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Opening ceremony



Minister for Fisheries and Equal Opportunities and Nordic Cooperation Eva KjerHansen

UEFA First vice-president Karl-Erik Nilsson (Sweden)

DBU President Jesper Møller (Denmark)

SDU Vice-Chancellor Henrik Dam (Denmark)


Key-note Speakers

Professor Karim Khan (University of British Columbia, Canada)

Karim Khan is Editor in Chief of the British Journal of Sports Medicine and a Professor at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He serves as the Scientific Director for the Canadian Institutes of Health (CIHR) Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis (IMHA)





Professor Anne-Marie Elbe (University of Leipzig, Germany)

Anne-Marie Elbe is full professor of sport psychology at Leipzig University, Germany. Her previous posts were at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, Northumbria University, Newcastle in the UK and at the University of Potsdam, Germany. She received her PhD from the Free University in Berlin, Germany in 2001 and her habilitation (post-doctoral lectureship qualification) from the University of Potsdam in 2005. Her publications and research interests focus on motivational and self-regulatory aspects of athletic performance, doping, health aspects of team sports and the integrative role of sports. Anne-Marie Elbe is President of FEPSAC (The European Federation of Sport Psychology), associate editor for Science and Medicine in Football and on the editorial board of Psychology of Sport and Exercise.



Dr. Dimitris Vlachopoulos (University of Exeter, UK)

Dimitris is a Lecturer at the Sport and Health Sciences department within Children’s Health and Exercise Research Centre (CHERC). His research is focusing on musculoskeletal development and exercise during growth. He completed his PhD after conducting the PRO-BONE study (Marie Curie EU grant) that included cross-sectional, longitudinal and randomised controlled trials studies focusing on bone mass, bone geometry and bone metabolism of adolescents athletes. Throughout the years, Dimitris was awarded with five New/Young Investigator Awards in international conferences and received the Neil Mackenzie Public Engagement Award and the Barbara Mawer travel Fellowship from Bone Research Society. He was also elected New Investigator representative (non-clinical) of the Bone Research Society in 2018.


Dr. Maysa de Sousa (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil)

Maysa Vieira de Sousa is a sports nutrition researcher at the Endocrinology Division, School of Medicine of the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Her research interests focus on the impact of nutritional and physical training interventions on physical performance, hormonal and molecular modulations in athletes, and to improve health in chronic metabolic disease.





Professor Peter Riis Hansen (University of Copenhagen, Gentofte University Hospital, Denmark)

Peter Riis Hansen is a senior consultant at the department of cardiology, Herlev and Gentofte University Hospital and professor of cardiology with focus on inflammation and ischaemic heart disease (IHD) at the Copenhagen University Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences. His PhD (1994) and DMSc (2000) were based on studies of inflammatory mechanisms in IHD. Other research interests include cardiovascular effects of exercise in children and adults, pharmacoepidemiological studies of the interaction between IHD and other chronic inflammatory diseases, and strategies for precision medicine in cardiovascular disease. Peter currently supervises several PhD students in these areas of research.





Senior research fellow Julie Midtgaard (The University Hospitals’ Centre for Health Research, Rigshospitalet, Denmark)

I hold a master's degree in psychology. I currently work as senior researcher in The University Hospitals Centre for Health Research at The Copenhagen University Hospital Rigshospitalet, and as associate professor at The Department of Public Health at The University of Copenhagen. I have been employed in health research since 2001 with special focus on development, mixed-methods evaluation and implementation of interventions that support adoption of exercise and physical activity – mainly in the context of cancer rehabilitation but also in other clinical subpopulations including people with mental illness. My particular interests have been on issues related to sustainability, gender disparities and hard to reach populations


Associate Professor Magni Mohr (University of the Faroe Island, the Faroe Island)

Magni Mohr, Associate Professor and Head of the Centre of Health Sciences, University of Faroe Islands, as well as Associate Professor of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Southern Denmark. Magni has authored >100 original research articles, with >9000 citations, and has got a H-index of 39. His main research area is Skeletal Muscle Physiology and Human Performance with emphasis on fatigue development during high intensity intermittent exercise. Another main research area is Health Effects of Sports with primary focus on team sports training. He is part of the Football Fitness research group at the University of Southern Denmark. Magni is a former competitive football player and has worked as match analyst, consultant and fitness coach for football teams at the highest international level, such as the Italian Serie A, English Premier League and Spanish LaLiga. He has additionally been fitness coach for several Scandinavian football teams including the Danish National team. Currently, Magni is the fitness coach and performance director of the national team of Cameroun. He is a FIFA instructor and teaches fitness training at Pro Licence courses around the world. He has received several research dissemination awards, such as best scientific paper from the Scandinavian Physiological Society and the Faroese National Science Media Award.


Project Lead Søren Bennike (Danish Football Association (DBU), Denmark)

Søren Bennike is holding a position as Project Lead for Research and Knowledge at the Danish Football Association. He is leading applied football science in collaboration with several domestic and international academic institutions. He received a PhD degree in 2016 in Humanities and Social Sport Sciences at the University of Copenhagen, and continued his academic work for a two-year period as a Post-Doctoral researcher at the 'Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports' and 'Copenhagen Centre for Team Sport and Health' at the University of Copenhagen. His main research areas were rooted in policy and politics, institutions and organisations, implementation and innovation – all related to sport and especially football.




Assistant Professor Susana Póvoas (University Institute of Maia, ISMAI, Portugal)

Susana Póvoas is an Assistant Professor at the University Institute of Maia and member of the Research Center in Sports Sciences, Health Sciences and Human Development, in Portugal. Her research is focused on tracking, testing and performance enhancement of youth and elite-level team sports athletes and on physical activity and exercise, including the effects of recreational team sports on health and physical fitness of different populations across the lifespan. She is currently the international coordinator of the Handball4Health project and the national Portuguese coordinator of the Football Fitness programme.




Professor Carlo Castagna (University of Rome, Tor Vergata, Italy)

Dr. Carlo Castagna received his PhD from the university of Granada (Spain, 2012) and University of Rome Tor Vergata (Italy, 2015) on physiology of Futsal and Training-Load analyses in Football respectively. He works since 2004 as lecturer and researcher at the School of Sport and Exercise Science of the University of Rome Tor Vergata (Rome, Italy). He is head sport-scientist of the fitness and technical department of the Italian Football Referees Association (AIA-FIGC) since 2007. Since 2011 he is the head of the Football Training and Biomechanics Laboratory of the Technical Department of the Italian Football Association (FIGC) located in Coverciano (Florence). His current main research interests are physiology of training, match analysis, field-testing and training-load optimization for elite, young and recreational soccer players and referees of different competitive levels.



Post Doc Jacob Uth (The University Hospitals’ Centre for Health Research, Rigshospitalet, Denmark)

Postdoc and physiotherapist at The University Hospitals Centre for Health Research at The Copenhagen University Hospital Rigshospitalet. His research focus is on the health effects of football training for men diagnosed with prostate cancer and women treated for breast cancer.






Associate Professor Carsten Hvid Larsen (University of Southern Denmark)

Is an associate professor at Faculty of Sport Science and Clinical Biomechanics at the University of Southern Denmark and sport psychology consultant in Team Denmark. His employment at Team Denmark includes support at European, World Championships and the Olympic Games with a focus on team development, performance enhancement and developing resilient athletes and coaches. Currently he supports the youth national teams in football (soccer).






Professor Pasqualina Buono (University of Parthenope, Naples, Italy)

Pasqualina Buono, Professor of Human Movement Sciences, University “Parthenope”, Napoli, Italy; Co-Head for the Healthy and active longevity laboratory at CEINGE-biotecnologie avanzate, Napoli, Italy; Coordinator of PhD Course “Human Movement Sciences and Sport”, University Parthenope, Napoli; Scientific Collaborator of IRCCS SDN Foundation, Napoli, Italy. Team leader of research lines focused on: genetic and epigenetic determinants in severe human obesity; research for new molecular biomarkers that will be used in the fight against GH or DEHA doping in athletes, in collaboration with University of Foro Italico, Roma, CEINGE-biotecnologie avanzate and IRCCS SDN, Napoli; molecular determinants in healthy longevity mediated by physical exercise and sport in collaboration with University of SDU, Department of Sport Science and Clinical Biomechanics, Odense, Denmark


PhD João Brito, FPF (Portuguese Football Federation)

João Brito is the physiologist for the Portuguese Football Federation (FPF). João completed his Ph.D. in Sport Sciences at the University of Porto. He joined the FPF in 2014 to lead applied sport sciences, and was the  exercise physiologist for Portugal during the EURO 2016. He collaborates with several domestic and international academic institutions, and has been involved with coaching education in UEFA A and Pro License courses. João is an active researcher, with special interests on monitoring training and competition loads, fatigue and recovery, injury prevention and recreational football for health. Previously, João worked as physiologist in the Football for Excellence Programme, National Sports Medicine Programme in Aspetar – Qatar Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Hospital, in Doha.



Professor Tim Meyer (University of Saarland, Germany)

Prof. Dr. med. Tim Meyer studied medicine and sport science at the universities of Hanover and Göttingen, Germany. Besides his German exams in both subjects he passed the American medical exam. Meyer started his medical work at the Institute of Sports and Preventive Medicine in 1996, wrote his doctoral thesis in Göttingen about endurance training with panic patients. His habilitation thesis at the University of Saarland was about applications of gas exchange measurements. In 2007 he followed a call of the university Paderborn as chair for Sports Medicine. In October 2008 he was called as chair of the Institute of Sports and Preventive Medicine of Saarland University. Meyer´s focus of research are medical aspects of football, exercise physiology (particularly recovery) and training prescription. Under his supervision, several training studies were conducted in elite and health-oriented athletes among them many soccer players (altogether over 150 publications as author or co-author in internationally referenced peer-reviewed journals). Besides his university work, Meyer works as team physician for the German soccer association (DFB), since 2001 as part of the national squad´s medical service team (including the World Cups 2002, 2006, 2010, and 2014 as well as the European Championships 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016). Together with Franco Impellizzeri, he serves as Editor-in-Chief for the only football-specific scientific journal worldwide, Science and Medicin in Football. At his institution at Saarland University he hosts an international PhD program entitled „Science and Health in Football“.


PhD stud. May-Britt Skoradal (University of the Faroe Islands, the Faroe Islands)

May-Britt Skoradal is a ph.d-student at the Centre of Health Sciences, University of Faroe Islands. She is additionally part of the Football Fitness research network organised at the University of Southern Denmark. Her ph.d project involves RCT of hypertensive middle-aged women, 55-70 year-old women and men with prediabetes and 11 year old school children, all including football as exercise intervention to promote health.




Dr. George Nassis (Athens, Greece)

George is a sports scientist and exercise physiologist currently lecturing at the university. He has published more than 62 papers in international peer reviewed journals and has presented in a number of international conferences and events. His research interests range from football high performance to health related topics. George has long leadership and project management experience related to football science and medicine. He has co-founded the Panathinaikos FC performance lab and served as its head for more than 5 years. George has also led international research collaborations like the one with FIFA during the World Cup 2014 Brazil. He is a senior associate editor for the British Journal of Sports Medicine and an editorial board member for the Science and Medicine in Football journal. George is a Fellow of the European College of Sport Science.



Assistant professor Malte Nejst Larsen (University of Southern Denmark, Denmark)

Malte Nejst Larsen, M.Sc., PhD in Human Physiology focusing on football and other types of exercises in terms of health promotion for all children as well as physical and technical demands of youth players. Currently holding a position as teaching assistant professor at the department of sports science and clinical biomechanics, University of Southern Denmark.







Professor Per Aagaard (University of Southern Denmark, Denmark)

Per Aagaard is professor in Biomechanics at the Muscle Physiology and Biomechanics Research Unit, Institute of Sports Science and Clinical Biomechanics, Faculty of health Science, University of Southern Denmark. His research is focused on adaptive changes in neuromuscular function and muscle morphology/architecture induced by training at young and old age, neuromuscular and biomechanical aspects of ACL injury, exercise based rehabilitation and prevention of tendinopathy and muscle overuse injury, effects of resistance training on musculoskeletal health.



Professor Peter Krustrup (University of Southern Denmark, Denmark)

Peter Krustrup, Professor of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Southern Denmark, and Honorary Visiting Professor of Exeter University, UK, Shanghai University of Sports, China, and Beijing Sports University, China. Peter has authored >250 original research articles, with >12000 citations, and has got an H-index of 53. His three main research areas are Muscle Physiology, Human Performance and Health Effects of Sports. Currently, Peter is continuing his pioneering work on the fitness and health effects of football and other team sports. His research includes investigations of the cardiovascular, metabolic and musculoskeletal effects of team sports compared with other types of physical activity (PA), and its potential as prevention and treatment of lifestyle diseases. He is a UEFA Pro Licence coach and worked as assistant coach for the Danish Women’s National Team that won a bronze medal in the Euro 2013. He is an editor for European Journal of Applied Physiology and British Journal of Sports Medicine and has acted as guest editor for two “Football for Health” special issues in SJMSS and a “Team Sport and Health” special issue in JSHS. He was chairman of the organizing committee for the World Congress of Science in Football in 2015 (WCSF2015) and the Copenhagen Consensus Conference 2016 on Children, Youth and Physical Activity. He has received several research dissemination awards, such as Men’s Health Award, the Danish FA CSR Award and the Faculty of Science Media Award.


Associate Professor Morten B. Randers (University of Southern Denmark, Denmark)

Morten B. Randers is an associate professor at the Department of Sports Science and Clinical Biomechanics at the University of Southern Denmark. His PhD (completed in 2011 from University of Copenhagen) was based on studies of physiological demands, fitness effects, and cardiovascular health benefits of recreational football. He has acted as a guest editor on the special issue "Football is Medicine" in SJMSS and has authored around 60 original research articles in the field of football, including health and fitness effects for untrained and recreational players as well as testing and performance enhancement in elite footballers. His research also includes investigations into basketball, team handball and futsal. He has been highly involved in the development of  the Danish FA Football Fitness Coaching Course and has practical experience as a Football Fitness coach and also worked as fitness coach full-time in a Danish Premier League club and part-time for the Danish elite referees under the Danish FA.