Participation in organised sports could be important in reducing the burden of cardiometabolic diseases and their known risk factors. This is especially relevant in Australia where over two thirds of all children (approximately 2 million children) participate in organised sports each year.

However, apart from an increase in physical activity, very little is known about the causal mechanisms which may underpin this relationship, and as such, the cardiometabolic benefits of organised sports may not be fully realised.

Using a large and nationally representative longitudinal sample of Australian children, this fellowship will investigate causal pathways and cardiometabolic health trajectories of children as they relate to their sports participation.

This knowledge will allow researchers, administrators, and policy makers to design and implement sports programs to enhance the cardiometabolic health of those 2 million children each year.

They may do this in part by allocating funding to the sports sector and designing sports programs in a manner that will serve to optimise the potential of youth sport as an “intervention” through which young peoples’ cardiometabolic health can be enhanced.

Funding body

Heart Foundation

Scheme name

Postdoctoral Fellowship

Tears funded

2016 – 2018

Lead institution

University of Wollongong

Project leaders