Victorian Institute of Sport

The Victorian Institute of Sport (VIS) was established to assist the development of Victoria’s elite athletes by providing access to state-of-the-art sporting facilities and services. The VIS encourages its athletes to lead balanced lifestyles and as such also provides lifelong career and education support. The motto; Success in Sport and Life epitomises the purpose of the VIS.

Currently situated on Olympic Boulevard opposite Rod Laver and Hisense Arenas, the VIS is a non-residential institute which utilises Melbourne’s outstanding sporting facilities, to allow high performance athletes to live and train in Melbourne – the sporting capital of Australia. In November 2011, the VIS will be moving to the Albert Park sporting precinct.

Since its inception in 1990, the Victorian Institute of Sport has supported and developed some of the nation’s – and the world’s – most successful athletes; including swimming champion Leisel Jones, Tour de France veteran Cadel Evans, rowing heavyweights James Tomkins and Drew Ginn and golfing pro Aaron Baddeley.

There are approximately 400 VIS scholarship holders across 32 different sports. The current list of scholarship holders is as diverse as it is vast; athletes range in age from 12 to 47 years and include both able bodied and those with a disability, male and female, team sports and individual in both Olympic and non-Olympic sports.

As part of their scholarship, athletes gain access to advanced coaching and support, world class facilities, in depth sport science analysis and physical therapies; including physiotherapy, massage and doctors. They also have lifelong career and education support through the ACE program (Athlete and Career Education). These outstanding services ensure that athletes are well supported in their quest for sporting success.

Over the years, VIS athletes have contributed over 150 medals to the nation’s tally in both the Olympics and Paralympics. Most recently was the success achieved at the 2010 Vancouver Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

VIS aerial skier, Lydia Lassila, became the fifth Australian to win a gold medal at any Winter Olympics, following her faultless performance in Vancouver. Whilst EAD skiers, Jess Gallagher and Cameron Rahles-Rahbula were accountable for winning three out of the four medals won at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.

At the Beijing Olympics, VIS athletes contributed 33% of the medals won by Australians, including four of the 14 gold medals.

Within the VIS structure, there are 13 Tier 1 program sports; athletics, cycling, golf, gymnastics, hockey, netball, rowing, swimming, triathlon, diving, aerial skiing, sailing and water polo.

Assistance is also offered to elite athletes with a disability in a range of sports including basketball, cycling, equestrian, rugby, shooting, skiing, table tennis and tennis.

In order to support its athletes, the VIS is funded by the State Government through Sport and Recreation Victoria, the Commonwealth Government through the Australian Sports Commission and numerous corporate sector sponsors.

For a complete look at the VIS operations click here>>> 

Angela Donald wins bronze in the beam at the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games. Photo: SYOGOC