From the name it sounds like a top secret government project, however Project 10 is far from that. It was the brainchild of our very own Chethan Kumar, Chief Coach at Star Badminton Academy (SBA) in Bangalore.
After having coached junior badminton players for many years, Chethan felt that there was something lacking in the coaching system. Without fixing this issue he could not fulfil SBA’s dream of training at least one Olympic Champion
Let us see what he says about this project
What is Project 10?
- It is my dream project in Badminton coaching, where we choose a set of 10 players having dreams of becoming champions. Basically, it is a fast track project in which a student can go from amateur to advanced level in around 1 year. This journey usually takes 2-3 years in standard coaching programs. Therefore, players can participate in state level tournaments at an earlier age, giving them an edge over their competitors. Our team at SBA dedicates all the resources at our disposal to ensure they get the training which this program demands.
Why did you think of starting this project
- A few years back, I was taking personal coaching sessions for a couple of amateur players for 3 hours weekly. Within the short span of a year, these kids showed amazing results and even started winning state open tournaments. I realized that we needed to come up with a structured plan which could be scaled to more players. That’s how Project 10 was born.
Why the number 10?
- Players need enormous attention from the beginning, so we wanted to limit the number of players in the group. Our experience has shown us that given the number of coaches and courts we have access to, 10 players is the ideal number. In the future, we plan to develop and train our coaching staff and put more resources into Project 10. At that time, we will be able to add more kids as well.
- How did you prepare yourself for this challenge?
- The preparation for this challenge has been an ongoing journey which started about 4 years ago. For the last 4 years, I have spent almost 10 to 14 hours daily researching on how state, national and international Badminton coaching works. I also focused on what factors differentiate players from these levels. I visited multiple academies all over the country where national players practice, and sat there for hours together just observing their training and coaching. Through this research, I was able to develop certain techniques that allowed players to learn all the advanced skills in a short less time. Finally, I designed the structured training plan which is at the core of Project 10.
How are the kids selected for this program?
- We first select players who are dedicated and willing to undergo the rigorous training routine. Then we have a detailed discussion with their parents to ensure that they understand the commitment and support systems which are crucial to the players’ success. Then, these players go through one counselling session and couple of on court sessions before we decide to take them into Project 10 .
What is your vision for the kids who are in Project 10 now?
- Becoming a badminton champion, and representing my country was my dream as a child. Though I possessed the technique and skill at badminton, this dream remained unfulfilled due to lack of resources. I see the same aspirations in the kids who are enrolled in Project 10. Though I will not be able to become a player myself, I have taken up this challenge to take these kids all the way to the highest level of Badminton. I don’t know what Project 10 means for the players, but I definitely know that it’s an emotion for me and the Project 10 parents. My new dream is to see them playing the Junior Internationals in upcoming years and beyond that , as they say, the sky’s the limit!!
SBA offers different Badminton coaching programs in Bangalore to fit the needs of players with different skill levels and age groups. For more details about our programs to see which one works for you, click here