Meet the 331 Pound Viral Indonesian Star Who’s INSANELY Good at Badminton
For the last three years, Indonesian-native Hanri Yustanto has been uploading badminton videos on Instagram and YouTube. At first glance, you’ll probably notice two things, one: “Woah, this dude is huge!” And second: “Wow, he is really really good!”
Yustanto, 28, was born and raised in Samarinda, East Kalimantan Indonesia. He started playing badminton when he was five years old and began training at a club when he was nine. He revealed that he’s struggled with his weight most of his life, making him vulnerable to injury.
“When I was in school, so many of my classmates made fun of me,” he recalled.
Despite weighing 150 kg (331 pounds), Yusanto’s talent in badminton was unavoidable, and he ended up playing for a professional team called Pusdiklat Sumber Mas Samarinda from 2000 until quitting in 2007.
Since then, he’s been playing recreationally while entertaining fans with his badminton videos online.
“I started uploading videos on Instagram around 3 years ago,” Yustanto told Shuttlers. “But when I uploaded a video on YouTube in early 2018, it went viral — I was shocked.”
That single video has generated over 1.9 million views to date, giving Yustanto a modest but loyal follower base. He currently has over 8,900 YouTube subscribers and 8,497 Instagram followers. His channel mainly consists of footage of him playing with his friends or at local tournaments, but he also occasionally does tutorials as well.
When he plays against new players who don’t know who he is, they usually underestimate Yustanto because of his weight before they quickly face a rude awakening.
“Usually before I entered the badminton court, the opponents always underestimated me,” he said. “But after they see me play, they’re immediately shocked and no longer underestimate me.”
Although his days as a professional are long gone, Yustanto still follows the industry and looks up to players like fellow Indonesian star Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo and Korean star Lee Yong-dae because of their impeccable defensive skills on the court.
Yustanto, who now makes a living as an entrepreneur in his home country, hopes to continue to inspire others through his videos online.
“I wanted to send a message that fat people like me are able to play sports, especially badminton,” he said. “My goal is just to share happiness with everyone.”
Shuttlers aims to be the premiere destination for Badminton News from around the world.