Professor Andy Smith

Professor of Sport and Physical Activity

Research Group and Institute

  • Sport, Work & Health Research Group


Andy Smith is Professor of Sport and Physical Activity and member of the senior management team in the Department of Sport and Physical Activity where he also manages its undergraduate sports development, management and coaching programmes. Andy is also Programme Leader for the MSc Sport, Physical Activity and Mental Health.

He joined Edge Hill in 2012 having worked at the University of Chester as Reader in the Sociology of Sport (2006-2012). He was awarded his PhD from the University of Liverpool in 2006 having completed his MA in the Sociology of Sport (2002) at the University of Leicester and BSc (Hons) in Sports Studies (2001) at Staffordshire University.


Andy’s research focuses on the links between sport, physical activity and (mental) health, youth sport, sport policy and development, and social and health inequalities from a sociological perspective. He is author of The Routledge Handbook of Youth Sport (with Ken Green, 2016 and 2018), Doing Real World Research in Sports Studies (with Ivan Waddington, 2014), Sport Policy and Development (with Daniel Bloyce, 2010) and An Introduction to Drugs in Sport (with Ivan Waddington, 2009), all published by Routledge.

Andy’s research on sport, education mental health has informed the work of community and professional sport and health organisations, the UK Select Committee’s Suicide Prevention report (2017), Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson’s MBE Duty of Care in Sport Review (2017), and the receipt in 2016 of the Outstanding Contribution to the Local Community award at the Times Higher Education Awards.

External Engagement

  • Managing Editor of Leisure Studies (2018-)
  • Founding and former Co-Editor of the International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics (2008-2015)
  • Editorial board member of European Physical Education Review (2012-), International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics (2017-), Leisure Studies (2014-), and Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health (2017-)
  • Guest Editor, Sociology of Sport Journal (2017), Frontiers in Sociology (2019) and European Physical Education Review (2019-)
  • Managing the Department’s programme endorsement and higher education work with the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (2018-)
  • Leading the Department’s work with Everton in the Community (the official charity of Everton Football Club) (2013-)
  • Leading the Department’s work with Rugby League Cares and State of Mind Sport (2017-)
  • Leading the Department’s work with Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust (2016-)
  • Research Lead, evaluation of Offload (sport and men’s mental fitness) (2018-2019)
  • Member of Mind’s national Sport, Physical Activity and mental Health network (2017-)
  • Member of Leisure Studies Association (2014-)
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