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New film Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Basketball highlights exciting research behind sport

17 February 2012

A new Research Councils UK (RCUK) film highlights the first in a series of events about the research behind sport that is helping maximise UK athletes’ potential for top results at the London 2012 Olympic Games. To launch the Cutting Edge 2012: The Research Behind Sport series this event focused on Olympic and Paralympic basketball and was an opportunity for members of the public to question both the cutting-edge researchers and high-achieving athletes. The film is available to view here.

The event was hosted by top sport’s scientist Professor Steve Haake and featured Colin Price the silver medal winning captain of Britain’s Wheelchair Basketball team in Atlanta 1996 and coach to junior wheelchair athletes. Other speakers included Professor Mike Caine who has worked on wheelchair design for Paralympics GB, Dr Maria Kavussanu who discussed morality in team sport, and why athletes engage in cheating and Dr David James who spoke about far research and new technologies should be used in the quest to win gold and where should we draw the line.

Cutting Edge 2012 is a series of events taking place across the UK in the lead up to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Each event brings together world-class researchers and top Team GB stars to showcase amazing athletic demonstrations, discuss elite performance and gives the public a chance to share views on the research behind the UK’s sporting achievements. Others events in the series are taking place in Leeds, Sheffield, Weymouth, Plymouth and Glasgow. Each one is free to attend and registration for tickets is available via The Royal Institution here.

Cutting Edge 2012 is a Research Councils UK initiative, in partnership with the Royal Institution, the Department for Innovation and Skills, The Institute of Engineering and Technology and PODIUM (the Further and Higher Education Unit for the 2012 Games). More information, including details about each of the six events, is available on the RCUK website here

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Further information

Jane Wakefield
Tel: 01793 444592 or email: Jane Wakefield

Notes to editors

  1. Cutting Edge 2012: The Research Behind Sport is a series of six events taking place across the UK. Details of these events is as follows:

    • Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Basketball, Wednesday 25 January, The Royal Institution, London.
    • Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Triathlon, Tuesday 27 March, Carriageworks, Leeds.
    • Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Athletics, Thursday 26 April, English Institute of Sport, Sheffield.
    • Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Sailing, Thursday 24 May, Weymouth Sailing Academy, Weymouth.
    • Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Diving, Thursday 5 July, Plymouth Life Centre, Plymouth.
    • Cutting Edge 2012: Behind Cycling, Thursday 19 July, Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, Glasgow.

  2. Research Councils UK (RCUK) is the strategic partnership of the UK's seven Research Councils who annually invest around £3 billion in research. We support excellent research, as judged by peer review, that has an impact on the growth, prosperity and wellbeing of the UK. To maintain the UK’s global research position we offer a diverse range of funding opportunities, foster international collaborations and provide access to the best facilities and infrastructure around the world. We also support the training and career development of researchers and work with them to inspire young people and engage the wider public with research. To maximise the impact of research on economic growth and societal wellbeing we work in partnership with other research funders including the Technology Strategy Board, the UK Higher Education funding bodies, business, government, and charitable organisations.

    The seven UK Research Councils are:

    • Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC);
    • Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC);
    • Economic & Social Research Council (ESRC);
    • Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC);
    • Medical Research Council (MRC);
    • Natural Environment Research Council (NERC);
    • Science & Technology Facilities Council (STFC).