Leeds United Performance Nutrition & Leeds Beckett University
Nessan Costello - Leeds Beckett lecturer and head of nutrition at Leeds United explains his role within the univesity and Leeds United.
Within this combined role, Andy Jenkinson (Leeds Beckett University, PhD Candidate) and I oversee the first team and academy programmes at Leeds United with regards to the planning, provision, management and direction of performance nutrition support, alongside delivery on a number of sport & exercise science undergraduate modules here at Leeds Beckett University (LBU). The focus of the role is to drive optimal player health, development and performance via delivery of high quality, nutritious and enjoyable foodstuffs within a over-arching evidence-based and innovative nutrition framework. More specifically, this involves daily contact with both players, coaches and kitchen staff; theoretically (consultations, workshops) and practically (cooking sessions, demonstrations) educating players on how to utilise the power of food to fuel training, performance, adaptation and recovery.
An excellent understanding of human physiology and metabolism during exercise underpins applied practise, which is something all staff strive to instill in LBU students from the first day of their undergraduate program. A combination of lectures, seminars, laboratory practicals and online tutorials provide students with a wealth of supportive learning experiences, that ensure students ascertain the theoretical knowledge and practical skills that they require to be successful within professional sport. Ultimately, the exploits of elite athletes delight and frustrate us as they strive for optimal sporting performance and it is this passion that we try and translate into our teaching on a day to day basis.