An academic at St Mary’s University, Twickenham has been awarded the ‘Emerging Researcher’ title from the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports.

Dr Neil Bezodis, Senior Lecturer in St Mary’s School of Sport, Health and Applied Science specialises in researching sprint acceleration and was awarded the 2014 ‘Hans Gros Emerging Researcher Award’ for his work in this area.

The annual award recognises an individual who has excelled in their research, bridging the gap between research and applied practice. As part of the award, Neil has been invited to deliver a keynote lecture at the Society’s forthcoming annual conference in Tennessee where he will discuss ‘Integrating research and practice with a view to enhancing sports performance: examples from sprint acceleration’.

Dr Bezodis has had a number of research articles published in leading journals this year including ‘Lower limb joint kinetics during the first stance phase in athletics sprinting: three athlete case studies’ which was published in the Journal of Sports Sciences, along with ‘Relationships between lower-limb kinematics and block phase performance in a cross section of sprinters’, which was published in the European Journal of Sport Science. He has also recently been elected to the board of directors of the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports.

What’s more, over the last two he has also been involved in an ongoing project with the Rugby Football Union (RFU) to provide support and training advice to the coaches and kickers of the junior squads.

About the award Neil said, “It’s great to be recognised for my ability to integrate research with applied practice in the real world. Presenting to a wide international audience at the annual conference will be a great opportunity to showcase my work and hopefully develop further international collaborations to help me continue extending my research.”

St Mary’s Academic Director Dr Charles Pedlar said, “This is a great example of the exciting work going on in the School of Sport, Health and Applied Science, with research being recognised on the international stage. This work gives greater insight into the sprinting technique in elite sprinters and therefore has the potential for direct impact on sports performance at the highest level.”