Sports Science  // Posts categorised as Sports Science

NUDGE: A data-driven attempt at reducing concussion risk in rugby. A process explained

Rugby, like many contact sports, faces a concussion issue. Over the last three years, I have been involved in research and subsequent law change and education to attempt to reduce concussion risk in the sport. In this article, I explain, step by step, what that process has involved and why certain decisions were made.

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Letter to BJSM reinforcing call for retraction of IAAF research on testosterone in women

Along with two prominent scientists, we have recently called for the research study on testosterone's effects in women athletes to be retracted. This research is part of the IAAF's policy on hyperandrogenism in athletics, but we have analyzed aspects of the study, and discovered significant and numerous errors. This article describes those errors, and calls for scientific integrity and transparency from both the IAAF and the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

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Can we trust the Tour, Sky and Chris Froome: Le Monde Op-Ed

The French newspaper Le Monde asked me to write an Op-Ed on the 2018 Tour de France, specifically addressing the question "Can we trust Chris Froome and Team Sky". This is the original, unedited piece that was submitted. It details the history of the Tour, which makes up the canvas onto which the words "Trust me" are written, and explains why that appeal must be accompanied by extraordinary actions to break a cycle that is now decades long. Froome and Sky fall well short of it.

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The physiology of the cold: Why might women out-‘survive’ men?

Boston 2018 was one for the archives. A brutally cold, wet and windy day made for incredible, unpredictable elite races, and a whole lot of DNFs! There's a theory that women did better in this regard than men, and this post explores cold physiology, and what factors MIGHT explain why women MIGHT be able to handle the extreme cold better than men

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Pacing physiology and the limit to performance: A #fourminute mull

The latest four minute mull explores pacing strategies, physiology and fatigue. In so doing, I offer a theory for the limits to human performance existing at the point where the "reserve" that physiology maintains is no more, the endspurt disappears, and humans are at the limits of what is physiologically possible.

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Team Sky and Marginal Games

UKAD sent a scathing letter to British Cycling, outlining a series of improper and sub standard processes and governance issues in the aftermath of their Jiffy Bag Investigation. The letter shatters the illusion of Marginal gains by the most professional, well run team in cycling, while the inaction by UKAD despite all the problems reveals the impotence of anti-doping bodies.

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03 Aug 2017 Posted in Physiology/Rugby/Sports management

Head injuries in Rugby Part 3: The key evidence and law change advice

This is part 3 of the 3-part series on head injuries in rugby. It explores the two most interesting and relevant findings of the research, looking at how the height of the tackle and the body position of the players influences head injury risk. These two items formed the strongest evidence that was used to change the high tackle laws in the sport. We also discuss the next steps and future application of the research.

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Head injuries part 2: What makes a tackle risky?

This is the second installment in a series of articles translating recent research I published on the risk of head injuries during rugby. This part looks at the characteristics of the tackle that increase or decrease the risk.

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The pursuit of the sub-2 marathon: Where to next?

Where do we go next? Now that Eliud Kipchoge has taken us to the brink of a sub-2 hour marathon, have the boundaries of human endurance been recalibrated? Can we expect a 1:59 soon? Or did the Nike staged event simply move some of the boundaries aside? This piece looks at potential benefits, and asks whether we should expect to see a speeding up, or a slowing down, in the foreseeable future?

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