Holsworth Research Initiative

Our research focusses on exercise, physical activity and rehabilitation.

Where are they now blog series

Dr Craig Staunton

Where are they now? blog series

The HRI Director and Stream Leaders have had the privilege of supervising a number of higher degree by research students since the Holsworth Research Initiative began in 2019. These students now work across a broad range of industries including academia, applied sports science and clinical practice.

In this new series, we will update our subscribers on where our past HDR students are now and how their research degree with the La Trobe Health School and the Holsworth Research Initiative helped shape their career.

Part 2: Dr Craig Staunton, Postdoctoral Research Fellow – Mid Sweden University

Part Two of our Where Are They Now blog series features Dr Craig Staunton, a former PhD student of the HRI and a current Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the Winter Sports Research Centre at Mid Sweden University.

Dr Staunton graduated with a PhD in 2019 under the supervision of HRI Director, Professor Michael Kingsley and HRI Stream Leader, Associate Professor Brett Gordon. Dr Staunton’s PhD formed part of an industry partnership that saw him embedded within the Bendigo Spirit Basketball team (WNBL) offering high-performance support. This arrangement allowed Dr Staunton to further develop applied Sport Science skills while simultaneously providing the data required for his PhD studies.

What was studied and what was found?

Dr Staunton and his supervisory team investigated the development and application of novel accelerometry-derived metrics for athlete monitoring in elite-level basketball. The submitted thesis consisted of a series of five studies.

Criterion validity of a MARG sensor to assess countermovement jump performance in elite basketballers

Construct validity of accelerometry-derived force to quantify basketball movement patterns

Accelerometry-derived relative exercise intensities in elite women’s basketball

The effect of match schedule on accelerometry-derived exercise dose during training sessions throughout a competitive basketball season

Discrepancies exist between exercise prescription and dose in basketball pre-season

Using data collected throughout training and games with Bendigo Spirit Basketball team, Dr Staunton and his team developed a novel metric for assessing exercise intensity in professional basketball and termed this average net force (AvFNet ). The metric was assessed for construct validity and then applied to both training and games in the assessment of exercise intensity. Conclusions from the thesis were;

# Player position, role and match periods all influence accelerometry-derived relative exercise intensities (AvFNet) in elite women’s basketball match-play

# Accelerometry-derived exercise dose (AvFNet × duration) and intensity (AvFNet) was largely similar throughout the competitive basketball season despite variability in the difficulty of match schedule (no evidence of training periodisation).

# The exercise dose received by the team in the season investigated was greater than the exercise volume prescribed for some drills.

# Mismatches between exercise prescription and exercise dose could lead to maladaptation of the training program and place athletes at an increased risk of injury and overtraining.

From Bendigo to central Europe

Fig 1. An example accelerometer trace using custom software developed by Dr Staunton’s supervisory team

Following the completion of his PhD, Dr Staunton worked as a High-Performance Manager in the Victorian Football League before being accepted into a Post-Doctoral Fellowship position in the Winter Sports Research Centre at the Mid Sweden University in the centre of Sweden. Here, he continues to develop accelerometer-derived algorithms for measuring exercise in winter sport disciplines like biathlon and cross-country skiing as well as other events such as trail-running. When asked about his future career aspirations, Dr Staunton stated that he wished to continue in academia and build his research profile.

If you are particularly interested in athlete monitoring in basketball you can read Dr Staunton’s submitted thesis here. A full list of Dr Staunton’s published journal articles, including more recent articles from his time at Mid Sweden University, can be found on his Google Scholar profile.

Keep an eye on your inbox next Monday for Part three of our 8-part blog series. We will be following up with Dr Emma Macdonald, Senior Podiatrist and Allied Health Education & Research Manager at Goulburn Valley Health.

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  1. […] Part 2: Dr Craig Staunton, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Mid Sweden University […]

  2. […] Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Mid-Sweden University Dr Craig Staunton […]

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