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  1. #1
    Josh
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    Default pro badminton player

    Hello all, I just got back from playing at my badminton club a few minutes ago and I thought I'd ask a quite personal question. For a while now, I have had a passion of turning pro in badminton once I get closer to my 20's. I'm just wondering how you go about becoming one. What's the process that you have to go through to become sponsored and compete worldwide. At my club, I play with a friend my age and the rest of the people are grown-ups, all older than my friend and I. So it looks like I'm off to a pretty good start. Any comments would be appreciated!!

    Josh

  2. #2
    Administrator kwun's Avatar
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    first of all. sorry if this sounds negative.

    how old are you? if you are under 12, forget about it. national players from China, Indonesia starts at around 7 or 8. and then they train full time in "sports school" until they are 17/18. and then may be they can be a pro. numerous fallouts become coaches, etc.

    and then you need a good coach, i mean, a good good coach.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    In canada, relatively speaking, an A asian level player is good enough for our national team :P The best is go train in INA or china and come back to canada and ask for a national tryout --> a cake walk.

  4. #4
    Christian
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    I guess it depends a lot on which country you are from and what your possibilities are in your country. If you can stay at home, improve your game and make some money.. well.. then that is probably the easy way... but whichever way you chose.. the 3 important things to remember are.. practice.. practice.. and practice..

    And if you cannot do it at home.. You'll have to look elsewhere..

    Here in Denmark, what we see these days is a lot of young people from other European countries and Asia who move to Denmark because we have excellent practice facilities.. and there are always lots of people to play with..

    These international players are not always that good compared to Danish standards.. but.. usually they have been the top og the top whereever they came from.. and now they very often play on the European circuit.. (where they do not make any money..) and then they play for a team in the Danish 2nd or 3rd division..

    Actually, I think a lot of them are attached to one of the coaches from the Danish national team who has started his own international badminton academy, where he tries to bring forward hopefull talents from other countries.. I don't know much about that though..

    Still, maybe that could be a way for you.. to try your luck abroad.. in Denmark or in another place.. I most warn you though.. there is no money in it unless you are able to find your own sponsors.. a lot of the players can make a little money from coaching in smaller badminton clubs.. but.. it is no where enough to survive.. so.. it's a tough battle..

  5. #5
    yoda
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    Let's do a reality check.

    Chances are the club that you are playing, you and your partner being the youngest players, does not appear to have any youth badminton training program. Nor does it sound like there is any coach other than the helpful hints of the grown-ups. So if you intend to get to any level of proficiency, you have to move to a badminton club that does.

    Depending on your age, chances are if you are able to chat on this newsgroup, it is likely you are too old to be considered for any national team. In China you would be spotted by the time you are 5, monitored until you are 12, at which time you would be taken by the state to enter into the 'badminton' school.

    If you are in North America, chances are you could progress to a high enough level, but without any coaching or international level exposure, it will be highly unlikely to be able to compete internationally. On a national basis maybe, but it will take a lot of hard work.

    So, the negatives aside. If you do want to go PRO, you will need to consider it as a career (that is what PRO means). That means you eat, sleep, dream and work badminton. You need a full program that will include cross training, diet, badminton training, competition (you need to play in tournaments - not clubs).

    All this will of course cost money, and the prize money if you win A levels would not even come close to break even. The best you could hope for is that after you retire, coaching or representing a product line will help you to pay off that loan you took out to pay for your education.

  6. #6
    Josh
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    Thanks for all your advice guys. It sounds like a very slim chance but you know, anything could happen. But on the other hand, maybe I should stop dreaming and get back to "reality".

  7. #7
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    I don;t think in China they have to start at 5 yrs old. Not everybody picks up a racquet at 5 yrs old and gets spotted by the regional centre.

    Josh, (I assume you live in Canada)
    Just matching with adults isn't good enough unless those guys used to play province or state level in China/Malaysia.
    As Kwun said, you need a real good coach, one that really understands the basic techniques and can pass it on. I wouldn't discourage you from training, but a good coach speeds up the learning process tremendously. The coach's time incurs a considerable cost.
    One practical difficulty is how to find a good coach. It can be a hit or miss affair.

    Maybe in the future, if you love badminton that much, you can arrange to go to China or Malaysia on a badminton training camp.

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    Administrator kwun's Avatar
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    yup. Cheung's right. and we cannot stress this more.

    you need a good coach, and a thorough one, it sounds like you have played badminton for a little while already, and most likely, you will have developed strokes that are less than "standard". a good coach will correct all those for you.

    i have recently seen a kid, definitely not more than 10 yrs old. he was coached by an ex-Chinese team player for 18 months. this kid stands lower than the net (ie. less than 5ft tall) and has nice footwork and consistent strokes. i can just imagine if i have his strokes/footwork today with my height and strength, i would be a much better player. with 10 more years of solid training. he will be somebody.

  9. #9
    Jafryin
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    Default Re: Han Jian

    I've heard Han Jian started at the age of 16 yrs old...??? Can someone confirm this..

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Han Jian

    That's what the book says. However, Han Jian's time was 20years ago. Very doubtful if starting at 16 yrs old at present time, that a person will get to International level. Today's game is much faster than that of the early 80's.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Han Jian

    Han Jian was a pro/elite athlete but not in badminton. I believe he was a football player for his province. His sports background helped his transition into badminton.

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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    hi josh,
    I have always wanted to be in pro-sport. I was really into Table tennis but could not find a coach nor the family support. But the important thing was i never had the "guts" when i was young to pursue what i wanted. So i guess, the important things that matter are :

    1) If u have the heart and the natural tendency go for it. If u have the guts to face failure but u want to go on becoz u love playing baddy go for it.

    2) Once u start thinking of money...obviously they are important to feed you..but still if u are prepared to starve(i mean literally)go for it. Playing for financial reasons can lead to the boredom and staleness.It becomes hectic to play pro sport day in and out with all the sacrifices ...But if u can overcome this and still keep loving the sport u will succeed.

    3) Forget ur age now(it is very important though from different aspects like technique correction,speed and strength development)But the reason why it is good to start early is partly becoz ..it is easy to change bad habits(technique etc) when u are young. But if u can persevere and put ur heart in to it u can do it.
    Forget the reality check....sport is about passion..

    To me it is akin to a spiritual feeling...a beautiful free kick in soccer..or a thundering down the line smash in baddy or a great backhand groundstroke in tennis give me the same feeling...


    4) :Yes, it is true people in china and indonesia etc have a headstart...but i know of good olympic atheletes from minnow countries who have won gold medals..they did not even have the basic facilites to train..but still did it...

    and the important thing... there is a "Hindu" saying..

    "you need a good teacher to help you attain salvation....and u do not get one by waiting for it to happen..U have to search for one...

    Go with the heart...not the mind..sport is about passion...

  13. #13
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    No harm in trying. Play your hardest and go in for competitions. No-ones going to build your hopes up because it's unfair to you and will result in dissapointment.

    Here in the UK talent does generally develop early but can develop slightly later. The top players at 12 years old aren't necessarily the ones who turn pro, often you get a late developer who puts in the work and who's game starts to come together at 16-18. I was beating a lot of the now English pros between the ages of 12 and 14 and I was surprised that some of them did turn pro. However, it does help to start early as you get the experience of the circuit.

    UKP

  14. #14
    yoda
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    What I meant to say at the age of 5 is that children are 'profiled'. Not necessarily playing a particular sport, but apparently by the time children start attending school they are 'analyzed' and in some cases their futures are already being planned. Some children are profiled and will be guided towards academics, some others will be directed to sports, unfortunately still the majority will fall by the wayside and let luck take it's course.

    The caution with young athletes however is burnout. There have been cases where juniors has been at the top of their game throughout their young career only to fail getting out into the adult league. This can be corrected with good coaching and career planning. The other unfortunate aspect with N/A badminton is sooner or later you will need to study, get a degree or other, and get a real job. Badminton then takes a back seat to necessities.

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    Default Re: Han Jian

    Gade was en route to becoming a soccer pro... and was in fact not far away from that goal. Luckily for our sport, he got diverted! I think he took up his badminton career comparatively late.

  16. #16
    Steven
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    HI to all;

    In China, the junior players who have potential are usually hand picked at age 12 by coaches. These coaches attended tournaments and watch for future potentials. If there are future potentials, then they are asked if they would like to pursue a career in Badminton.... in training... not in high performance training... as we call it in Canada. That's nothing compared to what Chinese go through.. The best way to imagine how they train is to imagine that you have just lost your freedom and are expect to perform like machines. It is a recreational sport anymore, not a fun thing to do just to relax anymore.. IT IS YOUR CAREER... so you are expected to give results... 7 hrs a day and 6 days a week of training... if six months after selection, you have not improve to a level considered acceptable, you better know where the door is.... How do I know about this.... well, my badminton coach is from China and he was one of the two boys selected by the coaches at age 14. Since then, he has spent 32 yrs in Badminton...

    I also do coaching now and trust me the coaching style that my coach and I perform is totally different than what you will see in the so called high performance training camps... Can you imagine losing 40 lbs in six weeks... not six months... six weeks. Well I did.. just from badminton training with my coach... I can almost guarantee that majority of the national players will fall flat on his/her face after 30 minutes of private training with my coach....

    If you take private lesson from a coach and you find your game tougher than your training, then you don't have the right coach...

    Now I am mostly my coach's assistance coach..... first time I tried coaching, I made to juniors cry.... not intentional....and these are not beginners... these are players that compete at the provincial level.... it is obvious the training attitude is totally different between the various countries...

  17. #17
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    Default Re: pro badminton player

    Steven,
    To my understanding China is trying to change this aspect. You are right to say that kids are picked young. They are not specifically picked up for badminton. Kids go through a series of physical and coordination tests and if approved they are sent to special schools. Their priorities in the school like you said is to achieve results in sports field. If they succeed there they will then be 'promoted' to city/province teams, then national and international.

    In China, it used to be an honor (or to have a better life for the athlete and family) to get into national team. Nowadays with the social-economic changes, things changed a little bit. The talent pool is not as big as it used to be and to have a better life turning athlete is one of many alternatives.

    Chinese coaches recognize that in sports field they have to improve on pedagogy and psychology. Training is more scientific. It used to say the more you train the better you'll get. My coach mentioned in his days they practiced 6/7 days a week, from 6 am to 9 pm - physical, technical and theorical. Now they dosage effort vs recovery. They are learning new coaching methods and retain their most valuable asset: the talent pool which before was taken for granted.

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