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Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre

Innovations that help people move
World-leading research in physical activity

Set to become the most advanced research and development centre for physical activity in the world, the £14m Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre will form the centrepiece of Sheffield's Olympic Legacy Park – a joint venture between Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Sheffield City Council.

The Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre will bring together expertise from academia, industry, and the medical profession from across the region and internationally, delivering innovations that help people move.

These innovations will generate benefits for the entire population, through increasing levels of physical activity for people with sedentary lifestyles, helping those who are already active exercise more effectively, and improving the performance of elite and professional athletes.

Our research experts will use Sheffield as a 'living laboratory' to encourage and enable people to be more active and adopt healthier lifestyles. This work will meet national and international public health challenges caused by physical inactivity, resulting in improved quality of life and a reduction in healthcare costs.

The centre, directed by Professor Steve Haake, will have a direct link with the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine which will generate the need for innovations and act as a test ground for new products.

Our planned impact

The AWRC seeks to develop technical interventions that increase physical activity levels, establish what works and then disseminate successful technologies nationally and globally. Meeting these challenges will influence commissioning bodies and generate significant commercial opportunities for the centre's industrial partners. We envisage our work will deliver substantial external benefits, including:

  • More than £115 million cost savings to the UK by 2021
  • A continuing flow of innovation projects with outputs that affect real lives in Sheffield and the UK
  • A world-leading knowledge bank built from our experience of innovations that work, to help inform effective future developments
  • A sustainable model for commercial partnerships

Regional economic impact

The Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre's location and work will help create a new economic zone in the Sheffield-Rotherham corridor. Set in the heart of the city's Innovation District, as the centrepiece of the Olympic Legacy Park the AWRC will translate Sheffield Hallam's knowledge and know-how from across sport and wellness into funding from the public and private sectors. This funding will then be used to create jobs and spin-off companies, generating further wealth for Sheffield and the UK by increasing export opportunities.

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