Jan-Frieder Harmsen was born on the 9th of April 1992 in Kiel, Germany. Frieder started his academic career in 2012 at the German Sport University Cologne, where he studied the B.Sc. Sport and Performance. After completing his Bachelor degree, he worked as a therapist in a rehabilitation and sports therapy clinic. At the same time, he was involved in collaborative research projects between the University Hospital Duesseldorf and the German Sport University Cologne with a focus on skeletal muscle physiology. He was thereby able to contribute to several peer-reviewed articles. In 2016, he began to study the Master program Exercise Science & Coaching at the German Sport University Cologne. During his Master, Frieder did an internship within the School of Medical and Health Sciences at Edith Cowan University in Perth (Australia), where he conducted his own study to collect data for his Master thesis.
In 2019, he started as a Research Officer in the Department of Human Biology at Maastricht University. Under the supervision of Patrick Schrauwen and Matthijs Hesselink, he investigates the impact of the biological clock on metabolism with a focus on insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus.