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Our 2021 Review

Around this time last year we sat down and reflected on the previous 12 months, and decided to turn our thoughts into a ‘2020 Review’. We enjoyed it so much, that we thought we’d do it again! We hope you enjoy reading about our highs, lows and lessons of 2021.

Our Monthly Highlights

Here is a highlight from every month of 2021. We’d encourage you to do the same and find a positive takeaway from each month, no matter how small!

  • January – We released our most-viewed video to date (apart from a #shorts video): Master The Late Backhand which currently has over half a million views!!
  • February – We travelled to Finland for the European Mixed Team Championships and both got another cap for England, it’s always an amazing feeling to represent your country!
  • March –You know what we’re going to say here… The All England! Aside from playing, our favourite moment of the All England has to be when Greg played a net game against Kento Momota, the World Number 1 (at the time). We’ve probably watched that clip back thousands of times, and it still makes us laugh at how funny he was every time he won a point!
  • April – We officially registered Badminton Insight as a company, scary stuff!
Greg vs. Kento Momota
Greg vs. Kento Momota
  • May – At the beginning of the year, the BWF (Badminton World Federation) asked us if we would film two videos for them, all about AirBadminton! It was a huge opportunity for us, and in May we went to the sand courts in Nottingham for a few days and filmed the two videos!
  • June – We re-signed our contract with VICTOR for another 2 years! They’re a great team with great products, so re-signing with them was definitely a highlight!
  • July – July was all about football, we watched every England match (the first few in self-isolation) and it almost came home…
  • August – The Olympics! One of our favourite moments from the Olympics was watching our good friend Toby Penty win his group and progress to the last 16. We also stayed up all night one night as there were too many good games… We just kept telling ourselves that the Olympics is only once every 4 years!! We also really enjoyed watching the Paralympics and it was great to see Team GB get 2 medals in the Para badminton, well deserved success by a great team!
Filming for the BWF
Filming for the BWF
  • September – Finally some return to normal badminton life, with the German Bundesliga resuming! We play for a team called BC Wipperfeld, and at the time of writing this (30th December) we are top of the league! We were also fortunate enough to go and train with the Dutch National Team for 1 week in September – a very friendly group and we very much enjoyed training with them!
  • October – The Belgian IC was the first tournament since Greg’s concussion back in November 2021 where he was fully fit. We lost in the Quarter Finals to a Japanese pair who recently got to the semi-final of the World Championships!
  • November – Okay there are a few highlights from November… We reached 100,000 subscribers on our YouTube channel! We filmed a spin serve video with our friend Marvin Seidel from Germany, and even had Aaron Chia (Tokyo Olympics bronze medallist in Mens Doubles) to do some demonstrations too! And we also reached the semi-final of the Irish Open, and visited the VICTOR Headquarters for a photoshoot!
  • December – We reached the sem-final of the Welsh Open (but for anyone who follows tournaments online knows we had a painful exit after having a few match points but didn’t manage to convert them… But this is supposed to be a highlight, so we’ll forget about that for now!). We also held our first Patreon meet-up, where we played badminton and went out for a meal with 9 of our Patreons! This was actually our top highlight of the year – meeting up with people in real life who have been following us and finding our videos useful, it really was very rewarding!

Reflections On Badminton Insight

In our 2020 Review we shared our ‘Badminton Insight statistics’, and we wanted to continue that to keep track of our progress!

April 1st 2020 – 0 Subscribers, 0 Videos, 0 Blog Posts
December 31st 2020 – 15,019 Subscribers, 42 Videos, 17 Blog Posts
December 31st 2021 – 125,981 Subscribers, 96 Videos, 23 Blog Posts

Reflecting on those statistics; firstly it’s still crazy to us that we have 125,981 subscribers on YouTube. If you go back and look at our 2020 Review, we set a goal of reaching 50,000 subscribers which at the time we thought was ridiculously ambitious! We honestly can’t believe the growth, but also the support we’ve received from everyone on the channel. The lovely emails, nice comments and people coming up to us at tournaments or training, all mean so much to us – so thanks to you guys for your continued support 🙂

Challenges

One area that we have failed at this year, is our website. We set a goal to write 24 blog posts in 2021 and we failed miserably at that. We only wrote 6! To be kind to ourselves, whilst training full-time (20+ hours per week), creating 1 YouTube video every week for 52 weeks (15+ hours per week), playing tournaments, coaching 4 nights a week, replying to emails and comments and doing livestreams… Something was not going to get done! And it was our blog posts.

To hopefully improve this, we’ve set ourselves a goal to hire a writer in 2022 to help us with these. If you have an interest in badminton, writing and are fluent in English – please send us an email! Or if you know someone, send them our way! Haha

This year hasn’t always been easy, and we’ve faced many challenges; from battling with injuries to technology failing on us at crucial times and of course not forgetting Covid, which just wont seem to go away! Challenges will always arise, that’s inevitable – especially in sport! We will just keep trying to focus on doing everything in our power to reduce the amount of challenges and thus negative experiences we face 🙂

One big reason we both enjoy Badminton Insight so much is that it is continually pushing us out of our comfort zones and we are learning new skills. For example we have both read numerous books on public speaking over the last few months as speaking on camera is not something that comes naturally to us, and we’ve also taken several video editing courses as again we’ve had no previous experience in this!

We definitely hope to inspire and encourage more people to push themselves out of their comfort zones as it really is very rewarding and can benefit you in so many ways – both on and off the court! As PT Barnum says in film, The Greatest Showman (we watched it on Christmas Day) “Comfort is the enemy of progress”! This quote moves us nicely onto our next section…

Our Favourite Quotes From 2021

The real point of doing anything is to be happy, so do only what makes you happy.

Derek Sivers (Anything You Want)

The goal is to make time for what matters, find more balance, and enjoy today a little more.

Jake Knapp & John Zeratsky (Make Time)

These quotes are a nice reminder that we need to stop every once in a while, something we’re not very good at! This is one of our goals for 2022.

We have also set a few more goals for 2022 such as continuing to release a YouTube video every week that is hopefully helpful and entertaining, and to have even more ‘highlights’ for when we are writing this next year!

As we’ve mentioned throughout this 2021 Review, thank you so much for following and supporting both us & Badminton Insight! We’re very excited to create lots more content in 2022, and we hope you keep following and enjoying what we’re doing!

Happy New Year and we wish you a successful and happy 2022!

Greg and Jenny 😊

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