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Members

Academic staff

Damian Bailey

Damian Bailey is Royal Society Wolfson Research Fellow and Professor of Physiology and Biochemistry. Professor Bailey's research takes an integrated translational approach to investigate how free radicals and associated reactive oxygen/nitrogen species control oxygen delivery to the human brain across the clinical spectrum of human health and disease. He has published >265 manuscripts in the highest impact factor biomedical journals with a current h-index of 50. 

His research has attracted widespread media interest, international awards and he is recognised with fellowships from the Royal Society, Royal Society of Chemistry, American College of Sports Medicine and The Physiological Society. He is currently chair of the Life Sciences Working Group, c/o European Space Agency.

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Professor David Byfield has been in private practice and chiropractic education for the past 37 years in Canada, England and Wales.  David joined the University in 1998 to help develop an integrated chiropractic degree programme which was the first of its kind in the UK.  He is currently Head of Welsh Institute of Chiropractic (WIOC) in the School of Health, Sport and Professional Practice in the Faculty of Life Sciences and Education. 

David has written three chiropractic educational textbooks and has also published a number of scientific papers in the peer-reviewed literature including book chapters covering clinical assessment, spinal manipulation and rehabilitation. David has been a member of the General Chiropractic Council in the UK and currently sits on the ECCE contributing to educational standards in Europe.

Prof Brendan Cropley

Professor Cropley is the Head of the Centre for Football Research in Wales. In collaboration with the Football Association of Wales, the Centre aims to promote, facilitate and conduct multidisciplinary research into football in order to support best practice in performance, player development and welfare, coach education, participation, and health. His research also focuses more widely on the development of professional practice in different disciplines, specifically sport coaching and sport psychology. These interests include examining the value of, and improving, education and development pathways. 

Professor Cropley is widely regarded as a research expert in the field of reflective practice and the potential it has for developing effective practice and facilitating human flourishing. More recently, he has developed successful programmes of research in the areas of life skills development through sport and the psychology of performance in coaches and athletes alike focusing on mental health and well-being. Professor Cropley  has published over 60 manuscripts and book chapters, contributing to world leading publications in the areas of sport coaching and sport psychology.

Sport Research - Lewis Fall

Dr Lewis Fall's principal research interests focus on the blood haemostatic system and its interaction with vascular disease. His current research includes investigating the role of oxidative stress in the pathopysiology of haemostasis; the influence of plasma volume correction on the interpretation of blood-borne biomarkers of haemostasis; and the effect of different blood sampling devices and protocols on the interpretation of blood-borne biomarkers of haemostasis.

Sport Research - Teresa Filipponi

Teresa Filipponi's principal research interests focus on evaluating the impact of behavioural models and theories in relation to lifestyle changes, especially looking at the link between research and its impact on policy-making.

Dr Chris Marley - Sport Research

Dr Chris Marley is member of the Neurovascular Research Laboratory led by Professor Damian Bailey. His research broadly focuses on factors that influence oxygen delivery to the brain and in turn cognitive function. He is particularly interested in better understanding the physiological mechanisms that explain the neuroprotective benefits of exercise, as well as the long-term neurological consequences of head injury within sport. He was recently awarded a University of South Wales Strategic Research and Impact Fund grant to progress his research. Dr Marley is a professional member of The Physiological Society and regularly showcases his latest work from the laboratory at their annual conference.

Sport Research - Karl New

Dr Karl New's research spans the areas of Clinical Exercise Physiology and Sports Performance and Medicine where the focus is upon pre-habilitation, rehabilitation and MSK outcomes. 

His early career research emanated from his PhD and looked at investigating the control and integration of blood pressure and vascular tone in the human upon exposure to acute environmental oxygen variation; investigating the phenomenon of post-exercise hypotension following bouts of dynamic exercise; and investigating the control of post-exercise vascular conductance and endothelial function.

George Rose Sport Research

As an exercise scientist, George Rose's research explores the link between preoperative cardiorespiratory fitness and postoperative survival in patients undergoing major surgery. In collaboration with University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, Department of Anaesthetics, this work has helped optimise the identification of patients at high risk of postoperative complications and mortality, which supports patient care provision decision processes. The use of exercise training prior to surgery is becoming widely acknowledged as an integral part of multimodal "prehabilitation" strategies, as the stress of undergoing major surgery is much akin to that of running a marathon! George is also a Physical Activity Consultant to the CHALLENGE-UK clinical trial.

Paul Rainer_Sport research

Paul Rainer is interested in children’s physical literacy and fundamental movement; young children’s participation in Physical Education, school sport and physical activity; and coach education and reflective practice.

Prof David Shearer

David Shearer is Professor of Elite Performance Psychology. His research focusses on group dynamics, extreme sports, and readiness to train and compete in elite athlete. He is a BPS Chartered and HPC registered Sport Psychologist and regularly consults with Olympic and Paralympic athletes. Professor Shearer is also the performance psychologist for 65 Degrees North, an organisation that seeks to help in the rehabilitation of wounded or damaged ex-servicemen and women by offering the opportunity to participate in challenging adventures.

Dr Morgan Williams

Dr Morgan Williams is a senior lecturer in Sport Science and Human Performance and a NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach (CSCS). 

Morgan’s research is predominantly in improving performance and protecting athletes from injury. Morgan continues to work in collaborative projects worldwide with a range of talented higher degree research students through to recognised world leaders in their field. He is a member of the Queensland University of Technology Hamstring Injury Group lead and actively involved in development and trialling of the Nordbord Hamstring and Groinbar Strength Testing Device. 

The body of work has targeted tackling the significant problem of hamstring strain injuries and their recurrences. From the outset in 2012, a novel conceptual framework for hamstring strain injury and reinjury was proposed. The work has grown and developed to include practical applications for identification of risk and evidenced based guidance on how to modify risk with appropriate conditioning. The main purpose is to provide athletes the best chance to perform to their potential; and this focus is driven from his own experience of frustration as an aspiring footballer who struggled with a series of significant injuries and setbacks.

Academic staff


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Lee Baldock is a lecturer in Psychology (Sport and Exercise) and a PhD student at USW. Lee’s research mainly focuses on the stress experiences of key sporting stakeholders (e.g., athletes, coaches, sport science support staff) and how such experiences influence their professional and personal lives, and their mental well-being. Lee has an emerging research profile in this area, with a range of peer-reviewed journal article and book chapter publications, and he has also disseminated his research at a range of university and national conferences. 

His research has also led to changes to national football coach education curriculum, through the design and implementation of stress and well-being interventions aimed at better supporting coaches with the demanding nature of their roles.

His PhD thesis title is: An examination of the stress, coping, and well-being of elite football coaches.

Sport research - Bobby_Briers

Bobby Briers is the course leader for the Foundation Degree Community Football Coaching and Developmen. He has conducted research on the impact of football community trusts departments have within their local communities. His interests include community and football participation.

sport research -Chris Emsley

Chris Emsley is a Lecturer in Sports Development and Coaching. Chris’ research interests span across Physical Education, Sport Development and Management, employability, and learning and teaching. As an early career academic, Chris has so far engaged in projects with UK Sport, Team Wales (Commonwealth Games) and Coleagau Cymru. Chris has also presented at the annual conferences of Advance Higher Education (HE) and the National Association for Student Employment Services. As a Fellow of Advance HE Chris is very interested in effective pedagogies and as such is currently working on projects based upon soft skill development and effective assessment strategies in Higher Education.  

Sport Research - Rob Griffiths

Rob Griffiths is the Deputy Head of School of Health, Sport and Professional Practice that includes the subject areas of sport, criminology, policing and security and chiropractic. His research interests lie within higher education curriculum design with a particular focus on enhancing the employability skills of students. This has involved extensive partnership work with national bodies including the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity and the English Football League Trust.


Sport Research - Trevor HarrisTrevor Harris is Technical Demonstrator. He assists with the data collection of many studies within the Neurovascular Research Unit. I have been particularly involved in the football and rugby concussion research.

Dr Stuart Jarvis's main research interest is in physical literacy. This focuses on the different dimensions of the definition and in particular the practical application of fundamental movement skills, health related physical fitness and psychosocial skills to promote levels of physical activity in children and adolescents. He is also interested in how physical activity, health and well-being is being promoted and delivered in the primary and secondary school physical education environment and in after school/community level sport. 


sport research - Lyn_JehuLyn Jehu is lecturer in Community Football Development. His research interests include martial arts; the practice of walking football in Wales; grassroots coaching and alternative forms of football provision.

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Kristin McGinty-Minister is a Senior Research Assistant at USW. She is an ex-elite volleyball player who moved from the US to the UK in 2012, and is currently a candidate for a Professional Doctorate in Sport and Exercise Psychology. Her research and applied work include facilitating mental health and improving/preventing mental ill-health in elite athletes, and promoting gender equality in sport. 

Kristin is part of USW's research team exploring the mental health and mental ill-health impact of postponing the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games on athletes and coaches, with the goal to develop appropriate support for those impacted.

Tom Owens, PhD student, Sport

Tom Owens is a lecturer in Biomedical Science and a PhD candidate at USW. Tom's PhD investigates concussion and the link to early onset dementia. The aim of the PhD is to establish how concussion influences the brain alongside natural ageing.

Tom’s wider research interests include the molecular, haemodynamic and clinical impact of concussion and brain injury in sports athletes. 

Tom has carried out two large scale studies investigating the life-long impact of concussion in rugby union players in collaboration with the Cardiff Blues. Tom has also investigated the effects of football heading and brain function among football players. Tom has been supported by the JPR Williams Research Fellowships and has published research articles and commentaries in several reputable peer-reviewed journals. 

Sport Research - Dean Parson

Dr Dean Parsons is course leader for rugby coaching. His research focuses on coach education, sports performance and predictive analysis, mentoring and reflective practice. His PhD  examined the effects of a peer-mentoring intervention on neophyte coach development and effectiveness.

Jay Probert

Jay Probert is Academic Subject Manager for Sport. Jay’s research focus to date takes a look at the impact of delivery through the ‘Flipped University’ approach. Sport currently delivers education programmes to over 700 students using this award winning method and research to date has focused on measuring the benefits on student employability. Further research is being conducted to explore the effective use of online learning tools to maintain student engagement. Jay is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Ben Stacey, PhD student

Benjamin Stacey is a lecturer in Clinical Science. Benjamin is currently undertaking a PhD in Physiology and Biochemistry at the Neurovascular Research Laboratory researching the effects of low oxygen levels (hypoxia) on the integrative regulation of cerebrovascular (brain) function. His other research interests include: environmental physiology (high-altitude adaptation; thermoregulation and microgravity); exercise physiology; oxidative stress; and nitric-oxide metabolism. 

Benjamin Stanway is a lecturer and course leader. He is  currently researching critical moments (technical/tactical) within soccer performance. Alongside this, he is looking into playing styles, tactical plans, individual and technical profiling, whilst considering situational variables. There will be appreciation for qualitative and quantitative methodologies, gaining information from elite football coaches on their knowledge and experiences. The research is in collaboration with national and international teams, and a software company, to influence the coaching process.

Sport Research - Mel Tuckwell

Melanie Tuckwell is the course leader for the MSc Sports Coaching and Performance and PgCert Personal Development in Sport. Mel has an interest in Coaching and in particular Coach Burnout and Coach Mentoring. 

Dr Kate Williams, Sport

Dr Kate Williams is a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Therapy. 

Her areas of expertise include Sports Trauma Management, Screening and Injury Prevention, Sports Specific Rehabilitation and Contemporary Treatments in Sports Injury. 

Dr Williams has two main research interests: the prevention of lumbo-pelvic-hip injuries; predisposing factors for prolonged sports related concussion and the use of active rehabilitation in prolonged sports related concussions. 

Recent research includes the baseline concussion scores of rugby players; examining factors that might pre-dispose players to prolonged sports related concussions; looking at the use of active rehabilitation strategies in reducing return to play time frame for prolonged sports related concussions.

Visiting professors and fellows

Sport Research - Professor Phillip Ainslie

The specific focus of Professor Philip Ainslie's research is directed to the integrated mechanisms which regulate human cerebral blood flow in health and disease.

Sport Research - Dr Ronan Martin Griffin Berg

Dr Ronan Martin Griffin Berg specialises in Renal and Vascular Research. His research focuses on mechanisms of impaired pulmonary gas exchange in various disease states, and how knowledge of these may be used for diagnostics and targeted treatments.

Dr James Coulson is a Clinical Senior Lecturer at Cardiff University. He is an Honorary Consultant Physician, Clinical Pharmacologist and Toxicologist to Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and to the National Poisons Information Service, Cardiff. His research interests include the management of poisoning; adverse drug reactions and cardiovascular disease. Dr Coulson is a Member of the Academy of Medical Education and is actively involved in both undergraduate and postgraduate teaching at Cardiff University. He is a co-opted member of the Advisory Panel on Substance Misuse for the Welsh Government.

Dr Kate Gower Thomas is Consultant Radiologist at Royal Glamorgan Hospital.

Shigehiko Ogoh is Professor of Biomedical Engineering in Toyo University, specialising in Physiology, Clinical pharmacy, Physiology, Nutrition and health science and Sports science.

Sport research website - Dr Wyn Lewis, Visiting Professor

Wyn Lewis MD DSc FAcadMEd FInstLM is Professor, Consultant Surgeon and Head of Health Education and Improvement Wales School Surgery.

Irineu Loturco is Professor of Methodology of Sports Training at the Federal University of São Paulo (UNIFESP) and ifounder and director of the Nucleus of High Performance in Sport (NAR; São Paulo, Brazil), a high-performance training centre that serves hundreds of top-level athletes from many different sports and develops social projects to help children and young people from low-income families.

Loturco has worked as a strength and conditioning coach in major Brazilian soccer clubs and with different Olympic and Paralympic sports, especially national teams. 

Sport Research - Jayne Ludlow

Jayne Ludlow is a former professional footballer and the national manager of the Welsh Women’s football team. Following her retirement from the game, Jayne began to pursue a career in coaching working first as a strength and conditioning coach before gaining her coaching badges. She remains one of very few female coaches who have been awarded the prestigious UEFA Professional Licence.  

Andries Pretorius is a former Wales international rugby union player who played for Cardiff Blues in the Pro12 league and Worcester Warriors in the RFU Championship. 

Mike Lewis, Visiting Professor

Research students

Tom Calverly (above right) is a PhD student in the Neurovascular Research Laboratory investigating the neuroprotective benefits of exercise.

Alan McKay is a PhD student in Sport Psychology and a member of the Sports Coaching and Development Research group. His research is dually funded by the Knowledge Economic Skills Scholarship (KESS) programme and the Football Association of Wales Trust (FAWT) and focuses on the psychosocial demands elite youth football players experience when making the transition from club to international level.

It seeks to support the FAWT in understanding how their age group players can develop mentally tough behaviours, and how their coaches can be better educated to support this aspect of the psychosocial element of player development.

Hannah-Wixcey PhD student in SportHannah Wixcey's PhD aims to understand why learners withdraw from Further Education and the impact that well-being has on their decision to withdraw from (or complete) their chosen course. Particular emphasis is being placed on mental well-being as a potential predictor of retention and attainment. 

This research endeavours to gain an understanding of how well-being levels change across the course of the academic year, providing valuable insight into student well-being in FE. Further, this research will highlight whether academic resilience and well-being impacts on the retention, attainment and performance of this population. By collating data on academic resilience, levels of well-being and demographic information of learners, it is hoped that unique knowledge of the most significant predictors of learner retention and attainment in FE will be identified. 

Hannah's research is funded by Coleg-y-Cymoedd.

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Sean is a PhD student in Strength & Conditioning at USW. His research focuses on exploring the importance of experiential learning and reflective practice for enhancing effective service delivery in S&C. Previously, Sean was the Head of Physical Performance at Viking FK, a Sport Scientist with the Football Association of Wales and U23 Lead Sport Scientist and S&C Coach at Cardiff City FC.

Sport Research - Ioan Paval, PhD studentIoan Alexandru Pavalis  PhD candidate in Sports Performance Analysis. His thesis is An Examination of Professional Practice in Performance Analysis: Developing an Understanding of Effectiveness.

The overall aim of this research is to examine the nature of professional practice in the discipline of performance analysis in an attempt to inform the future development of the field and the training of performance analysis practitioners. It is hoped that through this thesis, a thorough understanding of the current landscape of the utilisation of performance analysis in elite sport will be achieved whilst uncovering the applied demands practitioners encounter and how their input is measured against various criteria of professional effectiveness.

Sania Almousa is investigating anterior cruciate ligament injuries in female football in Wales.

Charlotte Hillyard is investigating performance anxiety in sport. 

David Jenkins's thesis title is Promoting Rehabilitation Adherence in Physiotherapy: A Self-Determination Perspective. The aim of this research is to examine the antecedents of rehabilitation adherence and its impact on rehabilitation outcomes, specifically, which factors impact levels of adherence and how patient well-being influences this process and subsequent outcomes. David's PhD is being funded by the Thomas and Elizabeth Williams Scholarship administered by Carmarthenshire County Council.

Steven Jones's PhD is exploring injury prevalence, strength training and performance in youth football.

Steven is a UKSCA accredited strength and conditioning coach with the UKSCA.  For the last 14 years he has worked in professional football, mainly at academy level, all over the world including UAE (Al Ain SC), Russia (FC Zenit St Petersburg and FC Anzhi Makhachkala), China (Dalian) and, currently, India (RG Punjab FC).  

Tom Young is exploring mental resilience in sport.

Dan Wixey's PhD is investigating the development of psychological attributes among British Academy soccer players.

The purpose of the PhD project is to identify, explore, and develop the psychological attributes that will give academy football players the best opportunity to transition successfully into the elite adult echelons of the sport. The project will conclude with a coach-education programme informed by the data collected throughout the preceding studies. The coaching programme is designed to be user-friendly for academy coaches, helping them to employ coaching strategies to support the psychological development of their players. Knowledge gained from this project can help inform sport psychology practices within soccer academies, enhancing its integration through coaching practices.