Doing sport at EDHEC: Interview with Stéphane Planque, Head of Sport

Sports sequence 2/3: a series of interviews in which members of EDHEC’s sports ecosystem share their visions of the School’s sports culture.

Reading time :
26 Jun 2023

Doing water polo or meditation classes, practising rowing in the Mediterranean or making use of the sports hall open from 6.00 in the morning to 11.00 at night ... at EDHEC Business School, students can choose from some 40 sports available free of charge in Nice or Lille, either by using the sports facilities on campus or taking advantage of the partnerships signed with various sports clubs. All told, EDHEC provides access to sport for close to 4,000 students each year.

For several years, Head of Sport Stéphane Planque has been ensuring students enjoy a high-quality sports experience throughout their studies at the School. In this interview he describes the sports ecosystem at EDHEC (formats, facilities, variety of activities), as well as the benefits that students can reap from doing sport. 

How is sport organised at EDHEC? In which formats?

EDHEC Business School offers students three formats for doing sport on the Lille and Nice campuses, all based on a “sport-health” approach. The first - unstructured sport - allows students to use certain facilities (swimming pool, sports rooms or CrossFit stations outside), simply by registering on an online platform. This format is designed to make it easy to do sport on the School’s campuses, with facilities open throughout the day from 6.00am to 11.00pm. Next, for students looking to do sport on a structured and regular basis, the leisure sport format offers free classes with a coach throughout the year. These sessions are designed to foster students’ engagement with a particular sport and help them discover different activities (fitness, CrossFit, yoga, pilates). 

The third format - competition sport – give students the chance to practice sport intensively, from a perspective of performance and excellence. According to the disciplines chosen, EDHEC arranges training sessions directly with a coach on its campuses or in sports clubs. If training sessions are run by external organisations, EDHEC books the student’s place free of charge. Students can then take selection tests for national competitions and, depending on their level, take part in different sports events in France. 

Which sports are on offer to EDHEC students? And which sports facilities are available?

Students can do sport either on their home campus in Lille or Nice, or in partner sports clubs in the surrounding region. 

In Nice EDHEC has a fitness room and a multi-sports hall that can be divided into two and which allows students to do indoor classes (dance, boxing, yoga). For team sports (basketball, football, rowing), the School has partnerships with the City of Nice and with PACA University that allow students to use external facilities, such as football pitches. In Lille some 3,200 EDHEC students take part in at least one sports activity. The Lille campus stands out for the quality and variety of its facilities: swimming pool, dance and fitness room, small-court sports hall (handball, basketball, volleyball), weights room and dojo. The School has also signed partnerships with several sports clubs in Roubaix and Croix (Roubaix Racing Tennis Club, Roubaix Rugby Club, Croix Municipal Sports Department). 

How does doing sport on the School’s campuses contribute to students’ well-being and success?

Doing sport provides students with the breathing space they need for their studies to go well and also gives them a chance to unwind. With this idea in mind, the sports department offers activities like sophrology and meditation that help students relax and let go. Each sport also brings together learners from all programmes and all years (BBA, MSc, PGE) and therefore encourages cohesion between the different class years. Doing sport builds a sense of belonging to a team and allow students to invest their energy in a collective project, exactly as they would do in a company. 


Read the first interview in the "Sports Sequence" series: Supporting high-level athletes: Interview with Bernard Curzi, Director of the EDHEC International BBA Online


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