We have a strong juniors section, with a track record of helping young athletes achieve their potential.
We pride ourselves on an ‘athlete focused’ culture, which is especially true for our juniors who are developing both physically and emotionally. The coaches will always prioritise our athlete’s well-being and development over any short-term goals or club results.
With our younger Harriers, (minimum age 8 – up to around 12 years old) our goal is to give them an enthusiasm for the sport while building their fundamental techniques and fitness. We train on Thursday evenings and aim to provide them with a wide range of runs, jumps and throws without over-stressing their developing muscles and bones.
The first Thursday of every month is a taster session for those interested in joining to come and have a go.
Our Under 13’s & Under 11’s can compete in three leagues:
- Oxfordshire Junior League (OJL) Athletics – A great introduction to athletics with three local fixtures through the spring/summer, including events like 75m sprints, 600m distance, long jump and throwing the vortex.
- Sportshall. A fun junior indoor athletics league through the autumn/winter season. Monthly fixtures inc. jumps, throws and running.
- Oxfordshire Cross-Country League. Monthly fixtures through the autumn/winter from 1200m (U9 boys & girls) to approx 5k for U17 boys.
These are all team events. The club will organize the team, entries, etc.
All our juniors are expected to be part of our Sportshall and OJL athletics teams. For the cross-country (XC) we field a juniors team, and those that wish to run can compete for the team. However, especially for the 8-12 year olds, it’s entirely the athletes choice.
13 – 18 Years Old
As the juniors reach their teens, they are able to specialise in their preferred discipline and we increase our focus on developing their fitness, skills and competition experience. In addition to our Thursday training, our senior coaches hold regular Tuesday sessions at Tilsley in endurance, sprints, jumps, throws, etc. for those interested in attending. These sessions are tailored to the handful of athletes in each group.
Our juniors compete in:
- Oxfordshire Junior League (OJL) Athletics – A team event coordinated by the club. Typically three athletics fixtures through the spring/summer including events like 100m, 400m, 1500m, long-jump, discus, javelin, etc.
- Youth Development League (YDL) Athletics. Our athletes aged 16 to 19 can participate in “Team Oxfordshire” in the YDL. This is a combined team made up of athletes from three local clubs (including WHH). This provides a good level of competition in both track and field events for our older juniors.
- Oxfordshire Cross-Country League. A team event coordinated by the club. Monthly fixtures through the autumn/winter.
- Open Graded Athletics Meetings. There are a range of ‘Opens’ around the country that athletes can enter individually to provide experience and competition. The coaches will be able recommend and provide guidance on appropriate ‘Opens’.
As well as the OJL, the coaches encourage competition in the Open Competitions and Oxfordshire’s Youth Development League
Former Junior Harriers
This longer term approach has had great results. As well as encouraging an interest in sport in the local community, our coaches have helped a number of athletes achieve their potential, competing at a national or international level.
We’re extremely proud of juniors and former Harriers achievements. A selection include:
- Invited to represent both the Oxfordshire County and English Schools XC team every year as a junior.
- 47th at the English National Championships at Parliament Hill 2012.
- 42nd in the Southern Championships 2012.
- 3rd, 2nd and eventually 1st in the Oxford Mail League overall from U13 -U17
- 2nd and 3rd place in the Berks, Bucks and Oxon Championships in 2012 and 2011.
- English Schools Silver 2014 800m
- SIAB International for england 4×400 Gold 2014
- South England u20 silver as an u17 800m 2014
- County Championship record 2016 400m
- English Schools Gold 2016 400m
- GB Junior Selection 4×400 at Loughborough International 2016
- Top 25 in the under 20 National cross-country championships
- Top 75 in the Senior Intercounties cross-country champs
- 4th in the Oxford/Cambridge varsity cross-country match
- Breaking 9 mins for 3000m
- Multiple Oxfordshire track and cross-country champion in U17 age group
- 2 Olympic triathlons (12th in Beijing, 9th in London) for France
- 5 times French Elite triathlon Champion
- 2 times World Triathlon Relay Championship silver medalist.
We have a great coaching structure with four experienced EA juniors coaches, Tom (endurance), Lisa (sprints & jumps), Dick (throws) and Angela, supported by three further EA qualified coaches and EA Assistant Coaches.
Please talk to the coaches about your hopes and goals, so we can ensure we’re best supporting our athletes as they progress. More Info
If you are enquiring on behalf of your son or daughter, we ask the parent to assist on the volunteer rota for the Thursday evenings training (which also gives you a chance to see what the juniors are doing). This typically means helping out once every 6 weeks or so.
The volunteers rota helps the qualified coaches provide a better quality training session for the juniors and we’re grateful to all the parents and friends of the Harriers who give their time.