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ECU launches exciting new partnership with Surfing Australia

Friday, 08 April 2011


Edith Cowan University (ECU) and Surfing Australia officially launched a groundbreaking new partnership this week, which will see leading lecturer from the School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Dr Jeremy Sheppard become the first ever sports scientist to be a part of the Surfing Australia team.

The three-year partnership will see Dr Sheppard split his time 50 / 50 between Surfing Australia and ECU, with the partnership also allowing Dr Sheppard to oversee PhD students who are completing research specifically related to surfing.

The resulting partnership is highly beneficial to both parties and will ensure that Australia maintains its status as a world leader in surf education and higher performance training.

“Surfing Australia sees this as a genuinely exciting progression for our sport,” said Surfing Australia Chief Executive Officer, Mr Andrew Stark.

“This announcement represents one of the most significant steps for our High Performance program to date.”

Dr Sheppard is excited about the new position, which gives him the opportunity to apply his passion for training athletes at the highest level.

“Surfing is a sport which plays a dominant role in my life, and I’ll be working for a country that is dominant on the world stage,” said Dr Sheppard.

“Through the partnership with ECU I will get to combine my work with my passion for teaching and mentoring students as a Senior Lecturer in Strength, Conditioning and Sports Science.”

“ECU is one of the best universities in the world for strength and conditioning, employing world experts in several fields of sports science, so it is both exciting and humbling to be involved in this relationship,” said Dr Sheppard.

Foundation Professor of Exercise and Sports Science at Edith Cowan University, Professor Rob Newton agrees.

“ECU is committed to teaching and research in sports sciences and this new partnership with Surfing Australia will result in both immediate and long term benefits in the sport of surfing.”

“This alliance of Surfing Australia and ECU takes surfing into the future, drawing on the latest scientific methods and a strong industry partnership to address issues currently facing surfers and their coaches, and ECU is very excited to be working with such a forward thinking and innovative organisation,” said Professor Newton.

The partnership officially commenced on Monday, 4 April 2011 and will focus on research across a number of different areas, including a surfer’s ideal upper and lower body strength, the incidence of trauma injuries surfers incur, fitness training methods and dry land methodologies.

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