The Badminton World Federation launched AirBadminton in Guangzhou ©BWF

AirBadminton and new outdoor shuttlecock the AirShuttle were launched by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) at a ceremony in Guangzhou. 

It was held outside Tianhe Gymnasium and was led by BWF President and Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games men’s singles gold medallist Poul-Erik Høyer. 

AirBadminton is BWF's new project held in partnership with HSBC, BWF’s Global Development Partner.

It is designed to create opportunities for people of all ages and ability to play badminton on all surfaces around the world. 

“This is a momentous occasion for badminton," said Høyer.

"Strategically, AirBadminton will allow us to fulfil our overall objective of putting a badminton racquet in the hands of as many people as possible.

“Given that most people’s first experience with badminton comes in an outdoor environment, we are now making it easier for everyone to access the sport through a new outdoor game and new shuttlecock, the AirShuttle.

“In the future, we see AirBadminton as an exciting, energetic version of the sport. 

"The aim is to inspire more people to play more badminton in more places.”

Joining Høyer at the launch was HSBC's global head of brand partnerships Jonathan Castleman.

“HSBC is delighted that more people will be able to enjoy the sport as a result of AirBadminton," he said.

"We have seen, time and time again, how participating in sport at any age contributes to better health, wellbeing, greater inclusivity and accessibility – AirBadminton will play a crucial role in this."

Also in attendance were several Chinese badminton stars. 

Atlanta 1996 men’s singles silver medallist and Chinese national Para badminton head coach, Dong Jiong was there, alongside Athens 2004 Olympic Games gold medallist Yang Wei, 2009 women’s singles world champion Lu Lan and 2010 men’s singles world champion Chen Jin.

The BWF is working with leading sports manufacturers to mass produce and roll out the AirShuttle.