Image of Melissa Parnell

Melissa Parnell

Public and Allied Health

Faculty of Health

I am a cross faculty PhD student working within both the Public Health Institute and Physical Activity Exchange. I joined LJMU in Autumn 2016 and I am now in my second year of PhD study.
The title of my PhD project is: The Effect of Second-hand Smoke on Children's Fitness.
The research involves working closely with Merseyside primary schools to recruit 9-11 year old children and their families. The mixed methods approach utilises quantitative laboratory measures, such as VO2max fitness testing and lung function tests. I also use qualitative measures in the form of surveys and focus groups to explore children's attitudes and beliefs around physical activity and exercise. In addition, I also use air quality monitoring to investigate how indoor and outdoor particulate matter (PM2.5) might also impact children's fitness. When combined, this variety of measures will provide a rich insight into how second-hand tobacco smoke might be impacting children’s fitness.


2016, Lancaster University, United Kingdom, MSc Environmental and Biochemical Toxicology
2015, Lancaster University, United Kingdom, BSc Biological Sciences

Academic appointments

Postgraduate researcher, Public Health Institute and Physical Activity Exchange, Liverpool John Moores University, 2016 - present

Journal article

Parnell M, Gee I, Foweather L, Whyte G, Knowles ZR. 2021. Children of Smoking and Non-Smoking Households’ Perceptions of Physical Activity, Cardiorespiratory Fitness, and Exercise Children, 8 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Parnell M, Gee I, Foweather L, Whyte G, Knowles ZR, Dickinson J. 2019. The impact of environmental tobacco smoke exposure on cardiorespiratory fitness in children: A pilot study. International Journal of Environmental Impacts., 2 :240-248 DOI Publisher Url Public Url


Parnell M. 2021. The Association Between Second-hand Tobacco Smoke Exposure and Children’s Cardiorespiratory Fitness, Physical Activity, Respiratory Health, and Attitudes Towards Exercise Gee I, Foweather L, Whyte G. Public Url