With a record number of more than 3.000 abstracts received, the 18th annual congress of the European College of Sport Science - ECSS Barcelona 2013 will be the largest congress in ECSS history.

Hosted by the National Institute of Physical Education of Catalonia (INEFC), the congress venue provides an excellent setting, right at the centre of the Olympic Ring on Montjuïc hill; next door to some of the main tokens of Barcelona’s Olympic dream, such as Calatrava’s sculpture-like communication tower, the historical Lluís Companys Olympic Stadium or the beautifully built sports arena, Isozaki’s Palau Sant Jordi.

“Barcelona is the place to be in Europe and we are making every effort to organise this as a meeting to remember for everyone”, says Thomas Delaveaux, Executive Director of the ECSS.

An outstanding scientific programme, workshops and satellites will attract over 2.500 researchers from all over the world, enjoying what promises to be a beautiful meeting.

ECSS Barcelona 2013 venue - source: sportools.de

Interview with Prof. Hans Hoppeler, ECSS Past President

Elena Gil, Relacions externes i Publicacions, INEF de Catalunya

Hans Hoppeler, ECSS Past President – source: sportools.de

What is your profession and your link to the European College of Sport Science (ECSS)?

I am a Professor of Functional Anatomy at the Medical Faculty of Bern, teaching the Anatomy and Biomechanics of the Musculo-Skeletal System to medical students, physiotherapists and students of sport science. My research interests have focussed on the malleability of skeletal muscle tissue with different training modalities, high altitude, nutrition, weightlessness and with immobilisation and ageing. I have organized the ECSS Congress 2006 in Lausanne, the seat of the IOC, and I have presided the ECSS.

What is the ECSS?

The European College of Sport Science is an organization with the focus of promoting Exercise Science covering all its facettes from Ethics to Psychology, Pedagogy, to Training Sciences including Biomechanics and Natural Sciences such as Physiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. All these research areas are of equal relevance for exploring the phenomenon of sport.

What is the significance of the annual congress of the ECSS?

The annual ECSS congress covers all these research areas competently with plenary and invited sessions representing the state of the art in each of the scientific disciplines. At the same time the congress is a platform for all scientists in particular for young scientists to present their own research.

Why did you choose Barcelona, and INEFC as the site for the 18th annual congress of the ECSS?

The ECSS as an European organization never had a congress in Spain. It was time to give the floor to Spain as an important contributor to European sport science. ECSS was lucky to find in INEFC not only a competent partner but also a perfect venue for its major annual event.

What means the motto of the congress "Unifiying Sport Sciences"?

Sport Science is multi- and cross disciplinary. Understanding "Sport" means, looking at a phenomenon from different perspectives. To grasp the essence of "Sport" means to be versed in more than one scientific paradigm. Hence, we strive to accentuate commonalities not differences among scientific approaches.

What are your personal expectations for the ECSS Barcelona 2013 congress?

Barcelona will be the largest Congress ever held. Barcelona and the INEFC offer a perfect environment where both the spirit of sport and sport science will equally contribute to the success of a Congress that will be remembered for its scientific content and for the social interactions it will convey.

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Steffen Neubert
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