Dr Bailey's research investigates the relationship between sedentary behaviour and chronic health conditions with examples being cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, sarcopenia and mental ill-health. His research has spanned from the epidemiological analyses of sedentary behaviour and chronic disease risk, laboratory-based studies examining the benefits of breaking up prolonged sitting time on markers of health to provide proof-of-concept, leading to the development and evaluation of interventions to reduce sedentary behaviour. Dr Bailey has established an interdisciplinary and multi-institutional network of collaborators to deliver this programme of research and leads the Sedentary Behaviour, Health and Disease Research Group. His research has been conducted in a range of population groups and settings, including young people, workplaces, people with Type 2 diabetes, spinal cord injury, older adults with frailty and sarcopenia, cardiac rehabilitation patients and police officers. This has been facilitated with his external partners such as local councils, the NHS, police forces, health charities and community organisations.
Dr Bailey’s research has shown that high amounts of daily sitting time are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes, regardless of how much physical activity people engage in. He has also published a large number of studies showing that regularly breaking up sitting time with short, frequent bouts of light, moderate or high-intensity physical activity leads to improvements in a range of metabolic biomarkers including blood glucose, lipid levels and blood pressure. His first laboratory based study published in 2014 was the first to show postprandial glucose attenuation in response to breaking up sitting time with light-intensity walking in young healthy adults. This paper has received over 272 citations on google scholar as of December 2020.
Dr Bailey has led successful research grant applications to various funding bodies to support his research, including (but not limited to):
- Diabetes UK, A tailored intervention to reduce sitting behaviour in people with Type 2 Diabetes: A randomised-controlled feasibility study, £137,510.
- Abbeyfield Research Foundation, Reducing sarcopenia and maintaining independent living in frail older adults via reductions in sitting time: The Frail-LESS (LEss Sitting and Sarcopenia in Frail older adults) intervention, £73,247.
- Heart Research UK, The benefits of breaking up prolonged sedentary time on cardiovascular disease risk markers in people with spinal cord injury, £86,434.
- Society for Endocrinology, Appetite-regulating hormones: Effect of intermittent versus continuous energy-matched physical activity, £10,000.
- Royal Society, Effect of intermittent versus continuous physical activity on appetite-regulating hormones, £12,745.
He has also supervised 2 PhD students to completion, 6 MSc by Research students to completion, and is supervisor for 5 PhD students who are all completing studies in the sedentary behaviour field.