India’s para badminton players are making a name for themselves on the international scene. Now they have a dedicated space to train and access support to improve their game. Called the Gaurav Khanna Excellia Badminton Academy, this is the first facility for para badminton in India.
Dronacharya award winner Gaurav Khanna is credited with bringing para badminton into the spotlight in India. So, it’s only fitting that the country’s first professional academy for para badminton is named after him.
Called Gaurav Khanna Excellia Badminton Academy (GKBA), this is India’s first professional academy dedicated to para badminton and will formally open in December this year.
Khanna, a former national badminton player, has nurtured para badminton champions like Pramod Bhagat, Sukant Kadam and Palak Kohli, to name a few. He trains people with physical and intellectual disabilities to achieve their best on the badminton courts.
An exclusive academy for para badminton is a long-cherished dream and this has come true thanks to Excellia School. So far, para badminton players have had to train in spaces alongside able bodied players. Now, they have a dedicated space. – Gaurav Khanna, Head National Coach, Indian Para Badminton
On par with international standards
GKBA promises to be a fully furnished facility on par with international standards. Apart from training, there will be mentoring sessions with physiotherapists, nutritionists, and psychologists on board.
The first batch starts training on 1 December and registrations are underway.
“I have been reading about the effort put in by Gaurav to promote para badminton in India”, says Asheesh Pathak Owner, Excellia School. “When I realised there was no dedicated training space for the players, I offered the space in the school”.
The Excellia School auditorium was renovated to create the facility. “This is the least we can do to support the players”, adds Pathak, who hopes to help develop more para badminton champions for India.
Khanna has many dreams in that direction as well. “I plan to hold a talent hunt programme to encourage more players and spread awareness about para badminton in India”. Khanna is offering his professional services for free.
GKBA is training seven to eight Paralympics contenders for free as well. With this kind of dedicated support and encouragement, the future of para badminton in India has never looked brighter.
If you would like to register, call Joy Gupta or Praveen Raj at +91-89320-00011
This article was originally published on Newzhook.