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Sport is a vital aspect of a St Paul’s education; it builds resilience and leadership skills while forming firm friendships through shared team spirit. We run an inclusive and varied programme to suit all abilities and interests, helping students discover the sports that suit them and develop an enduring commitment to an active lifestyle. Extensive sports provision is matched by exceptional facilities and dedicated teachers and coaches.
Sport at St Paul’s is absolutely for everyone; encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle for all is at the heart of everything that we do. Our main sports are netball, lacrosse, and rowing from LV (Year 9) onwards. All interested students have the opportunity to participate, join a team, develop their skills, play in both friendly and competitive fixtures and compete against local, national and international squads.
We also run a diverse co-curricular programme to accommodate as many interests, ages and skill levels as possible. Clubs range from athletics to contemporary dance, cricket and badminton to swimming. The cross-country team competes during the autumn and winter terms against various teams throughout the country, while the junior and senior football and basketball teams practice weekly and play fixtures against local schools, to much success. The aim is to help all students find their own favourite activities and develop life-long healthy habits.
Although St Paul’s is located in the heart of London, we nevertheless benefit from a range of excellent facilities. On the school site we have a modern and airy sports hall with gym facilities and dance studio. Our new pavilion features several assets including two indoor activity areas. The flexible downstairs area functions as a workout space and secondary multi-gym, while the spacious upstairs provides an indoor facility for lessons, clubs and other activities. From this space a viewing gallery extends out overlooking both the courts and fields. These can function as either four netball courts or five tennis courts, as well as doubling as two lacrosse pitches or an athletics field in the summer term. Students also have regular lessons in the school swimming pool. These facilities enable a variety of indoor and outdoor activities to take place year-round.
We have a fantastic team of experienced staff and work with external specialist coaches to enable a variety of sports to be taught and played at a high standard. The kickboxing club and karate club meet weekly with a professional coach to practise techniques and to engage in friendly sparring sessions. We have a popular fencing club, with a number of students competing at the Public Schools’ Fencing Championship in the spring, and our keen cricketers enjoy weekly practice alongside fixtures in the summer term. Rowing is an extremely popular co-curricular activity. The Boat Club competes throughout England, trained by a number of skilled in-house rowing coaches. This culminates with the National School’s Regatta and Women’s Henley Regatta.
Alongside encouraging ‘sport for all’, we also aim to support and stretch our elite teams and athletes. In netball, our A teams frequently win county titles, as well as performing particularly well at the regional round of the National Schools Competition. In 2017 our Senior 1st Team qualified for the National Schools Finals, which brought together the top 12 teams in the country. In lacrosse, a number of our athletes represent Wales and Scotland at U19 level. Particular team successes include our U19 1st team being crowned Division 1 champions at the National Schools Tournament in 2019 and our Senior 2nd team taking the National crown in 2016.
Our rowing programme has gone from strength to strength in recent years, with boats qualifying for Henley Royal Regatta, as well as achieving top finishes at National Schools and Hampton Head. A number of our senior rowers attend GB trials each year as well as securing rowing scholarships from some of the top US universities. Several students also compete in individual sports on the national and international stage, including GB fencers, national cross-country champions and elite-level swimmers and tennis players.