Associate Professor Michael Baker 

Australian Catholic University


Associate Professor Michael Baker is an AEP and AES whose research, clinical, and teaching career has focused on the integration of exercise, medicine, lifestyle and behaviour change as a means to improve quality of life. He has a Bachelor and Masters in Applied Science, and a PhD from the University of Sydney, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Higher Education. Dr Baker has published extensively since completing his PhD in 2010, with over 44 peer-reviewed journal articles, over 50 conference presentations and abstracts, three reports, three text books, and one book chapter.


Having recently served as the Head of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of Newcastle, Dr Baker is currently with the Australian Catholic University, where he has developed a Graduate Certificate in Exercise and Cancer. He has worked in AEP education and training since 2012 as a guest lecturer at a number of universities and as course co-ordinator of the Master of Clinical Exercise Physiology at ACU.


Dr Baker has held a number of positions with Exercise and Sport Science Australia, including serving on the Accreditation Council, and as Chair of the Exercise Science Advisory Group which recently developed the Scope of Practice for Exercise Scientists.


Session: Not So Rare: Exercise for patients with less common cancer
When: Wednesday, 28 March 2018 at 11.00am – 12.30pm
Presenters: Prof Clare Scott, A/Prof Prue Cormie and Miss Jane Turner
Panel Practitioner: Mr Michael Marthick

Dr. Stuart Cormack

Australian Catholic University


Stuart is currently a Senior Lecturer in the School of Exercise Science at Australian Catholic University. Stuart received his PhD from Edith Cowan University and has spent more than 20 years working in High Performance Sport, including in the Australian Football League and the Australian Institute of Sport. As part of his role at ACU he provides Sports Science consultancy services to various elite programs including Melbourne Football Club, International Cricket Council, and AIS Combat Centre. Stuart is heavily involved in the Master of High Performance Sport program, including development and delivery of content across multiple subjects. He is actively involved in applied research, including supervision of post-graduate students. Stuart has published numerous papers in scientific journals, co-authored several book chapters and regularly presents at international conferences. Stuart is a Level 3 Master Coach and Life Member of the Australian Strength & Conditioning Association. He has an interest in all areas of athletic preparation with a focus on monitoring training load and fatigue in high performance athletes.


Session: The conundrums of concurrent training
When: Thursday, 29 March 2018 at 1.30pm – 3.00pm
Presenters: Dr Vernon Coffey, Dr Donny Camera and Dr Jonathan Bartlett

Associate Professor Prue Cormie

Australian Catholic University


Associate Professor Prue Cormie is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist whose research and clinical work focuses on the role of exercise in the management of cancer. She is a Principal Research Fellow at Australian Catholic University and holds Honorary positions at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Austin Health and Royal Melbourne Hospital. Her research outputs include over 65 scientific journal publications, 35 invited presentations at national/international conferences, over 100 refereed conference proceedings and over $3 million in competitive research funding. A/Prof Cormie is a passionate science communicator with over 100 invited presentations in scientific, clinical and general public settings including in a TEDTalk: A new contender in the fight against cancer. She is the founder and inaugural chair of the Clinical Oncology Society of Australia Exercise and Cancer Group and the Exercise and Sports Science Australia Cancer Special Interest Group. A core component of her work is invested to translating research into practice for meaningful improvements in health care services for people with cancer. More information about her work is available here:


Session: Keynote – Exercise is Medicine: From Bench to Bedside
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 9.00am – 10.00am
Presenter: Dr Robert Sallis


Panel – Exercise is Medicine in Australia Panel
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 10.00am – 10.30am
Panel: Dr Robert Sallis, Mr David Beard, Mr Chris Tzarimas and Dr Melainie Cameron

Professor Aaron Coutts

University of Technology Sydney


Aaron is an applied sport scientist and a Professor and Director of the Human Performance Research Centre at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS). For the past 15 years Aaron’s research has focused around developing evidence-based methods for improving performance and health of athletes. Much of Aaron’s research has been on developing systems to measure, monitor and control the training process in high performance athletes.  Further to his academic work, Aaron also provides sport science advice to several of the leading sporting organisations.  He is presently the Director of Sport Science Research and Innovation at the Carlton Football Club. Aaron is also a Director of Exercise and Sport Science Australia (ESSA) and a member of the Nike Sport Research Laboratory Advisory Board.  He is also an Associate Editor for the International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, Science and Medicine in Football and an editorial board member for the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport and Frontiers in Physiology.


Frank Cotton Memorial Lecture
When: Wednesday, 28 March 2018 at 1.30pm – 2.30pm
Presenter: Dr David T Martin


Panel: Current Topics in Team Sports Panel Discussion
When: Wednesday, 28 March 2018 at 2.30pm – 3.00pm
Panel: Dr David T Martin, Dr Stuart Cormack, Dr Sophia Nimphius and Jonathan Bartlett

Professor David Dunstan

Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute


David is Head of the Physical Activity laboratory at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne and is an NHMRC Senior Research Fellow and Baker Fellow. He also holds the position of Professor within the Centre for Exercise and Nutrition at the Mary MacKillop Institute for Health Research, Australian Catholic University. His research focuses on the role of physical activity and sedentary behaviour in the prevention and management of chronic diseases. He has published over 210 peer reviewed papers, including publications in high impact journals such as Circulation, Diabetes Care and Diabetologia. In 2016 he was invited to be a co-author on the American Diabetes Association’s position statement on Physical Activity/Exercise and Diabetes. David is currently the Chair of the National Physical Activity Committee of the Heart Foundation. Over the past 15 years he has extensive media interest in his research including interviews with ABC Catalyst, 60 Minutes Australia, National Public Radio, Wall Street Journal, CNN, the New York Times and the LA Times.


Session: Why Can’t We Get People Physically Active?
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 1.30pm – 3.00pm
Presenters: Prof Stuart Biddle, Dr Natasha Schranz and Prof Jo Salmon
Panel Practitioner: Ms Rachelle Foreman

Dr. Jay R. Ebert

HFRC & University of Western Australia


Dr Jay R. Ebert has a PhD in cartilage repair, biomechanics and exercise rehabilitation, for which he was awarded the Exercise and Sport Science Australia Medal in 2008. He is currently a Lecturer at the School of Human Sciences within the University of Western Australia (UWA). He has a particular focus in musculoskeletal rehabilitation and, through his clinical and research work at UWA, he has been involved in the project development and coordination of several large orthopaedic research programs. Through this work, he has published in excess of 50 high quality manuscripts in international peer reviewed journals, made more than 70 conference presentations and won grant monies in excess of $800,000 for various musculoskeletal research projects. He is also a Director and practicing Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP) at HFRC in Perth, Western Australia, a leading multi-disciplinary rehabilitation clinic with a strong focus on orthopaedic research. He has extensive experience working with patients of all musculoskeletal conditions, with a particular focus at HFRC on lower limb injury and post-operative rehabilitation following orthopaedic surgery. For his clinical work, he won the Exercise & Sport Science Australia Exercise Physiologist of the Year in 2010.


Session: Returning to sport after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction: the when, if and how?
When: Wednesday, 28 March 2018 at 3.30pm – 5.00pm
Presenters: Dr Peter D’Alessandro, A/Prof Kate Webster and Mr Mick Hughes

Dr. Martin Gibala

McMaster University


Dr. Martin Gibala is a professor and chair of the Department of Kinesiology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada. He studies the beneficial effects of exercise at the molecular to whole-body level in both healthy individuals and people with chronic diseases. Gibala also conducts applied research on the impact of training and nutrition on human performance. His groundbreaking work on the physiological and health adaptations to interval training has attracted immense scientific attention and worldwide media coverage. Gibala has authored over 100 peer-reviewed articles, the results of which have been featured by outlets including The New York Times, CNN and TIME. His science communication efforts include a bestselling book, The One-Minute Workout, which was published in 2017 by Penguin Random House. It explains the science behind time-efficient exercise strategies designed to improve fitness and health. Gibala has received three awards for teaching excellence at McMaster as well as the President’s Award for Excellence in Graduate Student Supervision.


Session: Flexing Your Metabolic Muscle: Exercise Prescription For Metabolic Flexibility
When: Wednesday, 28 March 2018 at 3.30pm – 5.00pm
Presenters: Dr Jonathan Little, Prof David Bishop and Dr Andy Philp
Panel Practitioner: Mr Daniel Ryan

W/Prof Danny Green

University of Western Australia


Danny Green in a human integrative biologist whose research focuses on the prevention of cardiovascular disease.  His specific expertise relates to novel imaging approaches to the assessment of micro and macrovascular diseases, including surrogate measures of early and occult disease.  He is a cardiovascular exercise physiologist who assesses the impact of exercise, exercise training and physical activity in the context of prevention. This includes the best combinations of exercise, pharmacological and other preventative measures to minimise future development of atherosclerosis in young people at risk and re-occurrence of cardiovascular disease in older individuals.  His research encompasses the lifespan; from exercise training in the prevention of the development of atherosclerosis in obese children and adolescents, to research on the best combination of exercise and medications in the management of patients with hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, coronary disease and heart failure patients awaiting transplantation.


Session: Mechanisms of Exercise Intolerance in Chronic Disease
When: Thursday, 29 March 2018 at 9.00am – 10.30am
Presenters: Dr Erin Howden, A/Prof Chris Askew and A/Prof Andre La Gerche
Panel Practitioner: Mr Grant Turner

Dr. Shona Halson

Australian Institute of Sport


Shona Halson is a Senior Physiologist at the Australian Institute of Sport, where her role involves service provision, education and scientific research. She has a PhD in Exercise Physiology and has been involved in conducting research into the areas of recovery, fatigue, sleep and travel. She is an Associate Editor of the International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
Shona was selected as the Director of the Australian Olympic Committee Recovery Centre for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, the 2012 London Olympic Games and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. She has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and has authored several book chapters on sleep, fatigue and recovery.


Session: Replace, restore, revive: the keys to recovery after exercise
When: Wednesday, 28 March 2018 at 11.00am – 12.30pm
Presenters: Dr Jonathan Peake, Prof Aaron Coutts and Prof Louise Burke
Panel Practitioner: Dr Vincent Kelly

Professor John Hawley

Australian Catholic University


John is Director of the Mary MacKillop Institute for Health Research at The Australian Catholic University, Melbourne, Australia. He has published over 250 scientific manuscripts, written over 100 articles for technical journals and has authored numerous book chapters for exercise biochemistry and sports medicine texts. The focus of his laboratories work includes the interaction of exercise and diet on skeletal muscle metabolism; the molecular bases of exercise training adaptation; and the cellular bases underlying exercise-induced improvements in insulin action. He currently sits on the Editorial Boards of many international journals including the American Journal of Physiology (Endocrinology and Metabolism), Diabetologia, The Journal of Applied Physiology (U.S.A.), Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise (U.S.A.), Molecular & Structural Endocrinology, Sports Medicine (New Zealand) and The International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism (U.S.A.) and is a regular invited speaker at both National and International scientific meetings.


Session: Special Guest Presentation
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 3.30pm – 5.00pm
Presenter: Mrs Kim Brennan AM


Session: Tony Parker Lecture
When: Thursday, 29 March 2018 at 11.00am – 12.00pm
Presenter: Prof Louise Burke


Panel – Exercise Science & Sciencey Stuff: Fats, Fiction & the Media
When: Thursday, 29 March 2018 at 12.00pm – 12.30pm
Panel: Prof Louise Burke, Dr Robert Sallis, Prof Martin Gibala and Dr David T Martin

Dr Trine Moholdt

Norwegian University of Science and Technology


Trine Moholdt has a graduate degree in physiotherapy from Sør-Trøndelag University College Norway and Masters and PhD degrees in human movement science and clinical medicine from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). She is the head of the Exercise, Cardiometabolic Health and Reproduction research group in the Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at NTNU. Trine’s primary research interest is exercise training as a therapeutic tool for preventing and treating cardiometabolic diseases, and for improved fertility or pregnancy outcome, with a special focus on high intensity interval training. She has been involved in both epidemiological studies and clinical trials on health benefits of exercise training and physical activity.


Session: It’s all in the timing (exercise & nutrition to influence circadian in biology)
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 1.30pm – 3.00pm
Presenters: Prof John Hawley and Dr Evelyn Parr

Dr. Belinda Parmenter 

University of New South Wales


Dr Belinda Parmenter is an accredited exercise physiologist (AEP) with over 20 years’ experience in prescribing and delivering exercise for patients with chronic disease. Her clinical experience includes a specialisation in assessment, prescription, implementation and supervision of exercise for patients with cardiovascular disease.  Her PhD investigated the use of high intensity progressive resistance training for patients with intermittent claudication from peripheral arterial disease for which she was awarded the Exercise and Sports Science Australia (ESSA) Medal for most outstanding thesis in the field of Exercise and Sports Science. She continues her research in this field with a primary interest in the effect of cardiovascular disease on aerobic capacity and muscle strength and endurance, as well as the effect of exercise on reducing symptoms from and risk of cardiovascular disease across the lifespan. Some of her current projects include investigating ways to improve participation in physical activity in early childhood, to promote continued participation across adolescence and into adulthood. She is also currently working with the National Drug and Alcohol Research Council (NDARC) at UNSW on developing online education programs for teens to increase physical activity levels and reduce sedentary behaviour. She continues to investigate optimal exercise prescription for amelioration of cardiovascular risk (metabolic syndrome), as well as for the treatment of peripheral arterial disease.


Belinda is an invited member of the NHMRC funded National Centre for Research Excellence for Peripheral Arterial Disease and is the Chair of the Executive Management Committee for the ESSA Cardiovascular Special Interest Group.


Session: Heart Health: Putting the Evidence into Practice
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 11.00am – 12.30pm
Presenters: A/Prof Andre La Gerche and Dr Michael Baker
Panel Practitioner: Miss Angela Douglas

Dr. Simon Rosenbaum

University of New South Wales & Black Dog Institute


Dr Simon Rosenbaum is a Senior Research Fellow in the School of Psychiatry, UNSW and the Black Dog Institute. He currently holds an NHMRC Early Career Fellowship and is also an inaugural UNSW Scientia Fellow.


As an exercise physiologist, Simon conducted the first clinical trial of exercise for inpatients with post-traumatic stress disorder and has published over 100 peer-reviewed publications, including multiple book chapters on the role of exercise in the treatment of mental illness.


Simon has worked with a variety of groups including emergency service workers, contemporary veterans and Syrian refugees living with PTSD. Simon serves as an elected national director of Exercise and Sports Science Australia and is a passionate advocate for ensuring the integration of exercise as a component of treatment for people living with mental illness.


Session: Mental Health
When: Tuesday, 27 March 2018 at 11.00am – 12.30pm
Presenters: Prof Alexandra Parker, Dr Robert Stanton and Dr Megan Teychenne
Panel Practitioner: Mrs Katherine Stewart

Miss Esme Soan

Pear Exercise Physiology: Pregnancy & Women’s Health


Since graduating with a Bachelor of Clinical Exercise Physiology from QUT, Esme has had a passion for Women’s Health – from preconception, pregnancy and postnatal health, to pelvic floor dysfunction and menopause.


Esme has used her knowledge base from a short stint in maternal health research to begin work as a clinician specializing in Women’s Health at Pear Exercise Physiology: Pregnancy & Women’s Health, and is also Women’s Health Expert with ESSA.


Esme is also the Exercise Physiology lead with The Women’s Health Collective (WHC). The WHC exists to help create courses, resources and interdisciplinary learning for women’s health clinicians, to improve patient health outcomes. Big on conversation, and their aim is to normalise discussion about women’s health amongst the Australian public.


Session: Polycystic ovary syndrome & exercise
When: Thursday, 29 March 2018 at 1.30pm – 3.00pm
Presenters: A/Prof Nigel Stepto and Dr Trine Moholdt
Panel Practitioner: Mrs Joanne Turner

Chris Tzar

Lifestyle Clinic


Chris is recognised nationally for his contribution to both the exercise physiology profession and the broader health sector. Among the numerous national and state-based health initiatives that Chris coordinated, he was the principal negotiator with the Commonwealth Department of Health for the inclusion of Exercise Physiology services within the Medicare Enhanced Primary Care scheme, as well as the introduction of a regulatory framework for Exercise Physiology services within the Workers Compensation scheme.


Chris held several positions within ESSA over a period of 11 years, including National Board Director, Marketing Director and Past-President (NSW). He was the recipient of the inaugural President’s Award for services to the industry during the period which saw its most rapid growth.


Professionally, Chris Tzar is the (founding) Director of the Lifestyle Clinic – a leading allied-health service and the largest clinical training facility of Exercise Physiologists in Australia. He is also a Board Director of the Central & Eastern Sydney Primary Health Network (CESPHN) and the Chair (Multi-Disciplinary Group) of the Translational Cancer Research Network (TCRN) in Sydney. His previous posts include Chair, Exercise Is Medicine – Australia (the Australian arm of the global health initiative), Board Director of the Eastern Sydney Medicare Local (ESML), Executive Committee of the NSW Cancer Survivors Centre and the primary care representative to the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC). An editorial board member for HeartWise, Chris is also the chief author of the ‘EIM Physical Activity in the Workplace’ resource.