School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences


14 Apr 2021

‘One of the worst statistics in British sport’

The overrepresentation of independently educated athletes amongst Team GB at the London 2012 Olympics was described as ‘One of the worst statistics in British sport’.

Whilst the ensuing debate referred to independent schools en masse, the sector is far from homogenous. Within the UK independent (private) sector, a small subset of schools has educated a significant number of international sportsmen and women. Despite this record of success however, little research exists on young athletes in independent schools.

Answering calls to study independent school sport, this paper uses semi-structured interviews with pupils and staff involved in sport in six independent schools in England to explore why some schools consistently produce international athletes.

Read the full article, written by Loughborough PhD graduate Dr Adam Morton and published in Sport, Education and Society, here: ‘One of the worst statistics in British sport’: a sociological perspective on the over-representation of independently (privately) educated athletes in Team GB