Undergraduate study - 2021 entry

Sport and exercise

Edinburgh is one of the UK’s leading sports universities.

Whether you are a recreational gym-user or a performance athlete going for gold, our world-class sports facilities and coaches cater for you.

In 2018/19 we were ranked fourth in the UK for sport by British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS). We offer a wide range of world-class sport, fitness and performance facilities.

The best gym we’ve ever used.

Dr Nick GillHead of Strength and Conditioning, New Zealand All Blacks Rugby

Gym and fitness

We offer one of the country’s best gym and fitness programmes, with:

  • flexible and affordable membership packages
  • a year-round programme of more than 100 weekly exercise classes
  • world-class gyms, fitness challenges and sports participation events

Our 10 gyms include our spin studio, Velo-city, the recently upgraded Katherine Grainger Rowing Gym and a 102-station cardiovascular gym, complete with network fitness.

There is an extensive, high-quality provision for free and fixed weights, including an underground vault with top-of-the-range equipment and our unique MyGym area for body conditioning.

Our expert instructors and personal trainers will guide, support and encourage you.

If I hadn't gone to Edinburgh I'd never have taken up rowing. I'd never have had the life I'm currently living.

Olympic champion rower and Edinburgh law graduateKatherine Grainger

Club and recreational sports

Our Sports Union is made up of more than 60 sports clubs, catering for all types of activity and ability level, from complete beginner to elite athlete.

Our clubs offer weekly coaching and practice, with opportunities to compete and/or participate in sport on Wednesdays and at weekends.

We also run Scotland’s largest intramural sports programme, offering informal leagues, tournaments and fun events, alongside a pioneering ‘EDex’ come and try programmes in an array of sports.

We also deliver a raft of sports-related volunteering and skill development opportunities through our coaching and volunteering academy.

Edinburgh University Sports Union

Indoor sports

Our multi-activity sports halls accommodate a variety of sports, with dedicated spaces for squash, dance, boxing, grappling, archery and shooting.

We also have a 25-metre, six-lane pool, and saunas.

I’d encourage any student interested in sport to come to Edinburgh. The gym is amazing, probably one of the best university gyms in the world.

Corrie ScottMChem (Hons) Chemistry graduate and Commonwealth Games bronze medallist

Outdoor sports

Our sports ground at Peffermill Playing Fields is one of Scotland’s leading outdoor sports facilities and plays host to a multitude of sports clubs and local, national and global events. We have:

  • international- standard, floodlit,  water-based artificial hockey pitches
  • 3G football/rugby facilities
  • 3G five-a-side pitches
  • artificial cricket nets
  • a 100-metre training track
  • a range of premium quality grass pitches, including a new, Scottish Football Association-approved football arena, complete with spectator stand,  floodlights and training  area.

Promoting physical activity

We can support you to enjoy physical activity’s benefits through our Active Lives programme of one-to-one consultations and goal-setting.

Adventure sports

In addition to adrenaline sports clubs, we have Firbush Outdoor Centre located on the stunning banks of Loch Tay in the Highlands. 

It offers tailored activities and services, from windsurfing to mountain leadership training. Our experienced instructors are fully accredited and all specialist equipment is available.

We also have an indoor climbing and bouldering facility at the Pleasance Sports Complex, so there’s plenty of choice to get the pulse racing.

Find out why we are one of the UK’s leading universities for sport.

Sport and exercise

Performance sport

We have one of the UK’s most highly regarded performance programmes for talented individuals and teams. 

We’re proud to have produced Olympians including Sir Chris Hoy and Katherine Grainger – who both developed their talents at Edinburgh – and continue to support our young athletes.

Coaching, facilities and services

Our top-class coaches, facilities and services currently support more than 300 students. We offer exceptional sport-specific programmes in rowing, swimming, hockey, women's fencing, archery, orienteering, rugby and women's basketball. 

These are led by dedicated performance coaches, with specialist conditioning, medical and advisory back-up. This allows our teams to compete at the highest level in national leagues and in British and Scottish universities championships. A further 20 team performance sports and participants on our Individual Performance Programme also benefit from designated sports-specific support, including access to our world-class training and competition facilities.

These facilities are regularly used by visiting international teams such as All Blacks Rugby, and we routinely host major events such as the BUCS Home Nations Tournament in 2017.

Students on our Individual Performance Programme are offered access to the nationally renowned Fitness Assessment and Sports Injury Centre (FASIC). They benefit from dedicated specialist strength and conditioning expertise in an exclusive-use performance gym, and sports nutrition and lifestyle advice.

We also offer dedicated elite sports accommodation for first-year students, promotional opportunities and branded sports clothing, as well as sports science support and flexible studying and mentoring.

There is also access to funding opportunities through the Winning Students network. We now boast an elite athlete access policy to support applications to study at the University from talented sports performers.

Performance sport

Social media

Discover more about team and individual sport and fitness at Edinburgh on social media. Follow our Sport and Exercise accounts for updates about our world-class gym and sport facilities.

Twitter: Sport and Exercise

Facebook: Sport and Exercise

Keep up to date with team and individual sport activity by following the Sports Union and Sport at the University of Edinburgh.

Twitter: Sports Union

Twitter: Sport