1st Edition

Women’s Football

Edited By Jacky Forsyth, Claire-Marie Roberts Copyright 2025
    312 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    312 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The global increase in viewership of and participation in women’s football means that, to continue with this growth, we need to appreciate the specific scientific and health issues that determine successful performance for women.  Women’s Football provides a thorough, yet straightforward and accessible, analysis of the key physiological, biomechanical and social-psychological issues that can be applied to achieve women’s  footballing development.


    This cutting-edge text puts developing elite women footballers at the front and centre of its core aim, through the delivery of evidence-based, scientific information focusing on best practice.  As such, each chapter is co-written, where possible, by a scholar and a practitioner or player (e.g., coach, footballer), meaning the scientific principles and research presented within are translated clearly into practice.


    Women’s Football is essential reading for anyone who is involved with the game, including footballers themselves, as well as strength and conditioning coaches, physiotherapists, medics, nutritionists, sport psychologists, sports scientists, coaches, coach developers, technical directors, general managers, governing body personnel and club owners, from grassroots to elite level. The book is also invaluable to students and academics in sport and exercise, who are studying this topic.

    1. Global Context and Organisation

    Maurizio Valenti and Polly Bancroft


    2. Advancing Women’s Football Through Strategic Holistic Workforce Development: Payment, Conditions and Policies

    Beth G. Clarkson and Ali Bowes


    3. Match Demands and Physiological Determinants

    Naomi Datson, Ross Julian, and Barry Drust


    4. Talent Identification

    Stacey Emmonds, Adam Gledhill, Matthew Wright, and Kevin Till


    5. The Menstrual Cycle and Hormone-Based Contraception

    Kelly Lee McNulty, Paul Ansdell, Amal Hassan, and Kirsty Marie Hicks


    6. Menstrual Cycle Monitoring, Application and Implementation

    Ross Julian, Jonathan Hughes, and Debby Sargent


    7. Pregnancy and Motherhood

    Amal Hassan, Emma Brockwell, Sinead Dufour, Rosalyn Cooke Monica Rho, and Margie Davenport


    8. Sports Nutrition Needs

    Rebecca K. Randell, Ian Rollo, Samantha L. Moss, and Tom Clifford


    9. Eating Disorders and Elite Women’s Football

    Carly Perry, Maria Luisa Fernanda Pereira Vargas, Alex Culvin, and Ali Bowes


    10. Disordered Eating and Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (Red-S): A Case Study

    Melissa Streno and Rebecca McConville


    11. Psychosocial Development and Transitions

    Alice Stratford and Francesca Champ


    12. Mental Health in Professional Women’s Football

    Francesca M. Champ and Kristin McGinty-Minister


    13. Breast Health

    Nicola Brown, Melissa Jones, and Joanna Wakefield-Scurr


    14. Injury Epidemiology

    Lawrence Mayhew, Lisa Hodgson, Roar Amundsen, and Solveig Thorarinsdottir


    15. Concussion

    Craig Rosenbloom, Katrine Kryger, Sean Carmody, Ritan Mehta, Charlotte Cowie, Millie Bright, and Daniel Broman


    16. Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation

    Mark De Ste Croix, Francisco Ayala, Ross Julien, Debby Sargent, and Jonathan Hughes


    17. Reflection And Reflecting on Football Coach Education in Connection with Identity, Process and Practice

    Dave Lawrence and Hanya Pielichaty



    Jacky Forsyth, PhD is an exercise physiologist, and has worked in various roles in academia, undertaking both teaching and researching. Her main priority and drive in research are about promoting, raising awareness and advancing understanding of the key influences which impact women in sport and exercise. She has published research articles on improving the health and exercise status of pre- and post-menopausal women. She co-founded the Women in Sport and Exercise Academic Network with Claire-Marie Roberts for the purposes of connecting like-minded academics to promote and strengthen research into women in sport and exercise.


    Claire-Marie Roberts, PhD is a Chartered Psychologist, Chartered Scientist and a BASES Accredited Sport & Exercise Scientist who is the Performance Director at Coventry City Football Club. She has worked in various roles in men’s and women’s professional football for 20 years, including nearly a decade at the Premier League leading transformational change in elite football development. She is a senior research fellow at the University of the West of England, a special advisor to Nike on women athletes, and a Trustee of Restart - the official charity of The Rugby Players Association dedicated to supporting elite men's and women's rugby players suffering from serious injury, illness or hardship. She has published over 40 peer-reviewed research articles and has authored and edited three books.