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Surfing Australia and Edith Cowan University extend sport science partnership

Surfing Australia and Edith Cowan University extend sport science partnership
May 3, 2014

Surfing Australia and Edith Cowan University have extended their partnership for a further three years to continue to develop the sport science research program at the Hurley Surfing Australia High Performance Centre (HPC).

Officially opened two years ago by Surfing Australia with funding from the Federal Government and valued partners including naming rights partner Hurley, the HPC is the world’s first facility dedicated to the development of elite surfers and coaches.

The two-level centre of excellence boasts state of the art education facilities, equipment and accommodation and is at the forefront of sports science and coaching development for surfing.

The facility has attracted some of the brightest minds from around the world, who are conducting their doctorate and post graduate studies through the HPC under the guidance of Surfing Australia Sport Science Manager Dr Jeremy Sheppard.

Dr Sheppard explains "the partnership between ECU and Surfing Australia has allowed us to integrate applied research into our high performance environment, far beyond what could be accomplished without the help of our ECU scholars.

“In addition to their research study, each scholar has a direct role within our elite athlete program, ensuring that their experience is not just academic, but practical in nature. This win-win arrangement is a bespoke model that we are very pleased to continue with ECU."

Through the support of ECU, the HPC has been able to conduct a wide range of research with all levels of surfers in Australia from juniors through to Australia’s top professional athletes on the ASP World Championship Tour. The partnership also allows for a dedicated sport research centre at the HPC, which also includes athlete testing and treatment facilities.

“I am very proud and excited that Surfing Australia and Edith Cowan University are commencing a further three year partnership in research, athlete support, coaching development and training of postgraduate students for the advancement of surfing.

“Over the last three years this partnership has significantly advanced scientific knowledge and professional best practice in the sport of surfing for extensive benefit in terms of performance as well as safety and health of the athletes. This work is being recognised internationally and has established the Hurley Surfing Australia High Performance Centre as the leader in this field. The plan for the next three years is to build on this success with cutting edge research into equipment development, injury reduction, performance enhancement, ultimately developing a deep understanding of the science behind the sport.”

Surfing Australia Chief Executive Andrew Stark is very excited to extend this partnership, adding “the sport science research program we run in partnership with ECU at the HPC has provided a level of innovation and surfing specific research never before achieved in our sport anywhere in the world.

"This dedicated surf science program is one we hope will continue to provide Australian athletes with a competitive advantage on the world stage and continue to deliver Aussie world champs for many years to come. This program is in line with our commitment to innovation and progression of the high performance surfing program at the HPC. We thank ECU for their ongoing commitment to this exciting program”.

The HPC sport science team receives input and collaborates with the Surfing Australia Sport Science and Medicine Panel, which includes: Professor Chris Gore (AIS), Jason Patchell (AIS Sport Psychology), Professor Julie Steele (University of Wollongong), Professor Robert Newton (ECU), Professor Damian Farrow (AIS), Dr Gary Slater (Wallabies), Dr Mark Osborne (Swimming Australia), Dr Stuart Watson (Narrabeen Lakes Sports Medicine) and Tim Brown (Mermaid Beach Physiotherapy).


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