Liverpool waterfront

Keynote speakers

Introducing the Conference keynote speakers

Eddie JonesEddie Jones

RFU England Head Coach

Eddie Jones masterminded the Grand Slam in his initial season as England’s first Head Coach from overseas, on a four-year contract after the 2015 Rugby World Cup. He has extended his winning run to 13 games, an unprecedented achievement by a new England coach, that includes the 3-0 clean sweep against Australia last June. A former New South Wales hooker, he took charge of the Wallabies between 2001 and 2005. Australia reached the 2003 World Cup final on home soil, losing narrowly to England. He coached Saracens and climaxed his three years with Japan by creating the biggest shock in Rugby World Cup history when the Brave Blossoms beat South Africa 34-32 last year.

Kate Richardson WalshKate Richardson-Walsh

Olympic gold medalist

The captain of Great Britain’s gold medal-winning women’s hockey team in Rio 2016, Kate Richardson-Walsh MBE, was made an Honorary Fellow of LJMU in 2014 in recognition of her outstanding contribution to sport. Kate, a four-time Olympian, picked up gold for Team GB after a dazzling penalty shoot-out victory over Holland. She was then chosen as flag-bearer at the closing ceremony, Kate has captained the England and Great Britain Women’s Hockey Team since 2003 and under her leadership has helped establish the strongest, fittest and most successful women’s hockey team that Great Britain has had.

Marisol CasadoMarisol Casado

President of the International Triathlon Union

Marisol Casado was born in Madrid in 1956 and started her sport career in running and field hockey while furthering her education. She competed in the first triathlon in Spain and won the race. Marisol is President of the International Triathlon Union having been founding members of both the Spanish Triathlon Federation, and Iberoamerican Triathlon Association. Now a member of the International Olympic Committee, Marisol is currently involved in Public Affairs and Social Development through Sport and Evaluation for the Games of XXXIII Olympiad in 2024. Marisol also serves on the council of SportAccord.

Casado has a degree in Philosophy and Hispanic Language and an MBA in Sport Management and lives in Madrid with her husband Joaquín and daughter Berta.

Martin ColcloughMartin Colclough OBE

Head of Sports Recovery at Help for Heroes

Martin Colclough was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2014 for services to disability sport in the British Armed Forces. After 34 years as a member of the Royal Army Physical Corps he honed his expertise in the rehabilitation of injured service personnel. His role with Help for Heroes focuses on developing and delivering sports recovery programmes for ill and injured serving military personnel and veterans. Additionally, Martin’s leadership role also includes being Chef de Mission for the UK Armed Forces Team at the Invictus Games. He is currently the Army’s “Chief” Hang Gliding and Paragliding Coach and regularly competes in the British National Hang Gliding League.

Amy BaltzellDr Amy Baltzell

Clinical Associate Professor and Director of the Sport Psychology Specialization (of Counseling), Boston University

Amy Baltzell is a Clinical Associate Professor and Director of the Sport Psychology Specialization (of Counseling) at Boston University and President-elect of the Association of Applied Sport Psychology. She was a member of the USA Rowing Team (1989-1991), a 1992 Olmpian (rowing) and a professional sailor (America’s Cup, 1995). She also was the Varsity Lightweight Rowing Coach at Harvard University (1989-1990). She taught the first course in Sport Psychology offered at Harvard University. Amy co-authored the book entitled Character and Coaching. Over the past fifteen years in her role as sport psychologist, professor and author she has been an invited speaker, focused on coach education to a wide range and type of coaches.

James MortonDr James Morton

Reader in Exercise Metabolism and Nutrition at Liverpool John Moores University

As a researcher, James has received research awards from both the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences and the European College of Sport Sciences. His specific research interests focus on the molecular and cellular responses of human skeletal muscle to acute and chronic exercise and the impact of diet and nutrition on modulating these responses. To date, he has authored over 100 publications in the fields of sports nutrition, physiology and metabolism as well as numerous books/chapters on these topics. In addition to research, James also works in elite sport in both sports physiology and nutrition support roles. From 2010-2015, he was the performance nutritionist to Liverpool FC and also specialises in providing nutritional and conditioning support to a range of professional boxers (at British, European and World Title Level). Since December 2014, James has also acted as Head of Nutrition for Team Sky. He also directs nutrition-related research projects for the English Institute of Sport (EIS) and is the scientific advisor to Science in Sport (SiS) and Healthspan Elite.

James will also be the High Performance Strand keynote speaker.

Andy GrantAndy Grant

Athlete and inspirational speaker

Andy has been through more than most have in their lifetime. From losing his mother aged 12, to joining the Royal Marines, to serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, to being injured by an IED, becoming medically discharged and consequently facing life as an amputee. Hear him share his story and more on the ‘S.M.A.R.T’ technique – a mnemonic he has created to help him and others deal with problems. He will explain that life will put you in all kinds of situations, but it need not determine you as a person – it’s how you react. Andy has practiced what he preaches and lives each day like it is his last and certainly has got back the quality of life that he desired. He has been selected for the GB paratriathalon talent squad, can run 10K in 40 minutes – two minutes off the world record for a single leg amputee, has abseiled Europe’s tallest building, won gold medals in the Invictus Games 2014 and learnt to ski and surf.

Barry DrustProf Barry Drust

Professor of Applied Exercise Physiology

Barry's main research interests is the physiology of intermittent exercise, more specifically the physiology of football (soccer). Research areas within this theme include optimising performance, effective strategies associated with training and recovery and talent development. Barry is also a applied practitioner supporting staff and players within elite football. Current roles within professional football include consultative roles with the English FA and LIverpool FC. Barry also has links with other industrial partners including Nike and Catapult.