DON KETCHUM is a native of Phoenix. He was a sportswriter for The Arizona Republic/The Phoenix Gazette for nearly four decades. He covered high school sports on several occasions as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona State sports. From 2008-14, he was a staff writer for, the web site of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Hand-eye drills important for badminton campers

Learning how to play badminton is not as easy as one might think. It involves a great deal of hand-eye coordination and good footwork.

So you have to start somewhere, and Xavier Prep is putting a group of about eight young players (grades 6-8) through basic drills at its annual summer camp at the XCP gymnasium. The camp is being held in the middle of the afternoons. Instruction began Monday (June 11) and continues through Friday (June 15).

This year’s camp is being led by former Xavier coach Nancy Meyer, with assistance from Gators soccer coach Barb Chura.

Some of the introductory work involved using a grip on the racket that has positioning similar to shaking hands with another person. The players hit the bird back and forth without a net at first, then graduated to the courts with nets.

Also on the agenda was the thought process of where to send the bird over the net after making initial contact on the serve.

Perhaps we will see some, if not all of these girls, play for Xavier in future years.

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