Professor Stephen Mellalieu


Professor in Sport Psychology and Associate Dean for Research

Telephone number: 029 2041 5593

Stephen is a Professor in Sport Psychology and the Associate Dean for Research for the Cardiff School of Sport. He is Editor of the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology and co-founder and Network Editor of the World Rugby Science Network. 

Stephen is a Chartered Psychologist of the British Psychological Society, a registered Practitioner Psychologist and Partner with the Health and Care Professions Council, and a British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences accredited Sport Scientist. He has 20 years consultancy experience in high performance sport, working most recently within professional rugby union.

Research / Publications

My primary research interests lie in the area of athlete welfare, including stress, coping and performance, psychological skills training and behaviour change, and the organisational environment of elite sport. I am particularly interested in how those individuals who operate within high performance sporting environments utilise personal and social resources as they negotiate the various demands placed upon them across their professional careers. I am also interested in mental wellbeing in wider occupational environments and the role that psychological skills and resilience can play in facilitating health and performance.

Refereed Academic Journal Articles: (2014-)

Burgess, N., Knight C. J., & Mellalieu, S. D. (2016). Parental stress and coping in elite youth gymnastics: An interpretive phenomenological analysis. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health. 0.1080/2159676X.2015.1134633

Bruton, A. M., Mellalieu, S. D., & Shearer, D. A. (2016). Observation as a method for influencing collective efficacy: A review. Psychology of Sport and Exercise.

Bruton, A. M., Mellalieu, S. D., & Shearer, D. A. (2016). Validation of a single-item stem for collective efficacy measurement in sports teams: A tool for use with neuroimaging protocol. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology. doi: 10.1080/1612197X.2015.1054853

Wadey, R., Podlog, L., Galli, N., & Mellalieu, S. D. (2016). Stress-related growth following sport injury: Examining the applicability of the organismic valuing theory. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports. doi: 10.1111/sms.12579

Shearer, D. A., Kilduff, L. P., Finn, C., Jones, R. M., Bracken, R. M., Mellalieu, S. D., Owen, N., Cook, C. J., & Crewther, B. T. (2015). Measuring recovery in elite rugby players: The brief assessment of mood, endocrine changes and power. Research Quarterly for Sport and Exercise, 86, 379-386. 10.1080/02701367.2015.1066927

Gray, B. J., Bracken R. M., Turner D., Morgan K., Mellalieu S. D., Thomas M., Williams S. P., Williams M., Rice S., & Stephens J. W. (2014). Examining the levels of occupational physical activity and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Diabetes & Primary Care, 16, 293-298.

Gray B. J., Bracken R. M., Turner D., Morgan K., Mellalieu S. D., Thomas M., Williams S. P., Williams M., Rice S., & Stephens J. W. (2014). Prevalence of undiagnosed cardiovascular risk factors and 10-year CVD risk in male steel industry workers. Journal of Occupational Environmental Medicine, 56(5), 535-9. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000000146.

Gray B. J., Bracken R. M., Turner D., Morgan K., Mellalieu S. D., Thomas M., Williams S. P., Williams M., Rice S., & Stephens J. W. (2014). Prevalence of metabolic risk factors and associated 10-year prediction of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in female employees. Practical Diabetes. 31(7).

Gray B. J., Bracken R. M., Turner D., Morgan K., Mellalieu S. D., Thomas M., Williams S. P., Williams M., Rice S., & Stephens J. W. (2014). Predicted 10-year risk of cardiovascular disease is influenced by the risk equation adopted: a cross-sectional analysis. The British Journal of General Practice, 64, 634-40.

Santi, G., Saccinto, E., Bruton, A., Pietrantoni, L., & Mellalieu, S. D. (2014). Sport commitment and participation in masters swimmers: The influence of coach and teammates. European Journal of Sport Science, 14, 852-60.

Bruton, A.M, Shearer, D., & Mellalieu, S. D. (2014). Observation interventions as a means to manipulate collective efficacy in groups. Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 36, 27–39.


Edited Books:

Mellalieu, S. D., & Hanton, S. (Eds.) (2015). Contemporary reviews in sport psychology. London, UK: Routledge.
Books Chapters:

Slater, M., Barker, J., & Mellalieu, S. D. (in press). Change, conflict and culture management. In C. R. D. Wagstaff (Ed.), Organizational psychology in sport. London, UK: Routledge.

Mellalieu, S. D. (in press). Working within professional rugby union. In R. Schinke & D. Hackfort (Eds.), The Routledge companion of professional sport and performance psychology. London: Routledge.

Hanton, S., Mellalieu, S. D., & Williams, J. M. (2015). Understanding and managing stress in sport. In J. Williams & V. Krane (Eds.), Applied sport psychology: Personal growth to peak performance (7th Edition). New York: McGraw Hill.

Hanton, S., & Mellalieu, S. D. (2014). Coping with stress and anxiety. In A. D. Papaioannou & D. Hackfort (Eds.), Routledge companion to sport and exercise psychology (pp. 428-443). London: Routledge.


Teaching and Supervision

I currently deliver on modules in the areas of sport and exercise psychology at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate level. I also supervise dissertation research projects at Undergraduate and Postgraduate level.

Postgraduate Research Supervision: Doctor of Philosophy

Gareth Picknell. Thesis Title: Developing performance through reflective interventions. Student registered at Cardiff Met University and co-supervised by Dr. Brendan Cropley and Professor Sheldon Hanton. Expected completion 2017. 

Director of Studies.

Alison Connaughton. Thesis Title: Development of a measure of barriers to exercise in T2DM populations. Student registered at Cardiff Met University and co-supervised by Dr. Karianne Backx. Expected completion 2018. Director of Studies.

External Links

I have links with a number of external organisations in relation to research, professional practice, enterprise and learning and teaching.
Membership of Professional Bodies:

British Psychological Society (Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology- DSEP)

Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP)

British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES)

Higher Education Academy (HEA)
Editorial Board Membership:

Editor, Journal of Applied Sport Psychology

Editorial Board Member, The Sport Psychologist

Network Editor, World Rugby Science Network
Consultancy Activities (Organisations/Governing Bodies of Sport):

World Rugby

Welsh Rugby Union

Ospreys Rugby

Sport Wales

Qualifications and Awards

B.Sc. Physical Education & Sports Science, Loughborough University

M.Sc. Sports Science, Loughborough University

Ph.D. Sport Psychology, Gloucestershire University

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

BASES Accredited Sport & Exercise Scientist (Support)

Science Council Chartered Scientist

Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) Registered Practitioner  

British Psychological Society (BPS) Chartered Sport & Exercise Psychologist

Sporting / Coaching Profile


Semi Professional Rugby Union

Welsh Rugby Union U21s

Swansea University RFC Coaching Panel (2002-2013)