I joined the department from Canterbury Christ Church University, where I gained my PhD entitled ‘The influence of walking on risk factors associated with metabolic syndrome’ after graduating from the Master of Science in Exercise Physiology from Loughborough University. I am a certified ACSM Health Fitness Specialist, BACPR Phase IV Instructor and Postural Stability Instructor for falls prevention. I am registered as a Level 4 Specialist Exercise Instructor on the Register of Exercise Professionals and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
My teaching responsibilities and research interests predominantly relate to the health benefits of physical activity and also in the broad area of sport and exercise nutrition, with greater focus on the health benefits of functional foods. Most recently I have been responsible for starting to bring together groups of researchers and clinicians from the Faculty of Science and local NHS Trusts to work on collaborative research programmes and harness the variety of expertise in the South Coast area. By bringing together local specialists it is envisaged that physical activity and chronic disease or disability research will rapidly grow in this area.
Areas in which I have researched include investigating the ergogenic effect of caffeine on high-intensity aerobic cycling performance and the influence of hypotonic carbohydrate-electrolyte solutions on metabolism and performance during intermittent high intensity running. Current research interests include investigating the minimal physical activity levels to improve health and decrease risk factors associated with chronic diseases, the interaction of nutritional products and exercise on physiological function, physical activity promotion strategies, the evaluation of exercise referral services and the application of exercise in the clinical setting.
Future research in the Physical Activity and Health Research group intends to investigate the integration and optimisation of exercise applications into routine health care, such as refining the prescription of pulmonary muscle training in chronic respiratory diseases, investigating the efficacy and effectiveness of providing exercise services for a wider range of cardiac diseases, facilitating exercise and education for type II diabetes through defined physical activity pathways, the implementation of exercise services for dialysis patients and the use of cardiopulmonary exercise testing and exercise training in preparing patients for major surgery.