Thomas completed his bachelor's degree in Human Movement Sciences at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, in 2017. Following this, Thomas started a Master-PhD during his master’s in Human Movement Sciences around the topic of wheelchair tennis. In 2019 he did an internship at Loughborough University in collaboration with the Peter Harrison Centre for Disability sports to investigate the effects of surface and tyre pressure on the wheeling performance of wheelchair tennis players.

In 2019 he was appointed for three years as a PhD Researcher at the University Medical Center Groningen, the Netherlands. His PhD is entitled: ‘Wheeling performance in wheelchair: Understanding and improving a complex skill’. During his PhD, the wheeling performance of wheelchair tennis players was investigated from a wheelchair athlete, wheelchair configuration, and wheelchair environment perspective.

Thomas is a postdoctoral Research Associate at the Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sports, focused on wheeled sports and technology.

In his current position, Thomas is contributing to the knowledge base in the field of wheelchair sports via the development and translation of wheelchair sensor technology within wheelchair sports, using an open science approach. He will use a wheelchair ergometer to explore the ergonomics of wheelchair sports propulsion. The goal is to make sports biomechanics in wheelchair sports and beyond understandable for researchers, coaches, and players in order to improve health and performance.

Thomas’ research areas include:

  • Wheelchair sports
  • Wheelchair propulsion kinetics and kinematics
  • Wheelchair ergometry
  • Wheelchair sensor technology.

Featured publications

  • Rietveld, T., Vegter, R.J.K., van der Woude, L.H.V., de Groot, S. (2022) A newly developed hand rim for wheelchair tennis improves propulsion technique and efficiency in able-bodied novices. Applied Ergonomics. DOI: 10.1016/j.apergo.2022.103830
  • Mayrhuber, L.*, Rietveld, T.*, de Vries, W.H.K., van der Woude, L.H.V., de Groot, S., Vegter, R.J.K. (2022) A scoping review on shoulder injuries of wheelchair tennis players: potential risk-factors and musculoskeletal adaptations. Frontiers in Rehabilitation Sciences. *contributed equally. DOI: 10.3389/fresc.2022.862233
  • Rietveld, T., Mason, B.S., Goosey-Tolfrey, V.L., Van der Woude, L.H.V., De Groot, S., Vegter, R.J.K. (2021). Inertial measurement units to estimate drag forces and power output during standardized wheelchair tennis coast-down and sprint tests. Sports Biomechanics. DOI: 10.1080/14763141.2021.1902555
  • Rietveld, T., Vegter, R. J. K., Van der Woude, L. H. V., & De Groot, S. (2021). The interaction between wheelchair configuration and wheeling performance in wheelchair tennis: a narrative review. Sports Biomechanics. DOI: 10.1080/14763141.2020.1840617
  • Rietveld, T., Vegter, R. J. K., Van der Slikke, R. M. A., Hoekstra, A. E., Van der Woude, L. H. V., & De Groot, S. (2019). Wheelchair mobility performance of elite wheelchair tennis players during four field tests: Inter- trial reliability and construct validity. PLoS ONE, 14(6), e0217514. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0217514