We are delighted to announce that PSLC Badminton Club are the latest club to achieve the Bronze Clubmark status with Badminton Ireland after they recently finished off the process by putting a number of their members through the White Teicnic assessment with club coach Eamonn McFadden. It was evident how much support club members were willing to offer to assist the club in climbing on to the Clubmark ladder, when 23 participants from the adult and juvenile clubs undertook the White Teicnic assessment, all of whom were successful in securing their White Teicnic level that night.
Founded in 1983, PSLC Badminton Club is an active social and competitive club for players of all ages. Based in Portmarnock, Co. Dublin, club play is offered three nights a week, and is currently thriving with up to 80 members between the adult and juvenile sections. PSLC are heavily involved in the Dublin District Leagues and Cups with up to 13 senior teams entered in 2017/2018, while they also have a number of junior teams competing in the Dublin Juvenile Leagues.
The Clubmark Journey
Simon Keane, PSLC Club Secretary for the 2017/2018 season, gave us an insight into how the journey towards the Bronze Clubmark award began for the club; "About a year ago we started looking at ways to build up our juvenile club, so among other things we, as a club, decided to lower the age of entry from 10 to 8 years old. Keeping this in mind, we knew we needed more coaches and volunteers in order to run the club to the required standards. Hence, we began to search the Badminton Ireland website to seek information on coaching, and it was at this point when we came across the Clubmark process. In Clubmark, we found a roadmap that would help us to develop as a club, and essentially we used it as a framework to help improve practices within the club across all sectors".
Working towards achieving the Clubmark award, the club knew that they would have to meet the mandatory coaching requirements that are part of the Bronze level. Three volunteers from the club volunteered to upskill on Badminton Ireland Coaching Courses, attend the Badminton Ireland Coaches Conference to complete their CPD, and also register with Badminton Ireland on the Coaches Licence. The benefits of engaging in these steps from a coaching point of view for the club according to Simon included; having an increased number of educated coaches in the club, and also being able to pass on information to club members of the Teicnic programme following attendance at the Coaches Conference.
Furthermore, public relations was another aspect of club structures which PSLC targeted to revamp, and they made adjustments to their social media and website to build their online presence. In addition to this, they installed an online payment system on their website to allow membership fees to be paid online to the club, and this has proved to be a great success thus far. Advertisement and marketing was also done by putting up posters for the junior club in the locality, and dropping leaflets into local schools. The club have since created a school-club link as part of the Clubmark process.
Progression for the Future
We asked Simon about the clubs future and what progression will look like for them in the coming months and years, and here is what he had to say; "Our junior club has continued to go from strength to strength in recent months and numbers have almost doubled since last year, so we are already looking to add another session weekly for play. Likewise, while we have a team in the Dublin Juvenile Leagues this year, we are expecting to enter more teams in next seasons competition to ensure our progression is maintained. In addition to all of this we plan to offer more Teicnic programmes to club members, and also aim to upskill more coaches next season. Finally, the club has realised the benefits of the journey to Bronze Clubmark status and has already decided to work towards a future Silver Clubmark".
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