Leamington and national dodgeball player is on mission to get more people into the sport like Vince Vaughn movie character

A dodgeball player from Leamington who is among the best in Britain is on a mission like the Vince Vaughn film character to get more people into the sport.

Mark holding a dodgeball session for under-11s.
Mark holding a dodgeball session for under-11s.

Mark Allan, 26, plays for Great Britain, England and Leamington Spartans who are currently the best team in the country.

He quit his office job in January and has decided to follow his passion in life by working to become a full-time dodgeball coach.

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Dodgeball first came into the public eye when the hit American sports comedy film DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story, starring Hollywood actors Vince Vaughan and Ben Stiller, was in cinemas in 2004.

Mark holding an assembly to encourage youngsters to play dodgeball.

Mark said: "Throughout my life I have always tried lots of sports ranging from football to athletics to ultimate frisbee.

"When I started university, again I tried out everything on offer including dodgeball, I feel in love with it in the first session and I’ve been playing ever since.

"I love the inclusiveness, it doesn’t matter if you’re big, small, girl or boy, there are so many different styles of play that no matter who you are there is a style that will suit you and play to your strengths.

"Also, the culture that surrounds the game at every level is like no other sport, dodgeball is a family, it’s a game that is built on honesty and mutual respect which just makes it a joy to play."

Mark has set up community clubs, ran sessions at schools, held birthday parties and assemblies and is working with a charity to run a tournament.

He has also recently published an article online covering the subjects of obesity in children and engagement levels in sport.

Mark said: "Dodgeball is definitely growing.

"I have spoken to hundreds of teachers and parents and whenever we talk about dodgeball they all say how much their kids love playing it and they themselves reminisce playing dodgeball during their childhood and it brings back good memories.

"My job is to give kids a platform to continue playing this fantastic sport and show them that it doesn’t just have to be something that is played as a treat at school.

"And if children grow a passion for it, just like with netball and football, there are leagues and tournaments that they can get involved in and there are even routes into the national teams."

Mark is currently seeking a sponsor to help him with a couple of costs.

He will soon take part in the World Championships in Glasgow, playing for Great Britain.

The top 48 teams in the world will be competing.

Mark has an Instagram page @DodgeballStrawbs and a Facebook page Dodgeball Club – Leamington Spa both with information about classes and clubs and through which he can be contacted.