The first-ever badminton tournament takes place in space

Shuttlecocks + zero gravity = game on!

Astronauts from Russia's Roscosmos, America’s NASA, and Japan's JAXA took part in the first-ever badminton tournament in space, on the International Space Station (ISS). The Russian National Federation of Badminton reported the news on Feb. 6 and even provided video of this historic event.

Russian cosmonauts Alexander Misurkin and Anton Shkaplerov, NASA astronauts Joseph Aqaba and Mark Vande Hai as well as JAXA's Norishige Kana - all took part. There was no winner though as nobody counted the scores - the spirit of friendship prevailed.

"The first-ever team game took place away from Earth. For me it's like placing a flag on Mars," said Commander of the 54th Expedition to the ISS Alexander Misurkin. "You are wondering why badminton? Because I love it."

According to the commander, a double winner of badminton tournaments in Russia's space training facility Start City, the sport unites people, improves health and strength, and is great fun.

Zero gravity really tests cosmonauts' creativity. Here’s another way to have fun in space: Riding a vacuum cleaner.

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