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Aquatic Diploma in Sporting Excellence applications open for water polo

Applications have opened for the Aquatic Diploma in Sporting Excellence (DiSE) for water polo players.

The industry-leading educational programme is delivered alongside Loughborough college to give athletes the opportunity to combine their studies with training and competition.

The two-year programme is delivered through Swim England workshops, camps, club visits and online one-to-one progress reviews.

Each athlete is allocated an experienced DiSE assessor and are also supported by professional coaches, specialist practitioners and talent staff.

The programme covers a variety of topics including career planning and finance, lifestyle, nutrition, health and safety, mental skills, anti-doping, behaviours and values, communications and media, sports injuries and technical, tactical and physical skills.

DiSE will run for two academic years from September 2023 to July 2025 and applications must be submitted by Friday 14 July.

Applicants for this year’s programme must be born between 1 September 2006 and 31 August 2007.

Athletes must also be enrolling on a full-time state-funded education programme and meet the specific performance criteria.

A range of skills

A number of the nation’s top athletes have taken part in the initiative including senior internationals Thomas Manley, Sophie Jackson and Jordan Elliot.

Great Britain international Amelia Peters shared her experiences of being a part of the programme.

She said: “As a student studying science based A levels, I found the DISE programme gave me a valuable insight into aspects of elite sport which I would not have gained at school.

“The units allowed me to consider a range of ideas from tactical skills to psychological skills to enhance my water polo.

“I found the workload completely manageable alongside my four A levels and GB training.

“I particularly enjoyed the face to face workshops where I met other talented athletes from different aquatic disciplines to discuss our experiences. In a non-covid year, the training trip abroad would have been a great highlight.

“When looking at university options, the qualification allows you to demonstrate how serious you are about your sport when talking to performance sport coaches.

“It helped me to be awarded a scholarship at my first choice university –University of St Andrews. I am also now training in the GB Senior Women’s Water Polo squad and look forward to applying the things I learnt through DISE in my training.”

Swim England’s DiSE lead Darren Sims believes the programme provides a platform for athletes to thrive.

He said: “DiSE is a unique programme which aims to enhance the athlete’s knowledge and skills in their sport whilst they gain a recognised qualification.

“It’s a fantastic opportunity which gives the athletes the perfect environment to thrive in their sport and prepare them for a post athletic career.”

Applications to the DiSE programme are also open for swimming, artistic swimming and diving.

To find out more about DiSE and apply, click here or email [email protected].