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PhD Studentship: Investigating perceived exertion, work capacity, performance and training load during simulated cycling

Project Description

Application details:
Reference number: SSEHS/IT/RF
Start date of studentship: 1 July
Closing date for applications: Monday 22 April 2019
Interview date: late May 2019

Primary supervisor: Dr Ian Taylor
Secondary supervisors: Dr Richard Ferguson

Loughborough University

Loughborough University is a top-ten rated university in England for research intensity (REF2014). In choosing Loughborough for your research, you’ll work alongside academics who are leaders in their field. You will benefit from comprehensive support and guidance from our Doctoral College, including tailored careers advice, to help you succeed in your research and future career.

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The School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences has been ranked 1st in the world for Sport-related Subjects (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017, 2018 and 2019).

Full Project Detail

The factors determining task failure during intense exercise are complex and encompass physiological and psychological components. A theme across explanations of task failure is conscious decision-making processes based on subjective evaluations (e.g., how much can be tolerated, or how much effort can be put forward?). These are motivational decisions that are sensitive to manipulation. However, the precise psycho-physiological stimuli that influence these motivational processes are unknown (i.e., what aspects of psycho-physiological feedback are most predictive of perceptions of effort?). The broad aim of this PhD project is to improve our understanding of which sources of psycho-physiological feedback have the largest impact on subjective sensations of workload and exercise tolerance (i.e. perceptions of effort) or performance during simulated cycling.

This project is sponsored by Wattbike, a leading manufacturer of premium bicycle ergometers, and will be carried out within the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences and the laboratories of the company. The School is globally renowned for fundamental and applied research which supports knowledge advancement and informs the practice of sporting organisations worldwide.

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Entry requirements

Applicants should have, or expect, at least a 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline (e.g. sport and exercise science). A Masters degree and/or experience in a relevant subject is desirable. The successful candidate will combine a passion for sport with strong experimental and personal skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with collaborators.

Students would be expected to register for a 1st July 2019 or a 1st October 2019 start date.

Contact details

Name: Dr Richard Ferguson Dr Ian Taylor
Email address:
Telephone number: +44 (0)1509 226333 +44 (0)1509 223274

How to apply

All applications should be made online at Under programme name, select “School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences”.

Please quote reference number: SSEHS/IT/RF

Funding Notes

For UK/EU applicants, the studentship provides a tax-free stipend of £14,777 per annum plus tuition fees for the duration of the studentship. International (non-EU) students may apply however the total value of the studentship will be used towards the cost of the International tuition. International students will therefore need to financially support themselves or be able to secure alternative funding to cover the cost of living in the UK and details of support funding should be clearly explained in the application.

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