Professor Lars McNaughton

Professor of Sport and Exercise Physiology

Research Group and Institute

  • Sports Performance, Exercise & Nutrition Research Group


Lars McNaughton is Professor of Sport and Exercise Physiology and a member of the senior management team in the Department of Sport and Physical Activity where he also manages its undergraduate Sport and Exercise Science team.

He joined Edge Hill in 2011 having worked at Bond University (Gold Coast, Australia) as Head of School and previously at the University of Hull as Head of Department. He was awarded his PhD from the University of Oregon (USA) in 1985, in the field of neurophysiology and human postural control, under the mentorship of Professor Marjorie Woollacott.  He also completed a Masters in Business Administration from Bath University (2003).  He has worked extensively with professional team sports and athletes in the USA, Australia and the UK, including professional Soccer, Basketball, Cricket, Cycling and Swimming.


Lars’ research revolves around the use of nutrition and ergogenic aids to assist athletes in overcoming fatigue and thus, perform better.  He has published over 210 peer reviewed journal articles and 10 book chapters.   He is internationally known for his work in acid-base balance and how manipulation of this area can offset fatigue and thus allow athletes participating in high intensity exercise to perform better.  Specifically he manipulates buffers to assist the body’s own buffering system to cope better with the stress placed upon it by high intensity exercise. Lars’ early work was the first to show how exercise performance time and buffer dosage could improve specific types of exercise.  Lars also investigates how nutritional strategies, for example low glycemic index diets can assist athletes to work harder and longer.

External Engagement

Lars’ external engagement activities include:

Associate editor for the following Journals:

  • Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport (2005 -)
  • Research in Sports Medicine: An International Journal (2005 -)
  • Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition (2013 -)
  • Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness (2009 -)

He is also a Fellow of the following Professional organisations:

  • British Association of Sport and Exercise Science American College of Sports Medicine
  • Exercise and Sports Science Australia
  • European College of Sports Science
  • The Physiological Society
  • Higher Education Academy (Senior Fellow)

Institutionally he Chairs the Departmental Ethics Committee and sits of a number of Faculty and University Committees.

Selected Publications

  • Miller, P., Robinson, A., Sparks, A.S., Bridge, C.A., Bentley, D.J., & Mc Naughton, L.R. (2015) The effects of individually timed, sodium bicarbonate ingestion on repeated sprint ability, J Str Cond Res. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000001126
  • Sparks, S.A. Williams, E., Robinson, A., Miller, P., Bentley, D.J., Craig Bridge, C., & Mc Naughton, L.R. (2017) Sodium bicarbonate ingestion and individual variability in time to peak pH, Res Sports Med: An Int Jour . 25:1, 58-66, DOI: 10.1080/15438627.2016.1258645
  • Gough, L.A., Deb, S., Sparks, S.A., & McNaughton, L.R. (2017) The reproducibility of blood acid base responses following individualised doses of NaHCO3, Sports Medicine. 47:2117–2127, DOI 10.1007/s40279-017-0699-x
  • Deb, S., Gough, L., Sparks, S.A., & McNaughton, L.R. (2017) Determinants of W’ during the ‘all-out’ critical power test under normoxia and hypoxia: the effect of pre-exercise alkalotic inducement, Eur J Appl Physiol. IF 2.3281007/s00421-017-3574-4
  • Gough, L.A., Deb, S.K., Sparks, S.A., McNaughton, L.R. (2017) The reproducibility of 4 km time trial (TT) performance following individualised sodium bicarbonate supplementation; a randomised controlled trial in trained cyclists, Sports Med – Open doi: 10.1186/s40798-017-0101-4.
  • Deb, S.K., Gough, L.A., Sparks, S.A., & McNaughton, L.R. (2018) Sodium bicarbonate supplementation improves severe-intensity intermittent exercise under moderate acute hypoxic conditions, Eur J Applied Physiol, 118:607–615