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Research Case studies

We've been helping young athletes to fulfil their sporting potential


Practitioners and students from the Carnegie Faculty have been supporting the development of talented young athletes as part of the SportsAid b active Sporting Excellence Programme.

The initiative – established in 2009 as part of Bradford Metropolitan District Council’s Bradford Gold strategy – is aimed at maximising the potential of emerging athletes from the Bradford area ahead of the London 2012 Olympics, helping youngsters to enhance their athletic skills, and to also develop as young ambassadors for their sport, region and, eventually, their country.

Bradford Council approached Louise Sutton, Principal Lecturer and Performance Nutritionist at Carnegie, to take a leading role in the project alongside their partners SportsAid.

Working with her colleagues Dr Andrew Manley, Senior Lecturer and Registered Sport Psychologist, and practitioners at the Carnegie Sports Injury Clinic led by Registered Sport Physiotherapist, Alison Rose, Louise and the team have assisted SportsAid in their mission to support “the right athletes at the right time.”

Scientific Principles

Our Carnegie team have extensive experience of using scientific principles in the promotion, maintenance and enhancement of sport performance – and a variation of athlete screening, nutritional advice, and psychological support has been provided to 20 young male and female athletes since the programme started.

Those participating in the initiative represent a range of sports and include athletes with physical or learning disabilities. Levels of support have been tailored to each individual’s performance needs, with group and individual support sessions, a group induction day and an end-point review workshop all included in the programme.

Following extremely positive feedback after 18 months of the project from participants and partner organisations, several athletes went on to compete at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, won medals at national championships, were selected for national squads and secured professional contracts.

The programme has also given students from within the Carnegie Faculty fantastic development opportunities, while the success of the initiative has reinforced Carnegie’s well-established reputation for achieving excellence in sporting performance.

Additional funding has been secured to ensure the programme continues in the run-up to the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games – testimony to the success of the scheme, despite a testing financial climate – and the aim of colleagues involved in the Sporting Excellence Programme is to continue providing exceptional support to talented young athletes, while also capitalising on research output and student development opportunities offered by the scheme.

More information

You can find out more about the the SportsAid b active Sporting Excellence Programme by contacting Louise Sutton or Andrew Manley.


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