JOHNSON CITY (Nov. 3, 2009) – A groundbreaking doctoral program that focuses on sport science and physiology in training athletes and educating coaches will be offered at East Tennessee State University’s Claudius G. Clemmer College of Education beginning in 2010.
The Tennessee Higher Education Commission and the Tennessee Board of Regents have authorized the creation of the Ph.D. program in Sport Physiology and Performance. ETSU benefactor Wayne G. Basler contributed $100,000 toward the startup costs for the program, which will accept its inaugural class of students next fall. ETSU provided the remaining $100,000 that was needed by using funds from several sources, none of which were state dollars.
“It’s the first of its kind in the country,” said Dr. Mike Stone, associate professor of Kinesiology, Leisure and Sport Sciences and director of ETSU’s Exercise and Sport Science Laboratory. “There are many programs around the country that base their curriculum around the concept of sport participation. We are shifting the focus toward the science of sport performance.
“Coaches educated in this field of study can use evidence-based training programs and conduct physiological monitoring of athletes in order to help them achieve their performance potential.”
Stone said the program will have concentrations in sport physiology, which focuses heavily on research, and sport performance, which uses a research-based approach for enhancing performance.
Stone will join Dr. Mike Ramsey and Meg Stone as the core faculty for the program. All three have impressive research and service activities, and a national search is under way to recruit two additional faculty members.
“ETSU is extremely fortunate to have Dr. Stone, Dr. Ramsey, and Meg Stone on our faculty,” said Dr. Hal Knight, dean of the Claudius G. Clemmer College of Education. “They are highly respected in their field, and the opportunity to study under them will be a major drawing factor for graduate students, coaches and researchers across the nation.
“Their presence also paves the way for new collaborations and partnerships with leading laboratories in this region, the country, and the world, including the U.S. Olympic Committee.”
Doctoral students in the new program will work closely with ETSU’s Center of Excellence for Sport Science and Coach Education. Established in 2008 and directed by Meg Stone, the center focuses on research, education, and service in the field of sport performance and coach education, with particular emphasis on the study of sport science.
Both Meg Stone and Dr. Mike Stone have experience with the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) and bring extensive backgrounds in sport science and performance to ETSU. Meg has led a distinguished career as an Olympian and a coach. She competed in the discus for Great Britain in the 1980 and 1984 Olympics and was a gold medal winner in the 1982 Commonwealth Games. She also competed in track and field for the University of Arizona and continues to hold the NCAA shot put and discus collegiate record. In Europe, Meg was the first woman to serve as the national track and field coach for Scotland.
She has also coached several international-level athletes, including four Olympians in the U.S. and Great Britain, as well as athletes who later played in the National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball and National Football League. Meg was among four recipients of the first-ever “Legend in the Field of Strength and Conditioning” award, which was voted on by the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches association. In 2009 she received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
Dr. Mike Stone served as the head of sports physiology for the USOC before joining the ETSU faculty. Other academic roles include Chair of Sport at the University of Edinburgh and an adjunct appointment at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Australia. He has received several awards, including the NSCA Lifetime Achievement, and he is the only fellow of the United Kingdom Strength and Conditioning Association and a fellow of the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
His research has resulted in more than 150 publications, two books, and a number of contributed chapters in texts. In addition, he has coached several international- and national-level weightlifters, including one Olympian, and throwers both in the U.S. and Great Britain.
Dr. Mike Ramsey, ETSU associate professor of Kinesiology, Leisure and Sport Sciences, has a background in collegiate basketball and cycling, and he is a specialist in cardiovascular responses to exercise and training and bone mineral alterations as a result of training.
For more information about the program, contact Dr. Stone at (423) 439-5796.