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5 activities Rendcomb College offers over government schools

A common reason to opt for a boarding school education is to enjoy a rich and inclusive experience that builds socially adept and resilient adults. Much of this relies on the activities unique to boarding schools, that go beyond quality teaching.

When you research the values and outcomes of a state education compared to those offered by leading UK independent schools there are important subtleties that mustn’t be overlooked. This is not simply a matter of educational league tables and exam results, for private versus government schools.

The developmental opportunities offered at boarding school – which can uncover and grow new skills and interests – are largely denied to mainstream school pupils.

Timetabled and off timetable activities of value

Activities at boarding school – within the school day and in free time – are incredibly varied. At Rendcomb College, there are well over 100 different hobby, sports and special interest groups beyond the timetable!

In the company of like-minded peers and well-trained staff, even the shyest of our students becomes embolden and inspired to try new pursuits. All our activities are individualised to meet the ability levels and preferences of students. That include Physical Education lessons that are an introduction to both traditional and fresh sporting endeavours.

This is impossible to replicate in cash strapped state schools, where staff are weighed down by increasing daily performance pressures. Rendcomb College – as a well-supported and successful independent school – can balance academic excellence with the provision of an enriching programme of additional pursuits.

That’s not to say that some children at state schools don’t enjoy healthy and fun activities in their evenings and weekends. Often relying on family members or ‘carpools’ to deliver them safely to their chosen out of school clubs.

However, one of the many benefits of boarding school is that transitioning to activities is seamless, well supported as part of a vibrant daily routine. Plus, if your child decides to try something new, the list of sports, arts, special interest and study clubs at boarding school is vast!

Let’s just look at five of the activities boarders enjoy, that are not routinely available within state education.


According to famous golfer Arnold Palmer, “Success in golf depends less on strength of body, more on strength of mind and character.”

It’s something many Rendcomb College students enjoy, either challenging themselves to improve or perfecting their skills to take part in competitive fixtures.

It’s the perfect example of how out of classroom and PE activities at boarding school can be a personal source of relaxation and exercise or a team sport.

Either way, boarders have access to high-quality golf greens, equipment and coaches.

Martial Arts

The values and benefits of martial arts are even older than those of a British boarding school education!

Martial arts are a superb way to achieve physical mastery and control, as well as such personal attributes as discipline and perseverance.

Working their way through the national grading system with support from a top coach or Sensei, our students can achieve their personal best performance, or compete alongside their teammates.


This activity (which is rarely offered at state schools) is very much an individual pursuit. Though our students can progress to an advanced level if they wish.

Yoga classes at boarding school are a superb way to relax, achieve mindfulness and build flexibility, balance and muscle strength.

We are just happy when students enjoy their time with expert yoga instructors! It’s also a great illustration of how a boarding school activity can promote greater focus in the classroom.


Not all boarders want physical activities to challenge, entertain or relax them. Some prefer more cerebral pastimes, such as studying science, languages or business techniques, or the art of debating.

Is this just a way of channelling the vocal dexterity and love of arguing many pre-teen and teenage children display? In fact, debating helps to formulate critical thinking, expand perception and develop strong communication skills. It’s enjoyed not just by our future lawyers and politicians, but also students who want to work on their research, listening and analysis skills.


No list of boarding school activities rarely provided by state schools would be complete without fencing!

Rendcomb College stays up to date on new ideas for sports and leisure pursuits. However, some of the more traditional independent school options never go out of fashion.

This Olympic sport has evolved a long way from its roots in sword-wielding skills, not least in the scrupulous safety standards applied. The training involved is considerable, focusing on physical agility and speed, strategic thinking and the power of observation. Fencing has been likened to a full scale and physical version of Chess!

A well-rounded childhood

A good boarding school experience is perfectly designed to keep children occupied and fulfilled around the clock. However, partnership with home plays a crucial role too.

We do provide a range of unique activities that are unavailable to students at government schools, but we also encourage and support home-based hobbies and interests too. Many students have weekend projects and club memberships. We provide as much support, practice time and encouragement during the week as possible.

Each individual student is supported to reach their full potential. It’s as simple as that.