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Performance Sport Services Team

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​A​thlete Lifestyle and Education

Katie Payne - Athlete Lifestyle and Education

Lead for Athlete Lifestyle and Education support at Cardiff Metropolitan University, Katie holds a BSc in Sport and Exercise Science and a PhD in Sport and Health Sciences (Sport Psychology) from the University of Exeter. Katie also has a Talented Athlete Lifestyle Support (TALS) qualification and is a UK Anti-doping (UKAD) educator.​

Katie previously worked in a similar role at the University of Bath, supporting student athletes and facilitating their personal development. At Cardiff Metropolitan University, Katie supports athletes in each of the Performance Programmes, as well as the Welsh and English Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) athletes. Katie also has an interest in supporting Women in Sport and utilises her role within the Performance Services Team to examine the environment female athletes train and compete in, and ensuring our provision is female specific.


Richard Williams - Head of Physiotherapy

Richard is a physiotherapy graduate of the University of the West of England, and S&C and Rehabilitation graduate of Cardiff Metropolitan University. He began his career at Cardiff City FC, before moving into full time sport with Newport County AFC as Head of Academy Medical. From there, he has held roles at Scarlets Rugby, Swansea City AFC, and the English FA.

As the Head of Physiotherapy, Richard is responsible for coordinating the medical provision for all Cardiff Met Performance Programmes athletes, whilst leading clinically on the delivery of care to the Archers Wheelchair Basketball programme,, Cardiff Met Athletics, and the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS).

Betsy Mawdsley - Lead Football Physiotherapist​

Beth Mawdsley staff profile pictureBetsy Mawdsley joins the program as a Canadian physiotherapist. Betsy has a Masters Degree in Physical Therapy, a Diploma  of Sport Physiotherapy. She is a Registered International Sport Physiotherapist  and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist.

In Canada, Betsy worked with a wide range of athletes across both individual and team sports. She has been the medical lead for Women’s AAA Ice Hockey team and at American Football Tournaments. She has also worked with the Canadian National Para Ice Hockey Team and Canadian Mens’ National Field Hockey Team. 

As a physiotherapist, she believes in creating partnerships and that performance and rehab are interlinked. Betsy believes that team success is built with the development of the individual within the structure of a unified program and team. ​

In her personal life, Betsy was a member of the Canadian National Women’s American Football Team and has represented Canada at two World University Games in the sport of biathlon. She is now kept happily busy by a great family with two young boys and spoiled dog.​

Nikki McLaughlin - Women's Rugby Physiotherapist

​Nikki is a dynamic professional with a passion for sports physiotherapy, holding a PGDip in Sport and Exercise Medicine from Cardiff Metropolitan University. He started his journey with the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) in age-grade rugby and Wales U20s. Nikki swiftly advanced into the professional arena. His journey led him to pivotal rehabilitation roles with Dragons Rugby and Exeter Chiefs in the Gallagher Premiership.

Driven by a commitment to excellence, Nikki obtained his MSc in Sport Physiotherapy and Exercise Medicine. His expertise has been involved in supporting prestigious events like the World University Games, Commonwealth Games, and Olympics, where he provided invaluable support to athletes.

Returning to rugby, Nikki assumed the Lead Physiotherapist role at Worcester Warriors. Now, as Lead Physiotherapist for Cardiff Met Women's Rugby and the WRU Player Development Centre-East, Nikki is dedicated to nurturing the next generation of female rugby talent by applying his extensive knowledge and skillset to drive whole team success.

Barry Chan - Lead Rugby Physiotherapist & Men's Rugby

Barry completed his Undergraduate degree in Health and Exercise Science at the University of New South Wales (Australia) and followed this up by completing his Masters in Physiotherapy at the University of Sydney (Australia). Since graduating, most of his working career has been in professional rugby, having worked at the NSW Waratahs for 6 years and then at Dragons Rugby for 2 years. In addition, Barry has worked in a busy multi-disciplinary Sports Medicine Clinic in Sydney, getting to work alongside Sports Doctors, Orthopaedic Surgeons, Paediatric Doctors, Exercise Physiologists, Sports Podiatrist, Chiropractors and Sports Psychologists. All this experience has allowed Barry to refine his art of exercise prescription and form a strong foundational knowledge in Sports Physiotherapy.

Debbie Mason - Performance Physiotherapist

​Debbie qualified from Cardiff University in 2013 with a BSc (Hons) in Physiotherapy. She began her career in the NHS, gaining valuable experience working with children, teenagers and adults in a wide variety of settings. During this time, Debbie acquired the skills to support people with a range of conditions, from acute injuries to lifelong health conditions. Debbie has also worked with recreational to elite level athletes in a variety of sports, including at Cardiff and Met Hockey Club, Dragons Rugby, Hockey Wales, and Wales Netball.

Debbie has extensive experience working in tournament environments, supporting teams at European competitions, School Games and volunteering as a physiotherapist at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. Transitioning to working full time in university sport has enabled Debbie to pursue her professional interest in athletic development and injuries in young athletes, while also studying for an MSc in Sport and Exercise Physiotherapy. Debbie joined Cardiff Metropolitan University in 2023 as a Performance Physiotherapist. She currently leads the physio provision to the Cricket (UCCE), Hockey, and Netball performance programmes as well as supporting our TASS athletes.

Strength & Conditioning

Sam Thirlwell​ - Strength & Conditioning Coach

​Sam holds a MSc in Applied Strength and Conditioning alongside a BSc in Sport and Exercise Science. He previously lead the physical development programme for Girls Rugby at Henley College. He has also completed internships with Harlequins and Southampton FC. Sam currently leads on the Men's and Women's Hockey Programme at Cardiff Met.

Matt Thompson - Strength & Conditioning Coach

Matthew has a BA in Sport Studies and an MSc in Strength & Conditioning. Matthew has previously worked at the NFL Academy and now works at Cardiff Met, leading both women's rugby and football. Matthew has recently been working with the newly developed PDC program, as lead S&C coach for PDC East.

Jack Silvester - Senior Strength & Conditioning Coach

Jack is a Cardiff Met Alumni and holds a BSc in Sport and Exercise Science. Jack has been working at the University for the past 2 years and, prior to his role, completed an internship with the S&C department. Jack currently leads the S&C delivery for the Netball Performance Programme, as well as co-leading the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) Athletes based at Cardiff Met. Jack also assists the Men's Rugby & Athletics programmes.

Dai Watts​ - Head of Strength & Conditioning

Dai is a UKSCA accredited coach who holds a 1st Class Hons degree in Sport & Human Movement. Dai has held Strength & Conditioning positions in a wide range of sports, including Rugby Union, Head of S&C for WWRU, WRU 21s, WRU 18s, Wales senior 7s, and assistant S&C Senior Wales Squad 2008 Grand Slam season. Dai was instrumental in programming and preparing Wales-based Basketball athletes for 2012 Olympic Games and provided support for Subaru World Rally as Head of Programming for Petter Solberg and Phil Mills. Further experience includes previously being Head of S&C for Celtic Dragons Netball, Wales Judo development squad and Cardiff Devils Ice Hockey Academy as well as supporting international performers from many disciplines including Hockey, Shooting, Cycling, Wheelchair Basketball, Wheelchair Rugby, and Badminton. Dai currently oversees the Rugby Programme and the TASS programme here at Cardiff Met.

Adam Chamberlain-Carter - Strength & Conditioning Coach

Adam is a Cardiff Metropolitan Alumni and holds a BSc in Sports Science and Rugby from the University of South Wales and an MSc in Strength and Conditioning from Cardiff Metropolitan University. Adam started his career as an S&C coach, working in rugby with the WRU. He supported the Women's 15's & 7's programmes in preparation for 6 Nations, World Series 7's Qualification, and Paris World 7's. Adam also has led the Women's U20's and U18s 15's & 7's programmes. Adam was the Lead S&C coach for the Dragon's Women's & U18's regional programme. He also worked with Whitchurch High School Junior Rugby Academy before transitioning to university sport. At Cardiff Metropolitan University, Adam has worked with Cricket, Rugby, Basketball, Hockey, Netball, Swimming and Football, Shooting, Judo, Trampolining and Equestrian. He now leads the Cricket (UCCE), Wheelchair Basketball (WPL & BUCS) and Women's Basketball (WBBL & BUCS).​​​