About the UK Strength and Conditioning Association
For a number of years there has been the need for an independent voice which represents the UK strength and conditioning profession.
The UKSCA is the pre-eminent professional body for strength and conditioning practitioners in the UK. Launched in May 2004 with the support of UK Sport, the UKSCA has grown to represent over 2600 members, of whom more than 800 have attained the highly respected “Accredited Coach” (ASCC) standard.
The Association has the following aims:
- To establish and maintain high professional standards for UK strength and conditioning practitioners and facilities;
- The promotion and dissemination of good practice, knowledge and research in strength and conditioning;
- To facilitate communication among UKSCA members;
- To represent the interests of the membership of the UKSCA;
- Through our members, ensure that world class coaching in strength and conditioning is available to athletes at all levels in the UK.
The UKSCA is a not-for-profit, limited by guarantee company and is managed by a voluntary Board of Directors, elected from and by the membership. For biographies of the Board, see below...
Chris Bishop, PhD, ASCC
Director and Chair of the Board
Chris Bishop is a strength and conditioning coach and senior lecturer in strength and conditioning at the London Sport Institute, Middlesex University where he is also the programme leader for the MSc in Strength and Conditioning. Chris spent 8 years working in the field in both professional football and in the private sector where he has a wide range of experience coaching athletes in swimming, athletics and rugby, which he continues on a part-time basis alongside his current role at Middlesex. In addition, Chris has authored over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles, two book chapters and has a keen interest in using research to further the field of strength and conditioning. His particular areas of interest relate to asymmetries, the bilateral force deficit and using screening protocols to individualise athlete training programmes.
Kevin Paxton, ASCC
Director and Vice Chair
Kevin has been re-elected to the Board for a second term and currently works as the head of Academy Sport Science at Leicester City Football Club. He has previously worked for Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club and Sheffield United Football Club. During his last term on the board, Kevin launched the Annual S&C in Football Conference, was co-director for the UKSCA's Annual Conference, supported the development of Special Interest Groups and worked hard to champion UKSCA standards in sport and improve standards of coach mentorship programmes.
Dan Cleather, ASCC
Dan was accredited by the UKSCA during their first ever accreditation day in 2005. He served as Director of Finance and Administration from 2005 to 2009. He was re-elected as Finance Director in 2017. Dan is currently Programme Director of St Mary's University's distance learning MSc in Strength and Conditioning, and is also a Reader in Musculoskeletal Mechanics and Strength Training. Prior to joining St Mary's he was employed as a strength and conditioning coach with the English Institute of Sport, principally working with rowing, track and field athletics, canoeing, women's rugby and fencing.
Andy Boyd, ASCC
Equality, Diverity and Inclusion Director
Andy is currently head of athletic development and learning at the Scottish Rugby Union (SRU), overseeing the S&C and nutrition pathways for the performance pathways. He has previously held positions of lead and S&C coach for the SRU and Edinburgh Rugby. Andy is the first director of the UKSCA with specific responsibility for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and feels 'we have the responsibility to create more opportunities and mentors for our members reflecting a modern and diverse sporting population which will drive progressive improvement in our industry'.
Richard Clarke, BSc (Hons) MSc ASCC
Richard is the course leader for the undergraduate Sport and Exercise Science degree programmes at Birmingham City University. Richard also works privately with a range of youth and adult athletes, also supporting the FA Girls England Talent Pathway. He is currently completing a PhD investigating performance and injury risk in change of direction.
Richard Hunwicks, ASCC
Richard is a graduate of Leeds Beckett University and has extensive applied coaching experience in professional team sports. Currently Head of Performance at Catalans Dragons Rugby League and Vice Chair of the organisation.
Prior to this Richard held a similar role as Head of Human Performance for England Rugby League and has worked extensively in the Super League, latterly preparing and delivering England's player preparation on their journey to the 2017 World Cup final.
Notably, he has also achieved several Grand Final, World Club Challenge wins and Challenge Cup final appearances whilst actively coaching . In his early career, he mentored elite rugby union players, worked with all grades of junior football and held an Institute of Sport role leading physical preparation for Great Britain men's water polo squad in the run up to London 2012.
More recently Richard has also collaborated on a number of published research papers presenting the physical qualities and testing criteria of professional rugby players. In addition to this he is completing a postgraduate research degree quantifying the effects of training in overseas international competition of elite rugby players.
Richard is an active tutor and assessor for the UKSCA with a specific interest in programming for performance and was voted 2018 Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year in Elite Sport.
Padraig (Paudie) is currently the lead Academy S&C coach at Arsenal Football Club and also works as a tutor at Setanta College. He has previously held positions in the Irish Rugby Football Union, Munster Rugby, and was awarded the UKSCA's Youth Coach of the Year in 2015. Paudie feels that 'with such a high job instability across the sector there is a strong case for developing trade union type services to offer advice and protection'.
Associate Board Member
Steve is currently the director of Sports Science and Research innovation at Playermaker and has previously held positions with Hull City Football Club, the Football Association and Scunthorpe United Football Club. Steve thinks 'the pathway of each member of the wider community in strength and conditioning is varied' and through his experience of working in different roles, he can build support and guidance for the associate membership. He says: 'Not every person will be working within elite level team sports and as an Association we need to provide the relevant support to assist and provide a communication network for our members'.