Russell Martindale

Russell Martindale

Dr Russell Martindale

Associate Professor


My focus as an academic and practitioner is the development of talent and understanding the personal and environmental characteristics that enable people to fulfil their potential, develop effectively and achieve success. In line with this, I have developed the Talent Development Environment Questionnaire (Martindale et al., 2010) which has impacted research globally to assess the quality of development environments and guide evidence based practice.

Much of my work has involved the impact evaluation of a range of psycho-social interventions on the health, wellbeing and success of young people and adults, including those in sport, educational contexts and those who are socially excluded or have complex needs. For example, funded research projects have included the evaluation and design of:

• Elite sport academy programmes and structures
• Sport coach education and development
• School based talent identification and development programmes:
• School based physical activity promotion programmes;
• Impact of expeditions on positive adjustment of young people
• Impact of outdoor adventure experiences of school pupil learning, resilience and success
• Impact of youth cadet organisations on young people’s development
• Resilience and support requirements of military families who are geographically dispersed
• Resilience and support requirements of military families living on isolated bases
• Understanding the lived experience of military personnel
• Understanding resilience through the transition experience of military veterans

I am also a chartered sport and exercise psychologist and have worked with a variety of elite and development level performers, coaches and sports. I have experience working as a team psychologist (triathlon) through the Commonwealth Games 2002, London Olympics 2012 and Rio Olympics 2016 cycles, which has enabled me to apply evidence based talent development environment principles at the ‘coal face’. I have applied these same principles to the higher education context, helping staff and postgraduate research students to fulfil their potential through mentoring and communities of practice.



Advisory panels and expert committees or witness

  • Melting Pot Discussion for Talent Initiative - Sports Coach UK
  • Founding Member of Arsenal FC Psychology Research Group
  • Talent Development Environments. UKSport - TID Melting Pot, National Strategy, Leeds


External Examining/Validations

  • External Examiner: BSc Sport and Exercise Science, University of Worcester
  • External Examiner: MSc Sports Coaching, Leeds Beckett University


Fellowships and Awards

  • ENU Above and Beyond Partnership Award
  • Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


Invited Speaker

  • Talent Identification and Development - Sport and Business - Utrecht University School of Governance, Netherlands Jubilee Conference
  • Bridging the Gap - A Holistic Approach to the Development of Junior to Senior Athletes - East Renfrewshire Coaching Conference, Glasgow
  • Understanding Talent: Keynote. East of Scotland Institute of Sport Conference, Ratho
  • Talent Development Environments. East of Scotland Institute of Sport Conference, Ratho
  • Talent Identification and Development; The Stirling Seminar Series, The University of Stirling
  • Theory and Practice of Talent. Developments in Sport, Leisure and Fitness Conference, Bell College, Hamilton


Membership of Professional Body

  • Health Professions Council Registered Sport and Exercise Psychologist
  • Chartered Sport and Exercise Psychologist (British Psychological Society)


Research Degree External Examining

  • External Examiner PhD: Robin Taylor - Role of Siblings in Talent Development, University of Central Lancashire
  • External Examiner PhD: James Fitzwater: Mental Toughness in Military Training- Bangor University
  • External Examiner MPhil: John Stoszkowski - Sports Coaching, University of Birmingham
  • External Examiner PhD: John Parker - Sport Psychology, University of Gloucestershire
  • External Examiner MPhil: Graeme McDowall - Sports Coaching, University of Birmingham
  • External Examiner MPhil: Jonathan Hughes - Sport Science & Coaching, University of Wales
  • External Examiner DProf: David Passmore - Sport Coaching, University of Central Lancashire



  • Annals of Leisure Research; European Physical Education Review; European Journal of Sport Science; Frontiers; International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology; International Journal of Sport Psychology; International Journal of Sport Science and Coaching; International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology; Journal of Adventure Education & Outdoor Learning; Journal of Applied Sport Psychology; Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport; Journal of Sports Sciences; PLOS ONE; Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport; Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports; The Sport Psychologist


Pre-Napier Funded Projects

  • Developing the Potential of Young People Through Sport
  • Elite Coach Development Project
  • Sport Interactive Project - TiD and physical activity promotion

Current Post Grad projects

Previous Post Grad projects