Can suspension training reduce neck deterioration in rugby players (MRes Scholarship)

Can suspension training reduce neck deterioration in rugby players

Faculty Life Sciences and Education at the University of South Wales

Project ID: 21446
Annual Stipend: circa £11k p.a.
Application Deadline:
28 July 2019

MbyRes wedi’i gyllido yw hwn, sy’n cynnwys cyflog hael a ffioedd dysgu, gydag amgylchiadau sydd â digon o adnoddau ar gyfer ysgoloriaeth lwyddiannus. This is a funded MbyRes, including a generous stipend and tuition fees, with well-resourced circumstances for a successful scholarship.

Here is an exciting opportunity to study and help develop a technology and its application, which could lead to entirely new approaches in clinical practice and sport preparation.

The selected candidate will apply their practical skills and ambition to co-ordinate a multicentre trial of the chosen methodology. This collaborative project, will allow the student to develop transferable knowledge and skills in this most exciting and active field of cervical spine research.

This Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarship (KESS) project will be held in the Faculty Life Sciences and Education at the University of South Wales. KESS is a programme funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) awarded by the Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO) in the Welsh Government. The MRes will be associated with Research Council/ University Health Board/ other strategic partners (delete if not applicable). The project will focus on potential health consequences to neck function associated with contact sport, but more importantly on the potential to prevent this from occurring. The link with neck function and likelihood of concussion is growing in importance, this gives us the opportunity to lead this development worldwide.

The project is backed by FKPro LtD, who developed and supply a two strap, suspended bodyweight system to aid weight loss, core stability, flexibility, power, balance, stamina and strength. Used in personal suspension training and fitness throughout the UK. It is appropriate for all ability levels from beginner, basic gym and home users to elite athletes. FKPro can be used virtually anywhere, is light and easily portable.

Programme of research:

The focus of this research is to determine whether the suspension training methods provided by FKPro Ltd can affect neck control and resilience. The project aims to do this by studying the previously described reduction in functional deterioration in the cervical spine in Rugby players.

We will be recruiting 4 teams for an 8 week trial. Two teams will be given the FKPro suspension training kit, 1 with initial advice, the other with regular training and advice sessions. Two teams will be used as controls; one will be given no intervention (performing their current S&C protocols), the other will be given an education package about the importance of the neck. The innovation could be considered to be the trial itself. There have been few if any trials performed on active sports teams which take into account education and training differences. There will be many lessons to be learned from this work such as how do players take to using suspension training. In addition, we will need to determine whether regular reinforcement is necessary and whether knowledge about the issue of neck deterioration alone has any effect.

Wales has a strong history of rugby excellence. However, many ex-players live with the consequences of playing, which include neck injury and associated problems (headache, tinnitus). This project would consolidate the expertise present in USW/ east wales enabling further development and dissemination of protective protocols and education packages. World rugby have already shown an interest in this approach, evidence generated in this project would consolidate this relationship and increase impact and reach of this work.

Ysgoloriaeth ymchwil:

Bydd yr ysgoloriaeth ymchwil yn cynnwys ffioedd ar gyfer rhaglen MbyRes llawn-amser am flwyddyn ac yn talu cyflog o oddeutu £11k y flwyddyn. Mae hefyd tua £3k o gostau cymorth ar gael i’r prosiect ar gyfer treuliau, teithio, mân offer, hyfforddiant (gan gynnwys Ysgol Raddedig KESS) a mynychu cynadleddau.

Mae’r swydd ar gael o 1 October 2019.


The studentship will cover the fees for a full-time MbyRes programme and pay a stipend of circa £11k p.a. There is also around £3k project support costs available for consumables, travel, minor equipment, training (including the KESS Grad School) and conference attendance.

The position is available from 1st October 2019.

Cymhwyster Myfyrwyr:

I fod yn gymwys i gael ysgoloriaeth ymchwil KESS, mae’n rhaid:

·         cael cyfeiriad cartref yn yr ardal Ddwyrain Cymru (manylion isod)* ar adeg cofrestru.

·         bod gennych hawl i ymgymryd â gwaith cyflogedig yn yr ardal Ddwyrain Cymru* ar ôl cwblhau’r ysgoloriaeth.

·         bod y Brifysgol yn eich ystyried yn fyfyriwr ‘cartref’ neu ‘UE’ at ddibenion ffioedd dysgu yn unol â chanllawiau’r Brifysgol.

·         eich bod yn bodloni meini prawf mynediad Prifysgol De Cymru: gweler isod, cymwysterau a phrofiad a’r broses ymgeisio

*Ddwyrain Cymru ardal yn cwmpasu:  Bro Morgannwg / Caerdydd / Casnewydd/ Sir Fynwy/ Powys/ Wrecsam/ Sir Y Fflint

Eligibility of Student:

To be eligible to hold a KESS studentship, you must:

·         have a home address in the East Wales area (details below)* at the time of registration.

·         have the right to take up paid work in the Convergence area* on completion of the scholarship.

·         be classified by the University as ‘home’ or ‘EU’ for tuition fees purposes according to the University’s guidelines.

·         satisfy University of South Wales’s admissions criteria: see below, qualifications and experience and application process

*East Wales area covers:  Vale of Glamorgan/Cardiff/



Cymwysterau a phrofiad:

Bydd gan ymgeiswyr cymwys:

Qualifications and experience:

Eligible applicants will:


  • Have a degree (2i or higher) in an appropriate biomedical discipline
  • Possess a reasonable understanding of cervical spine structure and function
  • Be highly self-motivated, with capacity to learn and develop practical physiological techniques
  • Have well-developed and positively collaborative interpersonal skills
  • Have an ability to deliver technical reports and communicate findings
  • Be willing to travel and work in industrial / clinical settings


Y Broses Ymgeisio:

I lawrlwytho’r pecyn ymgeisio, ewch i:  Pecyn Ymgeisio Cyfranogwr

Am unrhyw ymholiadau ynghylch cymhwysedd, cysylltwch â:  Tîm KESS, Gwasanaethau Ymchwil ac Arloesedd, Prifysgol De Cymru: Ffôn: 01443 482578

Ar gyfer ymholiadau anffurfiol neu ragor o wybodaeth am y rhaglen, cysylltwch â: Professor Linda Ross ( ).

Application Process:

To download an application package, please visit:  Participant Application Package

For any queries on eligibility, please contact:  KESS Team at Research and Innovation Services, University of South Wales:  Tel: 01443 482578

For informal enquiries or further programme information, please contact: Professor Linda Ross ( ).

Dyddiad cau ar gyfer ceisiadau: Hanner nos 28 July 2019

Cynhelir cyfweliadau yn ystod yr wythnos yn dechrau (i’w gadarnhau)

Closing date for applications: midnight 28 July 2019

Interviews will be held w/c (TBC)

Mae Ysgoloriaethau Sgiliau Economi Gwybodaeth (KESS) yn fenter sgiliau lefel uwch ar draws Cymru a arweinir gan Brifysgol Bangor ar ran y sector AU yng Nghymru. Fe’i cyllidir yn rhannol gan raglen gydgyfeirio Cronfa Gymdeithasol Ewropeaidd (ESF) Llywodraeth Cymru ar gyfer Dwyrain Cymru. Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships (KESS) is a pan-Wales higher-level skills initiative led by Bangor University on behalf of the HE sector in Wales. It is part funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF) programme for East Wales