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HEAD ON… Succeeding through sportNovember 1st, 2015
According to the outstanding exam results achieved by rowers, taking up the sport at school has proven to be a real stroke of genius.
I firmly believe that striking a balance between sporting ambitions and academic work teaches pupils invaluable time management skills, which are key when it comes to revising.
Over the years, boys at Monmouth School and girls at its sibling, Haberdashers’ Monmouth School for Girls, have consistently demonstrated a strong connection between success on the water and top results in the classroom. And this year was no exception.
Over at Monmouth School, rowers in the 1st VIII were awash with A* and A grades at A level.
Freddie Dewey, who joined Monmouth in sixth form on a rowing scholarship, has just started a degree in medicine at UCL after achieving two A*s and an A at A level.
And Deputy Head Boy and 1st VIII rower, Jamie Brown, has taken up his place at King’s College, Cambridge to study English after achieving three A*s. Jamie told me that the qualities learnt on the river are transferable to what pupils do in school.
“Our sport psychologist used to talk to us about ‘habits of mind’,” he added. “He meant that the competitive mind-set we needed for rowing had to become second nature to us, and that meant applying it to everything we do. “Rowing teaches you that the small margins count. “In the same way, spending an extra half an hour on every essay that you do to make it polished, or revising a little bit more effectively each day, adds up over a term.”
But it’s not just rowing which can have this positive effect. Rugby is another sport which successful pupils have excelled at throughout
Old Monmothian Hallam Amos is a shining example. At just 21, he has played for his country in the Rugby World Cup whilst also studying for a degree in medicine.
Monmouth School and HMSG both offer sports scholarships and bursaries, and there is always plenty of support on offer when it comes to balancing academic work with training.
*The Schools have an established bus route covering the Thornbury area.