Wear safety goggles to play badminton, as eye experts warn of & # 39; irreversible loss of vision & # 39;

It is not normally considered a risky sport, since there is no physical contact.

But badminton players must always wear safety glasses to play because they can go blind, researchers have warned.

Flying shuttles and rackets from fellow athletes can cause injuries that require operations and even blindness.

And those who play doubles mainly have a & # 39; high risk & # 39; for serious eye damage than single people, the experts said.

There are no rules that impose protective eye clothing and professional players suggest that this should stay that way because injuries are so rare.

Badminton players must always wear safety glasses to play because they can go blind, researchers in Beijing have warned

Badminton players must always wear safety glasses to play because they can go blind, researchers in Beijing have warned

The researchers at Capital Medical University in Beijing added that people with impaired vision should not play at all.

Dr. Yi Liu, co-author of the study, said: “The use of protective eye wear is highly recommended, based on expert professional guidance, safety education and awareness of eye injuries that may occur.

& # 39; It has been repeatedly reported in the past 40 years that none of the wounded wore protective glasses while playing badminton, and we report the same experience. & # 39;

Shuttlecocks are a danger because they are small and compact and usually travel at high speed and in the vicinity of players.

Dr. Liu and the team gathered information from 52 men and 33 women who had suffered eye damage during a badminton match in the six years between 2011 and 2017.

The study participants were between 15 and 65 years old and had played badminton for an average of seven years. No were professionals.

In five of the total cases, the injury was pervasive as a & # 39; trauma & # 39; It is considered that permanent vision loss may cause.

In one case, the victim became blind in the injured eye, according to the article published online by the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

WHY IS A SHUTTLECOCK SO DANGEROUS?

Badminton has been classified by Sport Medicine Australia as a high-risk sport for eye damage due to the small, dense shuttle that travels at such a high speed in the vicinity of players.

The impact of the shuttle depends on the distance to the player taking the photo.

Because of their aerodynamics, badminton shuttles move quickly and serious blunt eye injuries occur when the distance between players is small.

Players can turn to their double partner and be hit by a shuttle.

Much less is known that badminton shuttles can cause significant vision loss compared to tennis balls, according to a Canadian study published in the Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology in 2017.

Source: Capital Medical University, Beijing, China

Dr. Liu said: “Assessment of the injury type showed that 58 were hyphaema, where blood collects in the anterior chamber of the eye, and 36 of these were advanced to secondary glaucoma.

& # 39; In 23 cases the lens was partially disrupted and the injury caused retinal release in a further two cases; 26 people required surgery for their injuries. & # 39;

The player was hit by a shuttle in 60 of the cases, while one racket had caused the injury in the other 25.

While shuttlecocks caused most of the total injuries, the researchers found that racket injuries were more serious.

They had produced enough power to knock over the player, break their glasses or even tear their eyeballs.

The majority of the injuries occurred in double games (73 cases) with only ten cases in singles.

In more than half of the cases (52), the double partner had caused the injury when the other player turned towards him while bumping into a shot; in 31 cases an opponent was responsible.

And in countries where it is widely played, such as China, the researchers are concerned that badminton is a & # 39; substantial & # 39; share of sport-related eye injuries.

Badminton, for example, is popular in Southeast Asia and is therefore the main cause of sport-related eye injuries.

In Malaysia, where badminton has been played for many years, the sport accounts for two-thirds of all eye injuries.

But there are no known guidelines that make eye protection a necessity.

Only the Ontario Badminton Association had protective glasses for all junior players and recommended eye protection for all badminton players in 2005.

Half of the injured study participants were not aware that badminton could be seen as a high-risk sport due to the association with eye damage.

The findings made recommendations to the researchers, including advising people not to play badminton who already have impaired vision, only one functioning eye, who are recovering from surgery, or who have had eye surgery or eye disease.

Lee Clapham, a badminton player from England and a qualified coach at the Badminton Association of England, said that imposing MailOnline rules is not necessary, especially among professionals.

He said: & # 39; I have had a few people who have had eye damage, the majority of a shuttle.

& # 39; It is usually the club players, amateurs or juniors who are not that competent in the field. It would be a freak accident if it happened at the highest level. & # 39;

Although some people have previously tried to make recommendations, especially parents, Mr. Clapham said it is not justified.

He said: & # 39; Unfortunately, it is one of those things where there are insufficient injuries to justify it, especially in professional life.

& # 39; The percentage is so small that restrictions may only be needed at the beginner level. & # 39;