Co-Ed Badminton Full of Dynamic Duos and Determination
March 24, 2017
Filed under Sports
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Two is better than one — a phrase that UC High’s Coed Badminton Team are in no doubt familiar with. Co-Ed badminton is a match between two teams that each consist of a female and a male. The guy usually plays in the back in order to deliver smashes while the girl in the front manages drops and drives. It’s definitely a sport that requires communication and a connection between the two players.
At UC High, the coach first pairs people up letting the players pick who they want to compete with or who they want to team up with. The coach then pairs people up by whoever she thinks is the best match for each player. These partners may also be chosen based on a player’s rank or based on the roster.
If you’re ever able to catch badminton practicing inside the gym or running outside, you’ll be able to see the determination and passion on each player’s face. At practice, they start off with stretching, which then progresses to running laps, either around the school or the gym, and then they do whatever their coach instructs them to do. “She shows us drills to improve our shots, rotations around the court with doubles or mixed partners, and how to move around the court easier,” said Sophomore Arynn Agustino. “Practices are basically everyday. We try to practice as much as we can, as long as we can. They’re very vigorous and it’s harder than everyone thinks it is,” said Junior Sabrina Nguyen.
Each counterpart possesses their own strengths and weaknesses when playing matches in duos. “My strengths are smashes, while my weakness would be drives to the back corners,” said Senior Elijah Wimsatt. “As a strength, I don’t think I’m particularly good at badminton, but I can put in the effort to become better. As a weakness, I’m not very good with footwork, but I’m working on it,” said Nguyen.
When in partners, it’s normal for there to be strengths and weaknesses as a team instead of as individuals as well. “I would say our strengths as a duo are following up on each other’s shots and our weaknesses are communicating,” said Agustino. “In doubles particularly, I don’t perform at my best. The fast pace of the game, along with dealing with two other people on the other side of the court can make it restrictive,” said Wimsatt. “I think that being able to communicate and having the right partner influences a lot of things, such as strengths and weaknesses on the team,” said Nguyen.
Having something that each player enjoys while playing a match are found in all sports, and badminton is no exception. “The thing I enjoy about coed badminton and badminton in general is how much you sweat and how out of breath you can get. It makes me feel good about my body and it makes me feel accomplished,” said Agustino. “I think my favorite thing is how hard the coach really pushes us, and how supportive the team is. We all have a good time together,” said Nguyen. “With coed badminton, I enjoy being able to smash in the back as it’s my strong point,” said Wimsatt.
During a match, these players’ emotions can be all over the place, from excited to anxious to scared. “I think mixed is a lot of fun because, for females, you just attack and hit at the net. It’s good to know that someone always has your back, literally, because the males are always hitting in the back,” said Nguyen. “During a match, I get really excited. I have full control over how I make my opponent play, and I can plan ahead for what I’m going to do next. The feeling of getting powerful smashes in is like no other,” said Wimsatt. “My emotions during a match can vary; it all comes down to who I play. Honestly, I usually get really anxious and scared,” said Agustino.
UC High’s Coed Badminton Team definitely has the passion, stamina, and determination to make the most out of every match. The practices can be brutal yet they are still able to come back the next day and do it all over again. The next time you see badminton practicing, or you go to watch one of their matches, keep your eyes open for these dynamic duos!