The origin of badminton goes back over 2,000 years. "Battledore and Shuttlecock," as the game was known in 17th century England and other European countries, was a forerunner of the 19th Century Indian game called "Poon." Modern badminton is a world sport, organized locally in over a hundred countries through hundreds of badminton associations. The United Kingdom alone has 36 associations and 74 recognized clubs. If you have an interest in badminton officiating, you can get your initial training at the local level, then seek additional training with regional or national associations.
Selection of Certified Umpires
Familiarize yourself with the latest Laws of Badminton as approved at the Badminton World Federation Annual General Meeting of May 15, 2010. An umpire is responsible for understanding the laws of the sport and interpreting them to the referee during competition. In order to be an umpire, you should be familiar with all regulations regarding the game, including court and court equipment, the toss, scoring, player misconduct, and penalties.
Explore the local badminton scene and join the national badminton association for your country. USA Badminton, for example, has listings of local clubs you can join. The process for becoming an umpire may vary slightly for one association to the next, but the general process is the same everywhere. You must gain your initial training at the local level, then attend an educational course with a regional or nationally recognized association in order to officiate at those levels.
Seek an assessment to become an accredited umpire after you have completed the training course. In the UK, for example, you must be accredited by the Badminton Umpires Association of England. After twenty-four months before you can apply for assessment to become a certified umpire. The Badminton World Federation is recognized by the International Olympic Committee as the sport of badminton’s world governing body. The federation organizes the Thomas Cup and other major world tournaments. The federation has two levels of umpires: a Badminton World Federation Certificated Umpire and a Badminton World Federation Accredited Umpire. In order to become a certified umpire, an individual has to be nominated.
Compile and record your "Record of Work" that details where you have umpired during the year and submit it to your accrediting association. Competition for umpires is stiff at the higher levels. The number of Badminton World Federation major events, for example, is determined by the Sport Committee and Council, and selection of certified umpires for federation events follows a nomination process. The Badminton World Federation Office and Sport Committee Chair come to an agreement on the number of umpires that will be selected for each event. The final selection is based on the competition format and additional factors, including financial resources.
Dedicate yourself to the sport, connect with association officials, and become involved in organizational matters at every level in which you officiate. Beyond the local clubs, the competition for selection of umpires becomes stiff. At the highest level of the sport, for example, the Continental Confederations of the Badminton World Federation, which includes Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceania and the Pan Am Confederations, recommend umpires, and reserves, as per quotas established by the federation. Nominations are listed in an order of priority, then referees are consulted regarding the nominations. The nomination list is finalized by the Sport Committee, then approved by the Badminton World Federation Council. Finally, the federation issues invitations to those who have been approved.
- USA Badminton: HANDBOOK II - BWF Laws of Badminton and Regulations 2010/2011
- Badminton World Federation: Umpires
- Badminton World Federation: History
- The Badminton Umpires Association of England: Initial Training & Joining the Association
- Badminton Europe: Procedure for Education, Assessment and Upgrading as a European Umpire
- Official Badminton: Rules, Strategies, and Techniques
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images
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