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Australia’s population is ageing and although an active lifestyle has health benefits across the life span, most people do not participate in sufficient physical activity for health benefits. In particular, very few older Australian adults participate in strength training (e.g. weight or resistance training).
Research from exercise interventions has shown that strength training has beneficial outcomes which are critical for the health and wellbeing of older adults, for example, improvements in physical functioning and the prevention of cognitive decline. However, little is known about the key influences on strength training among older adults, and data on patterns, trends and correlates of strength training among older adults are limited.
This project will focus on people aged 65+ years and will result in increased knowledge about the effects of strength training participation for health and wellbeing in this important population group. The project will make use of mixed-methodology and will use the socioecological model as a framework to examine the multiple levels of influence on strength training among older adults. Including individual factors (e.g. cost, motivation, intentions), social environmental factors (e.g. social support, perceived norms, modelling) & physical environmental factors (e.g. access to facilities) associated with strength training participation among adults aged 65+ years.
We envisage a series of studies including a systematic literature review, analysis of existing data on strength training and ageing, a focus group study and a survey study. This will provide the successful applicant with an excellent range of research skills. The exact series of studies will be developed with the successful applicant.
The scholarship is funded by ISEAL . It is commensurate with Australian Postgraduate Awards (2015 stipend rate: $25,849 per year) for 3 years with a possible extension of 6 months contingent on performance. The successful candidate will be based at the Footscray Park Campus of Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia. The principal supervisor will be Dr Jannique van Uffelen, Senior Research Fellow in Active Ageing, with co-supervision from Dr Jason Bennie, Research Fellow in Active Living and Public Health and Professor Stuart Biddle, Program Leader in Active Living and Public Health. The project will be embedded in the Active Living & Public Health Team to provide a supportive, multidisciplinary research environment.
We aim to start this scholarship in September 2015, although the starting date can be negotiated.
Please submit your cover letter, including information about the eligibility criteria, and resume as a single document (Word or pdf only) to firstname.lastname@example.org by 5 p.m. on Friday 29th May 2015. Applications without ‘PhD Scholarship at Victoria University, Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living ( ISEAL )’ in the email subject field may not be assessed.
Closing date: Friday 29th May 2015
ISEAL has as its mission to make important contributions to society through innovative research in Sport, Exercise Science and Active Living.
A University of Melbourne geology professor has joined the ranks of the world’s finest scientific minds after being awarded the prestigious Royal Society Fellowship at the weekend.
University of Melbourne Associate Professor of Media and Communications Ingrid Volkmer has been appointed to the prestigious International Panel on Social Progress.
Research by Dr Kerstin Zander has estimated the costs of heat stress
The impact of heat stress on productivity in the workplace throughout Australia is costing the economy billions of dollars each year, with research suggesting office workers are also affected.
The research published in the journal “Nature Climate Change” today is the first to examine the economic costs of heat stress in Australia.
Lead researcher Dr Kerstin Zander from the Northern Institute at Charles Darwin University said the study indicated that heat stress related reductions in workplace productivity were as high as for many chronic diseases.
“Climate change has a significant impact on labour productivity, particularly in Australia where people experience extreme heat, but few studies have estimated its economic cost,” Dr Zander said.
The research team conducted Australia-wide online surveys in March and October 2014 asking participants questions associated with work-related stress and physical exertion. Participants were also asked how much they had been affected by heat stress, particularly its impact on their work.
“Using data obtained from the survey, we have estimated the annual costs at AUD$728 per person across a representative sample of 1726 employed Australians,” Dr Zander said, “If we look at the overall working population aged between 18 and 65, the burden to the economy can be estimated as $6.9 billion per year.”
She said the figures represented the minimum national loss because they did not include the effects of heat stress on those carrying out non-paid work or how people were affected in their leisure time.
Co-researcher Professor Stephen Garnett said that assessment of productivity loss resulting from climate change had so far been based on physiological models of heat exposure.
“This study is the first to ask how people feel they are being affected by heat stress providing a valuable insight into the psychological impacts of heat stress,” Professor Garnett said.
“One surprising finding was that heat affected the productivity of office workers as much as it did outdoor workers, with 70 per cent of those surveyed saying heat stress had reduced their productivity at work. It is feeling hot that affects productivity, not necessarily whether they are experiencing unusual conditions.”
He said that education on how to manage heat stress would be key for employers if employee productivity was not to be compromised in the future.
This research was collaborative with VU University Amsterdam Associate Professor Wouter Botzen, CDU Northern Institute Research Fellow Dr Elspeth Oppermann and Lund University Professor Tord Kjellstrom.
To view the journal article visit W: www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2623.html
QUT research is aiming to improve search engines after finding online self-diagnosis of health conditions provides misleading results that can do more harm than good.
Despite its obvious health benefits, exercise does not automatically offset calories consumed and lead to weight loss.
In less than 25 years ECU has created some of the most eye catching architecture in Western Australia to create an innovative, global university.
The audacious golden exterior of the latest architectural addition to ECU’s Joondalup Campus is a clear sign of its rapid development as a vibrant, globally-focused University.