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Mr Simon Rea

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Professional biography

I am a Senior Lecturer on the Sport and Fitness award at the Open University.  I have worked full time as an academic contributing to the development of modules in the BSc (Hons) degree since June 2007. I have written content on many areas of sports science including sports nutrition, biomechanics, strength and conditioning, exercise physiology, sport psychology (motivation, leadership and team dynamics) and reflective practice.

Since 2019 I have worked as an Open Media Fellow for WELS Faculty supporting the development of content for BBC/OU co-productions and for the OpenLearn website.

I have also been involved authoring/co-authoring 14 text books related to sports science and in 2019 published a book Careers in Sports Science which is related to my main research area.  I am currently co-authoring a book titled Optimising female athletic performance for Routledge due to be published in January 2023. My publication Sports Science: A complete introduction (2015) sold 2316 copies in 2021.

I have been involved in teaching in Higher and Further education since 1993 and most recently spent time working for a private company training personal trainers. I have also worked as a performance coach in first class cricket advising players on nutrition, psychology and physical conditioning.

My research area is around work-based skills, which work based skills are most important, and how they can be developed.

Please click on the tabs above to find out more about my qualifications, teaching, research and publications.

Research interests

Simons research interests lie within applied sport science with a particular focus on employablity in sport science related occupations.

Some of the article's Simon has written for OpenLearn can be found here:


Rea, Simon (2019). Careers in Sports Science. Oxford, Adored Publishing.

Rea, Simon (2015). Sports Science - A Complete Introduction. London, John Murray Learning.


Teaching interests

My main teaching interests are in sport nutrition, exercise physiology, strength and conditioning and work-based learning.

I have chaired production of module E119 Working and learning in sport and fitness and am currently reserve chair.

I have authored a Badged Open Course titled Supporting Female Athletic Performance for OpenLearn available at:


Impact and engagement

I have worked on two BBC programmes as Academic Consultant

  • Icons: The Greatest Person of the Twentieth Century (2019)
  • Fever Pitch: Rise of the Premier League (2021)

As well as content for BBC Bitesize - Healthcare careers (2022)

As Open Media Fellow I have been involved in the production process for several BBC/OU co-productions including:

  • Don't exclude me (2021)
  • Paddy McGuinness: My autistic family (2021)
  • Abused by our sports coach (2021)
  • Black and British (2022)
  • Freeze: Skating on the edge (2022)
  • Inside our autistic minds (2023)
  • Special School Series 2 (2023)

BBC Ideas


Careers in Sports Science (2019-09-06)
Rea, Simon
Publisher : Adored Publishing | Published : United Kingdom

Sports Science: A Complete Introduction (2015-12-03)
Rea, Simon
Teach Yourself
ISBN : 9781473614895 | Publisher : John Murray Learning | Published : London

Exploring Sport and Fitness: Work-based Practice (2009-07-17)
Heaney, Caroline; Oakley, Ben and Rea, Simon eds.
ISBN : 978-0-415-49155-6 | Publisher : Routledge/The Open University | Published : Abingdon