Aspetar awards novel researchers
31 Jul 2017 - 2:15
Aspetar – the orthopaedic sports medicine hospital in Qatar – has paid tributes to the pioneering research efforts of three international researchers with the Aspetar Excellence Award at the 22nd annual European College of Sport Science (ECSS) Congress, which took place from July 5 to 8 in MetropolisRuhr, Germany.
The first of these three awards – the Excellence in Football Research Award – aims to attract and support novel research projects of direct relevance to the game. The award aims to stimulate research on applied science with potential applications on the football pitch. As such, researchers from a range of different sport science disciplines (physiology, psychology, nutrition, performance analysis, biomechanics) were invited to apply.
Applicant numbers for the Aspetar Excellence Awards have continued to rise since Aspetar launched it two years ago, increasing from 74 applicants from 29 countries in 2015, to 82 from 26 countries in 2016 and 129 from 32 countries in 2017.
The first award was presented to Australian researcher Dr Ric Lovell from Western Sydney University in recognition of his research “Scheduling of Injury Prevention Exercises during the Soccer Micro-Cycle: Insights from Muscle Damage, Soreness and Performance Recovery Profiles.”
In his research, Lovell presented novel data on the integration of injury prevention training in the busy schedules of a top flight football team. This demonstrated how injury prevention can be incorporated effectively into a four-day training schedule in the lead up to games.
The second award was presented to Dr Marcus Champ, from the University of Western Australia for his research “Multivariate Modelling of Non-Contact Injury Risk in Elite Australian Footballers.”
Dr Champ developed a model used to predict injuries which is especially useful for a range of experts working with football teams. The algorithm developed by Dr Champ tracked variables including training load as well as subjective feelings of wellness and fatigue, and was able to successfully predict a number of non-contact injuries.
The third award was presented to Dr Javier Fernandez, a Doctor at the FC Barcelona Sports Science and Medical Department, for his novel research “Better match physical performance achieved in professional football with higher variability during training: a machine-learning approach.”
The data compiled from FC Barcelona’s players was used for some very sophisticated analysis. The findings suggested a positive correlation between training variability and a player’s physical performance during a match, could be used to shape training strategies in the future.