Dr Cooper is an Associate Professor in Exercise, Cognition and Health at Nottingham Trent University. His research focuses primarily on the effects of physical activity on cognitive function and cardiometabolic health in young people, alongside more broad research interests examining injury and illness surveillance in elite sport and optimising team sport performance. Dr Cooper primarily teaches exercise and health physiology, and is module leader for Exercise Testing and Prescription or Health.
Dr Cooper completed a BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science (2008) and PhD (2011) at Loughborough University, before joining NTU as a Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Physiology in 2011. Dr Cooper was subsequently promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2016 and Associate Professor in 2019.
Dr Cooper is a member of the Sport, Health and Performance Enhancement (SHAPE) Research Group. His research interests include:
- The factors affecting cognitive function in young people across the school morning, with a focus on the role of physical activity. Work is continuing to examine the optimum modality, intensity and duration of exercise to optimise cognition in young people
- The effects of physical activity on cardiometabolic health in young people
- Exercise in the heat and neuromuscular and cognitive function
- The reciprocal relationship between self-control and physical activity/exercise performance
- Injury and illness surveillance and monitoring in elite sport
- More broadly, the effect of team games on young athletes.
Current PhD students under supervision as Director of Studies include:
- Luke Gilbert: Evaluating the role of Physical Education in enhancing cognitive function and health in young people
- Elise Sibbick: Using physical activity to enhance cognitive function, self-control and resilience in young people with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Students recently supervised to PhD completion include:
- Lorna Hatch (2018-2021): Physical activity and cognitive function in young people: the key moderating variables and a spotlight on The Daily Mile intervention
- Ryan Williams (2017-2021). The influence of team games on cardiometabolic health and cognitive function in young people.
- Ben Cousins (2016-2020). Examining the demands and load of elite Rugby Union: influence on time-loss incidence occurrence and severity.
- Karah Dring (2015-2020). Effects of exercise training on adolescent cardiometabolic health and performance.
- Rachel Malcolm (2013-2018). The effect of heat exposure and intermittent exercise on neuromuscular and cognitive function
- Daniel Martin (2013-2018). The effect of reproductive hormones and energy availability on muscle function, cognition and bone metabolism in females
Opportunities to carry out postgraduate research towards an MPhil / PhD are available in the areas identified above. Further information may be obtained from the NTU Doctoral School.
Dr Cooper is currently guest editor for a special issue of the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, entitled 'Effect of physical activity and physical fitness on cognitive function in young people'. Dr Cooper is also a guest editor for Frontiers in Human Neuroscience and Frontiers in Nutrition.
In 2019, Dr Cooper took up the position of Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of Health and Physical Education at The Education University of Hong Kong.
- American College of Sports Medicine
- British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES)
- European College of Sport Sciences (ECSS)
Dr Cooper has reviewed for a wide range of sport science (and related) journals, spanning his research interests. Dr Cooper has also acted as a grant reviewer for the British Heart Foundation, The Waterloo Foundation and DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft).
Other external activity:
Dr Cooper has acted as a consultant for a number of external organisations, including BBC Supermovers. Dr Cooper is also a member of The Daily Mile Research Advisory Group and Nottingham City Council Eating and Moving for Good Health steering group. Dr Cooper is also external examiner for Loughborough University/Loughborough College.
Dr Cooper is keen to combine his expertise and experiences in sport science with his passion for cricket, particularly cricket officiating. Any opportunities to work in this domain are very welcome.
Sponsors and collaborators
Dr Cooper collaborates with a number of external organisations, including on funded projects. Some examples of collaborating organisations include:
- The Football Association (FA)
- The Waterloo Foundation
- The John van Geest Cancer Research Centre
- London Irish Rugby Football Club
- Nottingham City Council Eating and Moving for Good Health steering group
- Small Steps Big Change (SSBC)
- The Daily Mile Foundation
- Youth Sport Trust
Selected Recent Publications:
For a full list, please click below.See all of Dr Simon Cooper's publications...
- Physical activity and cognitive function in young people
- Physical activity and cardiometabolic health in young people