Badminton open day draws young and old crowd

The Samoa Badminton Federation kicked off its "Come and Try Badminton Day" at the Multipurpose Gymnasium at Faleata on Saturday, inviting both young and old to participate. 

Badminton is second only to football as the most popular sport globally the federation stated in a Facebook post.

"We hope that you have all recovered and are well rested after the festivities and the challenging year behind us," the federation posted.

"We've got the gear, you bring the attitude and water. Come join us and get fit and healthy."

Badminton made its return to the Pacific, and specifically Samoa during the XVI 2019 Pacific Games in Apia, Samoa.

During the 2019 Games, Samoa's badminton team was delighted to be part of the sport, according to the Team Manager, Tomasi Peni.

"We're putting in our hundred percent although we had only two years to try and gather the players properly for our team," he said in during an interview at the time of the game.

"So far we're proud to revive badminton into Samoa and the performance by the team today (yesterday) is good from my own point of view."

One of the Badminton Oceania delegates, Julie Carrel, said it was fantastic to have badminton back in the Games.

In 2020, the Badminton World Federation (B.W.F.) launched Shuttle Time – a school badminton programme – to support their mission of helping children lead healthy and active lifestyles. The goal of the federation is to make badminton one of the world’s most popular and accessible school sports.

Shuttle Time offers school teachers access to free resources, training and equipment, to support badminton activities for children aged 5-15 years old.

Shuttle Time is one of Badminton Oceania’s leading development programmes which is implemented across 16 member nations: Australia, Cook Islands, Fiji, Guam, Kiribati, Nauru, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Norfolk Island, Northern Marianas, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tahiti, Tonga and Tuvalu.

Findings from a recent study, lead by Michael J. Duncan at Coventry University, showed Shuttle Time benefited participating schoolchildren’s fundamental movement skills.

Funded by the B.W.F. Sport Science programme, the ‘Dose Response Effects of the Badminton World Federation (B.W.F.) Shuttle Time Programme on Children’s Fundamental Movement Skills, Motor Fitness and Physical Activity’ study was conducted on 158 children (83 boys and 75 girls) aged 6-9 from two primary schools over a 10-week period.

Since last year, Badminton Oceania is looking for enthusiastic people from the Pacific Islands who are interested in becoming umpires for the sport. 

Currently, there are over 30 Umpires from Oceania with varying levels of experiences and accreditation. 

One of the most recent success stories involving an umpire from the Pacific Islands involved a Samoan brother-and-sister duo, Joel and Cherish Reti. 

The siblings took part in Badminton Oceania’s and the Samoa Badminton Federation’s joint national technical official development course in January 2019, before going on to work as umpires at the 2019 Pacific Games. The Reti siblings are now Pacific Accredited umpires.

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