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Students gain insight into the practical application of sport and exercise nutrition in elite sport

MSc students gained a real insight into sport nutrition in practice during a guest lecture delivered by Ruth Wood Martin, Lead Performance Nutritionist with the Irish Rugby Football Union and two-time 1500m Olympian Laura Weightman.

Students gain insight into the practical application of sport and exercise nutrition in elite sport

Ruth leads a team of Performance Nutritionists across the island of Ireland and shared insights into the nutrition education and supplementation of players as well as advising on catering schedules, hydration and recovery strategies. She has developed and managed an evidence-based, policy driven health and sport supplement programme within the IRFU. Ruth shared her insights and challenges of meeting player nutritional needs whilst competing at the recent Rugby World Cup in Japan.

Laura provided an insight into the nutritional demands placed on athletes training and competing in the elite sport environment. She shared her experience of competing at the recent IAAF World Championships in Doha, where she finished seventh the 5000m final and her thoughts on what she looks for in the qualities of a good practitioner.

Speaking about the session, Dr Lauren Duckworth, Course Director said “the knowledge and experiences shared by Ruth and Laura help our students gain a real appreciation of the role of the sport and exercise nutritionist, enrich our curriculum delivery and help to prepare them better for the world of work post study.”

MSc Sport and Exercise Nutrition student Aaron Simpson noted, "It was such a unique experience for us all to hear from Ruth and Laura, working and competing in elite sport. Their talk was so refreshing and insightful, and has really motivated me to continue to learn and develop as a sports nutritionist"

Ruth Wood Martin speaking at the event

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About the Authors

Dr Lauren Duckworth

Dr Lauren Duckworth is the Course Director for the Postgraduate Suite of Sports Science courses and a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Nutrition within the School of Sport.

Lauren completed her PhD research at Leeds Beckett University titled, "Dietary Protein Manipulation in Overweight and Obese Adolescents". Funded by Glaxo Smith Kline and supervised by Professor Roderick King and Professor Paul Gately. Lauren previously completed her BSc. (Hons.) in Sports and Exercise Science at Leeds Beckett University and went on to gain an MSc with Distinction in Exercise Physiology at Loughborough University.

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Louise Sutton

Head of Sport and Exercise Nutrition, Louise has a diverse applied work profile alongside her academic role. With a background in clinical dietetics she has a particular interest in the practical application of sport dietetics in elite and extreme environments.

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