I’ve recently made a throwback video of some highlights in my U15 and U17 junior singles career, and it made me think about all the tough badminton training sessions that I went through when I was younger. I found it fun to go through a few different torture-like training sessions I had in the past and hope you guys enjoy it too!
1. Outdoor Running 100 Degree Weather into 100 Bird Multi-shuttle Feeding
This was the summer prior to my U19 Singles title at the 2014 US Junior Nationals. I remember this vividly because this day, my teammate, Darren, had a full body cramp near the end of training and could not get off the floor for over 30 minutes. We trained in two 2-hour blocks during the summer – 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM, and 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM with a one hour break in-between. In the first 2 hours, we were forced to run outside in the 100 degree heat as a part of physical and “mental” training. I managed to get through this part without passing out, but could definitely feel the toll on my bodies and just pure exhaustion in my mind. After this, our whole team thought we would be doing some light technique work after the grueling session – we were wrong. Instead, he wanted us to do 10 sets of 100 birds of defense, where he stood on top of a huge box and hit shot after shot at us. For reference, we normally do sets of 25-30 birds. That day was… amazing…
2. 63 sets of 1-minute shadow footwork
This was another day I remember extremely clearly, because it was on Halloween of my first year in high school. My friends and I had all planned to meet up back home around 8 PM, because my training was from 5 to 7 PM. We had a day of drills and around 6:50 PM I was getting excited and ready to go back home. Coach Holvy then said, “Ok everyone get half a court. We will be doing footwork now.”. I was a little shocked since practice was ending soon, but figured it wouldn’t be that long. I was wrong (as always). After 10 or 15 sets of 1 minute, I desperately asked coach – “How many more sets are we going to do?”. He said, “63 sets total, because 3 games to 21 points is 63 sets”. I didn’t go trick-or-treating that year.
3. 20 laps of Bunny Hops
My first coach at Bintang, Coach Phu, always said that if we made him ask twice for something, we would all need to do 20 laps of bunny hops back and forth the length of our gym. We always thought this was a joke, but one day we made him ask twice when we didn’t line up. We all did 20 laps of bunny hops that day (which took 3 hours), but we all learned a good lesson – respect your coaches and don’t make them ask twice!
I think there were many more tough training sessions, but these were the 3 that have always stayed in my mind. Let me know what you think of these trainings and if you had any sessions that were memorable but painful as well!