As the number one university in the world for sports-related subjects, prestige played a big part in my decision to choose Loughborough. I also work at the University, which makes it convenient.

Applying new knowledge

The degree programme has been extremely useful, from physiology and understanding how things work to immunity. Most of all, I am able to apply the theory I have learnt in my job as a Performance Chef at the Elite Athlete Centre (EAC), where I come face to face with elite athletes from various disciplines.

I work at the EAC which is world-class and have been involved in the run-up to several major sporting events with the ECB, several National Governing Bodies in the lead up to Tokyo 2020 and soon the Commonwealth Games. Without the facilities here on campus we would not be able to attract the elite sport we do, so it all helps create this holistic environment that is conducive to performance and training.

The academic support and expertise available have helped a lot during the programme. I am very busy with work so the ability to log in online to lectures has been invaluable. Knowing the lecturers are at the forefront of research makes it all the more relevant.

Career possibilities

However, it would be nice to venture into perhaps a Performance Director type role, as by the end of the programme I will understand sport from a food, nutrition and physiology point of view, which is a rare combination. Currently as a chef and nutritionist, which is rare enough, being able to add physiology to my arsenal could open up a few doors.

Advice to other applicants

The advice I would give to someone considering studying this programme is to allow yourself time. If you can do it full-time without any other distractions, that is ideal. If you work full-time and have to spin other plates like I do, then be ready for long days and nights, but the material is so interesting that it will provide the impetus for you to stay motivated.

A few fellow classmates have asked about what it is like in the ‘real world’ and I have said two things: (1) networking is super important and is what will get your foot in the door, and (2) consider working abroad as opportunity is rife; there is more than just football out there.

Varun Shivdasani
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