Post 5. A few reflections on sharing and discussing research

Earlier this week I spent an enjoyable day at Leeds Beckett University’s Carnegie School of Sport. I gave a workshop on using contemporary methods of processing and analysing accelerometer data, which was followed by a whistle-stop introduction to processing accelerometer data using the GGIR R package. Both presentations can be viewed as movie files here and here (around 5 minutes duration each).

Following on from this I gave a seminar to staff and PGR students on the importance of partnership working in school-based physical activity intervention research. The talk used examples of my own experiences in West Lancashire and highlighted a couple of our projects funded by Les Mills International and West Lancashire Sport Partnership. The slides for this presentation are here (about 6.5 minutes duration in movie format).

Whilst it was a pleasure to share this work with the LBU colleagues through the workshops and presentations, it was just as satisfying to chat informally about physical activity, physical education, schools and research in general. I enjoyed finding out more about the LBU research and certainly picked up some ideas that might be useful to apply in my own neck of the woods.

On the drive home I reflected on my short visit over the Pennines. Like all academics, work is always busy and during semester time in particular it can be hard to break out beyond the boundaries of our own institutions and local areas. Everyone has different perspectives on the issues that bind us together as a physical activity research community, and it was refreshing to be in a different environment, and listen to and learn from others in this regard.

I’m looking forward to having similar conversations in the coming month, starting with a local conference for school head teachers and PE coordinators that we are hosting with West Lancashire Sports Partnership. This gives an opportunity to share the local youth physical activity research evidence and its impact, and more importantly to start conversations about co-producing new research that is designed and planned with input from key stakeholders. This approach typifies the partnership working we are striving for, and which in the long-term can hopefully lead to better physical activity engagement from children, families, and wider school communities. Next month is also the ISBNPA conference which will provide an opportunity for different types of conversations and for different types of learning.

In this job we are fortunate to have opportunities to inform practice and promote our discipline area with our project partners. We are also fortunate to have opportunities to spend time discussing our work and learning with expert colleagues from all over the world. I’m certainly looking forward to doing both over the coming weeks.

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