Departments and research groups

Our Faculty has 2 departments that each focus on a specific field. Each department has one or more research groups. Discover them all below.


The Faculty of Physical Education and Physiotherapy consists of 2 departments, each of which is responsible for specialised education and research. They include professors, assistants, and administrative staff.

  • Physiotherapy, Human Physiology and Anatomy MWE (KIMA)
  • Movement and Sport Sciences (BESW) 

Research groups

Among these departments are 12 research groups that focus on a specialisation area in Movement and Rehabilitation Sciences. 

  • Anatomical Research and Clinical Studies (ARCS)

This research group aims to answer questions on various topics (obesity, medical imaging, lymphology, neurology, morphology, anatomical variations/anomalies...) through anatomy (dissections/interventions). 
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  • Experimental Anatomy (EXAN)

Topographical, functional, and clinical anatomy, focusing on the human body and body composition.
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  • Human Physiology & Sport Physiotherapy (MFYS)

Human-robot interaction, physical and mental fatigue, and interactions with physical and cognitive performance, overtraining syndrome, injury prevention. 
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  • Movement & Nutrition for Health & Performance (MOVE)

Behavioural or non-behavioural health factors (movement, physical activity, fitness, nutrition), aspects influencing (sport) performance (movement analysis, nutritional impact, technical and tactical aspects of the sport, physiological processes, physical and psychological characteristics) and the promotion of 'physical literacy', at the level of the individual, the (educational) practice and the (health) policy.
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  • Motor Mind (M&M)

Alliance research group VUB-UGent with the research area of peripheral and central pain mechanisms contributing to the chronicity of chronic pain. 
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  • Pain in Motion (PAIN)

This group researches the biopsychosocial factors of pain and strives for a significant impact on healthcare for patients with (chronic) pain.
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  • Physical activity, nutrition, and physical education (PANU)

This alliance research group of VUB and UGent has following research areas: measuring, analysing, and specifying the determinants of physical activity, sedentary behaviour, motor competence and nutrition in different target groups; promoting physical activity and healthy eating as well as reducing sedentary behaviour; and promoting motor competence and the quality of physical education lessons.
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  • Rehabilitation Research (RERE)

This research group groups various lines of research, ranging from neurological to oncological rehabilitation and from paediatric to geriatric rehabilitation. RERE aims to provide the best scientific evidence for rehabilitation strategies to improve quality of life by optimising physical functioning. 
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  • Sport & Society (SASO)

Development-related, societal and policy-related issues of sport involvement of different population segments. Sport participation in different contexts and at different levels. 
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  • Sport Policy Factors Leading to International Sporting Success (SPLISS)

International joint research group with elite sports policy as its research area.
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  • Sport Psychology and Mental Counselling (SPMB)

Supporting individual athletes, teams and sport organisations in improving mental skills (motivation, self-control, concentration, self-confidence, relationship and team skills, communication and lifestyle).
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What's the difference between a department and a research group?

A Faculty consists of several departments. Each department within a Faculty is responsible for the educational and research activities within their specialisation.

Within each of these departments one or more research groups are active. These groups consist of an international team of researchers who are fully committed to socially relevant research within their specialisation. In this way, the educational offer can be permanently adapted to the latest scientific evolutions.

More on our faculty performance