Skip to content
Ruth Boat

Ruth Boat

Senior Lecturer

School of Science & Technology

Staff Group(s)
Psychology Sport


Dr Ruth Boat is a Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Psychology in the School of Science and Technology. Her research focuses primarily on the role of self-control within sport and exercise. Dr Boat teaches across the undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes, with an emphasis on sport and exercise psychology. She is module leader for the third year module Sport, Exercise, and the Brain, as well as contributes to several other modules across the curriculum. Dr Boat supervises undergraduate and postgraduate research projects in areas related to sport and exercise psychology. Dr Boat is also Admissions Tutor for the Department of Sport Science, handling admissions for the four sport science related undergraduate degree programmes.

Career overview

Dr Boat joined Nottingham Trent University in September 2017. She completed her PhD (2016) at Loughborough University, which investigated the role of self-control in athletic performance. Dr Boat received prestigious International awards for her research including The Young Investigator Award from the European College of Sport Science.

Following her PhD, Dr Boat worked as a lecturer in Sport Science at Coventry University (2016-2017). She obtained her Associate Teaching Fellowship at Coventry University, where she taught on the BSc Sport and Exercise Science and the MSc Sport and Exercise Science degree programmes.

Research areas

Dr Boat is a member of the Sport, Health, and Performance Enhancement (SHAPE) Research Group. Her research interests include:

  • The effects of self-control exertion on subsequent exercise performance.
  • The psychological and physiological mechanisms that may explain the effects of self-control exertion on subsequent exercise performance.
  • Psychological, nutritional, and physiological intervention techniques that may improve self-control during exercise performance.
  • Evaluating the role of self-control in dyspnoea.
  • The effects of exercise on self-control in young people.

Current supervised PhD students include:

  • Raymon Hunte (Director of Studies)
  • Anna Dunn (Director of Studies)
  • James Brown (Co-Supervisor)
  • Elise Sibbick (Co-Supervisor)
  • Hannah Graham (Co-Supervisor)

Opportunities arise to carry out postgraduate research towards an MPhil / PhD in the areas identified above. Further information may be obtained on the NTU Research Degrees website

External activity

Journal and Grant Reviewing:

Dr Boat reviews articles submitted to internationally-recognised journals, including:

  • Psychology of Sport and Exercise
  • Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology
  • Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports

Dr Boat has also acted as a grant reviewer for the Leverhulme Trust.

Membership of Professional Bodies:

  • European College of Sport Science
  • British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences

Awards and Prizes

  • Vice Chancellor's Early Career Teaching Award (VCTA) (2020)
  • Young Investigator Award from the European College of Sport Science (2016)
  • Loughborough University School Travel Grant (2015)
  • BASES Conference Presentation Award (2009)
  • Faculty Prize for Excellence in Academic Achievement (2009)

Sponsors and collaborators

Dr Boat is currently involved in collaborative research projects with:

  • Dr Ian Taylor (School of Sport, Exercise, and Health Sciences, Loughborough University).
  • Prof. Michael Duncan (Faculty Research Centre for Sport, Exercise, and Life Sciences, Coventry University).
  • Dr Nurwina Anuar (Faculty of Engineering, University of Technology, Malaysia)
  • Dr Bob Fenghua Sun (Department of Health and Physical Education, The Education University of Hong Kong)


  • Camp, N., Ramos, A. C. F., Hunter, K., Boat, R., & Magistro, D. (2022). Physical activity and psychological well-being of older adults after 1 year of COVID restrictions. Aging and Mental Health. doi: 10.1080/13607863.2022.2046691
  • Boat, R., Sunderland, C., & Cooper, S. B. (2021). Detrimental effects of prior self-control exertion on subsequent sporting skill performance. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports. doi: 10.1111/sms.14011
  • Hunte, R., Cooper, S. B., Taylor, I. M., Nevill, M. E., & Boat, R. (2021). The mechanisms underpinning the effects of self-control exertion on subsequent physical performance: A meta-analysis. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology. doi: 10.1080/1750984X.2021.2004610
  • Boat, R., Williamson, O., Read, J., Jeong, Y. H., & Cooper, S. B. (2021). Self-control exertion and caffeine mouth rinsing: effects on cycling time-trial performance. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 53, 101877. doi:10.1016/j.psychsport.2020.101877
  • Boat, R., Hunte, R., Welsh, E., Dunn, A., Treadwell, E., Cooper, S. B. (2020). Manipulation of the duration of the initial self-control task within the sequential task paradigm: effect on exercise performance. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 14, 571312. doi:10.3389/fnins.2020.571312
  • Pollak, K., Boat, R., & Cooper, S. B. (2019). Resisting temptation in schools!? How to reduce self-control depletion effects. Education and Health, 37, 84-88
  • Boat, R., & Cooper, S. B. (2019). Self-control and exercise: A review of the bi-directional relationship. Brain Plasticity, 5, 97-104. doi: 10.3233/BPL-190082
  • Boat, R., Morris, M., & Duncan, M. (2019). Effects of exercise intensity on anticipation timing performance during a cycling task at moderate and vigorous intensities in children aged 7-11 years. European Journal of Sport Science, 1, 1-9.
    doi: 10.1080/17461391.2019.1642387
  • Boat, R., Atkins, T., Davenport, N., & Cooper, S (2018). Prior self-control exertion and perceptions of pain and motivation during a physically effortful task. In M. Sarkar & S, Marcora (Eds.), Sport and the brain: The science of preparing, enduring, and winning, part C (pp. 19-34). Cambridge, UK: Academic Press. doi:
  • Taylor, I. M., Boat, R., & Murphy, S. L. (2018). A broader theoretical consideration of self-control and athletic performance. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology. doi:
  • Boat, R., & Taylor, I. M. (2017). Prior self-control exertion and perceptions of pain during a physically demanding task. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 33, 1-6. doi:
  • Boat, R., Hulston, C. J., & Taylor, I. M. (2017). Self-control exertion and glucose supplementation prior to endurance performance. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 29, 103-110. doi:
  • Boat, R., & Taylor, I. M. (2015). Patterns of change in psychological variables leading up to competition in superior versus inferior performers. Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 37(3), 244-256. doi:

See all of Dr Ruth Boat's publications...