Shrewsbury Sport is set to get a massive boost with the opening of the new Sports Performance Complex as part of the development of the fantastic Sir David Lees Innovation Centre. The facility features an additional sports hall complete with two full-size show courts for basketball and a strength and conditioning area that will further improve the performance of Shrewsbury's aspiring athletes. The increased capacity will also allow even more students to participate in other court sports such as Volleyball, Badminton and Netball, which is growing in popularity amongst international schools throughout the region.
The new sports complex is part of a four-year, 1.1 Billion Baht construction programme - which also includes a brand new 17,000 sqm Innovation Building for STEM subjects, Sixth Form and University counselling. Together, the investment underlines Shrewsbury's commitment to both educational excellence and breadth of opportunity for its students. With performances on the sports fields and courts around the school growing in ambition, the investment in Shrewsbury's sports facilities comes at the perfect time.
Of particular interest to members of the school's elite 'Team Shrewsbury' athlete programme is the installation of a sleek and modern Strength and Conditioning (S&C) zone, inspired by the 'Powerbase' at leading UK sports university, Loughborough. While this facility will be a vital tool for enhancing individual endurance and performance, it is also designed around the team training concept and general conditioning at the heart of Shrewsbury's "healthy lifestyle" philosophy.
At 340 square meters, the S&C zone has opened with a comprehensive selection of modern, high-quality gym equipment and adjacent spaces for large-scale yoga instruction and spin classes, both measuring 80 square meters. Shrewsbury's Director of Sport, Mr Paul Rotheram, is excited about the potential gains these facilities will bring to Shrewsbury's athletes.
"Sport is an essential aspect of school life here at Shrewsbury, Riverside. Our representative teams have fantastic opportunities to play at the highest level both in Bangkok and overseas. We keep in touch with our sporting alumni and enjoy watching their success on the world stage. The new sports centre will create more fantastic opportunities for both our elite, development and recreational athletes. The whole teaching and coaching team are looking forward to maximising its full potential."
Making use of the space is one thing. However, Shrewsbury has also invested heavily in securing and developing the professional expertise needed to guide athletes towards their goals and ensure their training regime aligns with their aims. S&C is one such case in point. In his position as Head of S&C, Mr Jonah Smith - a sports graduate of the University of Gloucestershire - now leads a team of S&C professionals whose encouragement and high expectations of student-athletes prove a critical driving force behind the fruition of Shrewsbury's sporting philosophy.
"I am delighted for students to have the opportunity to train, break records and achieve personal goals in the new facility. It is rare that students have access to facilities such as this, so the S&C team will be doing our utmost to maximise the space with a comprehensive training curriculum," he ensured.
Sitting above the S&C zone and connected to the existing sports building, the new 1,480 square meter sports hall area adds two basketball courts to the current three. It will also feature spectator seating for competitive fixtures - boosting the growing basketball programme, attracting players in multiple year levels. The hall will also include a purpose-designed netball court - one of the few in Thailand - and just one example of where the expertise and passion of Shrewsbury's PE staff have seen a significant rise in a sport's popularity and performance amongst the student-athletes. The facilities have not gone unnoticed by the Thai national Netball team, who are currently in talks with Shrewsbury to make it their home training base, a further source of inspiration for aspiring players at all game levels.
Excitingly, the new facilities represent just the first step to revamping the school's indoor sporting facilities as, once complete, the remodelling of the school's existing facilities can begin.
For the next stage of the campus master plan, two of Shrewsbury's most popular and successful technical sports - golf and climbing - will gain fantastic new performance training facilities in the form of a six-bay golf simulator and a four-metre indoor bouldering wall. A brand new multi-functional area for Pre-Prep children will provide a safe, dedicated facility for Pre-Prep Physical Education and indoor recreation. At the same time, there will also be a further renovation of changing facilities and air conditioning upgrades throughout the existing sports hall and gymnastics hall.