School of Business and Economics


Sabrina Heimler

Photo of  Sabrina Heimler

Doctoral Researcher in Human Resource Management and Organisational Behaviour

Sabrina joined the Centre for Professional Work and Society as a PhD Researcher, after being awarded a research scholarship.


  • MSc (Distinction) in Sport Management from Loughborough University in 2013.
  • BSc (Hons) in Geography and Management & Diploma in Professional Studies from Loughborough University in 2012.

Membership with professional bodies/associations:

  • Member of the British Academy of Management (BAM) since 2014.

Sabrina’s research interests focus on the study of sports careers, career transitions and narratives.

Sabrina follows a life-story approach to study the careers of professional rugby players. She worked with nearly fifty ex-professional rugby union players, to research and analyse matters concerning transition and retirement. Sabrina applies a holistic understanding to inform and educate about the players’ accounts and to learn about the impact of a professional sports career on the players’ identity and personal development on and off the rugby field.

Sabrina’s work generates and develops knowledge and offers practical suggestions for an academic audience, current and future generations of players and closely related stakeholder groups.

Inquiries about Sabrina’s research are welcomed via email.



  • Professor Christine Coupland
  • Professor Donald Hislop


Thesis Title/Topic:

  • ‘A career in sport: A thematic analysis of ex-professional rugby union players’ reflective career talk on their struggles with retirement’