Ms Melanie Best

Lecturer in Sports Sociology

Email address: Phone number: 01902 323239 Location: Walsall Faculty: Faculty of Education Health and Wellbeing School/Institute: Institute of Sport & Human Science Areas of expertise: Sports Sociology; Paralympic Sport, Disability Sport & Health & Wellbeing


My research experience is in Paralympic sport, having completed my PhD with the GB Wheelchair Basketball teams examining their psycho-social health and well-being up to, during and beyond the London 2012 Paralympics. I am a qualitative researcher and my current research interests relate to Paralympic sport and coach-athlete relationships.


From a teaching perspective I am a Sport Sociology lecturer and teach on units pertaining to Sports Development, Special Populations and Sports Events.

Research interests

Coach-athlete relationships

Paralympic coaching


PhD: Wheeling to London 2012: Examining the Psycho-social health and well-being of Great Britain’s Wheelchair Basketball teams over time – Loughborough University - July 2015


Certificate in Post-compulsory education & training – Warwick University - October 2007



Degree: 1st class-Sports Management – Birmingham University - June 2006


A Levels: 3 As – Biology, Geography, French – King’s High, Warwick - August 2001


Smith, Bundon & Best (2016) Disability sport and activist identities: A qualitative study of narratives of activism among elite athletes’ with impairment, Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 26, p.139

Previous professional experience

Employment at other FE colleges including City College, Coventry & University College Birmingham (2005-2007)

Further information

Conference Presentations

Poster presentation: The UK High Performance Conference for Paralympic Sport Science & Sport Medicine, ‘The Road to Rio: Learning from London.’ (2013)

Oral presentation:Health versus performance: Strapping in to the ultimate rollercoaster - The London 2012 Paralympics for the GB Wheelchair Basketball teams.’4th International Conference on Qualitative Research in

Sport & Exercise (2014)


Enterprise, Knowledge Transfer & Consultancy

Current paper examining perceptions of well-being for Britain’s wheelchair basketball teams – in collaboration with Professor Brett Smith, Birmingham University