PhD Studentship: Field Hockey – Optimising Sport Surfaces for Play Performance

Posted 4 months ago

Application details: Reference number: ABCE19/PF7
Start date of studentship: 1 October 2019
Closing date for applications: 4 August 2019
Interview date: w/c 12 August 2019

Supervisors:
Academic: Dr Paul Fleming & Dr Jon Roberts
Industry: Alastair Cox, Facilities & Quality Programme Manager FIH
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Full Project Detail:
Applications are invited for a three-year PhD studentship on the player requirements and playability of elite level field hockey surfaces, currently predicated on short pile artificial carpets with large volumes of water required to provide ideal play conditions.
This research aims to address the limitations in current guidance, balancing field compliance testing and player feedback.
The research will investigate player feedback on the quality of the surfaces used in competition and training and will include player testing, ball and mechanical testing approaches to measuring the surfaces’ playability. The feasibility of using video-based match game analysis of play performance will also be explored to enhance data quality.

The key outcomes anticipated are:
This PhD will give you the opportunity to make a significant contribution to ongoing international research to establish scientific benchmarking of the play performance of synthetic hockey fields and establish your future career as an expert in this field.
This studentship is part-funded by the International Hockey Federation (FIH) and is intended to support the development of future international standards for hockey surfaces worldwide. Through this collaboration you will have unique access to an international sports governing body, their network of contacts and wealth of expertise.
Elite-level hockey is currently played on water-based pitches, which are environmentally unsustainable in many countries; acceptable alternative surfaces are, therefore, required for future growth of the game. Your research will ideally provide new methods of player (and mechanical) field testing protocols to measure playability of current and future surfaces from the user’s perspective; new insights into the attributes of different playing surfaces and conditioning (i.e. watering); informing the sustainable development of future surface technologies and their regulation (such as dry fields).
You will have access to our world-leading sports facilities, advanced laboratories, international athletes, experienced academics and a community of peers working on related projects in support of other sports bodies.

Find out more:
More information about the School can be found at: www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/abce/.
Entry requirements:
Applicants should have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant scientific or engineering discipline. A relevant master’s degree and/or relevant employment experience will be an advantage. A strong interest or/and experience in measuring player perception and/or experimental testing (field and laboratory) is desirable.
Funding information:
The studentship is for three years and is intended to start in October 2019. The studentship provides a tax-free stipend of £15,009 per year plus the tuition fees at the UK/EU rate. Due to funding restrictions, this studentship is only open to UK/EU applicants. The project includes a budget for training, travel and IT support.
Contact details:
For information about the project, please contact:
Name: Dr Paul Fleming
Email: p.r.fleming@lboro.ac.uk
Telephone: +44 (0)1509 222616
For information about the application process, please contact:
Name: Mr Berkeley Young
Email: b.k.d.young@lboro.ac.uk
Telephone: +44 (0)1509 222611