September 26, 2018

An amazing year for the wrestling team -

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

My Experience at the Women’s March -

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

El Regreso Del Racismo -

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Parkland Shooting -

Friday, March 2, 2018

California Flu Crisis -

Friday, March 2, 2018

‘Rapping’ Up the Grammy Awards -

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

¿Cuál Será el Futuro de DACA? -

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Marcus Peters traded to the Rams -

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

2018 Upcoming Movies -

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Instagram-Worthy Desserts of San Francisco -

Monday, February 26, 2018

Upcoming Season of Baseball -

Monday, February 26, 2018

Black History Month -

Saturday, February 24, 2018

The Black Panther Review -

Friday, February 23, 2018

The Destructive Culture of Social Media -

Friday, February 23, 2018

Badminton season launches into action! -

Friday, February 23, 2018

LimeBike Takes Over! -

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

All Star Weekend Highlights -

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Chinese New Year Brought to SMHS -

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

San Mateo Volleyball Season Kicks Off -

Friday, February 16, 2018

The Van Jones Show:Jay-Z -

Friday, February 16, 2018

Yes, badminton is a sport

There’s nothing like the feeling you get after losing your first badminton match of the season. Personally, I feel sick to my stomach, which, by the latter half of the game, has usually tied itself into a knot. Losing a match fills you with a burning desire to improve your game, to train harder than you ever have before. It forces you to take the game seriously, because if you won’t, there are others that will.

And they will destroy you.

Okay, it’s not that dramatic. The point is, while sports like badminton aren’t taken seriously by some high school students, there are others who do get rather fired up about the game.

As a freshman, I would head to badminton games, armed with my trusty racket, “Wilson”, as dubbed by fellow teammates. While walking through the halls, friends would say, “Oh, you’re going to badminton match?” Their ever-so-little sneers and suppressed giggles tipped me off: since when had going to badminton games justify skipping school? While on the outside I maintained what a challenging sport it is—and trust me, it’s difficult—a little part of me started believing them.

Last year, for the first half of the season at least, I was an exhibition player; only ladder games counted towards a school’s total score for a match. And as a freshman, badminton matches were just fun excursions to scoot out of class an hour early and check out potentially cute guys at rival schools. (There were none.) It was only until the latter half of the season that I made my way up to ladder.

My first “real” match, I was beaten. Hard. That knot in my stomach twisted and untwisted, and for the rest of the season, I trained harder than before. While the training paid off and I did improve my skills, I had reached a point where rallying the birdie back and forth for a couple hours a day wasn’t working. Improving had become so hard. Last season, I learned that badminton is a sport that is easily picked up by amateurs. This season, I learned that it is one thing to be able to play the sport, yet quite another to be able to play it well.

The initial satisfaction of being able to grasp a game so easily mistakenly leads some to look down on the sport. They think, “Wow, if I’m able to hit the birdie over the net my first time playing [it], it must be a joke.” That logic doesn’t surprise me anymore. The only caveat? In reality, badminton is full of techniques and footwork that make the beating your opponent—good ones, anyways—extremely difficult. Being an amateur is easy-peasy, but being able to call yourself even a mediocre badminton player takes years and years of hardcore training.

The easiest way to gain a new appreciation for the sport? Play someone difficult.

They will destroy you.

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