Then & Now – Alex Maycock (BPHE ’20 & MSc ’23 Candidate)
An accomplished student, researcher, and athlete, Alexander (Alex) Maycock graduated from Nipissing University with a Bachelor of Health and Physical Education (BPHE) in 2020 and is expected to graduate with a Master of Science in Kinesiology in October 2023.
Alex’s graduate-level research has focused on the effects of beetroot juice supplementation on sprint training at both sea level and altitude. Working in Nipissing University’s Exercise Physiology Lab, he explored whether beetroot juice may be more effective for sprints at simulated altitude (14% oxygen) compared with sea level (21% oxygen).
His thesis titled, “Effects of acute nitrate supplementation on repeated sprints with trained cross country ski athletes in normoxia and normobaric hypoxia”, is expected to be published in Nipissing University’s library in late 2023.
As a graduate student, Alex received numerous scholarships, awards, and honours including the Canada Graduate Scholarship – Master’s in the Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR) valued at $17,500 in 2021. In that same year, he was awarded the Nipissing University Alumni Rising Star Award and the North Bay Sports Hall of Fame Barbara Olmstead Award. In 2022, he received an Ontario Graduate Scholarship valued at $15,000.
Alex’s research has been showcased in many different avenues. An abstract based on his work in the Exercise Physiology Lab was accepted at the 2020 American College of Sports Medicine Annual Meeting. He presented his work at the 2022 Canadian Society of Exercise Physiology conference in November 2022, and competed in Nipissing University’s annual Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition in 2022 and 2023, where he received the runner-up prize.
Reflecting on his journey as a graduate student researcher, Alex aims to apply his own research to the athletes with whom he works.
“When testing athletes, it is crucial that performance is reliable and that no other independent variables are effecting an outcome such as learning effects of the task, sleep/fatigue, pacing, temperature, and environmental factors,” shared Alex.
His accolades continue as a student-athlete. Not only was Alex named Nipissing University Male Athlete of the year in 2020 and 2023, but he also represented Nipissing University and Team Canada in 2019 in cross country skiing at the World University Games Competition in Russia, and again in 2023 in Lake Placid, New York as a flag bearer. Additionally, he was recognized with the Paul Nelson Memorial Award for the most outstanding coaching philosophy in 2020.
Looking ahead, Alex is considering creating repeatable exercise tests for best practice and performance tracking based on his research in the Exercise Physiology Lab. Further, he plans to pursue a career as a sport physiologist with national and international athletes.
Alex is currently a Cross Country Ski Coach with Nipissing University and supports the Canadian Forces in North Bay within the departments of fitness, sports, and facilities.