Our heritage

For over 160 years, sport and physical activity has played a significant part in the identity and life of the University of Edinburgh.

From our earliest and pioneering sports teams of the 1850s and the amazing people and ground breaking developments that have followed to shape our sector leading services, programmes and facilities, Edinburgh is a now firmly established among the UK’s top universities for its commitment to sport and personal well-being.

Sport is within the lifeblood of the University. Moreover, our students, staff & graduates can lay claim to playing a demonstrably important role in shaping the fabric and successes Scottish sport enjoys today.

Founding members

Many of our sports clubs are founding members of the national governing bodies of sport, and we boast a long, proud and distinguished heritage of medal success at the highest level, including Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games.

Olympic Icons

From Olympic greats of Dame Kathrine Grainger, Sir Chris Hoy, Eric Liddell, Polly Swann and others, to our contemporary icons such as Grace Reid, Sarah Robertson and Sarah Wilson who starred in Tokyo 2020, we have much to celebrate.

Support at every level

But our focus is broader, much broader, goes way beyond our sector leading pedigree in performance sport. We are also proud of our other game changing involvements in the likes of sports volunteering, recreational sports participation, vocational skills training, well-being promotion, community engagement, event hosting, as well as the academic activities of our Moray House School of Education & Sport and its pioneering research interests and degree programmes that produce graduates to fuel and further the UK’s sports industry.

Our steadfast and ambitious intention is to encourage, support and sustain involvement in all forms of physical activity and sport - changing lives and making our world a better place for individuals, the University and the wider community.