Prof. Dr. Ralf Brand

Head of Sport and Exercise Psychology at the University of Potsdam

*Affiliate Professor at the Department of Kinesiology, Iowa State University (Ames, USA)
*Editor-in-Chief of the German Journal of Exercise and Sport Research

Prof. Dr. Ralf Brand

I am a full professor and researcher at the University of Potsdam with diverse interests in sport and exercise psychology. The majority of my research focuses on the link between motivation and health with an emphasis on the role of automatic evaluative processes and affect in exercise behavior change and maintenance. A second focus is on why people use performance enhancing substances (e.g. doping in sport, cognitive enhancement in everyday life). I am fascinated by the possibilities of using reaction time-based and psychophysiological methodology, as they enable us to analyze evaluative processes of the impulsive control system.

I co-lead the ‘Landesteam Sportpsychologie Brandenburg’ and the ‘Zentrum für Praktische Sportpsychologie (ZPS)’, which is responsible for providing sport psychological services to more than 1,200 adolescent and adult elite athletes in Germany’s federal state of Brandenburg (and among them many national team athletes).

Prof. Dr. Ralf Brand

Highlighted Publications


  • Antoniewicz, F. & Brand, R. (2016). Learning to like exercising: Evaluative conditioning changes automatic evaluations of exercising and influences subsequent exercising behavior. Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology38(2), 138-148. doi: 10.1123/jsep.2015-0125
  • Brand, R. & Antoniewicz, F. (in press). The automatic basis of exercise behavior: Do you like exercising? In G. Tenenbaum & R. Eklund (Eds.), Handbook of Sport Psychology (4th edition). Hoboken, NJ, USA: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Brand, R. & Ekkekakis, P. (2018). Affective-Reflective Theory of physical inactivity and exercise. Foundations and preliminary evidence. German Journal of Exercise and Sport Research, 48(1), 48-58. doi: 10.1007/s12662-017-0477-9
  • Ekkekakis, P. & Brand, R. (2019).  Affective responses to and automatic affective valuations of physical activity: Fifty years of progress on the seminal question in exercise psychology. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 42, 130-137. doi: 10.1016/j.psychsport.2018.12.018


  • Brand, R., Wolff. W., & Baumgarten, F. (2015). Modeling doping cognition from a dual process perspective. In V. Barkoukis, L. Lazuras & H. Tsorbatzoudis (Eds.), Psychology of Doping in Sport (pp. 33-43). London: Routledge.
  • Brand, R., Wolff, W.,& Thieme, D. (2014). Using response-time latencies to measure athletes’ doping attitudes: the brief implicit attitude test identifies substance abuse in bodybuilders. Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy9:36. doi: 10.1186/1747-597X-9-36
  • Lazuras, L., Barkoukis, V., Loukovitis, A., Brand, R., Hudson, A., Mallia, … Zelli, A. (2017). “I Want It All, and I Want It Now”: Lifetime Prevalence and Reasons for Using and Abstaining from Controlled Performance and Appearance Enhancing Substances (PAES) among Young Exercisers and Amateur Athletes in Five European Countries. Frontiers in Psychology, 8:717. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00717
  • Wolff, W., Baumgarten, F., & Brand, R. (2013). Reduced self-control leads to disregard of an unfamiliar behavioral option: An experimental approach to the study of neuroenhancement. Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy, 8:41. doi: 10.1186/1747-597X-8-41



Campus I:
Am Neuen Palais 10
14469 Potsdam


consulting hours
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