Posted Aug 13, 2016 at 4:07 p.m.
The drafts from the ventilation systems are giving badminton players serious headaches when competing in the Olympic tournament in Rio de Janeiro.
Even the smallest detail influences the turn of matches involving top-class athletes. Strong, cold air currents can confuse the path of badminton shuttlecocks as they twirl around the field.
These winds, commonly referred to as “drifts” between badminton players, are caused by strong air conditioning and by currents that are created when hot, humid air from outside collides with cool air from outside. interior.
The “drifts” can sweep the sides, the top or the bottom of the steering wheel, deviating from its trajectory. The current can, for example, cause a shuttlecock to land in the net, in the middle of the field, or to fall outside the boundary lines.
However, this problem cannot be solved by turning off the air conditioning. Sweat, when found on snowshoes, in the eyes and on the floor, can be as problematic as the wind.
The problem of “drifts” goes back to the beginnings of the history of modern badminton, invented in England in the 19th century.e century.
However, the Riocentro multifunctional pavilion, where the badminton events for the Rio Olympics are held, has attracted much criticism. Many believe that the place was not designed with the idea that this type of sport would be played there.
Drafts are generally best controlled in badminton halls frequented by high-class athletes.
The intensity of the “drifts” varies from one court to another in the Riocentrio, according to several badminton players, and even from one plot of land to another. The three courts located in the center of the pavilion would be the worst in terms of unwanted winds.
Players, with experience, learn to adapt to this factor. Athletes who participate in badminton competitions in Asia, where heat and humidity create significant drafts, are generally experienced.
Other athletes prefer not to think about this constant. “I don’t want to worry about something that’s out of my control,” said Jan O. Jorgenson of Denmark, the world’s fifth-largest badminton player.