I am a lecturer in Skill Acquisition, Coaching and Performance in the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences, within the Faculty of Education and Health Sciences. My research examines human motor behaviour; that is, how humans control their movements and develop their skills across the lifespan. My recent research has concentrated on youth sport, in particular within the context of track and field athletics. Working under the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences' Sport and Human Performance theme, my current research agenda consists of three strands: (1)  Maturation and youth sport; (2)  Coaches’ knowledge and practices; and (3)  Enhancing practice quality. My primary research project is on Developing Youth Track & Field Athletes, which investigates the relationship between sport specialisation, maturation, and athlete retention.


Kearney, P. E. & Hayes, P. R. (2018). Excelling at youth level in competitive track and field athletics is not a prerequisite for later success. Journal of Sports Sciences. 36 (21): 2502-2509. DOI: 10.1080/02640414.2018.1465724. Available at: 

Kearney, P. E., Hayes, P. R., & Nevill, A. (2018). Faster, higher, stronger, older: Relative age effects are most influential during the youngest age grade of track and field athletics in the United Kingdom. Journal of Sports Sciences. 36 (20): 2282–2288. DOI: 10.1080/02640414.2018.1449093. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/02640414.2018.1449093.  

Cahalan, R., Kearney, P. E., Ni Briain, O., Reading, E., Quin, E., McLaughlin, L. C., & O’Sullivan, K. (2018). Dance exposure, wellbeing and injury in collegiate Irish and contemporary dancers: A prospective study. Physical Therapy in Sport. 34: 77–83. DOI: 10.1016/j.ptsp.2018.09.006. Available at: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1466853X18303481.  

Ellison, P. E., Kearney, P. E., Sparks, S. A., Murphy, P. N., & Marchant, D. C. (2018). Further evidence against eye-hand coordination as a general ability. International Journal of Sport Science and Coaching. 13 (5): 687–693. DOI: 10.1177/1747954117747132. Available at: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1747954117747132.  

Kearney, P. E. & See, J. (2017). Misunderstandings of concussion within a youth rugby population. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport. 20 (11): 981–985. DOI: 10.1016/j.jsams.2017.04.019. Available at: https://www.jsams.org/article/S1440-2440(17)30403-6/fulltext.