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Athletic Development


The Athletic Development programme at RGS is designed to introduce the pupils to the Fundamental movement patterns so that they are better able to then cope with the everchanging technical and tactical situations that they face within the chaos of their sport.

Gaining more control of their body will intuitively allow them to direct more attention to the skill aspect of what they are doing, as they are directing less time to the organisation of the physical movements required. 

Our philosophy is based around movement – being able to control your body and adjust and adapt movement to the ever changing constraints of the environment and opposition. This is what enables performers to prevail in the dynamic context of sport.

Sport is generally played on your feet and as such moving with control, speed, changing direction and being agile are highly prized commodities. This is where we focus our time. Our programme is weighted heavily in this direction and the sessions will always bias in this way.

We will also introduce strength training within this but in a way which values and promotes movement efficiency and competency above anything else – we are not interested in the numbers that boys can lift in the gym. Strength is an important quality but sits below speed, power, aerobic fitness and most importantly athleticism, which has a far more valuable long term carry over into performance, robustness and the likelihood to reduce the propensity to injury.


Areté Performance

Areté Performance work with individuals, teams, schools, businesses and other coaches to help them find solutions to the obstacles they encounter on their performance journeys. They specialise in physical development but it is the development of Mastery in its greatest sense that inspires them. They love to work with individuals and organisations who aspire to fulfil their potential and work towards their personal version of success.

With decades of experience from a wide variety of performance environments, across multiple sports and organisations, they have a clear understanding of what it takes to achieve at the highest levels. In addition to this they have worked across a range of academy, school and developmental programmes and appreciate the work it takes to reach the elite levels, as well as how to make the training experience a playful and enjoyable one. 

Success in the performance arena comes from mastering the moment, but the foundations for success are laid many moments before the defining occasion. Whether your goals are far in the future or 4 weeks away, Areté will help you perform to your potential when it matters most.

Physiotherapy Provision at RGS

At RGSHW, we provide a physiotherapy service that helps support pupils of all ages at the school. We want to ensure our young athletes receive the highest level of care possible, with a coordinated approach to any rehab and robustness a pupil may need. Jade Blake is the Lead Physiotherapist at the school and she has a wealth of experience, having worked in the Championship with London Scottish, as well as currently supporting the GB Judo international squad.

Jade will be leading the medical care for all home block fixtures, linking the reporting and management of injuries with our Strength & Conditioning department. Jade runs her private clinic from the RGSHW gym centre, where she is able to treat pupils during the school day for a discounted price. This option is also available to the wider community outside of school hours. We are really pleased to provide this provision at the school, allowing pupils and parents to take advantage of such a high-level practitioner being based at the school.

If you would like to contact Jade, her email address is jade@jdb-physio.co.uk.

Meet the Team


Jade Blake

Jade graduated from Sheffield Hallam University in 2010 with a BSc (Hons) Physiotherapy degree. Jade went straight into private practice to specialise in musculoskeletal Physiotherapy. During her career Jade has worked in a variety of clinical and sporting settings, treating a wide range of patients from 8 year olds to 90 year olds.

Jade has a passion for sporting injuries always being heavily involved with elite and amateur athletes alongside her private practice work. From early on Jade was involved with both professional and amateur teams at London Scottish. Jade has contracted for the British Judo for the past 10 years and continues to do so. More recently Jade has also worked within the IRU (Ireland Rugby Union) at Bisham Abbey and contracted for the ENB (English National Ballet). In the past year Jade has also gone on to set up her own private practice in Chalfont St. Giles and Beaconsfield. All of the above have given Jade a wealth of knowledge and experience to help return all our players back to the field safely, whether it be rugby, cricket, hockey, rowing, etc.

Jade is a member of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapist (AACP) and Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Sports Medicine (ACPSM). Jade is also a Clinical Pilates practitioner which she uses alongside her Physiotherapy practice to complete her approach.

Jade herself enjoys being active regularly training in the gym, horse riding, swimming and running, giving Jade further insight into other sports on a personal level.

Ian Taplin

Ian has worked in professional rugby for 15 years working with in the Premiership as well as consulting with Richmond and London Scottish in the Championship. Having studied PE & Sports Science at Loughborough University he completed an MSc at the University of Leicester before lecturing in Sports Science, then making the move into elite sports as a Strength & Conditioning Coach with London Irish. Here he led Academy Strength & Conditioning Programme before moving to Wasps to Head their Academy Physical development model helping to prepare the likes of Elliot Daly, Christian Wade, Sam Jones and Billy Vunipola amongst others for the rigours of professional rugby. After working with the Senior Squad for three seasons he returned to the Academy as Performance Manager during the clubs re-location from London to Coventry. After eleven seasons at Wasps the time was right for a new challenge and the philosophy and ambition of Areté Performance was a natural fit with his own of developing the whole person and athlete. 

Olivia Caesar

Olivia completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Bath in Sport and Exercise Science and is currently in her final term of a postgraduate degree in Sport and Exercise Psychology. Whilst at University, she undertook a year-long placement at Porsche Human Performance, Silverstone. Here, Olivia was given the opportunity to work with elite athletes, carrying out performance testing and strength and conditioning sessions.

This was followed by a physiotherapy and strength and conditioning internship at the Inspire Institute of Sport in India, working with international athletes in Wrestling, Judo and Boxing. Olivia continues to compete as a 400m runner, having first started training at secondary school. To date, she has won a number of University titles and has competed for Team England.

Olivia will be leading the Athletic Development for hockey and athletics, as well as coaching across all the Core Sports.

Eddie Fuller

Eddie undertook an undergraduate degree at Loughborough University in Sport & Exercise Science and a placement role as a Strength & Conditioning Coach with Loughborough Sport. During that time, he worked with elite athletes such as professional heavyweight boxer Dillian Whyte, the Loughborough Lightning Rugby Team, internationally competitive Swimmers and spent a year with the Leicester Tigers Academy AASE & DPP programmes.Eddie also led the S&C for the BUCS Women's Rugby and Men's Volleyball teams.

Eddie's coaching philosophy is “Human First, Athlete Second” - meaning he prioritises developing fundamental physical qualities that any person should have, and then specify the programme to the individuals sporting demands. Eddie believes that with a continued objective of educating the athlete about the “why”, you can teach movement skills effectively and reinforce healthy, long term habits.

Eddie will be leading the Athletic Development for rowing and cricket, as well as coaching across all the other Core Sports.

Luke Phipps

Luke has been at RGS since 2018 after initially arriving from South Africa to join our Gap program. Luke has been able to attain qualifications in Coaching Youth Strength & Conditioning with Strength & Conditioning Education and is currently an undergrad with the Open University studying BSc Sports, Fitness, and Coaching.

Luke's in-depth sporting knowledge finds him coaching hockey and cricket alongside his role as Athletic Development Coach. Through Luke's passionate and creative approach to teaching, he aims to promote high standards, develop individual's self-determination and encourage a vibrant and stimulating environment.

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