Tuesday, 16 Jul 2024

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Nelly Ruth Leva: A Source of Inspiration in Papua New Guinea’s Sporting Circles

Nelly Ruth Leva is a remarkable leader and athlete who has made a significant impact on the sporting community in Papua New Guinea. In 2020, she was part of a quartet that represented PNG in the VICTOR Oceania Para Badminton Championships, marking the country’s first international participation in the sport. The team achieved outstanding success, securing four medals.

Beyond their accomplishments on the court, they returned home with a powerful mission – to support their association in delivering a food bank project during the global pandemic. Additionally, they became qualified Shuttle Time teachers, passing on their knowledge and inspiring others to embrace the sport.

As a regular leader in the Inclusive GymBad-PNG program, Leva actively works to eliminate barriers faced by individuals with disabilities. By combining Shuttle Time and gymnastics sessions, this initiative aims to promote inclusivity. Leva, a devoted mother of three, is also an accomplished track and field athlete and has qualified for the javelin event at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. She will be competing in the F46 final next Friday.

In her own words, Leva says, “As a role model to my community, I hope to inspire and motivate girls and people with disabilities to gain confidence, engage in sports, and participate in the Inclusive GymBad program.”

Tham Khảo Thêm:  Badminton Pan America

Leva is a Shuttle Time Teacher.

Leva’s journey showcases the transferability of skills between different disciplines and sports. Being a left arm amputee and an SU5 Para badminton player, she brings attention to the significance of the rotating trunk and left shoulder in executing the overhead technique. This technique holds great relevance in both badminton and javelin.

Building on research conducted by Loughborough University on the overhead smash, Badminton Oceania reached out to Harley Towler, an academic contributor and former international shuttler, to explore how the skills acquired through badminton relate to javelin throwing. Towler explains, “Research into the badminton smash has identified critical technique factors that also appear in much of the throwing literature. Both badminton and javelin depend on rotational speeds achieved through trunk and shoulder movements. The ability to counter-rotate your trunk and achieve greater rotational speeds has been found to be linked to greater shuttlecock speed in badminton.”

The overhead action is a fundamental component in various sports, including badminton, tennis, cricket, and throwing events. The overarching goal is to maximize release speed, thus limiting the reaction time for opponents or achieving a greater throwing distance.

Iosefo Rakesa, another talented shuttler, has also made a name for himself in the athletics scene. In 2018, he became Fiji’s first representative in Para badminton at both the Australia Para Badminton International and VICTOR Para Badminton Championships. Rakesa is now a contender for medals in javelin and shot put at the Tokyo Paralympic Games.

Para badminton is still in its early stages in Oceania, with two representatives from Australia (Grant Manzoney and Caitlin Dransfield) making their debut at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo. This milestone marks the first appearance of the sport at the Games and will take place on Wednesday at the Yoyogi National Stadium.

Tham Khảo Thêm:  Badminton Pan America

– By Tom Leonard on Badminton Oceania website


What were Nelly Ruth Leva’s achievements in the VICTOR Oceania Para Badminton Championships?

Nelly Ruth Leva, along with her team, made history by becoming the first shuttlers from Papua New Guinea to compete internationally in the VICTOR Oceania Para Badminton Championships. They achieved remarkable success, winning a total of four medals.

What is the Inclusive GymBad-PNG program?

The Inclusive GymBad-PNG program is a unique initiative that combines Shuttle Time and gymnastics to create inclusive sports sessions. The program aims to remove barriers faced by individuals with disabilities and promote inclusivity in sports.

How is badminton related to javelin throwing?

Research conducted by Loughborough University highlighted the similarities between badminton and javelin throwing techniques. The rotational movements of the trunk and shoulder play a crucial role in both sports. The ability to generate greater rotational speeds through counter-rotating the trunk contributes to increased shuttlecock speed in badminton and enhanced release speed in javelin throwing.


Nelly Ruth Leva, an exceptional athlete and leader, has left an indelible mark on the sporting community in Papua New Guinea. Her achievements in the VICTOR Oceania Para Badminton Championships, where she won four medals, have inspired a new era of sporting excellence in the country.

Leva’s commitment goes beyond the court. She actively supports her association in delivering community initiatives, such as a food bank project, during the global pandemic. Leva’s participation in the Inclusive GymBad-PNG program further demonstrates her dedication to creating an inclusive sports environment.

Tham Khảo Thêm:  BWF News

As she prepares to compete in the javelin event at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, Leva continues to be a role model and an inspiration to her community. Her journey highlights the transferability of skills between disciplines and sports, emphasizing the importance of technique and perseverance.

The emergence of Para badminton in Oceania, with representatives participating in the Tokyo Paralympic Games, signals a new chapter in the development of the sport. Grant Manzoney and Caitlin Dransfield from Australia will be the first to represent their country in this historic event.

This article celebrates the achievements of Nelly Ruth Leva and the growing significance of Para badminton in Oceania. It showcases the power of sports in breaking barriers and inspiring communities. To learn more about Nelly Ruth Leva and her incredible journey, visit the Carnegiecentre website.