Home 2016 Festival News

The Science of Sport is Back!

  • 29 Aug 2017

In the build up to the Bledisole Cup test match this Saturday between the All Blacks and Australia there is an opportunity for over 120 teenagers to gain insight into the science behind high performance sport at a special lunch to be held, thanks to the New Zealand International Science Festival.

Supported by the Otago Community Trust, Otago Polytechnic’s Institute of Sport and Adventure, and Dunedin Venues, Nic Gill, All Blacks secret weapon and head conditioning coach, alongside Fiona Watson and Joanna Horan, ANZ netball performance analysts, will speak on the range of topics including sports psychology, mental fitness, nutrition and coaching to high school students from over 20 schools from around Otago on the eve of the All Blacks test in Dunedin.

All three speakers are ex Otago students that were at the forefront of their game, pairing the fields of science and sport, and understanding where their potential can take them. The speakers will also discuss some of the many opportunities available in sport science and their experiences working with science leaders in these fields.

“A world class sports team is supported by a management team who have world class knowledge and qualifications firmly based in science,” says Dan Hendra, Director of the New Zealand International Science Festival.

“In high performance sport there are sports psychologists, analysts, physiotherapists, nutritionists, massage therapists, strength and conditioning coaches – there to ensure the squad performs at its best in every game.”

New Zealand International Science Festival Director Dan Hendra says the lunch is an ideal way to keep the festival relevant in its off year, as well as helps to celebrate the many different directions science can take you.

 “It has become a Science Festival tradition of sorts to include a sports science event before a test match here in Dunedin and having three high profile speakers involved raises the bar even higher.”

Head of School of Otago Polytechnic’s Institute of Sport and Adventure Dr Megan Gibbons says this event provides an excellent opportunity for young people to “gain inspiration, and be challenged to think about the role science plays in sports in new ways, from someone who has achieved at the highest levels.”

“We are very pleased the speakers still feel a strong connection with Otago and want to share their knowledge and experiences. Valuable relationships with alumni have numerous benefits for people in the community, including young people – who we see as our future.”

 The ODT article is here: https://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/pupils-hear-about-role-science-sport

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