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Club News

Vacancies: Rochdale AFC Academy

17 December 2014

Vacancies: 2 × Part Time Academy Sports Scientists

Department(s): Academy Management Team / Sports Science & Medicine Department

Salary & Hours: £7000.00 pa (21 Hours) / £5000.00 pa (16 Hours)

Following the recent success of the Elite Player Performance Plan Category 3 application, Rochdale AFC Academy are looking to recruit two Academy Sports Scientists who will be able to design, develop and implement appropriate sports science practices as part of the Academy’s Sports Science and Medicine Programme for the Club’s Academy Players. Each Sports Scientist will be assigned to specific age groups within the Foundation, Youth Development, and Professional Development Phases (i.e., U9-U14 and U15-U18).

An exciting opportunity exists for highly motivated and enthusiastic sports scientists to become members of the Sports Science and Medicine Department at Rochdale AFC Academy. The candidate(s) will contribute to the maintenance and development of a high performance environment at the Academy. These roles will work with other key stakeholders including coaching and medical colleagues covering all aspects of player performance.

Role summary
Reporting to the Head of Sports Science, the Academy Sports Scientist(s) will contribute to the achievement of the aims and performance targets of Rochdale AFC Academy through:
- Providing sports science support for Academy Team(s) under the direction of the Academy Management, Coaching and Support Staff.
- Ensuring the short-, medium-, and long-term strategies of the Academy Sports Science and Medicine Department are implemented within desired timescales.
- Ensuring the day-to-day implementation of the Academy’s scientific support processes, geared towards achieving the Sports Science and Medicine Department’s vision and strategy.
- Providing sports science support that effectively meets the nationally audited criteria, and its commitments to players and coaches.
- Assisting in the achievement of the Academy’s annual performance targets and the Sports Science and Medicine Department’s SMART targets.

Key tasks and responsibilities
As an Academy Sports Scientist, the post holder(s) will:
- Liaise with the Head of Sports Science with the development and implementation of the Academy Sports Science and Medicine philosophy that will integrate into the vision and structure of the club.
- Enhance athletic development through developing, implementing, and evaluating strength and conditioning programmes that reflect scientific principles as they relate to adaptation, periodisation, peaking, tapering, and injury prevention/rehabilitation.
- Provide and deliver individual strength and conditioning programmes to Academy Players.
- Deliver scientifically underpinned field- and gym-based conditioning sessions with a view to physical development.
- Provide the practical implementation of appropriate nutrition and hydration strategies for young players.
- Perform regular, relevant assessments of Academy Players’ physical development and provide interventions designed to enhance athletic abilities.
- Ensure that all relevant information collected from players is logged and presented to appropriate staff members.
- Work with Academy Coaches and Support Staff to deliver a multidisciplinary approach to performance development.
- Coordination of sports science delivery through key working partners.
- Assist in the continued delivery, progression and development of the Academy’s Coaching Programmes.

Person specification
The successful candidate(s) will have an appreciation of the scientific underpinnings of team sports, and experience of working within an elite football environment is desirable. Effective communication skills, an understanding of working with young players, commitment to working unsociable hours, and the ability to create the right ethos and be a role model are essential.

- A qualification at degree level (or equivalent) in sports science or a related area specialising in the area of physical preparation of athletes.
- A qualification at higher degree level (or equivalent) specialising in the physical preparation of athletes.
- UK Strength and Conditioning Accredited, or ambition to achieve such accreditation within an agreed timescale.
- Football coaching qualification at FA Level 2, or ambition to achieve such qualification within an agreed timescale.

Technical/work-based skills
- Demonstrate good levels of I.T. literacy, in particular the use of Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint, and shared file systems (e.g. Dropbox).
- Possess the coaching and communication skills that engage and motivate diverse young players to improve their performance.

General skills and attributes
- The ability to work to deadlines using problem solving skills, initiative and sensitivity.
- Respond positively to change in a dynamic, fast-moving environment.
- Ability to work as part of a multidisciplinary team and develop productive intra-/inter-departmental relationships.

- Track record in working within multidisciplinary coaching and support teams.

Please see the job description for further information. Salary and working hours will be discussed at the interview stage. Please note, only those shortlisted for interview will be contacted.

Closing date: 05 January 2015

How to apply

Please send your CV and a covering letter to:

Kevin Gibbins
Rochdale AFC
Head of Sports Science
Spotland Stadium
OL11 5DS

Job title: Academy Sports Scientist
Department: Academy Management Team / Sports Science and Medicine
Reports to: Head of Sports Science
Location: Spotland Stadium
Contract: Part-time

Job purpose
The primary purpose of the role is to plan and deliver the Sports Science Programme to players within the Academy. The Academy’s Sports Science and Medicine Programme is a fundamental component of our young players’ long-term player development and is therefore crucial to delivering sustainable success to RAFC.
The role will also include assisting the Phase Lead Coaches with the delivery of best practice Coaching Programmes; the coordination and supervision of sports science interns; and among other tasks, includes the administration of nutrition, strength and conditioning, recovery, monitoring and fitness testing programmes

Key responsibilities
- Plan, deliver and evaluate physical development sessions with designated age groups designed to enhance the athletic abilities of the young players.
- Assist with the monitoring and assessment of young players’ physical development. This will include the management of data collection, analysis, reporting and providing feedback to coaches, parents and players.
- Assist the Head of Sports Science with the development and implementation of the Academy Sports Science philosophy that will integrate into the vision and structure of the club.
- Apply a multidisciplinary approach that includes close links to all areas of the Academy, for example, working closely with coaches to enhance the delivery of coaching programmes.
- Work closely with associated partners (i.e. universities) to coordinate a synergistic delivery of sports science services for all Academy players.
- Be involved in the continual development of scientifically underpinned protocols for all aspects of sports science and long-term player development.

Key relationships
- Assist the Head of Sports Science and fellow Academy Sports Scientist with the day-to-day planning and implementation of the Sports Science Programme.
- Liaise with the Academy’s Head of Coaching and Phase Lead Coaches.
- Coordinate the successful implementation of internships with external service providers.
- Deliver practical athletic development training sessions to Academy Players.
- Communicate with Academy players’ parents.
- Contribute to the multidisciplinary work of the Academy coaching, medicine, performance analysis, and education teams.

Scope of job

The purpose of this role is to plan and deliver the Sports Science Programme to all Academy players. This requires the ability to communicate effectively with a diverse range of people, and excellent time-management skills.

The role does not involve any management of a budget, but will involve the supervision of selected interns.

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