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Badminton becoming a school sport

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Throughout the world Australia is known for its elite sport and performers such as Catherine Freeman (Athletics), Shane Warne (cricket) and Pat Rafter (tennis). Badminton is one of the sports in Australia that is not fondly looked upon as a major sport as its participation rates are only 0.3% in adults (Australian Sports Comission , 2012). Professor Peter Figueroa developed a tool to investigate the issues surrounding, equality and equity in sport, physical activity and access. This has become better known as Figueroa’s framework. Constructed over five different levels interpersonal, individual, structural, institutional and cultural, these are used to investigate the ways in which inequities challenge the area of sport and physical activity (Yr 12 Physical Education Board , n.d.). Using Figueroa’s framework badminton would not be a suitable sport of the AIC competition because of low participation rates in Australia.

Firstly, society’s values, culture and ethnic background, beliefs and attitudes are the factors in which the cultural level of Figueroa’s framework are made up of (Hede, 2011). The game of badminton originated in ancient civilizations in Asia and Europe more than 2000 years ago (Badminton World Federation , 2013). Because of this cultural and ethnic background it would be too hard for badminton to compete with other sports in the sports calendar in the AIC, as it would not get reasonable participation rates at different schools. Even though badminton at Iona is a well-known and a loved game due the physical education program, other schools might not share the luxury as they might not offer it to their pupils. Beliefs and attitudes of some students will lower participation rates if the sport goes through to the AIC competition.

This is because the sport is not founded in Australia which can leads students to believe that they will not keep up with the physical requirements of the game as it requires a lot of skill and sharp reflexes. Since badminton is a sport that did not originate in Australia it will automatically create low participation rates in the AIC. Secondly, the structural level of Figueroa’s framework includes the influence of development programs, marketing and sponsorship and because of this badminton would not survive in AIC (Hede, 2011). Australia has no major development program for badminton at a young age, compared to other sports such as AFL (Aus Kick) and Rugby union (Junior Reds). Because of these major sports having a development program for youth means that they can build a relationship with the participant who hopefully leads to playing the sport in the future.

Badminton therefore coming into the AIC would already be on the down fall because of it having no development programs. Badminton does not receive much or no marketing what so ever, so this means that the Australian government do not fund as much money into the sport compared to others. This is simply due to it having a low participation rate at 0.3% in adults and this is why the sport is not national recognised in Australia (Badminton World Federation , 2013). Badminton has no major company sponsoring the sport either and this is another reason why the participation rates are so low, as it is not being promoted to society as well as it could be. Structurally, development programs, sponsors and marketing are all factors that minimise participation rates in Australia and therefore the sport would not be suitable for the AIC competition.

Thirdly, the institutional level of Figueroa’s framework level examines the institutions within society that affect sport and physical activity (Hede, 2011). Due to funding on facilities, equipment, coaching and the cost of running a competition badminton would not be a suitable sport of the AIC competition. For some schools putting badminton on the AIC calendar would mean extra funding to provide courts in which students could play on. Also schools that don’t play badminton in PE would also have to fund equipment, this includes racquets, shuttles and nets and this can be a big cost. Iona is a fortunate school that in which it already has some teachers that could become coaches, but many other schools do not have this luxury so on top of equipment and facilities more funding would have to take place for coaches.

To run a competition in the AIC the hosting school would have to pay for referees, and have a suitable venue to play on. All of these examples clearly point to the fact that badminton is not suitable for the AIC. Fourthly, the interpersonal level of Figueroa’s framework is used to investigate the relationships that affect whether an individual will develop a lifelong association with sport (Hede, 2011). Australia does not have a badminton super star that people can look up to, so this make it harder for the society to fall in love with the sport. St Peters is a lucky school in which if badminton was to become an AIC sport it would already have some coaches that are currently teachers. This although is not the case in other AIC schools as they would have to employ coaches to be competitive in the sport, which means more money has to be used when it could be used towards better education.

Most children/teenagers are influenced by sports that their parents played when they were the same age and for many Australians this it includes AFL, rugby union, rugby league, swimming, soccer, tennis, touch football and many more. Badminton however is a sport that is from a different ethnic background, so the most likely people to play the sport are those that have a European/Asian background. Even though many people from the Asian region are coming to Australia every day, it does not mean that the sport of badminton is going to pick up participation rates start away. This is why badminton should not be put into the AIC competition straight away because of lack of coaches means more funds and because badminton is from a different ethnic background. Lastly, the individual level of Figueroa’s framework examine why individuals choose to participate in physical activity (Hede, 2011). Badminton will not succeed on an individual level because the sport would have to be put in with term one, term two or term three/four sport.

This creates a decision that student will have to choose which sport to play and in most cases the student will go with the more national renowned sport for example, if badminton was put in term one then the student would more likely play cricket or volleyball. In conclusion, badminton would not be a sport that should be put into the AIC within the upcoming years. This is due to culturally badminton is from another ethnic background, structurally badminton does not have any junior development programs and is not recognized in the media. Institutionally some schools would not survive with another sport being added to the AIC as they are already not as competitive in other sports. Interpersonally Australia does not have a badminton role model for kids to look up to and schools would have to spend more money getting coaches. Lastly, individually some students would rather play nationally recognized sports compared to the not so recognized badminton. Badminton is a fun and enjoyable sport, but for the AIC it is not yet ready to bring the sport into the competition at the moment.

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