At Riccarton High School, we aim to foster and promote sporting opportunities for young people by encouraging them to practice and play sport in a fun and friendly atmosphere. We also ensure the maximum use of school assets, equipment and facilities for the benefit of our entire community.

Our sporting success depends not only on good management practices but also on the volunteer time of people from our community – whether that is teachers, senior students, community members or parents. If you are interested in helping out with coaching or managing a team, please contact our Sports Coordinator Rebecca Dodge

Riccarton offers a wide range of sports each year. Our spacious fields, all-weather netball and tennis surfaces and gymnasiums, provide great facilities for sport and the significant commitment by staff, senior students and parents encourages excellent participation rates.

School teams are involved in competitions on Wednesday afternoons, Saturdays and a number of evenings during the week. Other sporting opportunities on offer are annual winter and summer exchanges with Kaikorai Valley College from Dunedin, and winter exchanges with Geraldine and Westland High Schools. Many of our sports offer opportunities for students to attend tournaments or competitions. A high level of fitness and wellbeing is expected for our students on these trips. They are expected to be completing regular fitness trainings in the weeks prior to tournament. Students are expected to have a 3+ average on their fortnightly reports and take school work that they will be missing away with them..

Summer Sports

Athletics & Swimming

School Championships – Each year the school has its own athletics day as well as its own swimming sports day. Here students compete against other students in each event but also take out the title of best swimmer or best athlete. This takes place in term one.

Canterbury Championships – From our school championships, students can then go on to compete at Canterbury Championships. Last year we took nearly 20 students to Canterbury Athletic Champs and 5 to Swimming Champs. This takes place in term one.

South Island/Nationals – Each year students from Riccarton compete at National and South Island events. This is organised by the students and their families as is usually just a small group. Athletics Nationals is in term four with Swimming Nationals in term three.


Riccarton offers cricket for boys and girls from Years 9-13. The boy’s teams compete in the Saturday competition, with the First XI also competing in the First XI Schools Cup. Cricket takes place in Terms 1 and 4 and teams train after school on Mondays and Thursdays. The Riccarton Cricket Club has a strong relationship with the school and comes down throughout the week to help with coaching our players.

Tournaments -The First XI takes part in a T20 one-day tournament as well as opportunities to play out at The Willows Cricket Ground against invitational teams.

Equipment – Players generally have their own gear however the school has equipment that can be lent to players.

Equestrian (Summer and Winter)

We offer the opportunity to enter three competitions held throughout the year. These are team sports consisting of up to four students. If we don’t have enough riders for a competition, we enter a composite team – this is usually with either Papanui High School and/or Cashmere High School but can be with any other school in Canterbury. All competitions are held at ESNZ National Equestrian Centre, McLeans Island Road.

Our results over the years have been consistently very good.

It’s the riders’ responsibility to have competed previously at the level entered – but there is definitely always room for new riders to join in. The teams accommodate all riders and all abilities and are very low-key at the beginning level – the emphasis is on participation and having fun. 

Show Jumping – is held in late February on a Wednesday. Heights are 80cm, 90cm, and 105cm and there are also Show Hunter classes at 70cm, 80cm, and 90cm.

Dressage – held in late March on a Wednesday.

One Day Eventing – occurs in early August, usually on the weekend.

Mel Bainbridge oversees our equestrian team – contact her at 

Ki O Rahi

Ki O Rahi is a fast-emerging game with traditional Maori roots. With the sport growing at Riccarton and around NZ it is a great sport to get involved in.

Competitions – Riccarton has junior and senior teams that compete in local tournaments during terms one and four. 

Check out how to play here 

Rock Climbing

Rock climbing is a year-round sport, but students can choose to do it term by term. Each Wednesday students get taken to YMCA’s Clip’n’Climb to practice their climbing. Students are required to get their own way home from here as students will finish at different times.

Competitions – students participate in the South Island Competition in term three each year.

Equipment – all climbing gear can be hired at Clip’n’Climb though some climbers like to have their own gear.


Softball is growing here at Riccarton, with our teams having competed in the South Island Championships in previous years. The school offers training each week in preparation for this tournament with most students taking part in weekly competitions playing for their local club. 


Tennis is played over the summer in terms one and four. The school generally has a few teams in both the junior and senior grades. Games are played Wednesday after school against other school teams at venues around Christchurch. Teams need to have someone available to take them to games when the school isn’t able to provide them with transport. Teams don’t have organised training but have access to the tennis courts at the school.

Equipment -Players must supply their own tennis racket for games.

Touch Rugby

Touch has been one of Riccarton’s stronger sports recently with our girl’s team attending Touch Nationals. Teams play games on Wednesday after school with either a bus or van available to take them to their games. We usually have four teams – Year 9/10 Girls and Boys as well as Senior Boys and Girls teams.

Tournaments – The senior teams compete in both the Canterbury and South Island Tournaments which both take place in Christchurch in Term 1.

Equipment – There is no equipment needed for this sport but touch boots would be useful.

Ultimate Frisbee

Ultimate Frisbee is a summer sport played in terms one and four. This is a new sport to the school but has become popular very quickly with the school having several teams at both the junior and senior levels. Games take place on Wednesday after school with training at lunchtime throughout the week.

Tournaments – the teams will often play in local Canterbury School tournaments.

Equipment – no equipment is needed as it is provided.

The teacher in charge of Ultimate Frisbee is Mr. Paewai


Volleyball is one of Riccarton’s strongest sports winning many Canterbury titles over the years. The school has several teams at each age group that compete over the summer in terms one and four. The school offers both indoor and beach volleyball but focuses more on indoor discipline.

Games are played on Mondays after school with training throughout the week before school, lunchtime, or after school.

Trials and registration for volleyball are at the end of term three and the start of term one.

Tournaments – There are several tournaments for Year 11-13 students in term one including National Championships in Palmerston North. The Year 9-10 teams play in term one as well but their main tournaments take place in term four.

Equipment – No equipment is needed for volleyball other than a pair of indoor-specific sports shoes.

The teacher in charge of volleyball is Mr. Nielsen.

Winter Sports


Badminton is played in terms two and three. This is one of the most popular sports at Riccarton with the gym being full several times a week with training and games. Last year our senior teams competed at Canterbury Championships with both teams finishing 3rd.

You can either play in the Canterbury School Sports league where teams compete against other schools each Wednesday after school and train with a Badminton Canterbury coach or you can play in the local league that plays weekly games against students from Riccarton and other neighboring schools.

Equipment -Players must supply their own racket but shuttlecocks are supplied for all players. When using the gym players must wear sports shoes.

Badminton is run by Mr. Baars


Basketball is another one of Riccarton’s most popular sports for boys and girls, with up to 15 teams playing. We have teams of all ages that compete on Friday nights around Christchurch against other schools. Teams train after school or during lunchtime throughout the week.

Our Senior A Boys team competes in the Thompson Trophy on Tuesday nights and our Senior A Girls team can compete in the Whelan Cup. These are the premiere school basketball competitions in Canterbury.

Tournaments – we look to send our Senior A Boys and Girls teams, as well as our Junior A Boys and Girls teams, to tournaments each year. These take place in NZ Secondary Schools’ winter tournament week.

Equipment – no equipment is needed other than a pair of indoor sports shoes.

Cycling (Summer and Winter)

Road cycling and mountain biking are both on offer here at Riccarton High School. Although we do not offer any coaching, there are weekly competitions that students can take part in. On top of those weekly competitions, students can attend Canterbury, South Island, and even Nationals Secondary School events where they compete against other top riders while representing Riccarton. 

Over the summer there are weekly mountain biking races at the Halswell Quarry and over the winter there are weekly road cycling races starting out at Old Tai Tapu Road. 

Equipment – students must have their own suitable bikes.


Football at Riccarton is played during terms two and three on Wednesdays after school. We cater to all students that are interested in playing and had 4 teams in 2020.

We have one girls’ team that had players ranging from Year 9 through to Year 13, and we have one Junior Boys team made up of Year 9/10s as well as two Senior teams – our First and Second XIs. All of these teams practice once or twice a week as is at a level appropriate for all abilities. 

Equipment – players just need to supply their own pair of football boots.


We currently have two girls’ teams and one boys’ team at Riccarton, with both the boy’s and girls’ First XIs traveling to Dunedin to play at the South Island Division 2 Championships. 

Both the girls and the boy’s teams play on Monday afternoons either at 4 pm or 5 pm at Nunweek Park. Sometimes teams will travel to Rangiora to the Waimakariri turf for a 4:30 pm game. There is a school van booked for each team to take up to 10 students to the turf for games.

Trainings are currently on a Thursday after school at Nga Puna Wai turf. 

Tournaments – the girl’s team usually enters the South Island Tournament Jenny McDonald Cup.

Equipment – students need a hockey stick, shin pads, mouth guard, and socks.


Riccarton competes in the Canterbury School Sports Wednesday netball competition over terms two and three. We have teams for all students that are wanting to play so is a great sport for players of any ability or experience. Training takes place here at school at either lunch times or straight after school. 

Netball is a really big sport here at Riccarton so teams require help from parents to make things run smoothly. Let us know if you have a parent or someone keen on helping out with some coaching! 

The Senior A Girls team plays in the SuperNet Reserve competition on Wednesday afternoons/evenings, which takes place at gyms around Christchurch, against other schools’ top teams. They also attend South Island Schools Netball Tournament every year during winter tournament week.

The teacher in charge of netball is Mrs. Kate Rowlands.

Table Tennis

Table Tennis is played over terms two and three at Riccarton with spots for all students wanting to play no matter what their experience. 

Teams compete in the weekly school league on Wednesdays at the Canterbury Table Tennis Centre, just on Blenheim Road, against other teams from around Christchurch. Teams train once a week in the hall on Tuesdays after school.

Equipment is provided but we recommend having your own bat.


Girls Rugby – In 2020 our girls combined with Hillmorton and Hornby High School to form the ‘Southern’ team that competed in the UC Cup. Our girls were coached by a couple of current Canterbury women’s players and finished up 3rd. Games are on Wednesday after school and trainings are usually after school or at lunchtime. 

Boys Rugby – We have a relationship with Burnside Rugby Club which is our local club. If you are wanting to play rugby this year they are always welcoming new players.

For our school exchanges, we often put together a team to compete in these but we do not have a weekly team.