Sport is a grounding for so many important aspects of life. Amongst other things, it teaches teamwork, resilience, communication, loyalty and, very importantly, good grace in defeat. The great thing about a girls’ school is that students can get involved in any sport or outdoor activity without any stereotyping or fear of ridicule for having a go.
Physical Education and extra-curricular sport are at the heart of the Maynard School and we provide every student with access to the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to promote life-long participation in physical activity. All girls are given the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of different sports and develop their individual skills, whilst learning the value of teamwork and the importance of a healthy lifestyle. We hope that by the time our students leave us they take with them a lifelong passion for sport..
We are regular Devon champions in the sporting arena for netball, hockey, athletics and equestrian whilst our tennis, swimming and basketball teams have built an enviable reputation as some of the best in the South West. The School is also host to County and National level sports women in hockey, netball, swimming, rowing, jiu jitsu, athletics, sailing, equestrian and gymnastics.
The Maynard invests heavily in our sports programme. We hire the very best coaches available, and have access to some of the South West’s premier sporting facilities through our association with the University of Exeter and other amenities.
The Maynard operates in excess of 60 extra-curricular clubs throughout each term, many of which are sports based. These are an excellent way to extend our elite performers and provide extra practice for all those keen to improve. We also support students in their endeavours outside of school and have had seen many individual successes in equestrian, athletics, gymnastics, sailing, rowing, ballet and jiu jitsu.
Our multi-dimensional sports programme for our most senior pupils has given students the opportunity to take part in a wide range of sports over the year, and this year students have enjoyed aerobics, pilates, golf, fencing, kick-boxing and squash as well as the traditional sports on offer. This initiative has focused on the importance of health and fitness and the engagement of our pupils into a life-long love of sport. In addition our Lower 5 (Year 10) Sports Leaders run multi-sport sessions for Year 3 pupils from the local primary school for a term.
Junior and Pre-Prep Sport
In the Junior School, pupils participate in many team sports, including netball, hockey, rounders and basketball, but we also foster individual pursuits such as swimming, tennis, gymnastics and dance with the hope of encouraging exercise for health as much as for competition.
All of our pupils experience a term of early morning yoga, helping to wake them up and be ready for their day, improve their balance, strength and flexibility whilst having fun and learning to be body confident. Junior School pupils enjoy a term of swimming lessons, while our Pre-Prep girls swim once a week for two terms, enabling them to strengthen their individual skills.The Tennis Academy run by Jon Rycroft offers coaching to pupils in years 4-6 before school three times a week, and we also run after school Netball and Basketball clubs. We also offer ballet lessons once a week, taught by a specialist teacher.
Sports Scholarship Award (for 13+ entry)
Each year the school offers Sports Scholarships at 13+ (external applicants only) to students who have displayed excellence in sport and show evidence of further potential together with a lively interest in the subject. Scholars will be expected to play an active part in the sporting life at The Maynard, including taking part in a number of appropriate school sporting activities throughout their time at the school.
There are also Sixth Form Sports Scholarships awarded each year to committed and enthusiastic sportswomen who demonstrate a high level of sporting ability and a willingness to contribute to the sporting life of the school.
Director of Sport, Mrs Lewis-Weeks
As she approaches the end of her first term at The Maynard, we asked Director of Sport, Mrs Lewis-Weeks, about her experience and ambitions for the department.
How has it been stepping into your new role at The Maynard School?
Busy! Starting a new school is always a challenge, but the environment at The Maynard School make it a lovely place to work. I have felt welcomed by all of the girls and staff members at the school, and I’m excited to lead on taking sport and PE to the next level.
What has stood out to you most about sport at The Maynard School?
The amazing attitudes of the girls here! They all want to improve, succeed and are all so supportive of each other. The department go the extra mile to provide as many opportunities as possible.
Personally, what is your favourite sport to play/watch?
My favourite sports to play are football and hockey, but I really enjoy watching gymnastics. The way gymnasts push their limits always really amazes me!
What sports icon do you admire the most and why?
Sarina Wiegman- the way she has led the England women’s football team to European success is truly inspiring, particularly as she started out as a PE teacher!
Where do you hope to drive the Maynard Sports, or what are your goals for the year?
My goal is two fold- I want to increase opportunities and participation in all physical activity and sport, as well as driving elite sport forwards. Sport for all has always been a driving force behind my reasons for becoming a PE teacher. My firm belief that physical activity has the power to improve confidence, team working skills, leadership skills, as well as improving academic performance, is what impels me to make a difference. On top if this, I aim to provide a supportive programme to allow our elite performers to excel.
We already offer so much in terms of team sports, strength and conditioning, yoga, Les Mills classes, canoeing etc – is there anything else you would like to add to the list one day?
Absolutely! I would like to increase the offering of rugby, football and cricket throughout the school as a priority. I am planning on completing a ‘pupil voice’ survey within my first year to ensure we are delivering what the pupils want, as they are the most important thing in everything we do.
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