Application of novel MRI approaches to predict lumbar stress injuries in elite cricket fast bowlers. SSEHS/KBW/MK

Loughborough University

About the Project

Cricket fast bowlers have high incidence of lumbar stress injury, which has the greatest prevalence and financial burden of any injury in cricket. Our previous research demonstrated that fast bowlers have substantial asymmetries in bone mineral within the lumbar vertebrae and surrounding musculature.

Little is known about how bone morphology (shape) develops. It was traditionally assumed to be innate or genetically predetermined but increasing evidence suggests that it adapts to loading. Most importantly morphology influences injury risk. Advances in MRI scan sequences allows us to study changes in bone morphology and their relationship with injury risk.

The studentship will involve examining relationships between lumbar spine morphology, lumbar spine bone stress injury, workload and other relevant factors. Findings may increase our understanding of factors that influence bone morphology and inform guidelines on bowling workload and injury prediction and monitoring.

The research group have a substantial track record and international reputation for research in this area. The collaboration with the England and Wales Cricket Board allows unique access to elite bowlers and injury data. Access to the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine and National Cricket Performance Centre allows highest quality facilities to support the research.


Primary supervisor: Dr Katherine Brooke-Wavell

Secondary supervisors: Professor Mark King; Professor Nick Peirce (ECB); Dr Pete Alway (ECB)

Entry requirements for United Kingdom

Students will normally need to have, or expect to achieve, at least a 2:1 degree (or equivalent) and ideally a Master’s degree and/or relevant experience in a relevant discipline e.g. radiology, radiography, relevant engineering disciplines, physiotherapy, or other related subject. Good team working, organisational and communication skills are essential. Experience with image analysis will be particularly useful.

English language requirements

Applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements. Further details are available on the International website.

How to apply

All applications should be made online. Under programme name, select School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences. Please quote the advertised reference number: SSEHS/KBW/MK in your application.

To avoid delays in processing your application, please ensure that you submit the minimum supporting documents.

For more guidance, see also the studentship assessment criteria.

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