Dr Afroditi Stathi PhD

Dr Afroditi Stathi

School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
Reader in Active Ageing and Health
Head of Equality and Diversity

Contact details

Address
School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

Dr Afroditi Stathi is an expert in the field of the promotion of active and healthy ageing.  She leads a portfolio of international, interdisciplinary research which investigates ways of supporting older people to achieve meaningful and lasting lifestyle changes which in turn will help them to live healthy and fulfilling lives.

Qualifications

  • PhD Exercise and Health Science. University of Bristol, U.K.
  • MSc Recreation Management. Loughborough University, U.K.
  • BSc in Physical Education and Sports Sciences. Democritus University of Thrace, Greece.

Biography

Dr Afroditi Stathi joined the School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Birmingham in February 2018. Previously, she worked for 10 years at the University of Bath where she holds an honorary academic appointment. She completed her postgraduate studies at Loughborough University (MSc) and Bristol University (PhD) with scholarships from the Greek State Scholarships Foundation and the A.S. Onassis Public Foundation.

Teaching

Dr Stathi has adopted an evidence-based approach in her teaching, encouraging students to translate research into effective methods of physical activity promotion in practice. Her methods include distance-learning, on-line unit teaching and learning support. In her teaching she uses current technology and research evidence, mixed methods approaches, up-to date content, an interactive style of delivery and innovative assessment methods at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate level. Her teaching encourages students to apply theoretical constructs and principles in a practical and relevant manner.

Areas of teaching expertise:

  • Psychology of physical activity and health
  • Public health interventions
  • Interdisciplinary research
  • Mixed-Methods approaches

Postgraduate supervision

Dr Stathi has supervised 4 doctoral researchers to completion. She currently supervises 2 doctoral students and welcomes applications from potential doctoral researchers in her areas of interest.

Students who are considering applying to the University of Birmingham to work with Afroditi should contact her by email in advance.

Research

Dr Stathi designs and evaluates active ageing programmes. Her award-winning research has built partnerships with national agencies, national and international academics, policy-makers, primary care trusts, public health departments, service providers, local councils, volunteer organisations and charitable trusts, with the long-term goal of producing cost-effective methods for physical activity promotion in a range of health and community settings.

 Her research interests include:

  • Promotion of active and healthy ageing
  • Lifelong Health and Wellbeing
  • Citizen science; a participatory research approach involving members of the public working closely with research investigators to initiate and advance scientific research projects
  • Public Engagement and pathways to impact
  • Design, implementation and evaluation of lifestyle interventions
  • Interdisciplinary research

She has attracted external funding from the National Institute for Health Research (Public Health Research Programme), (Research for Patient Benefit programme); MRC (Lifelong Health and Well-being Initiative), (National Prevention Initiative), EPSRC, and European Commission (Framework V).

Current/Recent research projects

Chief investigator:

£1,641,790 NIHR Public Health Research Programme. A multi-centre randomised controlled trial and economic evaluation of a community-based physical activity intervention to prevent mobility-related disability for retired older people. The REACT (REtirement in ACTion) study. 2015-2020 (54 months). REACT study [REtirement in ACTion], a pragmatic multi-centre, randomised controlled trial with a 24-month follow up, which assesses the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a physical activity intervention in reducing mobility-related disability in older people.

www.thereactstudy.com/

£248,899 MRC (Lifelong Health and Wellbeing Initiative-Phase 3). Developing a model of volunteering action in promoting active ageing in the community: Project ACE (Active, Connected and Engaged). 2012-2014 (24 months).  Project ACE [Active, Connected and Engaged Communities], one of only two UK initiatives to be classified as a promising practice in the national review of 952 initiatives “Identifying what works for local physical activity interventions”, conducted by Public Health England. 

£48,058 MRC (Lifelong Health and Wellbeing Initiative-Phase 2). The Avon Network for Physical Activity Promotion of Older People in the community. 2009-2010 (10 months).

21,952 YMCA. A process evaluation of an outreach physical activity program in an inner-city primary school: The Y Active Project. 2009-2010 (12 months).

Co-Investigator:

£28,000 (AUS$ 50,000). Australia & New Zealand Musculoskeletal (ANZMUSC) Clinical Trials Network Seed Funding Research Scheme. (Chief Investigator: Anne, Tiedemann, University of Sydney). Peer-volunteer support to promote participation in group-based fall prevention exercise: multi-stakeholder and end-user consultation to adapt the UK ACE model for Australia. 2020-2021 (12 months).

£589,601 MRC National Prevention Research Initiative. (Chief Investigator: Dylan Thompson, University of Bath). Mi-PACT: Multi-dimensional personalised physical activity profiles in at risk men & women. 2012-2016 (48 months).

£86,400 Dunhill Medical Trust. (Chief Investigator: Ken Fox, University of Bristol). OPAL-PLUS: How have you been?” A four-year follow-up of the “Older people and active living: Project OPAL” study. 2011-2012 (12 months).

£239,713 NIHR-Research for Patient Benefit. (Chief Investigator: Colin Greaves, University of Exeter). Waste the Waist: Pilot randomised controlled trial of a primary care based lifestyle intervention for reducing cardiovascular and diabetes risk. 2010–2013 (24 months).

£167,600 MRC/ESRC National Prevention Research Initiative.  (Chief Investigator: Ken Fox, University of Bristol). Older People and Active Living: Project OPAL. 2006-2009 (36 months).

She led Project ACE [Active, Connected and Engaged Communities], one of only two UK initiatives to be classified as a promising practice in the national review of 952 initiatives “Identifying what works for local physical activity interventions”, conducted by Public Health England. 

She currently leads the REACT study [REtirement in ACTion], a pragmatic multi-centre, randomised controlled trial with a 24-month follow up, which assesses the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of a physical activity intervention in reducing mobility-related disability in older people.

Dr Stathi received the University of Bath Vice Chancellor’s Award for Public Engagement with Research in 2017. Watch the video of her winning talk here:

http://www.bath.ac.uk/announcements/vice-chancellors-awards-highlight-shining-examples-of-public-engagement-in-practice/

Researcher identifier number: 

https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2162-777X

Current website: 
https://www.thereactstudy.com/

Other activities

 Member of the Board of Trustees for the Goldies Charitable Trust, an organisation supporting the health and well-being of older people who are lonely or isolated (2011-onwards)

Publications

Selected Publications

2020

  • Abby C King , Diane K King , Ann Banchoff , Smadar Solomonov , Ofir Ben Natan, Jenna Hua , Paul Gardiner , Lisa Goldman Rosas , Patricia Rodriguez Espinosa , Sandra J Winter , Jylana Sheats , Deborah Salvo , Nicolas Aguilar-Farias , Afroditi Stathi , Adriano Akira Hino , Michelle Porter. (2020-accepted) Employing Participatory Citizen Science Methods to Promote Age-Friendly Environments Worldwide. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
  • Withall, J., C.J. Greaves, J.L. Thompson, J. de Koning, J.C. Bollen, S.J. Moorlock,K. R. Fox,(…) Stathi, A., for the REACT Study Research Group. (2020-accepted). The tribulations of trials: Lessons learnt recruiting 777 older adults into REtirement in ACTion (REACT), a trial of a community, group-based active ageing intervention targeting mobility disability. Journals of Gerontology: Medical and Biological Sciences.

2019

  • Blackburn, M. & Stathi, A. (2019). Moral discourse in General Practitioners' accounts of obesity communication. Social Science & Medicine. 230: 166-173. doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2019.03.032

  • De Koning, J., Richards, S., & Stathi, A. (2019). Loneliness, Social Isolation and Objectively-Measured Physical Activity in Rurally-Living Older Adults. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity.

  • Stathi, A., Withall, J., Thompson, J.L., Davis, M.G, Gray, S., de Koning, J., Parkhurst, G., Lloyd, L., Greaves, C., Laventure, R., and Fox, K.R. (2019) Feasibility trial evaluation of a peer volunteering active ageing intervention: ACE (Active, Connected, Engaged). The Gerontologist. doi/10.1093/geront/gnz003/5342922

  • Western, M., Thompson, D., Peacock, O., Stathi, A. (2019). The impact of multidimensional physical activity feedback on healthcare practitioners and patients. British Journal of General Practice-Open. doi.org/10.3399/bjgpopen18X101628

  • *Morres, I., Hatzigeorgiadis, A., Stathi, A., Comoutos, N., Arpin-Cribbie, C., Krommidas, C. & Theodorakis, Y. (2019). Aerobic exercise for adult patients with major depressive disorder in mental health services. A systematic review and meta-analysis. Depression and Anxiety. https://doi.org/10.1002/da.22842
    *Chosen by NIHR and highlighted in the NIHR Signals for its research quality and scientific importance. https://discover.dc.nihr.ac.uk/content/signal-000711/aerobic-exercise-is-an-effective-treatment-for-depression

2018

  • Stathi, A., Withall, J., Greaves, C., Thompson, J., Taylor, G., Medina-Lara, A., Green, C., Bilzon, J., Gray, S., Johansen-Berg, H., Sexton, C., Western, M., De Koning, J., Bollen, J., Moorlock, S., Demnitz, N., Seager, P., Guralnik, J. M., Rejeski, W. J. & Fox, K.  (2018). A community-based physical activity intervention to prevent mobility-related disability for retired older people (REtirement in ACTion [REACT]): study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Trials. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13063-018-2603-x
  • Morres, I., Hatzigeorgiadis, A., Stathi, A., Comoutos, N., Arpin-Cribbie, C., Krommidas, C. & Theodorakis, Y. (2018). Aerobic exercise for adult patients with major depressive disorder in mental health services. A systematic review and meta-analysis. Depression and Anxiety. https://doi.org/10.1002/da.22842.

2017 

  • Hinckson, E., Schneider, M., Winter, S. J., Stone, E., Puhan, M., Stathi, A., Porter, M. M. , Gardiner, P. A., Lopes dos Santos, D., Wolff, A. & King, A. C. (2017). Citizen Science applied to building healthier community environments: advancing the field through shared construct and measurement development. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 14, 133. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12966-017-0588-
  • Thøgersen-Ntoumani, C., Ntoumanis, N., Uren, H., Stathi, A., Wold, C. & Hill, K. (2017). Perceptions of Group-Based Walks and Strategies to Inform the Development of an Intervention in Retirement Villages: perspectives of residents and village managers. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity. 25, 2, p. 261-268.

2016

  • Withall, J., Thompson, J. L., Fox, K. R., Davis, M., Gray, S., De Koning, J., Lloyd, L., Parkhurst, G. and Stathi, A. (2016). Participant and public involvement in refining a peer-volunteering active aging intervention: Project ACE (Active, Connected, Engaged). The Gerontologist. https://doi.org/10.1093/geront/gnw148
  • De Koning, J., Stathi, A. and Richards, S. (2016). Predictors of loneliness and different types of social isolation of rural-living older adults in the UK. Ageing and Society. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0144686X16000696
  • Paxinos, O., Karavasili, A., Delimpasis, G. and Stathi, A. (2016). The prevalence of knee osteoarthritis in 100 athletically active veteran football players (age 35-55) compared to a matched group of 100 military personnel. The American Journal of Sports Medicine, 44 (6), pp. 1447-1454.

2015

  • De Koning, J., Stathi, A., and Fox, K.R., (2015). Similarities and differences in the determinants of trips outdoors performed by UK urban-and rural-living older adults. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 23 (4), pp. 613-621.
  • Gillison, F., Stathi, A., Reddy, P., Perry, r., Taylor, G., Bennett, P., Dunbar, J. and Greaves, C., (2015). Processes of behavior change and weight loss in a theory-based weight loss intervention program: a test of the process model for lifestyle behavior change. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. DOI 10.1186/s12966-014-0160-6.
  • Greaves, C., Gillison, F., Stathi, A., Bennett, P., Reddy, P. and Taylor, G. (2015). Waste the waist: A pilot randomised controlled trial of a primary care based intervention to support lifestyle change in people with high cardiovascular risk. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 12 (1). doi:10.1186/s12966-014-0159-z
  • Littlecott, H. J., Fox, K. R., Stathi, A. and Thompson, J. L., (2015). Perceptions of success of a local UK public health collaborative. Health Promotion International, doi: 10.1093/heapro/dav088
  • Blackburn, M., Stathi, A., Keogh, E. and Eccleston, C. (2015). Raising the topic of weight in general practice: perspectives of GPs and primary care nurses. BMJ Open, 5 (8), e008546.
  • Western, M. J., Peacock, O. J., Stathi, A., and Thompson, D. (2015). The understanding and interpretation of innovative technology-enabled multidimensional physical activity feedback in patients at risk of future chronic disease. PLoS ONE, 10 (5), e0126156.
  • Fox, K. R., Ku, P.-W., Hillsdon, M., Davis, M. G., Simmonds, B. A. J., Thompson, J. L., Stathi, A., Gray, S., Sharpe, D. J. and Coulson, J. C. (2015). Objectively assessed physical activity and lower limb function and prospective associations with mortality and newly diagnosed disease in UK older adults: an OPAL four-year follow-up study. Age and Ageing, 44 (2), pp. 261-268.
  • Peacock, O., Western, M., Batterham, A., Stathi, A., Standage, M., Tapp, A., Bennett, P. and Thompson, D., (2015). Multidimensional individualised physical activity (Mi-PACT) – a technology-enabled intervention to promote physical activity in primary care:study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Trials, 16 (1), 381.

2014

  • Withall, J., Stathi, A., Davis, M., Coulson, J., Thompson, J. L., & Fox, K. R. (2014). Objective indicators of physical activity and sedentary time and associations with subjective well-being in adults aged 70 and over. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 11(1), 643-656. 10.3390/ijerph110100643
  • Simmonds, B., Fox, K., Davis, M., Ku, P-W., Gray, S., Hillsdon, M., Sharp, D., Stathi, A, Thompson, J., Coulson, J., Trayers, T. (2014). Objectively Assessed Physical Activity and Subsequent Health Service Use of UK Adults Aged 70 and Over: A Four to Five Year Follow Up Study. PLoS ONE, 9(5), [e97676]. 10.1371/journal.pone.0097676
  • Trayers, T., Lawlor, D. A., Fox, K. R., Coulson, J., Davis, M., Stathi, A., & Peters, T. J. (2014). Associations of objectively measured physical activity with lower limb function in older men and women: findings from the older people and active living (OPAL) study. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 22(1), 34-43.
  • Davis, M. G., Fox, K. R., Stathi, A.,Trayers, T., Thompson, J., & Cooper, A. R. (2014). Objectively Measured Sedentary Time and its Association With Physical Function in Older Adults. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 22(4), 474. 10.1123/JAPA.2013-0042

2012

  • Gillison, F. B., Greaves, C., Stathi, A., Ramsay, R., Bennett, P., Taylor, G., Chandler, R. (2012). ‘Waste the waist’: the development of an intervention to promote changes in diet and physical activity for people with high cardiovascular risk. British Journal of Health Psychology, 17(2), 327-345.
  • Stathi, A., Gilbert, H., Fox, K. R., Coulson, J., Davis, M., & Thompson, J. L. (2012). Determinants of neighborhood activity of adults age 70 and over: A mixed-methods study. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 20(2), 148-170.
  • Stamatakis, E., Davis, M., Stathi, A., & Hamer, M. (2012). Associations between multiple indicators of objectively-measured and self-reported sedentary behaviour and cardiometabolic risk in older adults. Preventive Medicine, 54(1), 82-87. 10.1016/j.ypmed.2011.10.009

2011

Davis, M. G., Fox, K. R., Hillsdon, M., Coulson, J. C., Sharp, D. J., Stathi, A., & Thompson, J. L. (2011). Getting out and about in older adults: the nature of daily trips and their association with objectively assessed physical activity. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, 8, [116]. 10.1186/1479-5868-8-116

Stathi, A., & Sebire, S. J. (2011). A process evaluation of an outreach physical activity program in an inner-city primary school. Journal of Physical Activity & Health, 8(Supplement 2), S239-S248.

Thompson, J. L., Bentley, G., Davis, M., Coulson, J., Stathi, A., & Fox, K. R. (2011). Food shopping habits, physical activity and health-related indicators among adults aged ≥70 years. Public Health Nutrition, 14(9), 1640-1649. 10.1017/s1368980011000747

Fox, K. R., Hillsdon, M., Sharp, D., Cooper, A. R., Coulson, J. C., Davis, M., Harris, R., McKenna, J., Narici, M., Stathi, A., Thompson, J. L. (2011). Neighbourhood deprivation and physical activity in UK older adults. Health & Place, 17(2), 633-640. 10.1016/j.healthplace.2011.01.002

2002-2010

  • Stathi, A., McKenna, J., & Fox, K. R. (2010). Processes associated with participation and adherence to a 12-month exercise programme for adults aged 70 and older. Journal of Health Psychology, 15(6), 838-847. 10.1177/1359105309357090
  • Stathi, A., Gillison, F., & Riddoch, C. (2009). Opportunities and challenges in physical activity research in young people. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 12(5), 515-517. 10.1016/j.jsams.2008.09.011
  • Gilson, N., Ainsworth, B., Biddle, S., Faulkner, B., Murphy, M., Niven, A., Pringle, A., Puig-Ribera, A., Stathi, A., Umstattd, M. R. (2009). A multi-site comparison of environmental characteristics to support workplace walking. Preventive Medicine, 49(1), 21-23. 10.1016/j.ypmed.2009.05.001
  • Brown, W. J., Faulkner, G., McKenna, J., Murphy, M., Pringle, A., Proper, K., Puig-Ribera, Stathi, A. (2009). The international universities walking project: Development of a framework for workplace intervention using the Delphi technique. Journal of Physical Activity & Health, 6(4), 520-528.
  • Gilson, N. D., Ainsworth, B., Biddle, S., Faulkner, G., Murphy, M., Niven, A., Pringle, P., Puig-Ribera, A., Stathi, A., Umstattd, M. R. (2009). Interested in promoting walking at work? First things first, assess your workplace environment!. Sport and Health, 26(4), 11-13.
  • Stathi, A., & Simey, P. (2007). Quality of life in the fourth age: Exercise experiences of nursing home residents. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 15(3), 272-286.
  • Dagkas, S., & Stathi, A. (2007). Exploring social and environmental factors affecting adolescents' participation in physical activity. European Physical Education Review, 13(3), 369-384.10.1177/1356336x07081800
  • Fox, K. R., Stathi, A., McKenna, J., & Davis, M. G. (2007). Physical activity and mental well-being in older people participating in the Better Ageing Project. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 100(5), 591-602. 10.1007/s00421-007-0392-0
  • Stathi, A. (2004). Perspectives on physical activity and well-being of older people. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 12(3), 298-299.
  • Stathi, A. McKenna, D., & Fox, K. R. (2004). The experiences of older people participating in exercise referral schemes. Journal of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health, 124(1), 18-23.
  • Stathi, A., Fox, K. R., & McKenna, J. (2002). Physical activity and dimensions of subjective well-being in older adults. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 10(1), 76-92.

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