The British Esports Association, the not-for-profit body set up to promote grassroots esports, launched an exciting new initiative to bridge esports and traditional sport.

The Association partnered with West Ham United Foundation, GAME Digital, London Sport and Archery GB for a one-week pilot, which aimed to demonstrate the similarities between competitive video gaming and physical sports, to showcase the benefits of esports when played in moderation and to promote physical activity to video game fans.

This pilot was aimed at teenagers aged between 14 and 19 and took place at West Ham United Foundation in London from October 22nd to 26th 2018, during half-term. London Sport funded the pilot, whose mission is to make London the world’s ‘most active city’.

There were ten sessions taking place throughout the week, each including football, archery and Rocket League, a video game in which players control cars to guide a giant football into the opposing team’s goal.

Two sessions ran per day – one at 9.30am and the other at 1pm. There was space for 36 people per session, which will be split into three groups of 12.

The pilot could pave the way for two satellite clubs to run in the future.

Retailer GAME provided staff, kit and PS4 consoles for the initiative, in conjunction with Sony PlayStation, while governing body Archery GB helped to arrange the archery set-up. There were also be prizes up for grabs for participants.

Rocket League matches took place in classrooms, while football pitches and outdoor space for archery were provided. Participants received professional coaching and had the opportunity to compete with one another.

Special guests included top football, archery and Rocket League professionals.