Prof. Elaine Murtagh is Course Director of the BSc Physical Education programme in the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences and a member of the HRI Physical Activity for Health cluster. Her research focusses on exploring ways to improve physical activity opportunities for children and adults. She also examines the effect of physical activity, particularly walking, on health and wellbeing.

Current research projects include the IRC funded project Learning in Motionembedding gender-responsive, play-based pedagogies in teacher education in Palestine (2020 – 2024). Elaine is Steering Committee member of the World Health Organisation’s HEPA Europe (European network for the promotion of Health-Enhancing Physical Activity) . She is also an officer on the leadership team for the ISBNPA special interest group on Implementation and Scalability.


Martin R, Murphy J, Molina-Soberanes D and Murtagh EM (2022) The clustering of physical activity and screen time behaviours in early childhood and impact on future health-related behaviours: a longitudinal analysis of children aged 3 to 8 years. BMC Public Health 22(558). DOI:


Belton S, Connolly S, Peers C, Goss H, Murphy M, Murtagh E, Kavanagh J, Corr M, Ferguson K and O’Brien W (2022) Are all domains created equal? An exploration of stakeholder views on the concept of physical literacy. BMC Public Health 22(1): 1-15. DOI:


Belton S, O’Brien W, Murtagh E, Costa J, Issartel J, McGann J and Manninen M (2022) A new curriculum model for second-level physical education: Y-PATH PE4Me. Curriculum Studies in Health and Physical Education 13(2): 101-122. DOI: 10.1080/25742981.2021.2018941

Murtagh E, Shalash A, Martin R and Rmeileh NA (2021) Measurement and prevalence of adult physical activity levels in Arab countries. Public Health 198: 129-140. DOI:

Murtagh EM, Mair JL, Aguiar E, Tudor-Locke C and Murphy MH (2021) Outdoor walking speeds of apparently healthy adults: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Sports Medicine 51(1): 125-141. DOI: