Exercise & Sport Sciences

Exercise & Sport Sciences


The Exercise & Sport Sciences Department makes full use of the extensive facilities available at the College to offer an enriching, varied, and exciting, modern approach to traditional physical education.

The ESS Department is split between the academic Sport Sciences, which are assessed externally at GCSE and A level (see Curriculum section), and the core ESS programme which runs across two years in the Shell and Remove. Pupils’ developing athleticism is analysed throughout the two years of core ESS as tangible evidence of their individual successes, with four separate measurement points (start and end of Michaelmas in Shell; start of Michaelmas and summer in Remove).

This is supported by a varied programme in the Shell which covers functional movement development, “free flow” – a contextual approach to traditional gymnastic principles, climbing, track and field athletics, tennis and swimming. In the Remove, the fundamental movement skills developed in the Shell are put into practice through a range of competitive challenges: agility ball skills, aquatic and functional movement ii (FM .2). These three rotations form the bulk of the year and are competed within three sub-teams in each set across the whole year group.

Lessons are expertly delivered by our highly qualified teaching staff, each bringing their own unique experiences and styles from their respective personal sporting backgrounds. They are supported by graduate staff who bring their own experiences from high-level sport.

We have an appreciation for the history of our subject, but are forward thinking in our approach to its unique role in contemporary educational curriculums. We aim to develop a love for physical activity and the inherent health and well-being benefits it provides. Our varied programme aims to offer every pupil an opportunity to sample something which could ignite a lifelong passion.



The Sport Sciences arm of the department delivers the GCSE and A level academic courses, which are both externally assessed by OCR.


Physical factors affecting performance – one-hour paper (30%)

This paper covers modules on Physical Training and Anatomy and Physiology.

Socio-cultural factors and sports psychology – one-hour paper (30%)

This paper covers modules on socio-cultural influences, sports psychology and health, fitness and well-being.

Performance in Physical Education – Practical Assessment internally assessed & externally moderated (30%)

Three practical activities which must combine EITHER:

One team and two individual activities (for example hockey, athletics and skiing)


Two team and one individual activity (for example netball, rugby union and squash)

Analysing and Evaluating Performance – coursework – internally assessed & externally moderated (10%)

Coursework task which combines all major sections of the theoretical specification. Completed over two-year GCSE study.

A level

Physiological factors affecting performance – two-hour paper (30%)

This paper covers modules on applied anatomy & physiology, exercise physiology and biomechanics

Psychological factors affecting performance – one-hour paper – 20%

This paper covers modules on skill acquisition and sports psychology.

Socio-cultural factors affecting performance – one-hour paper – 20%

This paper covers modules on sport and society and contemporary issues in physical activity and sport.

Performance in physical education – internally assessed & externally moderated – 15%

One practical activity chosen from a wide range of options to be assessed in as EITHER a performer or a coach.

Evaluation and Analysis of Performance for Improvement coursework task – internally assessed & externally moderated – 15%

Coursework task which combines all major sections of the theoretical specification. Completed in the Upper Sixth.



The Exercise & Sport Sciences Department is inextricably linked to the co-curricular sport programme at the College. It goes without saying that the link between Exercise & Sport Sciences, the sports department, and strength and conditioning team means we are well-placed as a collective to support pupils who are seeking representative level performance, rehabilitation advice, or routes into Sport Sciences professions via university. All are integral to the plethora of co-curricular sport and physical activity clubs offered by the College.

In addition, the academic offering of the department is supported by our ESS library, which is housed in the Southfields building and covers a breadth of sport, leadership, biographical and journalistic publications. We also subscribe to the PE Review magazine, which is available as an online resource on Firefly. Hard copies are also housed in the College library.

The department also manages a bi-annual Exercise & Sport Sciences charitable trip to Swaziland and South Africa to visit and support the work of SKRUM. Skrum is a charity with which the College has a long-association. Its aim is to spread positive messages about safe sex, eliminating the spread of HIV/AIDS and education through coaching sport and physical activity in schools across Swaziland.


M J Sharrad BSc MA (Head of Exercise & Sport Sciences, I/c Athletics)
Mrs R F Horton MA (Director of Sport)
J Beckett BSc (Sports Facilities Manager)
Miss S Bingham BA
J W Davies BSc CSCS (Head of Strength & Conditioning)
W G Heywood BSc
Miss A Hudson BSc
G D M Lane BSc

Graduate Assistants

P J Barclay-Quelch
Miss R S Cox
C Falconer
C J Hetherton
Miss G K Higham
J S Leang
L C Stewart
Miss T R Thompson
E A W Whitworth