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Dr Elaine Murtagh

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Elaine Murtagh is a Senior Lecturer in Physical Education in the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences and a member of the HRI Physical Activity for Health cluster ( Her work focusses on developing and evaluating programmes to increase 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 Motion: embedding gender-responsive, play-based pedagogies in teacher education in Palestine (2020 – 2023). She is also member of the research team funded by Sport Ireland to develop a National Statement on Physical Literacy (2019-2020). Elaine is Co-Chair of the World Health Organisation’s HEPA Europe (European network for the promotion of Health-Enhancing Physical Activity) working group on children and young people.


Murtagh  EM, Murphy  MH, Milton  K, Roberts  NW, O'Gorman  CSM, Foster  C. Interventions outside the workplace for reducing sedentary behaviour in adults under 60 years of age. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2020, Issue 7. Art. No.: CD012554. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD012554.pub2.


Corr M, McMullen J, Morgan P, Barnes A, Murtagh E. Supporting Our Lifelong Engagement: Mothers and Teens Exercising (SOLE MATES); A Feasibility Trial. Women & Health. 2020;60:6, 618-635, DOI: 10.1080/03630242.2019.1688446


NCD Risk Factor Collaboration (NCD-RisC). Rising rural body-mass index is the main driver of the global obesity epidemic. Nature. 2019;569:260-264.


Murphy MH, Lahart I, Carlin A, Murtagh EM The effects of continuous compared to accumulated exercise on health: a meta-analytic review. Sports Medicine. 2019; 49: 1585–1607


Martin R and Murtagh EM. Active Classrooms: A Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial Evaluating the Effects of a Movement Integration Intervention on the Physical Activity Levels of Primary School Children. Journal of Physical Activity & Health. 2017;14 (4):290-300.