London 2012 Olympics: badminton chiefs defend women's dress ruling on grounds of 'style'

World badminton has hit back at criticism over its decision to force female players to wear skirts, saying it is purely for style and aesthetics.

By Nick Pearce - The Telegraph
10:53AM BST 05 May 2011

The Badminton World Federation has said it would go ahead with the regulation from June 1 despite one of Scotland's leading mixed doubles players telling Telegraph Sport the ruling was "sexist and dated".

The ruling will mean women playing in the sport's top tournaments, including the London 2012 Olympics, must wear skirts or dresses, even if they are over the top of shorts or trousers. Wearing shorts or trousers alone will be strictly forbidden.

Paisan Rangsikitpho, the BWF deputy president, said there was no sexism involved in the decision but that the federation wanted to differentiate the women's game.

"It has never been the intention of the BWF to portray women as sexual objects, and nor is that what we are doing," he said.

"We need to be able to able to differentiate the women's game and the ruling is part of a larger campaign to enhance the presentation profile of the sport," he added.

"This is to help attract a wider target group amongst both younger and older people, and amongst both women and men, where an aesthetic and stylish presentation of the players is certainly an important factor."

The governing body delayed the ruling for a month to allow its members to "better understand the reasons" following a series of protests against the unpopular decision.

Last month Imogen Bankier, who competes in the world's top-20 with her partner Chris Adcock, said to Telegraph Sport that the federation had no right to tell female players what to wear.

"You can't make demands like that to make women more glamorous," she said. "It is our right to choose what to wear on court and I will certainly fight to make sure this dated and simply sexist rule doesn't happen.

"It is ridiculous; tennis certainly doesn't have this problem so why should we have to put up with it."

Pledge 2012

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Another Local Badminton Club gone!

          Once buzzing with activity!

An old sports hall that once used to buzz with activity, now derilect.

Whilst phoning around to find a game this week I was saddened to see that yet another local club had folded.
One of Norwich's oldest clubs - Presbyterian Badminton Club is no longer around. This club had been running since the 1930's and used to play at The Bob Carter Leisure Centre on Monday nights, but for one reason or another the club is no longer around. Sad days when a club with this kind of history folds in a city full of potential players!
It's not just hard economical times that threaten badminton club numbers these days, but also the vast array of alternative sports and pastimes competing and vying for time and membership.
Two other local badminton clubs in the area I live in are also struggling to find numbers. Admittedly, it is a small community and catchment area that they are drawing from, but in the past the task of finding active players and willing committee members was not nearly so difficult.
On a National level, Badminton England are doing all they can to stimulate growth in the sport, especially during the run up to the Olympics, and both they and the clubs they work for and represent around the country need support to stop the decline at the grass roots level. Without clubs like ours, future generations of potential badminton players may never get the opportunity to experience the fun and excitement that we all currently take for granted week after week.
I suppose the moral of this story is that none of us should really be too complacent or take for granted the fact that we can turn up and enjoy a night out at our local badminton club every week. Because without the volunteers who organize and run it, and the regular members who support it each week, it might not exist at all!
I'm sure if we all do our bit and stay actively involved in the club and help where we can, the future doesn't have to be bleak at all, but as many ex clubs have found out, you need drive to survive!

Club League Fixtures and Teams

Local fixtures and BBC Club Results are now available here, however we are currently awaiting updates for the complete Norwich and District Leage table which unfortunately is out of our control. Hopefully they will be published and available soon.
In the meantime, why not check out our latest League Match Results and Reports

Note for All Team Captains

Could you please forward your Team Members list to me for this season, (including Reserves) for inclusion in the Team Listings.
Also, it would be really nice if all Teams could supply me with a brief Match Report after the game. Doesn't have to be too detailed or in depth. Just a few lines so club members can follow how our teams are doing throughout the season and Cheer or Comiserate as necessary :-)
Many thanks!


Club Coaching




If you are interested in getting together as a group with a qualified coach for a few coaching sessions then let your committee members know.
Sessions would be run by a qualified coach and may last two or three hours depending on requirements.
If there are enough interested members (at least six), then the cost per person could be as little as £10-£12 per person, which includes the court fees! Alternatively, you can also find coaches in the area that can provide you with individual tuition for around £20-£25 per hour if you want to arrange it for yourself.

Club 'Invite Cards'

If you've ever thought about inviting someone to a club night, but didn't have the address, email or phone numbers to hand, this Club Invite Card may be of use to you.
If you've got access to a printer you should be able to cut and paste the images below and make your own Club Cards without too much difficulty. Alternatively speak to one of the committee memebers who may have some already printed out.


Pre-game Static stretching -  beneficial or detrimental?

by Gerald Foley

Is stretching before exercise a good idea?  Looking round a gym or sports-ground it is obvious that a lot of people think it is.

The question came up when I was talking with one of my pupils about the benefits of allowing the muscles to lengthen.  AT teachers are always talking about that.  She asked me how this fitted with the idea of having a good hard stretch, especially of the hamstrings, before jogging or working-out.

It sent me scurrying back to a paper I remembered reading about this topic in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) some time ago.  As usual, it was longer ago than I thought; the date was August 2002.  The conclusion then was that vigorous stretching before exercise did not reduce the risk of muscle injury or muscle soreness. 

I wondered whether medical and sports science opinion had changed in the seven years since the paper was published.  The short answer is no.  A paper published in the Journal of Exercise Training in 2005 found that pre-exercise stretching had no effect in reducing the risk of injury.  A later paper published in 2007 found that pre-exercise stretches had no impact on subsequent muscle soreness.

There is also the risk of injury through excessive stretching.  Given the vigour with which so many indulge in their pre-exercise stretches they are clearly running the risk of damaging themselves. It happens among professionals too; we regularly read of football and rugby players injuring themselves in the warm-up before the game.

All this fits nicely into the Alexandrian view.  Stretching, in fact, tends to shorten and tighten the muscles and, if anything, reduces the level  of subsequent performance.  Alexander’s century-old ideas of stopping and allowing the muscles to quieten and lengthen before engaging in activity have truly stood the test of time.  Once we have allowed the muscles to lengthen, we can then gently warm-up to whatever level of activity we wish.

I have prepared a rather more technical version of this discussion, complete with scientific references, for anyone who wishes to look further into it.   To see the paper click here.

Personal Performance Courses



National Badminton Centre - Personal Performance Course

See available dates here:

Course led by top Badminton England Coach and England Squad players.
Open to both club and league standard players. The group will be divided by ability as appropriate and includes two nights full board twin room accommodation.
Adult Course only £170.00 per person for two full days coaching.
Why not organise a club coaching week-end away and take advantage of our group discounts. 10% discount for 4-7 people and 15% discount for groups of 8 or more.

For further details Phone 01908 268400 or email


Paul Stewart - UK Residential Badminton Weekends


Here's an alternative to the BEC opportunity to sign up for a goal specific training weekend. Read more about what is on offer here at Paul Stewarts website Badminton Coach
The site is also a mine of information and the forum (which is free to join) is well attended by badminton players and coaches from around the globe. If you've got any questions about badminton, you can get them answered here!