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Rugby Football League appoint Research and Innovation Manager

The Rugby Football League has appointed Dr Ben Jones from Leeds Beckett University on a consultancy basis as Research and Innovation Manager.

On a two-year contract, Jones will work with staff at the Rugby Football League strategically identifying areas for future work based on the needs of the sport, including studies exploring player welfare, physical performance and player development.

Jones has also initiated the Rugby League Applied Science project; a project which provides support to clubs by integrating research within their current programmes and structures. The project is based on a model which was developed between Leeds Beckett University and Leeds Rhinos, where Ben previously worked for eight years.

Rugby Football League Head of Human Performance, Richard Hunwicks said: “The appointment of Dr Ben Jones within the Performance structure of the Rugby Football League is integral to the further progression and dissemination of live research whilst informing current practice.

“At present there are a large number of Rugby League research projects surrounding player welfare, development and performance. As a governing body we are committed to supporting and developing research-driven practice in applied settings.

“Dr Ben Jones’ extensive academic experience will support the excellent work of current key partners including the University of Chester, Liverpool John Moores, Leeds Beckett, University of Bolton & University of Central Lancashire.”

On his appointment Dr Ben Jones added: “Rugby League is in a fortunate position with the amount of published and ongoing research within the game. Supporting clubs and those working in the sport has to be a priority to maximise player welfare, development and performance.”

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