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A female observes a male student running on a treadmill

Sports Science Institute

The Sports Science Institute at the University of St. Thomas offers the unique opportunity for undergraduate students to work directly with D-I student-athletes, using state-of-the-art technology to gather and evaluate data that helps teams train, perform, and recover smarter. Program participants receive a stipend for their work and gain real-world experience applying what they learn in the classroom.


To improve the student experience of both the athlete and non-athlete, through scientific approaches to performance enhancement and injury risk reduction.


We give students real-life experience by training them to work with Division-I athletes, coaches, and trainers. We provide athletes with access to state-of-the-art equipment and expertise to enhance performance, reduce injury risk, and enrich the life of the student-athlete. We bridge the gap between the world of academics and athletics, leading to an unmatched holistic student experience.


Paul Mellick

Associate Professor, Sports Science Institute Director
A female student with a tablet at a hockey rink

Step Inside Practice

Sports Science Institute + Men's Hockey

Learn how students in the Sports Science Institute use Polar Team Pro Sensor to help the men's hockey team in practice.

Participating Teams

The Sports Science Institute is proud to partner with these teams throughout the year:

A female student observes a male student in a Bod Pod

Using data to improve performance

Tools of the Trade

Students in the Sports Science Institute utilize a variety of state-of-the-art tools and technology to collect measurements that help players and coaches improve throughout the season. Examples include:

  • VO2 max testing, which measures aerobic capacity
  • Bodpod testing, which measures body composition
  • Dual X-ray absorptiometry, which measures bone density
  • POLAR team pro sensors, used in-season to monitor heart rate, calories burned, and distance covered in practice

The SSI team plans to add new machines, such as a skating treadmill and cycle ergometer, to increase the kinds of data they can collect.