Whether you are a weekend warrior, avid supporter or an elite athlete, you and your favourite sports are increasingly being influenced by cutting edge research and development. Science. Technology , Engineering and Mathematics careers have never been more relevant to the improvement of human performance.

Amazing advances in biosciences now allow us to not only live longer than ever before but on the sporting field they have translated to performances, and equipment we never dreamed possible. Our programs at BioLAB are developed around career pathways and industry applications including highlighting a number of local, national and international research and development examples.

A few recent examples that have impacted on sport and human performance are: Materials technology and the development of swimsuits that are based on the properties of shark skin; Improved testing of athletes for performance enhancing substances utilising advances in biotechnology; and the recent novel use of nanotechnology by the All Blacks Rugby team to engrave supporters names into the fibres of their jerseys.

A very exciting local example will look at following the progress of our lead partners Deakin University and their recently announced research and development partnership with Quiksilver to push the boundaries of textiles and sportswear innovation. The partnership will see Deakin materials scientists working with Quiksilver designers to create the next generation of action sportswear.

“The opportunity to provide new, relevant, inspiring and engaging programs that allow students and teachers to get a little closer to these success stories is an amazing opportunity” says BioLAB Director, Yvonne Van Der Ploeg.

“You only need to watch your favourite football team on the weekend to see the athlete tracking devices on the backs of players, or watch the latest international surfing event where you can see the heart rate of a surfer before, during and after a wave to see the amazing impact science, maths, technology and engineering is having on human performance.” she says. To take these examples and expose students and teachers to some of these pieces of equipment and technology is such an exciting opportunity for us and I can’t wait to see it develop into something truly unique for Victoria.”