Winter Olympics

Did you know that Team GB Winter Olympics stars train at Bath skeleton track?

19th March 2018

If you were as riveted as we were by the 2018 Winter Olympics at PyeongChang in South Korea in February, you may have spotted a common link between many of Team GB’s big winners. No less than 16 athletes who competed at the Games train at the University of Bath, including the history-making gold medallist Lizzy Yarnold.

In the city of Bath is where you’ll find one of the only push-start tracks used for training for bobsleigh and skeleton athletes. This is where Lizzy Yarnold, along with other medal-winning teammates including Laura Deas and Dom Parsons, trained for their Olympic performances. Laura Deas stood in bronze medal position for skeleton alongside Yarnold, who successfully defended her Sochi 2014 gold medal at this year’s Winter Olympics.

Also a big winner at PyeongChang was Dom Parsons, a University of Bath student studying a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. Dom won a bronze in the men’s skeleton, securing the UK’s first medal for men’s skeleton since 1948.  

Where is the Bath skeleton track?

You’ll find the Bath skeleton track, which is a small, short-track for training rather than a full course, at the Sports Training Village at the University of Bath. The University is just outside the city centre but a convenient distance away. The facilities, including the skeleton and bobsleigh push-start track, are nestled in beautiful surroundings. Students, staff and the Team Bath athletes enjoy panoramic views of Claverton Down and Bath Golf Course, surrounded as the University is on nearly all sides by stunning green spaces.

Fancy trying skeleton in Bath for yourself?

If you watched the Winter Olympics in 2018 and thought you’d love to give skeleton or bobsleigh a go, there’s good news for all of you adrenaline junkies out there. The British Bobsleigh and Skeleton Association (BBSA) offers taster sessions for skeleton in Bath, and you can also try bobsleigh too.

The taster sessions are two-and-a-half hours long and take place at the University of Bath’s push track, which has recently undergone a series of high-tech improvements. Excitingly, during these sessions you’ll be coached by world-class Team GB athletes, who offer their expert insight into improving your technique and getting into the sport at a more advanced level. At the end of the session once you’ve learnt the basics, you’ll get the chance to race against the clock and see how fast you can go!

The sessions take place throughout April to July 2018 and are an extremely good value £80 per person for each session. The BBSA also offers Corporate Days which also include lunch and a Q&A as well as the chance to try your hand at sliding. These days can be a really unique alternative to the usual corporate team building events, and they can be tailored to suit your company’s goals.

If you’re coming for a Bath skeleton taster session, you’ll be surprised at how physically intensive the sport can be. You’ll need somewhere soothing and comfortable in which to rest your weary bones afterwards – take a look at our fabulous range of city centre Bath self-catering apartments and studios.