:  Pilot Pen Championships 2016 Registration Form (IND) (45 downloads)
  3. If you are registering on behalf of your school / club, please download and fill in this Registration Form here:  Pilot Pen Championships 2016 Registration Form (GRP) (21 downloads)
  4. Please mail the completed Registration Form, together with the cheque payment for your entries, to World-Champ Distributor, located at Blk 848 Sims Ave #01-720 Singapore 400848

Things to note:

  • Your entry will only be processed* upon receipt of your entry form and payment, and you will receive an SMS confirmation from us within 5 working days.
  • Submission of form and payment in person at the above-mentioned address will be accepted.
  • For enquiries, we expect our hotline to be busy during this period of time. Alternatively, please email us atwcd.agegroup@gmail.com or message us on our Facebook Page (fb.com/victorsport.sg) and we will get back to you within a working day.

*We typically experience a surge in registrations closer to the end of the eligible period. Please be informed that all entries will be processed on a first-come-first-served basis and registration for specific categories will end once the maximum of 64 entries has been reached. To avoid disappointment, we encourage you to register early to ensure a place in the category that you are competing in.

GOODIE BAG COLLECTION

** Each participant is entitled to ONE goodie bag per entry

Date and Time: 4 – 5 June 2016 (Sat – Sun) from 12 – 5pm

Location:  VICTOR Flagship Store located at Blk 848 Sims Ave #01-720 Singapore 400848

  • Please kindly note that collection of goodie bags outside this window period will not be entertained.
  • There will be no collection at the tournament venue. Goodie bags which have not been collected will be forfeited.

 

Alpha Academy Age Group

Date: 20 – 26 June 2016

Location: United World College Dover Campus,
1207 Dover Road Singapore 139654

Categories:
Boys’ & Girls’ Singles 10&U, 12&U, 14&U, 17&U and 19&U
Boys’ & Girls’ Doubles 10&U, 12&U, 14&U, 17&U and 19&U

Registration Fees: Please refer to the table below

Closing Date: 13 June 2016

Prospectus / Rules & Regulations:
http://bit.ly/1J3UXbt

Registration Form:
http://bit.ly/1IpbRkM (Bulk Signup)

For more information, email info@alphaacad.com. See you all there!

RICH Badminton Challenge

Rich badminton challenge 2016 Holiday Competition

Double Smashers Championship

Double Smashers Championship

Double Smashers Championship

Do share with me how did you fare for this competition and any other competitions that you’ve come across alright? I wish you the best of luck in winning, and let the games begin!

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6 Important Rules for Your Badminton Strategies

When should you do a drive shot, net or other techniques? In this post, I’m going to talk about 6 important rules to help you get started in crafting your own Badminton strategy.

An Overview of a Strategy in Badminton

The rule of thumb of a good strategy is simple. First, the strategies you create must help you score points. Secondly, it must stop your opponent from scoring points.

With that in mind, strategies will differ with different opponents. As they have different strengths and weakness, you will need to customize your strategy for each opponent. 

The Killer Misconception

A common misconception is that student wants a one size fits all solution, like a particular technique that can score a lot of points.

And for me to feed that ideology would be poisonous as they would only use this technique when playing against any opponents.

Techniques are used as part of your strategy, but they are not the strategy.

Instead, a better approach would be to understand the fundamentals of a good strategy and practice creating them to beat specific opponents.

That’ll leave you with no choice but to work those thinking muscles, killing two birds with one stone! 

Here are the 6 rules that you’ll need to know

How to Score

1) Vary your strategy according to the opponent – every opponent is different

2) Choose to attack versus rallying/defending the shuttle – attackers always have the advantage. 

3) Attack your opponent’s Baseline Backhand corner (If applicable) – most people are very weak in this area

4) Exploit your opponent’s Bad Habits – pay close attention to find out the weak spots of your opponent

How to Not Lose Points

1) Get Focused before you serve/receive the shuttle – take your time to get yourself into a peak state of focus

2) Notice your opponent’s scoring trend – identify under what circumstances or techniques they scored more points, and find a way to counter-attack their best shots, destroying their mental confidence. 

This list is not exhaustive but it will get you started on a solid foundation. As you get better along the way you’ll find new principles that work across the board, so don’t get fixated on these 6 rules. Ultimately, Badminton is an evolving sport with better methodologies and equipment being created so we’ve got to be open and improve along with the sport! 

In the meantime keep smashing and I wish you the very best of luck!

Useful Links

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The Long Forgotten Fun in Badminton

Category : Badminton Training

As the days went by, I realise I needed to make Badminton more fun for my students, because what we’ve done have been just training and playing matches, I felt it could much better…

This is an important issue, especially for recreational players that train or play once a week. Problem is, after a week, they’ll forget techniques taught in the previous lessons, making me repeat or craft similar programs and that makes it kind of boring after a while. (At least I think they feel bored!)

I desperately wanted to make them burn with passion, or at least have fun and a good laugh training. And thus I started trying various methods to try and make badminton more fun like finding appropriate playing groups for them to get involved, competitions for them to compete and feel the excitement in the sport, adding a lot of variations to the program and more.

Still.. after much testing, I still felt training could be way more interesting. I clearly remember that I had a lot of fun in my good old training days, I just couldn’t figure out what was missing…

Finally I resort to asking my students themselves “How should training be? Like how can I make it really fun for you?”

And I’ve got some Really interesting answers that I absolutely have to share with you all!

Some students told me
“I like everything the way it is”

Some said
“Don’t worry, leave the fun part for us to find”

Others joked
“We can think about fun after I’ve lost X pounds/ inches off my waist”

And then there’s this student that said
“I think cheap thrills would be nice”

Bingo! I needed games with a little more thrill in them. I had been teaching for years and somehow over time I had forgetten these little games and challenges that gets everyone screaming their lungs out and cheering their teammates on. Basically games that are both fun while still meeting training objectives.

How could I have missed out?! Yes i know it’s bad for me to openly spell out my mistake but I really hope you don’t make the same mistake like I did, by being overly focused on improvement and neglect the joy & fun of the sport! Sure enough competing can be really fun, but sometimes we too need a mental break or just a good laugh to relieve stress from work/school/etc.

After reading this I really hope you don’t forget to add some cheap thrills into your trainings to make it way more fun.

Some examples are
E.g loser treats everyone drinks
– Any funny(but not dangerous) sorts of forfeits
– 5 versus 5
– touch & go
– Who can smashes the box most number of time wins
– Mimic the player opposite doing footwork

And the list goes on and on!

I really hope this list has benefitted you in some way and Please do share with me what are some of your favorite Cheap Thrills! I’d totally love to hear and try them out too.

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True Motivational Story of a Man with Parkinson Disease

A week ago I bumped into a gentleman named Stan Lee –slim, tall and fit looking uncle in his mid 50s — who kindly asked me if I could spar with him using half the court to help him get warmed up.

 

And as I was free because I went to the badminton hall earlier that morning, at 8:30am, I gladly obliged. Interestingly enough, after about a minute or so, I faintly remember I’ve played with this man before, about a year back, so I asked if he played around in the west side of Singapore. (where I was playing)

 

He got curious and started to fill me in on his story and it instantly struck me; he was that frail, hunched back, veteran player I played with in the Bukit Gombak stadium about a year ago! Back then I went down with my dad and I partnered Stan Lee in a friendly game against his friends.

The Struggle:

I clearly remembered Stan Lee had difficulties doing all the basic things in badminton; he trembles a lot and could not serve well, was always short of breath after every few points (with minimal rally) and couldn’t execute shots with power. And when we were at the showers he explained to me that back then he was once a F&N junior player/trainee (to be trained as potential representative of Singapore) and plays in many competitions and trained regularly. But ever since he got diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, he was so affected by it that he took 3 hours to shower and couldn’t  even change his shirt himself. He described how the things like the jump smash that was once child’s play is now just a dream for him.

 

Now, a year later, he was this fit looking man who was capable of taking on your typical secondary school kids (13-16 year olds) in a game of singles! I was totally appalled and had to learn how he did it.

Blood, Sweat and Tears:

He was forced to retire from his job but thankfully, has wonderful children to help support him, leaving him free to follow his passion.

 

He started from basics all over again. He wanted to prove all his competitive friends wrong, that he ‘Will be Back’ to challenge them. He started to train; from jogging at a slow pace to moderate pace, alternating for 10 rounds in the badminton hall instantly, even though he had not been jogging for years. He remembers those training days where right after jogging, he had to continue to do push-ups, sit ups, frog leaps, running and jumping on the spot with the knees lifting toward the chests as close as possible (Tuck jumps), shadow badminton (footwork drills), etc. He also had to put his ego aside whenever he made mistakes and was told off by a much younger player that he partnered with.

 

It’s amazing how he had to go through so many falls (I meant literally he fell down, and at his age!) and the dedication it took to travel by LRT train and MRT train from home to Gombak Sports Centre then back home all by himself daily, even when he was very tired.

 

It was a daily struggle.

 

He always goes to the badminton hall late, sometimes even when the game time is almost over. This was due the unpredictability of his medications and health condition that caused him to freeze; which slows him in preparing breakfast and packing the badminton necessities into his bag, etc. But no matter how late he was, he always makes sure he goes the badminton hall.

 

And on that morning when I was “warming up” with him, he had already ran 10 rounds the hall and did 30 minutes of stretching exercises, footwork and wrist work. My Jaws literally slammed the floor silly, and I knew I had to write about him to spread his message as he is a true inspiration! We can learn so much important values from him, to aim for the stars and work your butt off.

 

Currently he felt he is not ‘up to mark’ yet, and aims to become Bukit Gombak Best singles player and has set sights to try to beat a couple of the more skilful players around the area. He is also going to be filmed by the Chinese media (the media team will fly in from China) as an inspirational story to the disabled and chronically ill people in China too! As of now, he prefers to keep a low profile and I totally respect that.

 

With grit and determination, this man has managed to overcome extremely challenging situation to achieve something valuable to him, all without private training. And if he can do it, everyone can! We just need to believe in ourselves, set challenging targets and work our butt off to achieve our goals.

 

And if I do see him again, I’ll be sure to take a video of his game to show you how he plays! In the meantime, Peace!

 

Edit: He read through my article and added in some points. As we do keep in touch via Whatsapp, he shared with me how good he felt when breaking his personal best and he also sent me a video of himself playing singles against one of his friends, with the rest by the bench commenting in awe of his improvements. And I can totally relate to him of how it feels when you’ve hit the target that you set out to do, and after all the hard work and sacrifice, that feeling of adrenaline flowing through your soul is just indescribable.

 

Screenshot_2015-07-23-22-07-19

Screenshot_2015-07-23-22-07-27

And as promised, here’s a video of him playing before his medication took full effect.

 

 

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Badminton Players’ Insecurities and the Solution for it

Every now and then, I receive a call asking about badminton lessons, and when I try to understand why want lessons, it often boils down to feeling insecure of their abilities. If you’re guilty of being one of them, I assure you it is Perfectly normal for a lot of players (Even for national players because playing ability is relative to the players around you)

 

Personally I’ve come across a few situations that cause players to feel insecure and take up private lessons.

1a. They want to catch up with their group of friends/colleagues in a new firm that have been playing regularly for years

1b. They worry that they bore the stronger players as they are unable to hit a decent return or take their fast shots and etc.

2. They want to train up to a certain standard first before joining a playing group to play.

 

In this article, I would like to address the insecurities as a recreational beginner (Sorry pros, can’t help you out here!) and with the benefit of hindsight and experience over the years, how best I believe you should go about conquering this problem.

 

Problems with Just Training

The common misconception is that by taking up quality training under a capable coach, you can finally kiss goodbye to your worries of looking/feeling incapable, you dream of becoming the top player among your friends that everyone looks up to and wants to play with. Sad to say it doesn’t usually happen! Badminton is player versus player sport, and to truly improve fast, you’ll need good training, the right attitude and quality sparring with a variety of players. And that takes more than a 1 or 2 hour, once a week private training to cover them all.

 

While training is very beneficial in helping you improve, and I strongly recommend it if you want to get a strong foundation, ultimately you must dare to play with a variety of players to practice what you’ve learnt in training! To get started you need to set a good foundation in order to rid yourself of your insecurities, and first up on the list is the right mindset.

 

Right Mindset

Every badminton player loses games, and as the weaker player in any group, you will lose more frequently. What matters is not how incapable you are compared to your friends, but how you react to the defeat, because remember! Even the world’s best player loses, so whether you win or lose, it really doesn’t matter or make much difference. What we all want is to have fun with badminton, seeking the thrill of an intense game or just a good laugh!

 

Now that leaves us with the problem of how to give them a good laugh or an intensive game. The most important aspect to is to get in the right frame of mind. Expect to lose often, stay humble and always seek feedback and advice to improve your game. Join more groups and create a feedback loop to understand where your weaknesses are in every match and how you can effectively make them a little better in the next match.

 

Once you’ve opened yourself up to the fact that even the top players lose, you’ll realize that badminton is not just about being the best. It’ll lighten your mood, help you enjoy the game better and when you are ready to take action to improve your level of play, the next thing you can do is find the right playing group for yourself.

 

 

Right Playing Group

Find the right playing group. If you are joining a firm that has a strong sporting culture, you may quickly realize that you are lagging far behind compared to the rest that has played for years. Sometimes the ability gap may be too wide for you to reasonably catch up with them soon (Like within 3 months). In this case, don’t lose hope because now it’s time to find a suitable group to play with.

 

Note that this is true in the reverse situation when your colleagues are much weaker than you are.

 

One of the most effective ways you can do this is to ask your friends if they know of any appropriate groups to recommend, bearing in mind they were once a newcomer, they probably started off from other groups too. Another useful place to find groups are badminton halls nearby. Wherever there are courts, there will be players! So find the peak hour of the courts and chances are, there are badminton organizers you can join and even better, they can provide you with other organizers contact that suit your level of play.

 

The last method I would recommend to find playing groups are online, such as Meetup.com or badminton forums such as BadmintonCentral.com. The reason is that from my experience, good organizers get strong word of mouth referrals and thus do not need to utilize the online forum to find players.

 

Also, a lot of online organizers spend money marketing to find more players so naturally they will charge more for you to join their games to cover their overheads. Nonetheless there are many great organizers in the online world and it’s a great place to start hunting for playing groups.

 

The next question in mind is, what makes the playing group suitable for you?

 

Supportive Friends

The right kind of playing groups that you want are those relatively close to your playing level, yet you belong to the weaker half of the group, giving you the chance to spar with stronger players that can push your game to a new level, while still giving the better players an intensive game.

 

Ideally these players are very encouraging and willing to share with you your weaknesses. Over time, with trial and error and practice, you’ll be able to improve your game. Eventually as you get better, you can find stronger groups to join, repeat the process until you’re able to match up with you’re colleagues and give them a nice surprise with your smash!

 

To sum it all up, these are the 3 points.

  • Right Mindset
  • Right Playing Group
  • Supportive Friends

 

One thing I’ve noticed though, having a badminton buddy that you’re close to really helps a lot in your quest, but I’ll leave that to the next post to share why.

 

In the meantime do share with me what do you think about this and the problems you face and I’ll do my best to help you out. If you found this post useful to any of your friends, please! Do tag them and lend them a racket for their battles!

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My First Step to creating an online Badminton Community

Category : Badminton Training

Hello Everyone!

This is the first blog post of this site after months of planning and preparations on my end reading a ton of readings on search engine optimization, online marketing and tutorials and creating mock sites on different platforms such as Weebly, Wix and WordPress. It was one hectic, tiring but yet a fruitful journey, and I’m finally confident enough to launch this badminton site.

 

Here’s How the Story Came About

I’ve been a Badminton player for well over a decade, played professionally, retired and now teach a few days a week on a part-time to help my father’s academy, (Yes it’s a family business) to teach badminton enthusiast about this wonderful game.

And with the technology revolution, everybody pretty much uses the internet nowadays, and in effort to reach out to more students, I’ve decided to try to build a website and so I started learning how to do it.

 

What I Hope to Achieve Here

Over the years I’ve noticed good questions that get asked by a lot students, and honestly I must admit sometimes I cannot answer their questions. And so I have to do a search but often to no avail.

With this site I hope to create an information portal for badminton enthusiasts looking for tips, advice and guidance on specific and intriguing training questions and I invite you to be a part of this wonderful internet journey to share with us your experiences and if you’ve benefitted from this site, please share the love with your friends too!

 

And of course if you have any questions about badminton training, please do leave a comment and I will be sure to answer it to the best of my abilities.

 

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