sports award
Boarding schools provide students with the guidance and support for a successful career in sports. Source: Jay Biggerstaff/AFP

Winning sports awards isn’t everything. But playing sports is important.

Children gain a slew of benefits, as one research after research have found. Playing sports keeps students active and makes them exercise regularly.

Ths, in turn, leads to better health that extends beyond the physical.

According to a report by the Public Health Agency, staying active promotes good mental health by improving one’s mood and sense of well-being, reducing anxiety, combating negative emotions and protecting against depression.

Participating in team sports further  improves students’ social and communicative skills as they interact with others who have the same interests as them.

When playing in a team, problems often arise too. This encourages students to use their problem-solving skills to overcome the issue with their teammates.

Master the games well enough and soon, in addition to the suite of benefits above,  the sports awards will follow as well.

Schools play a big role in shaping whether children have the right coach and team to take their athleticism to the next level.

Boarding schools have the added advantage of convenience. There’s no daily commute between home and school to think about — students can head straight to the field or track after class.

They usually have better infrastructure and more options to choose from too. This not only makes it easier for children to play sports and reap all its benefits — it helps them become top athletes who clinch sports awards too.

Here’s a look at the UK boarding schools with a track record of helping its students win sports awards:

Four UK boarding schools already winning sports awardsin 2023

Woodhouse Grove School

At Woodhouse Grove School, the girls from their U19 and U16 teams recently competed in the Sisters n Sport Competition

Both teams qualified for the next round and will head to the England National Schools Netball Finals on March 11.  

Through incredible coaching and support, both teams are now ranked in the top 16 schools in the country in this competition. 

St Swithun’s 

St Swithun’s recognises the importance of combining academics with athletics. Here, students are given the opportunity to discover their talents in various sports.

As a result of this supportive and inclusive environment, Imogen has been able to explore her interest and talent in lacrosse since year 7.

Now in year 11, she was recently selected to join the U20’s England national academy programme for lacrosse. 

“Ever since taking up the sport five years ago, I have loved playing the game and being part of this squad makes it even more special. I am grateful for this opportunity to take my skills to the next level and represent my country,” she shares

This dedicated and hard-working student trains three hours a week with her team and meets regularly with her coach and mentor. 

“We are incredibly proud of Imogen and her achievements. She is a shining example of what our students can achieve with hard work, determination, and a love of the sport,” says the school’s head of lacrosse, Kate Nelson Lee


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Millfield School (@millfieldschool)

Millfield School

Millfield School is renowned for its academic programmes and rugby history. It was named the number one school for England international rugby players and became the St Joseph’s Rugby Festival Champions for the eighth year in a row. 

Recently, six of the school’s former rugby players were selected to compete in the Six Nations tournament this year.

Six Nations is a yearly international competition between England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland and Wales. 

The students chosen were Mako Vunipola, Josh Bayliss, Huw Jones, Rhys Davies, Sam Harris and Eddie Erskine. 

“The Six Nations is an exciting time at Millfield. Our current students and staff take great pride in supporting their teams with the added interest of watching Old Millfieldians in action. The individual journeys of our participants this year will undoubtedly add to the spice of the special tournament,” says John Mallet, Millfield’s director of rugby


Brentwood School 

Just this month, Nina Pert from Brentwood School won the title of Women’s Candidate Master.

Established exclusively for women chess players, this official lifetime achievement award is given by the International Chess Federation (FIDE).  

The Year 10 chess captain won this title after she broke the 2000 barrier and became the seventh highest-rated female player in the world for her age. 

“Nina fully deserves this accolade. I have had the pleasure of sharing her chess journey since she was six. She has worked hard to develop her game over a number of years and make the most of her natural talent,” says Robin Slade, head of chess at Brentwood School