The Bristol Bears Academy aims to unite and inspire the city. See below for frequently asked questions about what the Academy can do for you.
HOW DO I ENTER THE ACADEMY?
Players can enter the Academy programme through the Developing Player Programme (DPP). The programme runs from U13 to U16 and is a weekly, broad-based programme. Players are identified by their rugby teacher, club coach and must then apply. This is an open door policy and players can be referred into the programme throughout the duration.
WHAT QUALITIES DO YOU LOOK FOR IN A PLAYER?
To understand what attributes the Bristol Bears Academy look for in a player, please download our talent predictor attributes brief by clicking here.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BEING IN THE ACADEMY?
Young players are assisted in achieving their potential, while developing their game understanding. The Academy environment, alongside like-minded aspirational players, increases the understanding of the demands of elite rugby and enables character development.
ARE ACADEMY PLAYERS CONTRACTED TO BRISTOL?
From the end of the U18 PDG programme, a small number of players will earn full-time contracts with the Senior Academy.
WILL I STILL GO TO SCHOOL OR COLLEGE?
Yes, the DPP and PDG programmes run after school and in school holidays. Where players are contracted after the age of 18, there is scope for this to run alongside a higher education programme. A number of our first year Senior Academy players are studying undergraduate degrees.
CAN I STILL PLAY FOR MY SCHOOL OR CLUB?
Yes. The Academy works hard to establish positive relationships with clubs and schools to ensure the players’ needs are at the centre of their development.
AS A PARENT, WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP?
We encourage all our parents of Academy players to be supportive and not judge their son on his ability to play rugby. Selection or non-selection is not the be all and end all, it is merely a step in a not yet defined direction of a player’s young life.
In times of disappointment, we encourage parents to offer a sympathetic ear and emotional support, while helping your son to find workable solutions.
Trust the DPP and Academy coaches to make objective decisions, some of which will be contrary to your own. Encourage your son to take responsibility for his own development.
For more information about the Academy, please contact Mike Hall on firstname.lastname@example.org