Alex Rowlands

Alex Rowlands
University of Leicester | LE · Diabetes Research Centre; NIHR Leicester Biomedical Research Centre - Lifestyle Theme

PhD

About

238
Publications
69,709
Reads
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9,818
Citations
Citations since 2016
138 Research Items
6015 Citations
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201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,000
201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,000
Additional affiliations
June 2015 - present
University of Leicester
Position
  • Senior Researcher
October 2014 - present
University of South Australia
Position
  • Adjunct Senior Research Fellow
October 2011 - October 2014
University of South Australia
Position
  • Senior Researcher
Education
September 1995 - December 1998
Bangor University
Field of study
  • Physical activity and health
September 1992 - June 1995
University of Liverpool
Field of study
  • Human Movement Science

Publications

Publications (238)
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: Commonly used physical activity metrics tell us little about the intensity distribution across the activity profile. The purpose of this paper is to introduce a metric, the intensity gradient, which can be used in combination with average acceleration (overall activity level) to fully describe the activity profile. Methods: 1669 adolesc...
Article
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The lack of consensus on meaningful and interpretable physical activity outcomes from accelerometer data hampers comparison across studies. Cut-point analyses are simple to apply and easy to interpret but can lead to results that are not comparable. We propose that the optimal accelerometer metrics for data analysis are not the same as the optimal...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: High-impact physical activity is associated with bone health, but higher volumes of lower intensity activity may also be important. The aims of this study were to: 1) investigate the relative importance of volume and intensity of physical activity accumulated during late adolescence for bone health at age 23; and 2) illustrate interpretat...
Article
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The inter-relationship between physical activity, sedentary behaviour and sleep (collectively defined as physical behaviours) is of interest to researchers from different fields. Each of these physical behaviours has been investigated in epidemiological studies, yet their codependency and interactions need to be further explored and accounted for i...
Article
Full-text available
Considering physical activity (PA) volume and intensity may provide novel insights into the relationships of PA with bone, lean, and fat mass. This study aimed to assess the associations of PA volume, PA intensity distribution, including moderate‐to‐vigorous PA (MVPA) with total‐body‐less‐head bone mineral content (BMC), lean, and fat mass in child...
Article
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The Verisense Step Count Algorithm facilitates generation of steps from wrist-worn accelerometers. Based on preliminary evidence suggesting a proportional bias with overestimation at low steps/day, but underestimation at high steps/day, the algorithm parameters have been revised. We aimed to establish validity of the original and revised algorithms...
Article
To evaluate the criterion validity of an automated sleep detection algorithm applied to data from three research-grade accelerometers worn on each wrist with concurrent laboratory-based polysomnography (PSG). A total of 30 healthy volunteers (mean [SD] age 31.5 [7.2] years, body mass index 25.5 [3.7] kg/m2 ) wore an Axivity, GENEActiv and ActiGraph...
Article
Aims: The interplay between physical activity (PA) volume and intensity is poorly understood in relation to cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. This study aimed to investigate the role of PA intensity, over and above volume, in relation to incident CVD. Methods and results: Data were from 88,412 UK Biobank middle-aged adults (58% women) without p...
Article
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Physical activity (PA) intensity of people living with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is typically evaluated using intensity thresholds developed in younger, healthier populations with greater exercise capacity and free from respiratory symptoms. This study therefore compared (i) PA differences between COPD and non-COPD controls using...
Article
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Introduction Low self-compassion and poor sleep quality have been identified as potential key predictors of distress in type 2 diabetes (T2D). This study investigated relationships between sleep behaviors (sleep duration, social jetlag and daytime sleepiness), diabetes-related distress (DRD) and self-compassion in people with T2D. Research design...
Conference Paper
Background Physical frailty is prevalent in end-stage liver disease (ESLD) and is associated with poor clinical outcomes. Increasing physical activity has been used to combat physical frailty, yet current knowledge of daily physical activity patterns is limited to subjective and/or step count reports, making prescription of targeted exercise progra...
Article
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Background The number of individuals recovering from severe COVID-19 is increasing rapidly. However, little is known about physical behaviours that make up the 24-h cycle within these individuals. This study aimed to describe physical behaviours following hospital admission for COVID-19 at eight months post-discharge including associations with acu...
Article
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We examined the compositional associations between the intensity spectrum derived from incremental acceleration intensity bands and the body mass index (BMI) z-score in youth, and investigated the estimated differences in BMI z-score following time reallocations between intensity bands. School-aged youth from 63 schools wore wrist accelerometers, a...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction: Higher levels of physical activity are associated with lower cardio-metabolic risk. However, the relative contribution of overall activity and the intensity of activity is unclear. Our aim was to determine the relative contribution of overall activity and intensity distribution of activity to cardio-metabolic risk in in a cross-secti...
Article
Full-text available
Walking pace is a simple and functional form of movement and a strong predictor of health status, but the nature of its association with leucocyte telomere length (LTL) is unclear. Here we investigate whether walking pace is associated with LTL, which is causally associated with several chronic diseases and has been proposed as a marker of biologic...
Article
Full-text available
the benefits of physical activity (PA) and sleep for health, accurate and objective population-based surveillance is important. Monitor-based surveillance has potential, but the main challenge is the need for replicable outcomes from different monitors. This study investigated the agreement of movement behavior outcomes assessed with four research-...
Article
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This study investigated associations between step cadence and physical function in healthy South Asian (SA) and White European (WE) older adults, aged ≥60. Participants completed the 60-s Sit-to-Stand (STS-60) test of physical function. Free-living stepping was measured using the activPAL3™. Seventy-one WEs (age = 72 ± 5, 53% male) and 33 SAs (age...
Article
Full-text available
Aims: To examine the independent associations between relative protein intake (g kg-1 day 1 ) and markers of physical function in those with type 2 diabetes, while also comparing with current guidelines for protein intake. Methods: This analysis reports data from the ongoing Chronotype of Patients with Type 2 Diabetes and Effect on Glycaemic Con...
Article
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OBJECTIVE To investigate the association between admission blood glucose levels and risk of in-hospital cardiovascular and renal complications. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS In this multicenter prospective study of 36,269 adults hospitalized with COVID-19 between 6 February 2020 and 16 March 2021 (N = 143,266), logistic regression models were used t...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Although the cardiovascular disease (CVD) benefits of both overall volume and intensity of physical activity (PA) are known, the role of PA intensity, over and above volume, is poorly understood. We aimed to investigate the interplay between PA volume and intensity in relation to incident CVD. Methods Data were from 88,412 UK Biobank pa...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: To assess the association between household size and risk of non-severe or severe COVID-19. Design: A longitudinal observational study. Setting: This study utilised UK Biobank linked to national SARS-CoV-2 laboratory test data. Participants: 401,910 individuals with available data on household size in UK Biobank. Main outcome mea...
Article
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Objective Using a large national database of people hospitalised with COVID-19, we investigated the contribution of cardio-metabolic conditions, multi-morbidity and ethnicity on the risk of in-hospital cardiovascular complications and death. Methods A multicentre, prospective cohort study in 302 UK healthcare facilities of adults hospitalised with...
Article
Background: Physical activity and sleep are important for health; whether device-measured physical activity and sleep differ by ethnicity is unclear. This study aimed to compare physical activity and sleep/rest in white, South Asian (SA), and black adults by age. Methods: Physical activity and sleep/rest quality were assessed using accelerometer...
Article
This study aimed to a) determine whether wrist acceleration varies by accelerometer brand, wear location, and age for self-paced “slow”, “normal” and “brisk” walking; b) develop normative acceleration values for self-paced walking and running for adults. One-hundred-and-three adults (40–79 years) completed self-paced “slow”, “normal” and “brisk” wa...
Preprint
Full-text available
Objectives: Walking pace is a strong marker of functional and health status. We investigated whether walking pace is also associated with leucocyte telomere length (LTL), which is causally associated with several diseases and has been proposed as a marker of biological age. Methods: We used baseline data from UK Biobank participants recruited from...
Article
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Background Pre-existing comorbidities have been linked to SARS-CoV-2 infection but evidence is sparse on the importance and pattern of multimorbidity (2 or more conditions) and severity of infection indicated by hospitalisation or mortality. We aimed to use a multimorbidity index developed specifically for COVID-19 to investigate the association be...
Article
Identifying clusters of physical activity (PA) from accelerometer data is important to identify levels of sedentary behaviour and physical activity associated with risks of serious health conditions and time spent engaging in healthy PA. Unsupervised machine learning models can capture PA in everyday free-living activity without the need for labell...
Article
Full-text available
Objective To quantify the association between accelerometer-assessed physical activity and COVID-19 outcomes. Patients and Methods Data from 82,253 UK Biobank participants with accelerometer data (measured 2013-2015), complete covariate data, and linked COVID-19 data from 16th March 2020 to 16th March 2021 were included. Two outcomes were investig...
Article
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Background: Although age, obesity and pre-existing chronic diseases are established risk factors for COVID-19 outcomes, their interactions have not been well researched. Methods: We used data from the Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK (CCP-UK) for Severe Emerging Infection developed by the International Severe Acute Respiratory and emerging...
Article
Objectives To profile sleep duration and sleep efficiency in UK long-distance heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers and explore demographic, occupational and lifestyle predictors of sleep. Methods Cross-sectional analyses were carried out on 329 HGV drivers (98.5% men) recruited across an international logistics company within the midland’s region, UK...
Article
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Background: Targeted self-management programmes may improve health and increase physical activity in people with multimorbidity. Aim: Investigate the impact of a structured, theoretically-driven self-management group education programme on habitual physical activity levels in people with multimorbidity. Design: Individually randomised controlled tr...
Article
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The aim was to establish which postural and physical activity outcomes are comparable across different accelerometer brands worn on the thigh when processed using open-source methods. Twenty participants wore four accelerometers (Axivity, ActiGraph, activPAL, GENEActiv) for three free-living days. Postural and physical activity outputs (average acc...
Article
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Isotemporal substitution modelling (ISM) and compositional isotemporal modelling (CISM) are statistical approaches used in epidemiology to model the associations of replacing time in one physical behaviour with time in another. This study’s aim was to use both ISM and CISM to examine and compare associations of reallocating 60 min of sitting into s...
Article
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Obesity is an emerging risk factor for coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19). Simple measures of physical fitness, such as self-reported walking pace, may also be important risk markers. This analysis includes 412,596 UK Biobank participants with linked COVID-19 data (median age at linkage = 68 years, obese = 24%, median number of comorbidities = 1)....
Article
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Background Health and key workers have elevated odds of developing severe COVID-19; it is not known, however, if this is exacerbated in those with irregular work patterns. We aimed to investigate the odds of developing severe COVID-19 in health and shift workers. Methods We included UK Biobank participants in employment or self-employed at baselin...
Article
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Background Trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), a metabolite generated by the gut in response (in part) to meat consumption, is linked to poor cardiometabolic health. Objectives We investigate the effect of an 8-week vegan diet, followed by a 4-week period of unrestricted diet, on glucose tolerance and plasma TMAO in human omnivores with obesity or dysg...
Article
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Background People from South Asian and black minority ethnic groups are disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is unknown whether deprivation mediates this excess ethnic risk. Methods We used UK Biobank with linked COVID-19 outcomes occurring between 16th March 2020 and 24th August 2020. A four-way decomposition mediation analysi...
Article
The aim of this study was to investigate short- and long-term compensatory effects on dietary intake following high intensity interval training (HIIT) compared with usual care moderate intensity continuous training (MICT) during and following a cardiac rehabilitation program. This study investigates secondary outcomes of a clinical trial. Ninety-th...
Article
Aims: Restrictions during the COVID-19 crisis will have impacted on opportunities to be active. We aimed to a) quantify the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on accelerometer-assessed physical activity and sleep in people with type 2 diabetes and b) identify predictors of physical activity during COVID-19 restrictions. Methods: Participants were f...
Article
Full-text available
Objective To investigate the association of obesity with in‐hospital COVID‐19 outcomes in different ethnic groups. Methods Patients admitted to hospital with COVID‐19 in the United Kingdom through the Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK (CCP‐UK) developed by the International Severe Acute Respiratory and emerging Infections Consortium (ISARIC) w...
Article
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Aim To describe concurrent screen use and any relationships with lifestyle behaviours and psychosocial health. Methods Participants wore an accelerometer for seven days to calculate physical activity sleep and sedentary time. Screen ownership and use and psychosocial variables were self‐reported. Body mass index (BMI) was measured. Relationships w...
Article
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Aim To assess the effectiveness of a low-cost pragmatic intervention (structured education and ongoing text message support) to increase daily physical activity in participants 12–48 months after a coronary heart disease cardiac event (myocardial infarction, angina or acute coronary syndrome) diagnosis. Methods A single-centre randomised controlle...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: This study aims to (1) establish GENEActiv intensity cutpoints in older adults and (2) compare the classification accuracy between dominant (D) or non-dominant (ND) wrist, using both laboratory and free-living data. Methods: Thirty-one older adults participated in the study. They wore a GENEActiv Original on each wrist and performed nine a...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: Health and key workers are at an increased risk of developing severe COVID-19; it is not known, however, if this risk is exacerbated in those with irregular work patterns. We aimed to investigate the risk of severe COVID-19 in health and shift workers. Methods: We included UK Biobank participants in employment or self-employed at basel...
Article
Introduction : This study examined the equivalency of sleep estimates from Axivity, GENEActiv, and ActiGraph accelerometers worn on the nondominant and dominant wrists and with and without using a sleep log to guide the algorithm. Methods : 47 young adults wore an Axivity, GENEActiv, and ActiGraph accelerometer continuously on both wrists for 4–7 d...
Article
This study examined the effect of exercise training on sleep duration and quality and bidirectional day-to-day relationships between physical activity (PA) and sleep. Fourteen inactive men with obesity (age: 49.2 ± 7.9 years, body mass index: 34.9 ± 2.8 kg/m ² ) completed a baseline visit, 8-week aerobic exercise intervention, and 1-month post-inte...
Article
Behavioural lifestyle factors are associated with cardiometabolic disease and obesity, which are risk factors for COVID-19. We aimed to investigate whether physical activity, and the timing and balance of physical activity and sleep/rest, were associated with SARS-CoV-2 positivity and COVID-19 severity. Data from 91,248 UK Biobank participants with...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Pre-existing comorbidities have been linked to SARS-CoV-2 infection but evidence is sparse on the importance and pattern of multimorbidity (2 or more conditions) and severity of infection indicated by hospitalisation or mortality. We aimed to use a multimorbidity index developed specifically for COVID-19 to investigate the association be...
Article
Objective: To examine whether circulating metabolic responses to low-volume high-intensity interval (LV-HIIE) or continuous moderate-intensity aerobic (CME) exercise differ between white Europeans and South Asians with nondiabetic hyperglycaemia (NDH). Research Design and Methods: 13 white Europeans and 10 South Asians (combined median (IQR) age 67...
Article
The use of high-resolution physical activity intensity spectra obtained from accelerometry can improve knowledge of associations with health and development beyond the use of traditional summary measures of intensity. The aim of the present study was to compare three different approaches for determining associations for spectrum descriptors of phys...
Code
A tool used for generating radar plots to assist with the interpretation of accelerometry data. Important: To ensure you are accessing the latest version, please access the Github repository link: https://github.com/Maylor8/RadarPlotGenerator