By Richard Mejia / Staff Writer
Very early on Monday mornings, nestled away in the Hall of Champions gym at the LAC, echo the sounds of a ferocious beaten shuttlecock.
Former LBCC student and current Poly High School badminton coach Soknath Prak, 30, said, “There is no actual badminton team on campus, so we play here with students who are enrolled in the class and the former students who continue to be part of the Badminton Club.”
Due to conflicting class offerings and lack of a funded budget, the badminton course is only offered as one class a semester without any higher levels.
The situation means that a student cannot be in the actual class after they take it and most likely have scheduling conflicts with their registered courses.
Professor Barbara Jackson has taught the badminton course for 10 years in unison with her kinesiology class.
Jackson said, “A lot of the students I have are highly intelligent. Their majors vary from nursing to electrical engineering and they use badminton as an outlet to contrast their intense studying.”
The badminton class has an average of 40-50 participants, and embraces the sport’s competitive nature by hosting an annual Viking badminton tournament.
The tournament is usually played in late Spring over the course of two days in the Hall of Champions gym. The athletes are encouraged to bring their friends and family in hopes of creating interest for the class.
Prak said, “It’s unfortunate how everything is structured, but we encourage those who want to play to come in whenever they can.
“With all the sports offered (at LBCC), not all of us can be 6’4” and have unbelievable athleticism, but this is a sport that allows a person to be competitive and play an actual sport.”