Designing an intervention to increase physical activity among people with physical-mental multimorbidity

Greater ManchesterMental Health
Start Date: 1 Sep 2014 End Date: 30 Sep 2019

What’s the aim of the study?

The aim of the study is to develop an intervention to increase physical activity in sedentary adults living with depression and one or more long-term physical health conditions (for example, diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and coronary heart disease).

What kind of physical activity a person does, how often, and how long for is influenced by physical, social, psychological, and economic factors. The focus of the PhD is on isolating modifiable factors that have a psychological component and that are implicated in motivation to engage in physical activity.


Why is it important?

Multimorbidity is becoming an increasing problem and is becoming more prevalent within an aging population. Physical activity is a self-management behaviour that could help relieve symptoms of depression and improve physical wellbeing. Finding ways of engaging sedentary adults with depression and a long-term physical health condition in doing physical activity is important to improve their self-management of health conditions.


Who is the PhD student?

Before starting the PhD, Isabel completed a BSc in Psychology (2007) and MPhil (2014) at the University of Manchester. The aim of the MPhil study was to outline and test the use of a conceptual framework of attachment theory in collaborative care for depression in people with a comorbid chronic physical health condition. Isabel has worked as a research assistant on different projects and has also worked as a clinical studies officer for the Mental Health Research Network within the NHS.


Who else is involved?

The PhD is supervised by Dr Sarah Knowles at the Centre for Primary Care and Prof Chris Armitage at the Centre for Health Psychology.


More information

More information about recruitment to this study can be found at For more information please contact Isabel Adeyemi.


Dr Sarah Knowles