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Manager and Leader in Soccer

Dr. Jesús Rico-Sanz is the founder of SPSI and has 18 years of experience in a variety of roles with soccer organizations.


He holds a National A license from the USA Soccer Federation and has coached and directed programs in youth, college, and professional soccer.


Dr. Rico-Sanz has held positions as Director of Player Development, Performance Director, Director of Coaching, and Executive Director.


For over 15 years, he has advised players and coaches at all levels of play, from youth to professional. 

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Pioneer in Soccer Science

Dr. Rico-Sanz has dedicated over 30 years to study human physiology, exercise and sport physiology, energy metabolism and fatigue factors, nutrition, genetic interactions with diet and exercise on human performance and health, and has done comprehensive research in soccer players including:

  • Physiology:

    • Cardiorespiratory fitness of soccer players

    • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS) methods to measure concentrations of Intramuscular Phosphocreatine, ATP, Glycogen, and intra- and extra-myocellular lipid in soccer players

  • Nutrition:

    • Nutritional assessments in soccer players and teams

    • Body composition in soccer players and teams

    • Nutritional supplements effects on performance and body composition

  • Match Analysis:

    • Match technical performance grading 

    • Match tactical performance grading 

    • Match physical performance analysis 

  • Training:

    • Comparison of training methods on players' physiology, cardiorespiratory fitness

    • Effects of soccer training on performance, aerobic power, and body composition. 

  • Performance:

    • Endurance

    • Strength

    • Speed and Power 

Dedicated to Education and Science


  • Bachelor of Science in Exercise Physiology, University of California Davis, USA

  • Master of Science in Exercise ScienceUniversity of California Davis, USA

  • Ph.D. in Physiology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Postdoctoral Fellowships:

  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy methods to study muscle metabolism, Imperial College, England; Paul Scherrer Institute, Switzerland; and University Autonoma of Barcelona, Spain

  • Genetic and exercise training interactions on cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle fiber types, and other muscle phenotypes, Pennington Biomedical Research Institute, USA

  • Genetic and lifestyle interactions on health outcomes, National Public Health Institute and University of Helsinki, Finland

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Versatile Midfielder and Forward Player

In addition to his academic and leadership accomplishments, Dr. Rico-Sanz has a wealth of experience in soccer. He started in the Academy of Real Madrid CF being utilized in five different attacking midfield and forward positions due to his abilities with both feet. Two surgeries in his early twenties prevented a professional career with the first team. 


While completing his academic degrees, he also played in the Sacramento Senators of the Western Soccer League in USA (highest league prior to MLS) and Vanløse IF in Denmark as a center forward making an impact in games scoring goals or assisting.

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