Professor Diane Crone, PhD, FRSPH

Prof Crone

Professor of Exercise and Health

​Telephone number: 0290 417092
Email address:

Diane is a Professor in Exercise and Health at the Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences. Her expertise lies in the area of the design, delivery and evaluation of health promoting interventions in primary and secondary health care, and in the community. She has published internationally in the areas of exercise referral scheme evaluation, mental health promotion, arts for health and in physical activity pathway intervention evaluations.

She has presented both nationally and internationally in both English and Spanish. Much of her work is undertaken with health professionals in the NHS and with regional and local government officers, in both the UK and EU. As a consequence, has specific application to practice and is used regularly in the development of evidence-based practice.

In terms of management and leadership, she has extensive experience of both leading and taking part in multi-partner projects and of international and transnational working practices.  She has led and managed three large EU bids, Leonardo and ERASMUS, including HELP (Healthy Learning and Practice through Europe €320K; 2011-2013), EGS (Employability of Graduates in Sport across Europe €380K; 2012-2014) and SPAcE (Supporting Policy and Action through Active Environments €650K; 2015-2017). In addition to leading numerous other regional and national level research projects, in her previous Professorial role at the University of Gloucestershire, she was the University’s strategic lead for the research priority area, Sport, Exercise, Health and Wellbeing. This research area incorporated staff across three School’s (Natural and Social Sciences, Sport and Exercise, and Health and Social Care), and included two REF related Unit of Assessments. She was also the University lead for Research4Gloucestershire, a collaborative research partnership between the University and six key health and social care providers in the county.

She is a member of BASES (British Association for Sport and Exercise Sciences) and a Fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health.

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Research / Publications

Selected publications from 2015 onwards:

Buckley, B. J. R., Thijssen, D. H. J., Murphy, R. C., Graves, L. E. F., Whyte, G., F.B., G., Wilson, P. M., Crone, D. and Watson, P. M. (2018) Making a Move in Exercise Referral: Co-Development of a Physical Activity Referral Scheme. Journal of Public Health

Redmond, M., Sumner, R. C., Crone, D. M. and Hughes, S. (2018) 'Light in dark places': exploring qualitative data from a longitudinal study using creative arts as a form of social prescribing. Arts & Health.

Chilton, J., Crone, D., & Tyson, P. J. (2018) Clinical Outcomes from a 10-Week Follow-Up Psychoeducational Programme for Dual Diagnosis. Journal of Dual Diagnosis.

Crone, D. M., Sumner, R. C., Baker, C. M., Loughren, E. A., Hughes, S., & James, D. V. (2018) 'Artlift' arts-on-referral intervention in UK primary care: updated findings from an ongoing observational study. European Journal of Public Health, 28(3) 404-409.

Florindo, A. A., Andrade, D. R., Guerra, P. H., Mota, J., Crone, D., Mafra, A. C., & Bracco, M. M. (2017). Physical activity promotion by health practitioners: a distance-learning training component to improve knowledge and counseling. Primary health care research & development, 19(2), 140-150.

Baker, C., Loughren, E. A., Dickson, T., Goudas, M., Crone, D., Kudlacek, M ... De la Cruz Sánchez, E. (2017) Sports graduate capabilities and competencies: a comparison of graduate and employer perceptions in six EU countries. European Journal for Sport and Society, 14(2), 95-116.

Visiedo, A., Sainz de Baranda, P. Crone, D., Aznar, S., Pérez-Llamas, F., Sánchez-Jiménez, R., elázquez, F., de Dios Berná-Serna, J. and Zamora, S. (2016) Programas para la prevención de la obesidad en escolares de 5 a 10 años: revisión de la literature (Programs to prevent obesity in school children 5 to 10 years old: a review). Nutrición Hospitalaria,33(4), 814-824 ISSN 0212-1611.

Queen, M., Parker, A. & Crone, D (2016) Gender perceptions and their impact when referring obese patients for exercise. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 8(3). pp. 287-300.

Thomas, T., Passfield, L., Coulton, S. & Crone, D. (2016) Effectiveness of a tailored training programme in behaviour change counselling for community pharmacists: A pilot study. Patient Education and Counseling, 99(1), 132-138.

Baker, C., Loughren, E.,  Crone, D. & Kallfa, N. (2015) Perceptions of health professionals involved in the implementation of a NHS Health Check care pathway in the primary care setting. Practice Nursing, 26(12), 608-612.

Queen, M., Crone, D. & Parker, A. (2015) Evaluation of a tactic to engage hard-to-reach patients during exerciser referral process: a longitudinal qualitative study. European Journal for Person Centered Healthcare, 3(3), 288-294.

Queen, M., Crone, D. & Parker, A. (2015) Long-term engagement with a practice-based exercise referral scheme: Patients' perceptions of effectiveness. European Journal for Person Centered Healthcare, 3 (3), 369-376. ISSN 2052-5656

Baker, C., Loughren, E. A., Crone, D. & Kallfa, N. (2015) A process evaluation of the NHS Health Check care pathway in a primary care setting. Journal of Public Health, 37(2), 202-209.

Baker, C., Loughren, E.A., Crone, D. & Kallfa, N. (2015) Patients' perceptions of a NHS Health Check in the primary care setting. Quality in primary care, 22(5), 232-237.


Books and Book Chapters:

Buckley, B., Crone, D., Watson, P., Murphy, B., & Pearce, M., (in press) Co-production in exercise referral schemes. In: A. Scott and D. Vishnubala (eds). Essentials of Exercise Referral. Human Kinetics, (pp. TBC). ISBN TBC.

Crone, D. and Lozano-Sufrategui, L. (in press) Interviews and focus groups. In: S.R. Bird and J. A. Hawley (eds). Research Methods in Physical Activity and Health (pp. TBC). Routledge, London TBC. ISBN TBC.

Owens, C., Crone, D., Gidlow, C., James, D.V.B. (in press) Chapter 8 – Observational (cross-sectional and longitudinal) studies. In: S.R. Bird and J. A. Hawley (eds). Research Methods in Physical Activity and Health (pp. TBC). Routledge, London. ISBN TBC.

Baker, C., Loughren, E. A., Crone, D., Tutton, A. & Aitken, P. (2016) Contemporary lifestyle interventions for public health - Potential roles for professional sports clubs. In: S. Cotterill, N.

Weston and G. Breslin (eds). Sport and Exercise Psychology: Practitioner Case Studies (pp. 417-436). Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-1-118-68654-6

Crone., D.M. and James, D.V.B. (2016) Evidence-based practice in physical activity promotion. In: A. Scott and C. Gidlow (eds ). Clinical Exercise Science. (pp. 247-262). Routledge, London, ISBN 9780415708418

Gidlow, C., Crone, D. and Huws-Thomas, M. (2016). Physical activity promotion in Primary Health Care and the community. In: A. Scott and C. Gidlow (eds). Clinical Exercise Science. (pp. 263-284). Routledge, London. ISBN 978-0-415-70841-8

Teaching and Supervision


Diane, to date, has supervised to completion PhD (n= 14), MPhil (n=1) and MSc by research (n= 5). Topics include a range of areas including, physical activity and health promotion, arts for health, mental health and wellbeing, partnership working, effectiveness of exercise referral schemes, group therapy in dual diagnosis.  She has supervised both qualitative and mixed methods research. She is currently supervising PhD students in both the UK and Spain.


Diane has taught at under and post graduate, and doctoral level programmes in both England and in Spain. Her topics include:

  • Physical activity promotion for public health
  • Arts and health
  • Mental health promotion
  • Active travel and urban active environment strategies
  • Pragmatic evaluation approaches

External Links

Diane has a number of active external links either through collaborations on projects or as an invited expert panel/committee member. Some of these include:

  • Public Health England Mental Health Campaign Expert Advisory group member, 2018-2022.
  • HEPA EU (Health Enhancing Physical Activity EU) various working groups
  • International Society of Physical Activity and Health/Public Health England/HEPA (Health Enhancing Physical Activity) EU International Congress Physical Activity and Public health 2018 - Scientific Committee; Theme Lead (Mental health).
  • Mental Health First Aid England
  • Innovation for Wellbeing Foundation, Bangladesh
  • Varied significant collaborations with universities in the UK, EU and internationally:
    • Staffordshire University, UK
    • University of Bath, UK
    • University of Birmingham, UK
    • University of Gloucestershire, UK
    • University of Murcia, Spain
    • Universidad de Castilla La Mancha, Spain
    • University of Valencia, Spain
    • University of the Basque Country, Spain,
    • Palacky University, Czech Republic
    • University of Thessaly, Greece
    • University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Sporting / Coaching Profile

Currently regularly participates competitively or recreationally in sprint triathlons, tennis league, DAMES Cycling Club, mountain biking, and skiing.

Previously she has been a successful county and regional athlete in football, badminton and throwing the javelin.