Maria Konstantaki

Favourite Thing: Run maximal tests where I exercise people to exhaustion, take blood samples for analysis, measure body fat levels.



Volos High School


University of Athens, Greece (PE and Sports Science,1988-1992), University of Sheffield (MSc Sports Coaching, 1994-1995), De Montfort University Bedford (PhD Exercise Physiology, 1997-2001), Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College (MA Learning and Teaching, 2004-2008)

Work History:

De Montfort University, Bedford College, Reading University, Buckinghamshire New University


Buckinghamshire New University

Current Job:

Lecturing and research

Me and my work

Research into sports nutrition

My Typical Day

4-5 hours teaching lectures and labs, 2 hours admin, 2 hours lecture prep

Teaching in the classroom or the human performance lab followed by administrative work and student tutorials or meetings.

What I'd do with the money

I would buy a ticket for the Olympics to watch the swimming events and conduct some research during the events.

Swimming has always been my passion. I was an athlete and now swim for recreation. I attended the swimming events in Beijing in 2008 while I carried out research on visitors’ experiences at the Games. In 2005 I also carried out research on the environmental and socio-cultural impact of the 2012 Games. I would like to follow up this research and the research I conducted in Beijing  but when I looked for tickets for the 2012 Olympics there were either sold out or sold at extortionate prices. With the £500 I could buy tickets to the swimming events and administer research questionnaires at the Olympic site.

My Interview

How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Diligent, hard working, friendly

Would you rather be a scientist or an athlete? And why?

I would rather be a scientist assisting athletes. Even though I like to exercise I do not want to be competitive so I enjoy helping others win competitions through sports science support.

If you could have a body super power, what would it be and why?

Which Olympic event would you most like to win? And why?

100m butterfly – been my childhood dream!

What did you want to be after you left school?

I lingered between physical education teaching and archaeology but was an active sportswoman so the physical activity won in the end.

Were you ever in trouble in at school?

No, I was always very well behaved and attentive. I think being involved in sport helped me stay out of trouble.

What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?

Teaching exercise physiology to a variety of groups (pilots, dance teachers, coaches, motorsport enthusiasts)

Tell us a joke.

Two tomatoes walk down the street. A bus comes and runs over one of them. The other tomato says: ‘Come on ketchup!’