The Science of Athletic Performance

Date & Time

September 14, 2019 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am


Alumni Hall, Ballroom
211 Emmet Street
Charlottesville, VA



Join us for an engaging discussion on a data-driven approach to understanding and optimizing athletic performance as well as preventing and treating sport-related injuries. Arthur Weltman, 2019-2021 Cavaliers’ Distinguished Teaching Professor and Chair of Kinesiology in the Curry School of Education and Human Development, will moderate the panel discussion. He is a longtime exercise physiology advisor to the department of athletics.

Panelists include:

Michael Curtis, Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for the 2019 NCAA Champion Men’s Basketball team. He applies internal and external monitoring to optimize performance and recovery.

Joseph Hart, Associate Professor of Kinesiology. He uses advanced technology to assess muscle imbalances and is an expert in using science to determine an athlete’s ability to return to play after sustaining an injury.

Jay Hertel, Joe H. Gieck Professor of Sports Medicine. He uses wearable sensor technology to assess athletes’ movement biomechanics to optimize performance and prevent injuries in distance runners and team sport athletes.

Kelli Pugh, Associate Athletic Director for Sports Medicine. She is responsible for working closely with university faculty and athletic department staff members. From concussion assessments and return to play functional assessments to performance enhancement through a variety of athlete monitoring systems, the Athletics Sports Medicine staff keeps UVA’s student-athletes on the cutting edge of health and safety while helping maximize their performance.

Jacob Resch, Assistant Professor of Kinesiology. He uses the latest technology to study sport-related concussion including how to diagnose a concussion, the evidence-based consequences of one or more concussions, and what can be done to prevent and treat the injury.

Susan Saliba, Professor of Kinesiology. She is currently working with colleagues in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences to develop algorithms using sensors to measure internal and external load and for injury prevention.


Arthur Weltman (moderator)

Chair of Kinesiology Department; Professor, Curry School of Education and Human Development

Arthur Weltman, PhD, is the 2019-2021 Cavaliers’ Distinguished Teaching Professor. He is Professor and Founding Chair of the Department of Kinesiology and Professor of Medicine at the University of Virginia. He has directed the Exercise Physiology Core Laboratory (EPCL) within the School of Medicine since its inception as the first GCRC Exercise Physiology Laboratory in 1990. His research focuses on the effects of exercise on clinical outcomes, particularly how intensity of exercise affects outcome measures. He has published over 240 papers in refereed journals and has been funded continuously by the NIH as an investigator/co-investigator since 1986. He is a former intercollegiate athlete and has served as an exercise physiology advisor for the Department of Athletics at UVA since 1990 as well as for a number of professional teams. He is a graduate of Queens College of the City University of New York and earned his doctoral degree in Kinesiology/Exercise Physiology from the University of Michigan.

Michael Curtis

Head Strength and Conditioning Coach, Men’s Basketball

Michael Curtis is in his 11th year as head strength and conditioning coach for men’s basketball at Virginia. He was named to the position on May 11, 2009.

Before accepting the position at UVA, Curtis was the director of strength and conditioning for the Michigan athletics department. At Michigan, Curtis supervised and managed the training efforts of more than 20 athletic teams, five assistant coaches and two training facilities. He was primarily responsible for the implementation of performance training programs for men’s and women’s basketball.

Curtis, a former basketball player at Virginia, was the head strength and conditioning coach for the Memphis Grizzlies of the National Basketball Association for six years (2002-08) before assuming his responsibilities at Michigan. He also served as the basketball strength and conditioning coach at South Carolina for one year (2001-02) and was the director of strength and conditioning for Olympic sports at Dayton for one year (2000-01).

Curtis, who is from Richmond, VA, earned a bachelor’s degree in sports medicine from Virginia in 1998 and a master’s degree in exercise physiology from UVA in 2000. He lettered four times as a member of the Cavaliers’ men’s basketball team and was a team co-captain for the 1997-98 season. Curtis also serves as the head strength and conditioning coach for the Virginia women’s basketball team.

Joseph Hart

Assistant Professor, School of Medicine; Associate Professor, Curry School of Education and Human Development

Joseph M. Hart, PhD, ATC is an assistant professor of orthopaedic research at the University of Virginia, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. Hart also has an academic appointment in the Curry School of Education where he teaches and mentors graduate students in the Sports Medicine and  Athletic Training Program. Hart earned his BS degree in Sports Medicine from Marietta College, MS in Athletic Training from West Virginia University and a PhD in Sports Medicine from the University of Virginia. Hart has been a certified and Licensed athletic trainer since 1997 with experience at the high school level, college, professional sports and clinic settings. Hart’s research focus is in the area of neuromuscular consequences of joint injury, in particular neuromuscular factors that contribute to the progression of osteoarthritis following ACL reconstruction and factors that contribute to the low back pain recurrence.

Jay Hertel

Joe H. Gieck Professor of Sports Medicine, Curry School of Education and Human Development

Jay Hertel is the Joe H. Gieck Professor of Sports Medicine at the University of Virginia. He directs UVA’s graduate programs in Athletic Training & Sports Medicine and is co-director of the Exercise & Sport Injury Lab. His primary area of research deals with lateral ankle instability which he studies from a multifactorial perspective using diverse methods ranging from laboratory-based assessments of biomechanics and motor control to evidence-based practice principles inherent to clinical epidemiology. Hertel has authored or co-authored over 150 peer-reviewed journal articles and presented at numerous national and international sports medicine conferences.

His research has been funded by agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, National Athletic Trainers’ Association, Research & Education Foundation, American Physical Therapy Association, and the National Football League Charities. Hertel is a fellow of both the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Athletic Trainers’ Association. In 2011, he received the Medal for Distinguished Athletic Training Research, the highest career research award in athletic training. Hertel is a senior associate editor for the Journal of Athletic Training and a member of the international advisory board for Physical Therapy in Sport.

Kelli Pugh

Associate Athletic Director for Sports Medicine, Athletics

Associate Athletics Director for Sports Medicine Kelli Pugh is the primary care provider working with the Cavalier football program. She has worked closely with the football team since 2002.

In this position she is responsible for all aspects of the athletic training regimen which includes evaluation, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries for the football program.

A native of Springfield, VA, Pugh received her master’s degree in athletic training from the University of Florida in 2002. While at the Gainesville, FL, school, she worked with the football team as a graduate student athletic trainer. She was also the primary athletic trainer for the women’s golf team. Pugh earned her bachelor’s degree in sports medicine from UVA in 2000. She spent four years as a student athletic trainer, working two seasons with the football team.

Pugh is a certified athletic trainer by the National Athletic Trainers Association and a massage therapist certified by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork. She graduated from the Suncoast School of Massage Therapy in Tampa, FL, in 2001. In addition to her athletic training experience, Pugh has volunteered as a massage therapist with the USA Women’s Lacrosse team and the Canadian National Women’s Rowing team. She is also a Certified CPR/AED Instructor for the American Red Cross.

In 2010 the Virginia Athletic Trainers’ Association (VATA) honored Pugh as its College/University Athletic Trainer of the Year.

Jacob Resch

Assistant Professor of Kinesiology, Curry School of Education and Human Development

Jacob Resch is originally from Spirit Lake, IA. Resch completed his undergraduate degrees and Athletic Training and Health Promotions at South Dakota State University before traveling to study and work in London, England. After returning to the United States, Resch completed his MS in Exercise and Sport Science at South Dakota State while working clinically for Orthopedic Institute in Sioux Falls, SD. Resch then pursued his PhD in Exercise Science at the University of Georgia investigating current and novel measures of sport concussion and became increasingly involved with the global efforts to expand the profession of athletic training. Following the completion of his doctorate, Resch obtained an assistant professor position at the University of Texas at Arlington for four years where he taught within the Athletic Training Education Program and conducted research addressing sport concussion in middle school, high school, and collegiate athletes.

In the fall of 2014, Resch and his wife, Celestial, and son, Maxwell, moved to Charlottesville where he now serves as faculty of the University of Virginia Department of Kinesiology. He teaches in the Graduate Athletic Training Program and continues to investigate current and novel measures of concussion as part of the Brain Injury and Sport Concussion Institute.

Susan Saliba

Professor of Kinesiology, Curry School of Education and Human Development

Susan Saliba has 18 years of clinical experience as both a physical therapist and athletic trainer. She currently teaches courses in the NATA Accredited Advanced Masters In Athletic Training Curriculum, including gross anatomy, pathophysiology and rehabilitation, manual therapy techniques, orthopedic bases of sports medicine and advanced therapeutic modalities. She is also the director of the undergraduate program in Kinesiology, a major that prepares students for graduate education in medicine, physical therapy, athletic training, physician assistant or other allied health professions. Saliba has been recognized by the National Athletic Trainers’ Association for service and is a member of the American Physical Therapy Association.