Research group

Development of Young People through Sport (DYPS)

Silhouette of a man about to throw a basketball

How can we maximise positive youth development through sport?

In many ways, sport acts as a dress rehearsal for life. By providing opportunities to give and receive feedback; develop discipline; adhere to rules and respect those who apply said rules; learn about one’s roles, responsibilities, and obligations to others; provide support and encouragement to others; and experience highs and lows, victory and defeat. Sport allows us to learn about ourselves and develop personal, inter- and intra-personal skills.

The Developing Young People through Sport group examines ways to (1) adapt sports competitions for positive individual and group-level outcomes, (2) develop effective training programmes, (3) facilitating optimal training environments, (4) train effective and efficacious coaches, and (5) improve the lives of disadvantaged and disengaged young people and youth at risk.

Areas of research include:

  • Bio-banding
  • Coach-Athlete Relationships
  • Coaching Efficacy and Effectiveness
  • Competitive Engineering
  • Fundamental Movement Skills
  • Group Dynamics and Teamwork
  • Leadership
  • Moral Development 
  • Pedagogy
  • Perceptual-Cognitive Skill Development
  • Physical Education
  • Positive Youth Development
  • Relative Age Effect

Related courses

Sport and Exercise Psychology (MSD, MPhil, PhD)

Sports and Exercise Sciences (MSD, MPhil, PhD)

Health and Physical Activity (MSD, MPhil, PhD)

Current projects

We are currently working with the Rugby Football Union (RFU) completing a two year evaluation of the ‘Half Game Rule’ in age grade rugby (U7-U19).

The Half Game Rule ensures that all players named in a match day squad play for at least half a game. This research is examines how engineering junior competition affects participation, retention, enjoyment, and the game of rugby more broadly.

Our papers




On the right Sue Innes is holding an ultrasound on the arm of a young Black woman sitting on the left. Both are looking towards something off the left hand side of the photo.
Our research

Our School has a proven track record of excellence in teaching, research and applied sports science. We are 23rd in UK for research power in sport and exercise sciences (Times Higher Education research power measure, REF 2021).

Learn more about research in SRES