School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences


a close up of a 2012 Olympic medal

Sport performance

The aim is to understand and enhance sport and exercise performance across the ability range by investigating the factors influencing, and methods for improving, human performance in sport and exercise.

Theme Leadership Team

Prof Vicky Tolfrey (Lead), Dr Lewis James and Dr David Fletcher

Key research areas include the effect of nutrition and training on performance and recovery from sport; the impact of high training volumes on the immune system; the biomechanics and motor control of elite sporting performance; talent identification and development; understanding sport through statistical and video-based analyses of performance; interactions with sport and eating disorders; sleep to win; impact of sport on bone health, cognition and muscle function; and the psychosocial and behavioural aspects of sport performance and coaching.

Themes that incorporate these specific areas of expertise are:


Measuring Force, Velocity and Power in Jumping and Sprinting: new concepts, new methods, new perspectives

Dr Jean-Benoit Morin, Université Côte d’Azur


IAS (+ others symposium) Seminar

Professor David Bishop (AUS)


Fortius - The Genes, Neurones and Anatomy of Stronger Muscles

Professor Jonathan Folland, Loughborough University


Mental Health and Elite British Sport

Dr James Bell, Head of Mental Health - EIS, Head of Culture Development - UK Sport


IAS Military Talk

Professor Rory Cooper (USA)


IAS Round table discussion

Professor Rory Cooper (USA)


A Healthier Future for Youth Sport?  How Psychology Challenges us to Raise our Game

Professor Chris Harwood, Loughborough University


To develop or not to develop”: A research and applied perspective on talent in elite sport.

Professor Paul Wylleman, Vrije Universiteit Brussel


Supporting athletes' mental health in elite sport

Professor Paul Wylleman, Vrije Universiteit Brussel


An overview of sport (and exercise?) science research at Victoria University

Dr Sam Robertson, Victoria University


IAS Seminar: Overview of Research at U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine

Dr Robert Kenefick


USARIEM - IAS Lecture: Hydration Strategies: Planned Drinking vs.Drinking to Thirst

Dr Robert Kenefick


Biomechanics of Movement with a Unilateral Transtibial Amputation

Dr Anne Silverman, Colorado School of Mines


Post playing career transition and the impact on and of identity

Kelly Sotherton

Michael Johnson


Forward dynamic modelling of cycling for people with spinal cord injury

Professor Peter Sinclair, University of Sydney


Mechanism and prevention of knee ligament injury  

Dr Yasuharu Nagano, Japan Women’s College of Physical Education

Dr Shogo Sasaki, Tokyo Ariake University of Medical and Health Sciences


Extreme Environmental Physiology: Preparing for the best, preventing the worst

Professor Mike Tipton, Portsmouth University


Perceptual-cognitive skills and expertise in sport

Professor Mark Williams


(IAS) Hot Topics in Motion


Duty of Care in Sport (Round Table discussion)

Annamarie Phelps


Lumbar injuries in cricket fast bowlers: reasons and risk management.

Dr Helen Bayne, University of Pretoria


The billion-dollar race to break the two-hour marathon barrier

Professor Yannis Pitsiladis 


Application of FDA in human movement

Dr John Warmenhoven


Pump Up Your Blood Vessels and Heart: Myths and Realities of Resistance Training and Cardiovascular Function

Professor Maureen MacDonald, McMaster University


The Nike Oregon Project: Experiences and Reflections of High Performance Support to Elite Runners

Darren Treasure


Methods in life-course health and wellbeing research


Athlete health – Round table discussion

Craig Ranson, English Institute of Sport


More than just a game: the public health impact of sport and physical activity for people with a disability

Dr Cheri Blauwet, Harvard University, Boston


Sport Performance research seminar

Dr Angus Mugford, Director of High Performance, Toronto Blue Jays


Future thinking in high performance coach development

Diccon Edwards, Head of Coach Development, UK Sport


Paralympic sport coaching twilight evening

Rob Townsend, Loughborough University and Rob Shaw, University of British Columbia, Canada


Optimising athlete physical and mental health through the Tokyo and Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games

Craig Ranson, English Institute of Sport


Pulmonary vascular dysfunction with ageing and disease: implications for exercise tolerance

Dr Bryan Taylor, University of Leeds


Psychobiology of Endurance Performance

Professor Samuele Marcora, University of Kent


Can we use genes to train smarter?

Professor David Bishop, Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living, Victoria University, Australia

UK Sport Performance Strategy 

Chelsea Warr, Deputy Director of Performance, UK Sport

Sports Strategy at Loughborough

John Steele, Executive Director of Sport, Loughborough University

Dr Steve Ingham, English Institute of Sport, Research and Development