Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport

The Centre contributes significantly to research and practice in disability sport. It consists of two main research strands: Sport Performance and Health and Wellbeing.

Our mission is to improve knowledge about Paralympic sport and to promote the substantial health and quality of life benefits that can be gained through participation in disability sport and physical activity.

The centre is heavily involved in research, in addition to providing sport science support to a number of GB squads.

Research expertise

Sport performance

Led by Professor Vicky Tolfrey, the ‘Sport Performance’ research strand aims to develop disability sports knowledge to provide benefit to athletes and coaches at both elite and grassroots level and increasingly, to rehabilitation populations. Areas of research within this research strand include:

  • Physiology - optimising performance and training strategies.
  • Classification research - working towards evidence-based classification.
  • Biomechanics - optimising performance through analysis of movement patterns.
  • Psychology - sport psychology.

Health and wellbeing

Led by Dr Christof Leicht, the aim of the 'Health and wellbeing' research strand is to develop knowledge that can be used to promote physical health and mental health among disabled people. Areas of research within this research strand include:

  • Physiology/Immunology - immune function, hot baths and more.
  • Biomechanics - shoulder health in athletes and general wheelchair populations.
  • Psychology - promoting physical activity.
  • Participation - inclusive sport for young people.


For more information, including information on how you can collaborate with world-leading academics working in the Centre, please visit the Peter Harrison Centre website.