"Almost always you can do one more set!"
That mindset in itself is one of many reasons why Kirsty Gilmour has proven to be a determined athlete on the international badminton circuit. Our Junior Committee, Junior State Team Players and Badminton Victoria Junior Camp participants were pleased to welcome Kirsty in one of their online conversation last weekend about levelling up physically and mentally as a young athlete.
Kirsty is a Women's Singles player from Scotland and you may remember her winning the individual Bronze Medal at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. From across the other side of the world, she spoke to the juniors about what she wished she knew when we she was young and a junior.
She encouraged the juniors to not be disheartened if something does not go their way. Kirsty shared with our rising stars that there is more than one pathway to reach an elite level and achieve the goals you set for yourself.
Kirsty also spoke on the fact that badminton is a sport for all and that regardless of your body structure you can play what you want if you put the work into it. In saying that, she said that players have different techniques and it is important to figure out what works for you, and to get a good foundation.
"Try not to compare yourself to other players, that can have a negative impact on your mentally... Be the player you are."
When it comes to training, Kirsty was very adamant that we can "almost always you can do one more set! Everyone has it in them: One more set."
"How hard you work is in your control. How fit you are is in your control. So it’s important to work on what you can control…"
"Almost always you can do one more set!" (Kirsty loved saying this.)
The juniors also had the chance to ask her questions: How she prepares for events? How she keeps working on her game when she travels so much? How much she trains normally? Snd also how she’s come back to training after the lockdown restrictions?
And while competitive badminton tends to individual based, Kirsty enjoys being in a team and in fact, her favourite tournaments are team events. For Kirsty, winning in a team is the best feeling because of the support from her teammates.
During the past few months where the most of the badminton scene has been on hold, we think this final piece of advice from Kirsty is gold for anyone feeling a little flat lately:
"Setting goals no matter how crazy it may seem, set those goals and then work towards those goals by ticking those boxes along the way."
Thank you Kirsty for chatting to our young badminton athletes and our attending juniors for being part of the conversation. And congratulations to our Junior Committee on another great online session!