Trinity Sport announces results of first integrated strategy for sport

Posted on: 20 January 2020

Trinity College Dublin’s first integrated Strategy for Sport, ‘Raising our Game’ was officially launched in 2015 and reached its final phase of planned implementation at the end of 2018. The results of the strategy ‘Raising our Game’ were announced today by Michelle Tanner, Head of Sport and Recreation at Trinity Sport. The two main themes focused on increasing participation in sport and physical activity and developing the performance environment and structure around individual athletes and teams.

Commenting on the results, Michelle Tanner, Head of Sport and Recreation, Trinity Sport said: “We are delighted to release the results of our first integrated strategy for sport and reflect on how far we have come since the launch of the strategy in 2015. Increasing participation amongst students, staff and members was a driving objective for Trinity Sport and there have been positive results with a 157% increase in participants of organised classes and a 55% increase in active staff members at the sport centre. Performance has improved significantly, by the end of the strategy focus sport athletes won 29 league, cup, varsity & colour games and 20 national caps. Trinity Sport will continue to build on the success of the ‘Raising Our Game’ strategy, we’ve raised our game – now it’s time to play our best game.”

Prof Kevin O’ Kelly, Trinity’s Dean of Students and Chair of the ‘Raising Our Game’ Strategy Group commented: “The strategy group set out an ambitious target from the inception of the ‘Raising Our Game’ strategy for sport, it is wonderful to see the positive outcomes such as the development of Printing House Square and also the Sports Centre reconfiguration project which was completed in 2017. These results directly benefit Trinity students as the range and diversity of sporting opportunities available to Trinity students are a key part of campus life and integral to the Trinity student experience.”

Key participation results:

To increase regular participation an innovative programme of sport and recreation was implemented for staff, students and community members.

  • A 157% increase in participants of organised classes, with a 74% increase in female participants.
  • In conjunction with the Health Centre and the Human Resources Department, Trinity Sport created and delivered an ‘Active Staff programme’ which saw a 55% increase in active staff members at the Trinity Sport centre.
  • Trinity Sport introduced an Intra Mural Sports Programme for students at Trinity Hall which saw an increase of 317% participants over three years.
  • Trinity Sport developed a children’s activity programme to include after school activities which saw over 14,000 children participate, overall this was a 30% increase over the course of the strategy.


Key Performance Results:

Another key objective was to provide a supporting environment for student athletes and focus sport teams to perform and compete successfully at a high level.

  • Trinity Sport identified focus sports which were developed to a high standard, at the end of the ‘strategy for sport’ this included 29 league, cup, varsity & colour wins, 20 national caps by focus sport athletes.
  • Trinity Sport secured investment from the University to implement a support system to attract high-performing athletes to Trinity, currently 240 athletes are supported annually via the high-performance pathway.
  • Trinity Sport developed a robust medical pathway for sports scholarship and focus sport athletes which supported 415 individuals with treatments.
  • Several projects, collaborations and agreements were put in place with 10 national governing bodies.


Key profile results:

Increasing the profile of sport internally and externally was another key objective for the Strategy for Sport.

  • The Trinity Sport identity was created to represent the breadth of sporting opportunities in Irelands premier university, and by the end of the Strategy for Sport 80% of the college community recognised the Trinity Sport identity.
  • Online engagement in annual showcase events increased by 74% between years 2 and 3 of the strategy.
  • 228% increase in Facebook followers to 7,564 with over 35,000 engagements with Trinity Sport social media content.
  • 6 former international athletes and alumni were announced as Trinity Sport ambassadors including Nicole Owens and Mark Pollock.

Key personnel results:

Another aim for Trinity Sport was to provide quality volunteer, coaching and administrative opportunities to students and staff creating a positive impact on sporting performance.

  • New positions were created in the areas of operations, sports development and communications to support the strategic implementation process.
  • Attendance in club officer training increased by 66% over the lifetime of the strategy, with over 86% of clubs represented.
  • 169 students enrolled onto the sports volunteer programme over three years of the strategy completing 2686 volunteering hours.


Key finance results:

Trinity Sport is managed within a fully integrated and financially robust governance structure, to achieve shared visions and goals.

  • A proportion of the student levy was ring fenced annually and directed towards strategic areas. Seven capital projects have been implemented as a result including college park rugby pitch upgrades, Islandbridge storage, Santry GAA pitch upgrades, fitness theatre expansion, Iveagh grounds purchase and a new high-performance gym.
  • Trinity Sport income increase by 50% since the beginning of the strategy, 48% of this total amount coming from sponsorship and business development activity.
  • The Trinity Sports development unit was established as part of a wider structure review. Professional staff roles have been developed to lead participation and performance areas.


Key infrastructure results:

  • Completion of the Santry Sports facilities has had a significant impact on the quality and overall usage with a 125% increase in usage since 2015.
  • The Sports centre reconfiguration project carried out in 2017 has improve facilities to include a new fitness studio, high-performance gym and the main fitness theatre was expanded to 420sqm.
  • Printing House Square squash and rifle facilities are scheduled to open in Summer 2020.
  • Successful purchase and operation of Iveagh Grounds.

Trinity Sport will continue to build on the success of the ‘Raising Our Game’ strategy.  A new planning process is now being implemented which will link to the college’s strategic direction for the future and align with the inspiring generations theme as we engage with our sporting alumni, sporting heritage, ambassadors, partners and sponsors. Consultation on the future of sport will commence in February supported by the Students Union and DUCAC in the form of focus groups and surveys, for more information on this please contact: For the full results of the Trinity Sport ‘Raising Our Game’ strategy please visit here


Media Contact:

Sally-Anne Fisher, Head of Communications | | +353 1 896 3606