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  1. #1
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    Default The state of Badminton England, UK Sports and the UK market? (

    It seems that even after so many years the UK market for badminton is tiny. The big chain stores such as JJB and Sports Direct only sell the low end rackets. If you want high end you have to then find a small Yonex dealer who is out of the way and may still not stock high end rackets.

    Then there is the lack of choice. Its Yonex, Carlton, Wilson or Head. The later 2 not being popular at all. I understand that the far east market is saturated as the best players in the world are from there but has the UK just given up on the sport?

    It seems from the early days on international tournaments that the far east countries won so much the the UK just gave up. I know there are places online you can get Victor, APACS etc. but i find the clubs i have been to and go to now have never heard of them.

    Everyone there really has a low end Yonex or Carlton. I've been to a couple of Badminton England affiliated clubs but even they ended up closing. Even there the best players who could go further were not using best equipment. I have found here a lot of places will only use plastic shuttles because of costs. Even the woman who runs our club only uses AS10's which she says she buys in bulk for 12 a tube!!! You can get much better than that for less. Its only since i took along a few tubes of Yang Yang shuttles that the AS10s came out. Everyone was happy to use plastic all the time. One guy even said he was afraid to use them for ruining them! Another said he just can't hit feather shuttles.

    So thats Badminton and how small the market is here. What about other sports?

    I don't think its just badminton, its a lot of sports. Look at the Tennis, no Brit in the final since 1938! Thats insane, I know there are always one or 2 top players in the game at one time who seem to be there year after year but it never seems to be a Brit.

    Apparently another 50million is going to be pumped into sports. Is this going to be a government quango to say everyone is a winner and its the taking part that counts. Of course its not, winning is everything. Apart from in England where i can name you more losers than winners. I remember a lot of my friends at school who were really good at various sports but were never given any encouragement. I was part of my primary school football team, one time i remember defending and made an inch perfect tackle and i was only 11. The coach then told me it was dangerous for me to do that. Dangerous to make a tackle, now as an 11 year old i feel i get in trouble for playing the game.

    Sports day even became a farce. Each year my house lost, we saw the others running around the field with the trophy and didn't get upset. We were determined each year to win. In my final year we did win My brother is 2 years younger and at the same school. After i left it seemed to go nuts. The sports were no longer sports, they were stupid games, kicking a ball so far then running with a giant beanbag between your legs. How does that help someone who run fast or a good relay racer?

    Now its the PC brigade who say you can't upset kids. I'm sorry but if someone is no good at something don't tell them they are as good as anyone else. On the flip side don't tell the amazing kid its not all about winning.

    I enjoy playing badminton, i got into the sport late so was never going to be a pro but i would like to join a Badminton England club to take it a bit more seriously as for me its not just a hobby while i am young, i'm gonna play for years. I have found one in Reading where i am going to Uni but thats just it, i have found only ONE!. Its a massive university town and within any sensible distance there is only one affiliated club.

    Any thoughts on either subject?

  2. #2
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    well ,if they are not top players then is no point using top of the range equipments ,I think they are only recreational players ! The high end rackets from Yonex , Apacs, Victors are aim for county players or high level club players mainly top divisons. if you going to uni , then it is a good idea to join the uni team, I have great fun while playing for two universities.

  3. #3
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    What i mean is i have played with some county players but a lot of people here don't know of big international brands.

  4. #4
    Regular Member Andy05's Avatar
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    I agree with everything being too PC, it annoys me that while I was at school we got banned from shotput and discus because we didn't have a cage to throw from... we were already banned from spinning so we couldn't hit each other anyway.

    As for how we perform in all competitions internationally, well we can't really get into the game until age 10-11 when it is introduced at schools. And we are only a small island so in terms of population we are punching above our belts in most sports.

    A top end sports store is a business, if a business buys 10 top end racquets and tries to sell them near RRP because they aren't buying in bulk they can't provide too much discount. People who go to those aren't after top end racquets, but there are really good shops online if you are serious about investing, you just have to find a way to test racquets first.
    I do agree with you that these 'sport' shops are more sportswear than sports equipment.

    It's just all part of playing a proper sport

  5. #5
    Regular Member lcleing's Avatar
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    The problem with badminton is, it's an 'indoor' sport and it's relative expensive compared to other sport.

    You can get a football for 2 and play that for months but how about badminton? You will need to spend at least 5 to get half a dozen of decent plastic shuttles and to be honest, they don't last as long as the cheap football you brought in some low end sport store. It's easier to find a place to play football as well compared to locating a gym/court for badminton. Let's look at the cost now shall we? You could just go to a field(or empty park) with no fence on it and start kicking the ball around. Could you do the same with badminton? Yes, you need to pay for the court on top of finding one. Not to mention that people love to build tennis/squah court compared to badminton court(at least from the place I am from).
    As such, you need to have plenty of 'extra' money if you playing badminton frequently(especially when play with feather) and not many kids can afford that.

    And there's is this common perception of regarding badminton as an easy(or was it sissy) sport. A lot of people thought it was a lot cooler and macho to kick the ball, tackling others on field, crushing the tennis ball with gigantic racquect, row and bump into others boat than swinging a light racquet in a hall.

    And with so much sponsorship and money going into football, I doubt that's gonna help badminton to become a popular sport over here. Ask around the school and see for yourself that which sport will the kid pick up? I am sure it's pretty obvious that all the kids wanna be a football star, which you get to fly on business class to play matches, stay in a 5 stars hotel and partying with the WAGs when you are not training. Not to mention you are getting couple of million per year. All the cool kids want to get rich and have a 'flamboyant' lifestyle like John Terry and David Beckham. And to be honest, it's much more rewarding to become a tennis player than playing badminton.

    I think for badminton to become a more popular sport, there is ton of work that BE got to do. I will suggest they start on the publicity & promotion of the sport first. How many badminton news have you come across in UK? Not many right(even the some WAGs who contribute absolutely nothing to the society got more coverage than badminton)? I don't think they even show Super Series on the TV channel in UK(I might be wrong cause I seldom watch TV). From there, maybe we can start educating the majority and correct they misconception about badminton(being a less physical sport).
    Last edited by lcleing; 07-24-2010 at 08:29 AM.

  6. #6
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    is a disgrace there is no media coverage of badminton in this country even it is one of the most popular sport

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