Ramsgate sports coach celebrates one year of innovative start-up business

The MatchPlay Cards are distributed to 21 countries

A Ramsgate sports coach is celebrating the first anniversary of his business that uses an innovative card game to support coaches and sporting players.

St Lawrence College Sports Coach Jack Rolfe refused to let dyslexia stand in the way of his ambitions and last December founded The Coaching Lab and product MatchPlay Cards.

The graduate of Sports Coaching Science at Canterbury Christ Church created the cards to help solve the problem of accessible learning opportunities as a sports coach without the need to spend hundreds of pounds.

Jack launched The Coaching Lab and its MatchPlay Cards as a learning and development startup enterprise aimed at bringing local coaches together from across the county.

The 23-year-old says the Lab has grown massively in such a short space of time, adding: “I thought it was a totally mad concept that no one would engage with, I was wrong, very wrong. Coaching is about developing people and this is the top priority of The Coaching Lab. I think people have really respected and shared what we value.”

Packaged and distributed from Ramsgate to 21 countries across the globe, a large part of the startup business is MatchPlay Cards. This is a card game for the sports field; encouraging creativity, embracing independent thinking and challenging players of all ages to adapt and overcome the challenges they are faced with.

The concept born from his dissertation at Canterbury Christ Church University in 2018. Though not football specific in their design, MatchPlay Cards have been featured by the UK’s number one football magazine, Match of The Day, and are currently being used within three Premier League football academies.

The young entrepreneur explains the journey hasn’t always been smooth: “I am dyslexic and struggled to see what the future would hold job wise when I was sat at school trying to write my exams, so to see these MatchPlay Cards and The Coaching Lab come together and grow has given me a sense of renewed belief.

“I have two values in life, make the most of every opportunity and don’t be boring. Hopefully, it can be an inspiration for more young people to kick start businesses.”

For more information about The Coaching Lab head to: https://www.thecoachinglab.org