Loughborough University

Opportunities in parasports for disabilities

For more than 15 years Loughborough University’s Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport has helped to improve knowledge about Paralympic sport and promoted the substantial health and quality of life benefits that can be gained through participation in disability sport and physical activity. 

The Centre is part of the University’s School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects for the third year running by the global QS higher education league table. It works directly with a number of Paralympic GB squads, providing sport science support, and has close ties with the English Institute of Sport and the British Paralympic Association.

One of its key research outputs is optimising performance and training strategies for disabled athletes. Outside of elite sport it works tirelessly to promote the many benefits that can be gained from physical activity for all disabled people. The Centre was a key research partner in a project to develop the first ever scientific guidelines to inform people with spinal cord injury (SCI) how much exercise is necessary for important fitness and health benefits.

In 2017 Professor Vicky Tolfrey, Director of the Centre, received one of the International Paralympic Committee’s (IPC) top awards in recognition of her commitment to para athlete research.

Further reading