Winston Churchill, when asked how he came to live to 90 whilst drinking and smoking heavily for much of his life, famously answered "No sport!" Maybe this story is apocryphal, and maybe, as often, he somewhat re-arranged the truth to suit himself and the image he wanted to project of his behaviour. But since he, like myself, went to a British public school (not the same one and obviously not at the same time), I very much doubt whether the great man managed to escape from sport altogether throughout his lifetime. And he was for a some time an accomplished horseman, so maybe the proper response to his comment would be "horseshit!"
English private and public school education (the same system, but different ages of the children for those who wonder about this curious denomination for what is an almost totally private and elistist system) puts sports very much at stage centre. In fact at the schools that I attended, and at the time I was there, it was considerably better for image amongst one's peer group to be good at sports than to be good at studies! I know, the old saying "the Battle of Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton" is a bit hoary, but maybe it had some truth in it. Then again, there was also Blücher and the Prussians, which certainly counted for much more!