BWF Brings Proud Paralympian Programme to Para Badminton

December 3, 2022

Athletes are the beating heart of the Paralympic Movement and it is for that reason that during the HULIC DAIHATSU Para Badminton World Championships 2022, the Badminton World Federation (BWF) lead a series of development workshops throughout the week, collaborating with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) on the Proud Paralympian Programme to help Paralympians on their sporting journey.

To mark International Day of Persons with Disabilities, we celebrate IPC trained leader, Camila Haase Quiros, who is one of the trainers of IPCs athlete education programme, the Proud Paralympian, for those who aspire to compete at the Paralympic Games.

Approximately 30 Para badminton athletes participated in the two-day course in Tokyo, which included helping athletes balance life on and off the field of play, plus better preparing them for success with educative drives for life beyond competing.

The Proud Paralympian modules featured topics on balancing sport and life, transferable skills, networking and tools for success.

“I think this is a great and important workshop for all Para athletes,” declared Hasse, a Para swimmer whose list of achievements includes her appearance at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, making her the first female Costa Rican athlete in any sport to have competed at the Paralympic Games.

“The modules include really important information on networking, how to navigate sponsorship, how to handle job interviews, CV writing and tools to equip athletes for their sporting careers and outside out competing too. This is my first time witnessing Para badminton and it is very competitive. It is unpredictable too, as in, you can never know who will win and it’s very exciting to watch,” Hasse added.

BWF Head of Communications, Lloyd Green, delivered part of the workshop, leading a session on working with the media; getting ready for interviews, Tweeting, blogging, and other forms of social media publishing.

“Following the great success of Para badminton’s debut at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, we have and will have more and more emerging stars from the sport as the interest in para athletes and their stories increases. The objective of the media training module is to better equip Para badminton athletes with the tools and experience they need to handle media interviews, understand the benefits and negatives of social media, and how to present and promote themselves through various channels in ways that are both authentic and fun. If we can enable this then the players themselves will be able to help us grow the sport,” said Green.

World No.15 para player Ritah Asiimwe (SU5) a scholar on the BWF-WAOS Postgraduate Certificate of International Sport Management, was one of the students participating in the Paralympian Programme, remarked how “educational” the course was for her.

“It was really enlightening. There were parts of the course I didn’t know how to do, like how to structure my CV, understand my approach to media interviews, and how I come across on social media platforms. The module has taught me how to build my brand on social media. I’m not famous, but I am known and I understand now that fans want to have an insight into my life and my para journey. It’s also a great platform to speak up about positive topics.”

In conjunction of the HULIC DAIHATSU Para Badminton World Championships 2022, a BWF Coach Forum were delivered.

During the BWF Coach Forum, 28 coaches from 25 countries attended which the sessions were delivered by experts and staff from BWF.

Topics included:

  • BWF and IPC Updates
  • Research in Para Badminton – where should the BWF invest
  • Developing the BWF Para Badminton World Circuit – a coach perspective
  • Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games – how we prepared and key learnings
    • Richard Morris, Head Coach Team Great Britain
    • Hirano Kazumi, Chairman of Japan Para Badminton Federation
  • Paris 2024 Paralympic Games

Photo credit: Alan Spink