Being an astronaut is a tough job. Not only does it involve a number of risks and dangers, it also needs a lot of physical and emotional strength. It involves living in unusual conditions – in outer space – often for months at a time. There’s a lot of stress in this line of work. However, there are times that Astronauts too need to blow some steam and have fun – even in outer space! This led to the first ever badminton match in outer space.
For the first time ever – a game of badminton was played in outer space. This game took place between astronauts from the US, Russia and Japan.Russian cosmonauts Alexander Misurkin and Anton Shkaplerov played against their U.S. peers, Mark Vande Hei and Japanese Norishige Kanai in the first set, a statement from the Russian space agency Roscosmos said.
While there was no score which was announced, the statement from Roscosmos stated that ‘friendship won’, indicating that the match was a draw. Russian cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin said that for him, playing this game was as monumental as placing a flag on Mars! Sometimes, even the smallest of things help boost the morale of those in space!
A second set of the game was also played where Vande Hai was replaced by Joseph Acaba, an American. “In the future, in ships that will carry us to other worlds, it is necessary to provide a separate module for such a game since it is very useful from the point of view of psychological relaxation and strengthening of friendly relations in a team,” Vande Hei with the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration commented.
This was indeed one of the more interesting events to have taken place in the outer space and will set the precedent for more such events in the years to follow.