Dr Helen Quirk


School of Health and Related Research

NIHR SPHR Launching Fellow in Public Health

+44 114 222 0754

Full contact details

Dr Helen Quirk
School of Health and Related Research
Room 2037, 2nd Floor
Regent Court (ScHARR)
30 Regent Street
S1 4DA

My background is in psychology (BSc University of Sheffield, 2010) and sport and exercise psychology (MSc Sheffield Hallam University, 2012). I have a PhD from the University of Nottingham. The subject of my thesis was understanding how to promote physical activity in children with type 1 diabetes. I am a chartered member of the British Psychological Society and Co-Deputy Chair of the parkrun Research Board, hosted at the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC) at Sheffield Hallam University.

I joined the University of Sheffield as a Research Fellow in April 2020 having been awarded an NIHR School of Public Health Research Launching Fellowship. 

Research interests

My research interests are in the promotion of physical activity, exercise, health and wellbeing in clinical and non-clinical populations. Before working in ScHARR, I was a researcher in the Academy of Sport and Physical Activity at Sheffield Hallam University and continue to be a visiting researcher in the Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC) at Sheffield Hallam University. I have been involved in the development, implementation and evaluation of physical activity interventions and have been commissioned by organisations such as parkrun, Public Health England, Diabetes UK and Sport England to evaluate programmes.

Current projects

• NIHR SPHR Launching Fellow in Public Health - April 2020 to March 2022


Show: Featured publications All publications

Journal articles

All publications

Journal articles

Conference proceedings papers

  • Haake S, Quirk H & Bullas A (2021) What impact does parkrun have on previously inactive people? Results from the parkrun health and wellbeing survey 2018. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF BEHAVIORAL MEDICINE, Vol. 28(SUPPL 1) (pp S117-S117) RIS download Bibtex download
  • Quirk H & Haake S (2018) Interim evaluation results from the parkrun PROVE project. JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY & HEALTH, Vol. 15(10) (pp S100-S100) RIS download Bibtex download
Research group

PhD Supervision

I am currently supervising Research Students at Sheffield Hallam University conducting research into: i) the initiation and maintenance of walking football among older adults and ii) community-based physical activity and mental health; a case study of parkrun.

I am interested in supervising Research Students in topics/areas such as community-based physical activity promotion and/or associated health inequalities, physical activity for people with long-term health conditions, physical activity among children and young people and any research exploring the public health potential of parkrun.

Professional activities

• Co-Deputy Chair of the parkrun Research Board.
• Associate Editor for the International Journal of Sport Psychology.