In a university life that revolves around stereotypes and clichés, including all night library sessions, budget cooking and eating pasties, it comes as a weekly welcome relief for me to go and play badminton.
It wasn’t always this way. In my first year of uni, I was one of those people who signed up to just about everything at the Freshers Fayre – although in the end I didn’t go to any society sessions during my first year. I guess I would have to put it down to the adjustment to a new way of life. I also wasn’t sure what standard I would be at amongst others at the club. How I wish I hadn’t wasted that year dilly dallying! Don’t get me wrong, I always meant to go and try badminton in the first year; it’s just that the weeks kept on rolling by, with each week busier than the one before.
In my second year I finally found a couple of housemates that were willing to go and try it with me. So off we went to the induction session and, low and behold, I wasn’t completely useless at it. Not only that but I also had a thoroughly enjoyable time and, apparently, after the first few sessions, I showed some promise. I have continued to go to sessions since and will do for the rest of my time at university. Twice a week, there I am, come rain or shine; it has become a sort of addiction for me now.
There are so many reasons to sign up and be part of a club when you’re at uni, especially in your first year when everyone is looking to meet new people. What better way than to join a sports club, where you’ll have at least one thing in common with everyone there? Just get chatting to people and they will very quickly end up being very prominent friends in your life. For me personally, it is just good to be able to get away from housemates and course peers for a few hours a week, run myself ragged, giving 110%, and see a different bunch of people. Best of all though, is that I have such a laugh during this time as well. Sure, we try to play to win, but that competitive edge has been beautifully balanced at this society with a relaxed environment too.
Not only is it a good way to meet with a new group of people but, again for me personally, as I was lucky enough to get onto the team this year, it can also add to your CV. Being part of a sports club is a great way to demonstrate your ability to work well as part of a team. Being involved with badminton makes me feel as though I’ve had a well-rounded university experience and playing back at home simply won’t be the same.
Adam is a third year Photography student at Falmouth University and has been playing badminton with FXU for two glorious years. After graduation he hopes to go and work for a photographic journal as a writer.