Bachelor of Coaching Science 2011, Bachelor of Sport Studies (Honours) 2012
While some people watch sports for fun, for alumna and UC Teaching Fellow Jocelyn Mara sport has become a career in a way she could never initially imagine. With her robust background in coaching and sports performance analysis, Jocelyn became a Sports and Exercise Science Teaching Fellow at UC in 2012.
"Sport is more than playing - it's a culture, a social environment and a balanced life. You can try all the different areas until you find a place that fits you, and that's been my experience," Jocelyn says.
A former Canberra United player herself, Jocelyn has seamlessly transitioned into her academic and sideline roles.
As a postgraduate scholar in Performance Analysis at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS), Jocelyn provided performance analysis servicing to elite athletes and coaches and conducted high performance sport research. Because of Jocelyn's incredible accomplishments and performance with the AIS, she was invited to assist with performance analysis for the Canberra United Football Club and the Brumbies Rugby squad. Jocelyn also completed an internship at the ACT Academy of Sport as a strength and conditioning coach, training world class athletes. Jocelyn's research has focused on the programming and testing of fundamental strength and movement skills of elite athletes, as well as the performance analysis of attacking strategies in high level women's football. For her contributions to the study of athletics and performance analysis, Jocelyn won an Australian Institute of Sport Prize in 2011.
In 2012, Jocelyn began working on her PhD and teaching at UC, continuing to focus on the analysis of sports performance. "To have to the opportunity to work with some of the world class academics at the University of Canberra, as well as coaches and players all the way through to national level has been an amazing experience," Jocelyn says.
As part of her PhD, Jocelyn has used revolutionary optical player tracking technology to study both training loads and player pacing during matches for Canberra United. These studies and her role as a performance analyst for Canberra United over the past two seasons have contributed greatly to the team's on-field success. During their 2014 campaign in particular Canberra United were widely regarded at the fittest side in the W-League thanks to Jocelyn's monitoring program.
Jocelyn is an exemplary faculty member who has already had a tremendous impact on Australian sports and football in particular. "It's great to know that the work I am currently doing will one day be used by coaches around the world in developing their training plans and match strategies".