Dr Owen Thomas

 

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Reader in Sport Psychology

Research Excellence Framework (REF) Coordinator 

Telephone number: 029 20417281
Email address: othomas@cardiffmet.ac.uk​

Owen is a Reader in Sport Psychology and the REF Coordinator for the Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences (Sport) coordinating the School's submission to UoA 24. He has previously served as the Post Graduate Coordinator for Cardiff School od Sport and been the Programme Director for the MSc Sport Psychology (British Psychological Society accredited). Owen is an active researcher and lecturer within the Sport Psychology curricular and has previously sat on School's Management and Planning Team. He is a chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society and a registered practitioner with the Health and Care Professions Council and consults with a range of client groups. 

Research / Publications

My research interests primarily relate to the areas of stress and performance and confidence and efficacy in sport. I also have a clear applied focus to my research undertaking several programmes of with collaborators at the English Institute of Sport. More recently, I have begun a programme of work exploring health and wellbeing within South Wales and Gwent Police forces and in University settings.

Contributions to Edited Peer-Reviewed Research Books

Hays, K., Lane, A., & Thomas, O. (2016). Sport confidence. In Lane, A.M. (Ed.). Sport and Exercise Psychology: Topics in Applied Psychology, Second Edition. London: Routledge. ISBN: 978-0340928943

Thomas, O., & Neil, R. (2014). Breathing exercises. In, R. C. Eklund & G. Tenebaum (Eds.), Encyclopaedia of sport and exercise psychology (pp.92-94). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. ISBN: 978-1-452-20383-6.

Thomas, O., & Neil, R. (2014). Activation (energizing) strategies. In, R. C. Eklund & G. Tenebaum (Eds.), Encyclopaedia of sport and exercise psychology (pp. 251-253). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. ISBN: 978-1-452-20383-6.

Neil, R., & Thomas, O. (2014). Relaxation. In, R. C. Eklund & G. Tenebaum (Eds.), Encyclopaedia of sport and exercise psychology (pp. 587-591). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. ISBN: 978-1-452-20383-6.

Kingston, K., Thomas, O., & Neil, R. (2013). Psychology for coaches. In, R.L Jones, M. Hughes, and K. Kingston. An introduction to sports coaching: Connecting theory to practice, second edition (pp. 49-66). London: Routledge. ISBN: 978-0-415-69491-9.

Thomas, O. & Tong, R. (2010). Co-ordinating dissertations in a shared modular matrix: Reflections on assessment criteria, delivery and marking. In, P. Kemp, R. Atfield & R. Tong. (Eds.), Enhancing learning through assessment in business and management, hospitality, leisure, sport, and tourism (pp. 53-64). Newbury, Berks: Threshold Press Ltd. ISBN: 978-1-903152-25-6.

Thomas, O., Mellalieu, S.D. & Hanton, S. (2009). Stress management in sport:  A critical review and synthesis. In. S.D. Mellalieu  & S. Hanton (Eds.). Advances in applied sport psychology: A review (pp.124, 161). London: Routledge. ISBN: 978-0-415-44763-8.

Hanton, S., Thomas O. & Mellalieu, S.D. (2009).  Management of competitive stress in elite sport. In B. Brewer (Ed.). International Olympic Committee sport psychology handbook (pp. 30-42). Chchester: Wley-Blackwell Publishing. ISBN: 978-1-4051-7363-6.

Kingston, K., Thomas, O. & Mitchell, I. (2008). Psychology for coaches. In, R.L Jones, M. Hughes, and K. Kingston (Eds.). An introduction to sports coaching: From science and theory to practice (pp. 28-40). London: Routledge. ISBN: 978-0-415-41131-8.

Rotheram, M., Bawden, M., Maynard, I., Thomas, O., & Scaife, R. (2006). An exploratory investigation of the 'yips' across and within sport. In P. Hassmén & N. Hassmén (Eds.). Yearbook 2006 from the Swedish Sport Psychology Association (pp. 1-22). Laholm, Sweden: Trydells Tryckeri AB.

Refereed Academic Journal Papers

Sellars, P., Evans, L., & Thomas, O. (2016). The Effects of Perfectionism in Elite Sport: Experiences of Unhealthy Perfectionists. The Sport Psychologist, 218-230.

Pitt, T., Thomas, O., Lindsay, P., Bawden, M., & Hanton, S. (2015). Doing sport psychology briefly: A critical review of single session their relevance to sport psychology. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 8, 1-31.

Pitt, T., Lindsay, P., Thomas, O., Bawden, M., Goodwill, S., & Hanton, S. (2015). A perspective on consultancy teams and technology in applied sport psychology. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 16, 36-44.

Lindsay, P., & Thomas, O. (2014). Reflections on being a neophyte sport psychologist in the media: Conversations with my younger self. The Sport Psychologist, 28. 290-301.

Lindsay, P., Pitt, T., & Thomas, O. (2014). Bewitched by our words: Wittgenstein, language-games, and the pictures that hold sport psychology captive. Sport & Exercise Psychology Review, 10, 41-54.

Roberts, R., Rotheram, M., Maynard, I., Thomas, O., & Woodman, T. (2013). Perfectionism and the 'YIPS': An exploratory study. The Sport Psychologist, 27, 53-61.

Rotheram, M., Maynard, I., Thomas, O., Bawden, M., & Francis, L. (2012). Preliminary evidence for the treatment of type I 'Yips': The efficacy of the emotional freedom technique. The Sport Psychologist, 26, 551-570.

Thomas, O., Lane, A., & Kingston, K. (2011). Defining and contextualizing robust sport-confidence. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 23, 189-208.

Thomas, O., Picknell, G., & Hanton, S. (2011). Recall agreement between actual and retrospective reports of competitive anxiety: A comparison of intensity and frequency dimensions. Journal of Sports Sciences, 29, 495-508.

Hays, K., Thomas, O., Butt, J., & Maynard, I. (2010). The development of confidence profiling for sport. The Sport Psychologist, 18, 373-392.

Hays, K., Thomas, O., Maynard, I., & Butt, J. (2010). The role of confidence profiling in cognitive-behavioral interventions in sport. The Sport Psychologist, 18, 393-414.

Kingston, K., Lane, A., and Thomas, O. (2010). A temporal examination of elite performers sources of sport-confidence. The Sport Psychologist, 18, 313-332.

Lindsay, P., Thomas, O., & Douglas, G. (2010). Exploring and transforming client generated metaphors in applied sport psychology. The Sport Psychologist, 24, 97-112.

Hays, K., Thomas, O., Maynard, I., & Bawden, M.  (2009). The role of confidence in World Class sport performance. Journal of Sports Sciences, 27, 1185-1199.

Mellalieu, S.D., Hanton, S., and Thomas, O. (2009). The effects of a motivational general-arousal imagery intervention upon preperformance symptoms in male rugby union players. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 10, 175-186.

Thomas, O., Hanton, S. and Maynard, I. (2007). Anxiety responses and psychological skill use during the time leading up to competition: Theory to practice I. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 19, 379-397.

Thomas, O., Maynard, I. and Hanton, S. (2007). Intervening with athletes during the time leading up to competition: Theory to practice II. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 19, 398-418.

Hays, K., Maynard, I., Thomas, O. and Bawden, M. (2007). Sources and types of confidence identified by world class sport performers. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 19, 434-456.

Lindsay, P., Breckon, J., Thomas, O., and Maynard, I. (2007). In Pursuit of congruence: A personal reflection upon methods and philosophy in applied practice. The Sport Psychologist, 21, 273-289.

Lindsay, P., Maynard, I.W., & Thomas, O. (2005). Effects of hypnosis on flow states an cycling performance. The Sport Psychologist, 19, 164-178

Thomas, O., Maynard, I.W., & Hanton, S. (2004). Temporal aspects of competitive anxiety and self-confidence as a function of anxiety perceptions. The Sport Psychologist, 18, 172-187.

Hanton, S., Thomas, O., & Maynard, I.W. (2004). Competitive anxiety response in the week leading up to competition: The role of intensity, direction and frequency dimensions. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 5, 169-181.

Thomas, O., Hanton, S., & Jones, G. (2002). An alternative approach to short-form self-report assessment of competitive anxiety. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 33, 325-336.

Teaching and Supervision

I currently deliver content on Sport Psychology related to my research interests at both an Undergraduate and Post Graduate level. I also supervise a range of student projects in Sport Psychology at both undergraduate, taught post graduate and doctoral level.

Post Gradate Research Supervision: Doctor of Philosophy
Completions:

Ben Chell. Thesis Title: Psychological mechanisms underpinning severe performance loss in sport. Student registered at Sheffield Hallam University and co-supervised by Professor Ian Maynard and Dr Mark Bawden. Completed May 2005. (External Examiners: Dr Sandy Wolfson, Northumbria University and Dr Richard Thelwell, University of Portsmouth). Supervisor.

Jeff Breckon: Thesis Title:  Physical activity counselling: The application of motivational interviewing and brief negotiation. Student registered at Sheffield Hallam University and co-supervised by Dr David Lavalle and Dr Lynne Johnston. Completed February 2007. (External Examiners: Professor Stuart Biddle, Loughborough University and Professor Steve Rollnick, Cardiff University). Supervisor.

Kate Hays: Thesis Title: The role of sport confidence in World Class performance. Student registered at Sheffield Hallam University and co-supervised by Professor Ian Maynard. Completed July, 2007. (External Examiner: Professor Craig Mahoney, Northumbria University). Supervisor.

Mike Rotheram: Thesis Title: Understanding the 'YIPS' in relation to task-constraints in sport. Student registered at Sheffield Hallam University and co-supervised by Professor Ian Maynard and Dr Mark Bawden. Completed July 2007. (External Examiner:  Dr Jan Graydon, University of Chichester. Supervisor.

Andrew Lane. Thesis Title: The development and maintenance of robust sport confidence in elite sport. Student registered at Cardiff Metropolitan University and co-supervised by Dr Kieran Kingston. Completed July 2012. (External Examiner Dr Jennifer Cumming, University of Birmingham). Director of Studies. *Recipient of the British Psychological Society Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology Doctoral Thesis of the year 2013.

Timothy Pitt. Thesis Title: 'Nudging' Sport Psychologists to Change: Developing a Framework of Single Session Problem-Solving Within Elite Sport. Student registered at Cardiff Metropolitan University and co-supervised by Dr Pete Lindsay (English Institute of Sport/MindFlick©), Prof. Sheldon Hanton and Dr Mark Bawden (English Institute of Sport/MindFlick©). Completed July 2017. Director of Studies. (Externally 40K funded research project from the English Institute of Sport).

Current Supervisions:

Hannah Brooks. Thesis title: The triathlon 'Mindset': A prospective study. Student registered at Cardiff Metropolitan University and co-supervised by Prof Lynne Evans and Dr Andy Lane (Advisor), Dr Matt Barlow (Bangor University) and Dr Kate Hays (English Institute of Sport). (Externally 40K funded project research project from British Traithlon). Expected completion 2020.

Bradley Wooldridge. Thesis title: En exploration of mental health and wellbeing support services in a higher education setting: A we fit for purpose?. Student registered at Cardiff Metropolitan University and co-supervised by Dr Mikel Mellick and Dr Katie Thirlaway. Expected completion 2020.

Helen Oliver: Health and wellbeing in UK Policing: Student registered at Cardiff Metropolitan University and co-supervised by Prof Rob Copeland (Sheffield Hallam University), Dr Tjerk Moll and Dr Rich Neil. (Externally 72K funded research project from South Wales Police and Gwent Police forces). Expected completion 2020.

Qualifications and Awards

B.Sc. (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff

M.Sc. Science in Sport and Exercise, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff

Ph.D. Psychology of Sports Performance, Sheffield Hallam University

Post-Graduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, Sheffield Hallam University

BASES Accredited Sport Psychologist (Research and Support) (2002-2013)

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy                              

British Psychological Society Chartered Psychologist and full member of the Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology

Health and Care Professions Council Registered Practitioner Psychologist (PYL28908)

External Links

I am currently, and have previously been engaged with a number of organisations through research, professional practice and enterprise activities. As a chartered BPS Psychologist and registered Psychologist with the HCPC (PYL28908) I have provided support to a range of client groups. Some highlights of these activities include:

Research Awards and Research Funding

I have been fortunate to receive two rewards related to my own research and research that I have directed. My own doctoral research was awarded Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) doctoral thesis of the year back in 2004 and Dr Andy Lane's PhD for which I was Director of Studies was awarded doctoral thesis of the year by the British Psychological Society Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology in 2013.

I have gained external funding for several research projects with collaborators at the English Institute of Sport, British Traithlon Federation, PoliceMutual, South Wales and Gwent Police forces and the College of Policing.

English Institute of Sport (EIS)

I maintain strong links with several of the lead practitioners at the EIS and am involved in leading and contributing to a range of collaborative research projects related to the delivery and support of applied sport psychology services. These resulted in external funding (40K) to direct Dr Tim Pitt's PhD research and also (40K) external funding from British Triathlon Federation/EIS to direct Hannah Brook's investigation on the development of the triathlon 'Mindset'.

South Wales Police, Gwent Police, PoliceMutual and College of Policing

More recently I have progressed an internally secured University 'Get Started' (2.5k) award to secure external funding from PoliceMutual (60K [35K ring fenced for CSS]) for a project exploring health and wellbeing and resiliency in the Gwent and South Wales Police forces. This project evolved into additional external funding (72K) from the forces to fund Helen Oliver's ongoing PhD. The project has grown further via a College of Police funded (113K) research project exploring the impact of an App based physical activity intervention programme with South Wales Police with colleagues from the Sheffield 'MoveMore' programme.

European Journal of Sport Science

I acted as Associate Editor for the journal (Psychology, Social Science and Humanities) between 2007 and 2015. I have maintained a place on the Editorial Board from 2015 onwards.

England Golf

I have worked at a regional and national level with England Golf (formally English Golf Union and English Women's Golf Association) as a Sport Psychologist with a range of age group players.

Doctoral Examinations

Kylie Roy, PhD. Thesis title: Sport injury related growth: Theory-to-practice. Viva: July 2017. Roehampton University. External Examiner.  

Harry Bowles, PhD. Thesis title: "Days in the dirt": An ethnography on cricket and the self. Viva: July 2014. Cardiff Metropolitan University. Internal Examiner.

Benjamin Rosenblat, PhD. Thesis title: Biomechanics of training – Principles in strength and conditioning. Viva: October 2014. Cardiff Metropolitan University. Examination Chair.

Eleri Jones, PhD. Thesis title: Performance anxiety: Mechanisms and measurement. Viva: July, 2012. University of South Wales. External Examiner.

Andrea Faull, PhD. Thesis title: Anxiety and motor performance: An examination of the part process goal paradox. Viva: October, 2009. University of Wales Institute, Cardiff. Internal Examiner.

Denise Hill, MPhil-PhD transfer. Thesis title: An in-depth examination of choking in sport. 2007: University of Gloucestershire, UK. External Examiner

Sport / Coaching Profile

I represented Yorkshire as a school boy in rugby union and played for Rotherham Rugby club (Rotherham Titans) in my younger days. I also played golf for the county of South Yorkshire as a junior. My rugby days are (well!) behind me, but I remain a keen golfer.