COMEBA activity in Syria

Emil Staak from Denmark led a Badminton Europe supported training camp organised by COMEBA. This took place in Damascus, Syria.

Here is a summary of Emil Staak’s report from the COMEBA training camp in Damascus, Syria from 12 to 19 July 2009.

Topics of the training camp:
  • Physical training (on court and in gym)
  • Serve, 2. – and 3 strike (double)
  • Variation in attack from the backline (single/ double)
  • Variation I attack from the net (single/ double)
  • Single defence and contra
  • Double defence and contra
  • Defensive footwork with focus on timing and technical aspects
  • Offensive footwork with focus on timing and variation

Because of the linguistic difficulties the training was arranged in a very practical way with added theoretical knowledge – all theoretical information was done in connection with practical exercises.


The number of participating players varied from 12-16 players of age U15-U19.

The players standard was below the average European level, but keeping in mind of the players´ training circumstances I find that maybe 3-5 of the players could take it to a higher level (than the Arabic countries) if they get better training conditions (training partners, better shuttles, coaches, etc.)


There is no doubt that a lot of my observations can be explained in the hard challenges the players and Syrian badminton federation experience daily. It is hard to get to a high technical level when your daily training is done with plastic shuttles (the shuttle does not behave in the same way as a feather shuttle). The plastic shuttles does as well make the game more physical and less tactical which is probably why tactical training is not developed to a very high level.

However should the players improve to a higher level and be able to compete with other countries than the Arabic countries they would need to improve a lot technical and tactical where some players even find some of the very basics hard. The coaches and players need to understand and acknowledge that long and hard training sessions is not everything – it is more essential with quality and varied effective training that involves tactical, technical and mental training as well.

Both players and coaches was very positive and welcoming and I’m sure they did the very best they could.