All Year Round Sports
Swimming takes place throughout the year, both in Games time and in PE lessons, in the six lane x 25m indoor heated pool. PE lessons are taught by the Physical Education staff which includes a full time Swim Coach and it is the aim that every child leaves the Dragon being water confident and a competent swimmer. There are school and invitational swim events that the school teams compete in throughout the year and the Dragon hosts one of the regional qualifying rounds for the IAPS Championships as well as the Oxon Primary School Relay South-East Qualifier. Over the last decade, the school Swim Squad has had regular success at both Regional and National level competitions. All Dragons participate in Form Relays which take place at different times during the year, giving every child the opportunity of racing against others of similar ability whilst representing their Form. A trophy is awarded to the Form that collects the most points during the year and there is also a form Medley Relay competition as well. Annually, over 150 different pupils regularly train and compete for the school.
Tennis is possible (on a sign-up basis) during the winter months through our partnership with Premier Tennis, whilst there is the opportunity to play Squash at Nuffield Health and Racquet Club based at nearby St. Edward’s School. The school has a good link with the club and they offer winter and spring indoor training. In the summer, most tennis activity takes place on the school courts.
With a number of golf fixtures organised against other schools, we also enter teams into the ISGA League competition. There are opportunities to go to a local driving range or play on local courses, and Dragon Golfers have enjoyed success at IAPS championships and also the prestigious Stowe Putter Competition in recent years.
We are very fortunate at the Dragon to have about three hundred metres of the River Cherwell passing through the school grounds, which has fostered a love of rowing within many Dragons, some of which have gone on to earn representative honours. This includes Frances Houghton OD, four time World Champion and five time Olympian who was in the Women’s Quadruple Scull that won silver at the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games, as well as silver in the Women’s Eight at Rio in 2016. We have our own Boathouse which houses the majority of our single sculls and training boats as well as the school canoeing group. Our Racing Squad train out of the St. Edward's School Boathouse at Wolvercote on the Thames. Those selected to participate as members of the Sculling Squad have access to quads, doubles and single sculls. We also have access to two following launches to support the children whilst coaching on the river. All children have the opportunity to learn sculling as part of the school Activity and Clubs Programme.
Each year the Dragon participates in various events across the region. In the first term, the children have the opportunity to enter races called ‘Heads’, which are longer races, often over several kilometres along a stretch of river. Each year we enter a number of these, traditionally starting with the City of Oxford Head. As the summer approaches the regatta season commences. These are much shorter sprint races, usually over distances of up to 1000 metres. Most of the competitions are public events, although some are “private matches”.
At the end of the Summer Term the school hosts its own internal regatta on the River Cherwell with as many as 80 races take place during the day with events for all. The parents’ presence makes for a wonderful social occasion, as picnics and barbecues are set up along the river bank. There are several school cups for which the children can compete during the year and at the Dragon Regatta.
Other sports are played as part of the Activities and Clubs programme.