Craig Anthony Williams

Craig Anthony Williams
University of Exeter | UoE · Children's Health and Exercise Research Centre, Sport and Health Sciences

PhD, MSc, BEd(Hons)
Celebrating 37 years - paediatric exercise, sport & medicine research - watch our new video https://bit.ly/3ahFPLW

About

441
Publications
153,827
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Introduction
Professor Craig Anthony Williams is currently the Director of the Children's Health and Exercise Research Centre (CHERC), Sport and Health Sciences, and Director of Research for Sport and Health Sciences, University of Exeter. Craig conducts research in Physiology, Human Biology and Sports & Exerise Medicine. Current projects include investigating the use of physical activity participation and exercise training in children with congenital heart disease and the promotion of physical activity, sport, recreation and exercise for adolescents with cystic fibrosis. Youth sports related projects include training load and injury in middle distance runners and talent development in soccer academy players.
Additional affiliations
September 2013 - present
University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust
Position
  • Researcher
January 2006 - present
January 2006 - present
Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust
Position
  • Research and Development
Description
  • I am currently collaborating with paediatricians at the Royal Devon and Exeter on a series of exercise physiology related projects for children with chronic diseases.

Publications

Publications (441)
Article
Full-text available
The interventions aimed at improving the levels of physical activity (PA) in children and adolescents diagnosed with heart disease did not produce the expected outcomes. Safe participation in sport activities proposed based on actual recommendations could be a solution to promote PA in this population. The aims of this study were to discover a caus...
Conference Paper
INTRODUCTION: Patients with congenital heart disease (CHD) typically exhibit reduced exercise capacity and life quality, even after their structural heart defects have been clinically corrected. However, little is known about the interactions between physical activity (PA), sedentary time (ST), exercise capacity (peak VO2) and health-related qualit...
Article
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Background Children and young people with CHD benefit from regular physical activity. Parents are reported as facilitators and barriers to their children’s physical activity. The aim of this study was to explore parental factors, child factors, and their clinical experience on physical activity participation in young people with CHD. Methods An on...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Children and young people with CHD benefit from regular physical activity. Parents are reported as facilitators and barriers to their children's physical activity. The aim of this study was to explore parental factors, child factors, and their clinical experience on physical activity participation in young people with CHD. Methods: An o...
Article
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Introduction: The near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS)-derived reperfusion rate of tissue oxygen saturation (slope 2 StO 2 ) may provide a surrogate measure of vascular function, however, this has yet to be examined in a paediatric population. This study investigated in adolescents: 1) the between-day reliability of NIRS-derived measurements; 2) the r...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
INTRODUCTION: Young-people with congenital heart disease (ConHD) have reduced cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF), which has been associated with mortality and morbidity. Previous studies have explored the determinants of CRF using inappropriate ratio-scaling techniques and have not accounted for physical activity (PA). The aims of this study were to i...
Chapter
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) has been for the last decade one of the most popular modes of training. While it has its origins in athletic training, it is also now appearing in public health and clinical exercise sciences for patients with chronic diseases. More recently, youth athlete studies have been conducted to evaluate the benefit f...
Article
Full-text available
This book presents an integrated, research-driven, collection of 54 evidence-based chapters. Chapters are founded on the research and practical experience of 104 internationally renowned scientists and clinicians, from 25 countries. Each extensively referenced chapter concludes with a bulleted summary and where appropriate is cross-referenced to co...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Several systematic reviews have been published to investigate the effectiveness of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) in schools. However, there has been limited attention given to understanding the functioning of the intervention processes, which is of paramount importance for interpreting and translating the intervention effective...
Article
Funding Acknowledgements Type of funding sources: Public grant(s) – National budget only. Main funding source(s): UK Research and Innovation Medical Research Council Doctoral Training Programme Grant Work supported as part of a research partnership between the University of Bristol and Canon Medical Systems UK that determines the independence of th...
Conference Paper
Objective To enable evidence-based public health policy and guidelines for 24-hour health behaviours in infants and toddlers, by demonstrating the feasibility and acceptability of using valid, objective, longitudinal measures of everyday health behaviour and physiology in infants and toddlers. Methods We are currently recruiting, through non-NHS c...
Article
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Background Increased maximal oxygen uptake (V̇O2max) is beneficial in children with cystic fibrosis (CF) but remains lower compared to healthy peers. Intrinsic metabolic deficiencies within skeletal muscle (muscle “quality”) and skeletal muscle size (muscle “quantity”) are both proposed as potential causes for the lower V̇O2max, although exact mech...
Conference Paper
Background and Aim: Young people with congenital heart disease (CHD) are less active than their healthy peers negatively affecting quality of life and long-term outcomes. Despite no specific guidelines, a commonly used measure of physical activity (PA) is moderate- to-vigorous PA (MVPA), which has the disadvantage of neglecting light-intensity acti...
Article
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Social factors and psychological characteristics can influence participation and development in talent pathways. However, the interaction between these two factors is relatively unknown. The aim of this study was to investigate the implications of socioeconomic status and psychological characteristics in English academy soccer players (n=58; aged 1...
Article
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Introduction Improving healthy lifestyles of adolescents is challenging. Citizen Science is a way to engage them in the design and delivery of interventions, and may also increase their interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). The Science Engagement to Empower aDolescentS (SEEDS) project aims to use an equity-lens, and e...
Article
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Objectives Regular exercise testing is recommended for people with cystic fibrosis (pwCF), as is the provision and regular review of exercise training programmes. A previous survey on exercise testing and training for pwCF in the UK was conducted over a decade ago. With the landscape of CF changing considerably during this time, this survey aimed t...
Article
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Aims: Echocardiographic assessment of adolescent athletes for arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy (ACM) can be challenging owing to right ventricular (RV) exercise-related remodelling, particularly RV outflow tract (RVOT) dilation. The aim of this study is to evaluate the role of RV 2-D speckle tracking echocardiography (STE) in comparing healthy adoles...
Article
Research has shown that there is a lack of confidence and understanding in how to use exercise for managing cystic fibrosis. This editorial discusses the key points of a consensus statement that highlights what is and is not known about the relationship between cystic fibrosis and exercise.
Research
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The project is related to the use of exercise echo cardiography and young athletes, as part fo an on-going heart health of yougn athletes.
Article
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New findings: What is the central question of this study? What is the effect of 4 weeks of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and 2 weeks of detraining on vascular function and traditional cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors in male adolescents? What is the main finding and its importance? Four weeks of HIIT improved macrovascular funct...
Article
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Background: Increasing evidence suggests that vitamin D is associated with pulmonary health, which may benefit children and young people diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (cypCF). Therefore, the aim of this systematic review was to evaluate primary research to establish associations between 25OHD and pulmonary health in cypCF. Methods: Electronic data...
Preprint
Background Increased physical activity has been shown to result in improved physical fitness, quality of life, self-confidence, and reduced anxiety in adults with congenital heart disease (CHD). In comparison to adults there are relatively few data on the benefit of physical activity for children and adolescents with CHD. It is clear that increasin...
Article
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Individuals with Down syndrome (DS) present similar heart rate variability (HRV) parameters at rest but different responses to selected movement maneuvers in comparison to individuals without DS, which indicates reduced vagal regulation. The present study undertakes a scoping review of research on HRV in individuals with DS, with special attention...
Article
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Background Cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET), and its primary outcome of peak oxygen uptake (VO 2peak ), are acknowledged as biomarkers in the diagnostic and prognostic management of interstitial lung disease (ILD). However, the validity and repeatability of CPET in those with ILD has yet to be fully characterised, and this study fills this e...
Article
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BACKGROUND: Peak oxygen consumption (peak V̇ O2) is traditionally divided (“ratio-scaled”) by body mass (BM) for clinical interpretation. Yet, it is unknown whether ratio-scaling to BM can produce a valid size-independent expression of peak V̇O2 in people with a Fontan circulation. Furthermore, people with a Fontan circulation have deficits in lean...
Article
Full-text available
Objective The importance of aerobic fitness (VO 2peak ) in cystic fibrosis (CF) is well established, and regular exercise testing is recommended. To standardise VO 2peak , a ‘percentage of predicted’ (% pred ) derived from normative reference values (NRV), as promoted by the 2015 European Cystic Fibrosis Society Exercise Working Group (ECFS EWG), c...
Article
Full-text available
New findings: What is the central question of this study? What is the effect of three repeated breath-hold techniques routinely used by freedivers, thought to manipulate arterial partial pressures of O2 and CO2 , on the cardiorespiratory and haematological response to breath-holding during facial immersion? What is the main finding and its importa...
Article
Full-text available
Background Public health guidelines for children advocate physical activity (PA) and the restriction of continuous sedentary time. Schools offer an attractive setting for health promotion, however school-based interventions to increase PA typically fail, and primary school children may spend most of the school day sitting down. Classroom movement b...
Article
Introduction and Objectives The use of cardiopulmonary exercise tests (CPETs) has been advocated by the European Respiratory Society (ERS) and the Association for Respiratory Technology and Physiology (ARTP) for diagnosis and treatment of chronic lung conditions. Results from CPETs, especially the maximal oxygen uptake (&Vdot;O2max), are of prognos...
Article
Objective (1) Identify and review current policies for the cardiovascular screening of athletes to assess their applicability to the paediatric population and (2) evaluate the quality of these policy documents using the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research & Evaluation II (AGREE II) tool. Design Systematic review and quality appraisal of policy do...
Article
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The talent development processes in youth football are both complex and multidimensional. The purpose of this two-fold study was to apply a multidisciplinary, machine learning approach to examine: (a) the developmental characteristics of under-9 to under-16 academy players (n = 98; Study 1), and (b) the characteristics of selected and deselected un...
Article
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Background Current echocardiographic criteria cannot accurately differentiate exercise induced left ventricular (LV) hypertrabeculation in athletes from LV non-compaction cardiomyopathy (LVNC). This study aims to evaluate the role of speckle tracking echocardiography (STE) in characterising LV myocardial mechanics in healthy adolescent athletes wit...
Article
Background Physical activity levels are known to decline following hospitalisation for people with cystic fibrosis (pwCF). However, optimal physical activity promotion strategies are unclear. This study investigated the effect of a web-based application (ActivOnline) in promoting physical activity in young pwCF. Methods Multicentre randomised cont...
Poster
Full-text available
Thetraditional and accepted method of RS peak VO2 to BM was invalid as it failed to create a size- independent expression of fitness. • Ratio-scaling to FFM (and allometric scaling) produced size- independent expressions of peak VO2
Article
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Aims The role of cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET) in predicting major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) in people with congenital heart disease (ConHD) is unknown. A systematic review with meta-analysis was conducted to report the associations between CPET parameters and MACE in people with ConHD. Methods and results Electronic databases...
Article
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Background The roles of physical activity (PA) and exercise within the management of cystic fibrosis (CF) are recognised by their inclusion in numerous standards of care and treatment guidelines. However, information is brief, and both PA and exercise as multi-faceted behaviours require extensive stakeholder input when developing and promoting such...
Article
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This study aimed to examine the reliability and validity of Global School-based Student Health Survey(GSHS) to measure 24-hour movement behaviours (moderate-to-vigorous physical activity - MVPA;sedentary behaviour in the form of recreational screen time - ST; and sleep) in Saudi Arabian youths. Atotal of 120 (50% female) participants aged 12–15 yea...
Article
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The aim of this study was to compare the use of generic and cystic fibrosis (CF)-specific cut-points to assess movement behaviours in children and adolescents with CF. Physical activity (PA) was assessed for seven consecutive days using a non-dominant wrist-worn ActiGraph GT9X in 71 children and adolescents (36 girls; 13.5 ± 2.9 years) with mild CF...
Article
Full-text available
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is well‐suited for imaging peripheral blood flow due to its non‐invasive nature and excellent spatial resolution. Although MRI is routinely used in adults to assess physiological changes in chronic diseases, there are currently no MRI‐based data quantifying arterial flow in pediatric or adolescent populations during...
Article
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ABSTRACT Purpose: Cerebral palsy (CP) is the commonest motor disability affecting children. This study reviewed the evidence for virtual reality (VR) intervention compared with conventional physiotherapy in upper limb function of children with CP. Methods: Searches were undertaken in MEDLINE, EMBASE, PEDro, CENTRAL, Web of Science, CINAHL, ERIC, I...
Article
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This study sought to investigate the association of light physical activity (LPA), moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), sedentary time (SED), and sleep with lung function in children and adults with CF. In total, 86 children (41 females; 13.6 ± 2.8 years; FEV1%predicted: 86 ± 1%) and 43 adults (21 females; 24.6 ± 4.7 years; FEV1%predicted...
Article
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Commonly used cut-points may misclassify physical activity (PA) in people with cystic fibrosis (CF). The aim of this study was to develop and cross-validate condition-specific cut-points in children and adolescents with CF. Thirty-five children and adolescents with CF (15 girls; 11.6 ± 2.8 years) and 28 controls (16 girls; 12.2 ± 2.7 years), had th...
Article
Full-text available
Cross-sectional studies have reported lower pulmonary and aerobic function during exercise in people with cystic fibrosis-related diabetes (CFRD) compared to non-CFRD counterparts. However, this association has yet to be longitudinally investigated. Therefore, this study examines these differences over time between people with cystic fibrosis (CF)...
Article
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Objectives: The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in unprecedent changes to clinical practice, and as the impact upon delivery of exercise services for people with cystic fibrosis (CF) in the United Kingdom was unknown, this was characterised via a national survey. Methods: An electronic survey was distributed to healthcare professionals involved i...
Article
Funding Acknowledgements Type of funding sources: Public Institution(s). Main funding source(s): UK Research and Innovation - Medical Research Council GW4 Studentship Background Right ventricle inflow (RV) dilation is a common adaptation to training in professional athletes, but how this impacts myocardial mechanics is yet unclear. Previous studie...
Article
Full-text available
Athlete preparticipation screening focuses on preventing sudden cardiac death (SCD) by detecting diseases such as arrhythmogenic ventricular cardiomyopathy (AVC), which affects primarily the right ventricular myocardium. Diagnosis may be obscured by physiological remodeling of the athlete heart. Healthy athletes may meet the 2010 Task Force Criteri...
Article
Exercise intolerance is common in people with CF (pwCF), but not universal among all individuals. While associated with disease prognosis, exercise intolerance is not simply a reflection of the degree of lung disease. In people with severe CF, respiratory limitations may contribute more significantly to impaired exercise capacity than in those with...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Physical activity (PA), sedentary behaviour (SB) in the form of recreational screen time, and sleep time (ST), are associated with cardiometabolic disease risk in adolescents. The Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for children and youth has emphasised the integration of these three movement behaviours rather than in isolation (PA ≥60 min/day, SB...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background Distance running is one of the most popular sports among children and adolescents around the world. Previous adult- and adolescent-based research indicates that injury is prevalent when participating in distance running. While knowledge related to the extent of the injury problem is important, an understanding of athletes’ psychosocial r...
Conference Paper
Background Little is known about the overall health of adolescent distance runners. Objective To describe all health problems (injuries and illnesses) in relation to type, location, incidence, prevalence, time loss, severity, and burden, in competitive adolescent distance runners in England. Design Prospective observational study monitoring all h...
Article
Full-text available
Exercise and physical activity (PA) have been shown to be effective, safe and feasible in both healthy children and children with congenital heart disease (CHD). However, implementing exercise training as an intervention is still not routine in children with CHD despite considerable evidence of health benefits and well-being. Understanding how chil...
Article
Introduction: Countermovement jump (CMJ) and perceived wellness measures are useful for monitoring fatigue. Fatigue indicators should simultaneously show sensitivity to previous load and demonstrate influence on subsequent physical output; however, this has not been examined. This study examined the efficacy of CMJ and wellness measures to both de...
Article
The 12-lead electrocardiogram is a key component of cardiac screening in elite adolescent footballers. Current technology hampers mobile electrocardiogram monitoring that could reduce the time-to-diagnosis in symptomatic athletes. Recently, a 22-lead mobile electrocardiogram monitor, CardioSecur (Personal MedSystems GmbH), has been approved for use...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose: In a sample of healthy adolescents, the authors aimed to investigate the effects of high-intensity interval exercise (HIIE) training and detraining on baroreflex sensitivity (BRS) and it's vascular and autonomic components at rest. Methods: Nineteen volunteers were randomly allocated to (1) 4 weeks HIIE training performed 3 times per we...