How do you combine sport and studies to become a professional player?
Every sports player devotes a lot of time, effort and resources on his or her way to success. We can distinguish top-level sportsmen and sportswomen, high-performance sportsmen and sportswomen and high-performance sportsmen and sportswomen. The differences between them depend on the amount and level of success they can achieve. However, in general terms, we use the term high-performance player for all those who devote long hours, special attention and focus to their physical, technical, tactical, psychological and nutritional training.
High-performance players usually start developing their careers during their teenage years, which makes them combine long hours of training and other age-related academic activities. Generally speaking, it is incompatible to combine long and hard training sessions with a regular school life without the help of their clubs or academic centres.
Reconciling training and studies requires an additional effort for every high-performance player. To overcome this challenge, clubs and academic centres must be sensitive to their needs and allow to adjust the training process to the particular conditions of the players/students; without this help, most of them would face certain academic failure, which in turn would condition future professional development in a significant way.
Like any adolescent, the academic education of the high performance football player becomes an essential part of his integral education, thus increasing his professional opportunities in the future.
It is therefore important to adapt academic life to sporting life (and vice versa) as much as possible. Therefore, coordination between clubs and schools is necessary to be successful. This means adopting a series of measures such as: adapting the school timetable to training, having flexibility in exam dates (to avoid exams coinciding with competitions), following academic progress effectively and providing tutoring, reinforcement and pedagogical assistance.
Where to combine sport and studies in the best way?
One of the possible places where the combination of sport and studies is shown to be possible is a high-performance football academy. Here, incoming players transform their routine, where they have time for high-intensity training and quality classes, all in an international environment and with kids who are all pursuing the same goal.
In the football academies, the coaches and educators convey to the young athletes the need to continue their education despite the fact that they are putting all their energy into football. In a residence with players of different nationalities and different backgrounds, the challenge is even greater due to the number of different aspects to be taken into account. However, there are different models that make this coordination possible.
At Soccer InterAction (SIA), there is a pedagogical department where we help our players with everything they may need regarding studies in a personalised way.
Comfort, convenience and usability is what identifies us: Making educational services easier to use and solving a timely need by being all in the same complex. Avoiding annoying displacements or being integrated.
High-performance football schools such as Soccer Inter-Action offer accommodation, lessons and training from one to three years, with many of our football players following the British curriculum in a school where, among other benefits, the school timetable is adapted to the training schedule.
In this way, the school functions as a proper integrated centre. At the same time, SIA makes other resources, teaching staff and facilities available to the players. This allows for individual monitoring and ensures regular academic development.
Another of the advantages is the accessibility to studies in its different formulas for all our players. By being integrated within our own facilities and work processes, we ensure that all students have access to services that were not available to them previously or in other academies.
Our players make the most of their years at the academy and although our educational proposal can functionally be similar to others on the market from prestigious academies, they will increase their non-sporting and educational curriculum, giving them access to a multitude of future options. With us they will increase their extra-sporting and formative curriculum giving them access to a multitude of future options.
The BRITISH SCHOOL educational project at Soccer Inter-Action
Another benefit of this model, in addition to the reconciliation of studies and training schedules, is the possibility of following the British curriculum, which has many advantages in itself, such as a multicultural education, total and real immersion in English, personalised teaching, small groups to boost participation and confidence, a practical, creative and interactive methodology, and is a prestigious educational system recognised throughout the world, including universities in the USA, Canada, etc.
Our players’ families find value in using and visualising British School which has a certain reputation in the marketplace.
What is the British School methodology?
The British School’s prestigious and innovative educational project is based on the British National Curriculum. Developed by the Department for Education in England based on the following points:
Full linguistic immersion;
from Pre-nursery to Year 13 (0 to 18 years).
Personal and individualised education;
with continuous supervision and curricular adaptation to the needs of each pupil.
which shares the learning of curricular and extracurricular subjects, aimed at artistic and sporting development.
Teaching and culture of values;
reflected in the behaviour and attitude of students.
Permanent contact with pupils’ families;
informing them of all relevant aspects of their children’s education.
What other services does the British School provide?
We are aware of the importance of a good and varied diet and that is why all their menus are designed by a professional nutritionist and supervised by Soccer Inter-Action’s sports nutritionist. They have their own staff who prepare daily meals and snacks for the pupils. A new concept of school canteen, converted into an educational classroom that promotes healthy and sustainable food.
We provide the players’ families with a regular school transport service, with routes with stops in the towns close to each of our centres in Alzira, Xátiva and Gandia. A safe, comfortable and efficient mobility option, used by all the players. Soccer Inter-Action offers a transport service after the first training session. In order to reconcile the hard training sessions in the morning with the educational centre.
Support with personalised tutors during the immersion process at the centre for the first few months, who provide support with the native language.
How is the Spanish and British education system validated?
We show you a table of equivalences between the academic years of the British and Spanish education systems.
What do students have to prove to gain access to the Spanish University?
- In Year 11 (4th ESO) a minimum of 5 IGCSEs. These exams do not count for points.
- In Year 12 & Year 13 (1st & 2nd Bachillerato) the minimum is 3 A Levels and the maximum is 4 Levels. These exams do count for points.
- It is possible to take 2 A Levels and 2 AS as long as they add up to a total of 48 UCAS points.
- The mark for the General Phase, UCAS points, is obtained from the score in the Official A Levels. The equivalence of UCAS points to a numerical mark from 0 to 10 is established by the MEC, through the UNED (public entity in charge of the management of Access to EU and countries with bilateral agreements).
- The mark for the Specific Phase, up to a maximum of 4 more points, is obtained from the score of the PCE (Pruebas de Competencia Específica) that the foreign educational centres carry out through the UNED.
- The mark for the Spanish University Access will be the sum of both phases, with a maximum of 14 points.
Which universities have British School students attended?
Most of the students are successful in their chosen university option. We show you the Universities that have been admitted.
SPANISH PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES.
UNIVERSIDAD CARLOS III MADRID. UNIVERSIDAD POLITÉCNICA DE VALENCIA. UNIVERSITY OF VALENCIA. UNIVERSIDAD COMPLUTENSE DE MADRID. UNIVERSIDAD AUTÓNOMA DE MADRID. UNIVERSIDAD DE NAVARRA. UNIVERSITY OF GRANADA. AMONG OTHERS
SPANISH PRIVATE UNIVERSITIES
IE UNIVERSITY SEGOVIA / MADRID
UAX UNIVERSIDAD ALFONSO X EL SABIO
UCV UNIVERSIDAD CATÓLICA SAN VICENTE MÁRTIR
CEU CARDENAL HERRERA
UNIVERSIDAD EUROPEA MADRID / VALENCIA
LONDON IMPERIAL COLLEGE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
UNIVERSITY OF MEMPHIS
What Scholarship System for USA is managed by Soccer Inter-Action
Other players who have finished high school may have very different goals, from obtaining a scholarship at a US university to gaining access to universities for formal training. U.S. universities award thousands of athletic scholarships that can cover up to 100% of your tuition.
Competing and studying at an American university thanks to an athletic scholarship is very possible for our players. The adaptation of the academic calendar to the sporting calendar, sports facilities on campus, professionals at your disposal make it a good option for football academy players… To qualify for sports scholarships in the USA, the better level you have, the more options you will have, so your preparation here ensures a better result.
Soccer Inter-Action can also help you with your TOEFL and SAT preparation.
What requirements do players have to have in order to get a football scholarship?
The academic requirements are to finish high school and take the TOEFL and SAT exams.
The athletic requirements are to have a high competitive level and to comply with the rules of the American university leagues.
If you want to know the different options, please consult our Football Scholarships article in our Blog.
What facilities and pedagogical resources does Soccer Inter-Action provide?
In order to achieve a balance between study and sport, SIA has facilities such as a computer room with internet connection, digital whiteboards, video analysis rooms and other resources (mentioned above) available for players. There are collective and individual study rooms. Library.
In addition, we also monitor individual players to ensure that they overcome difficulties such as, for example, following course content, ability to follow lessons/classes taught in countries with different time zones, overcoming the loneliness of distance learning students, etc. All these resources give our organisation an added value that our players appreciate.
Language (English-Spanish) and communication classes are included in the programme.
As mentioned above, people from several countries live together in a high-performance footballer’s residence. To provide a harmonious coexistence it is mandatory to find a common language for effective communication. English and Spanish are the languages our players use with each other. For that reason, we teach and strengthen these languages to minimise the possible effects of the language barrier.
Video analysis classes included in the programme
Coaches and players at the academy learn all about video analysis to improve football training and matches. We include a LongoMatch Intensive Course in the programme. This intensive course will take place entirely in the classroom. Attendees incorporate and discuss the main topics related to football tactics, introductory analysis and the basics of LongoMatch PRO video analysis software.