School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences


Gareth completed his PhD at Loughborough University in 2014 and has since held lectureships at Nottingham Trent University, Cardiff Metropolitan University and the University of Bath. He returned to the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences as a lecturer in 2019 and contributes to the research themes of “Lifestyle for Health and Wellbeing” and “Sports Participation”. His teaching and learning contributions include delivering on topics related to Sports Management and Sociology.

Gareth is a social scientist with broad interests related to the social determinants of health. His work is largely informed by concepts and theories derived from sociology but is proactive in engaging with researchers, practitioners and ideas across different disciplines such as medicine, education, psychology, philosophy, social marketing and behavioural science. He has specialist knowledge in qualitative research having utilised a range of ethnographic, interview and visual methods in the past.

His main research interests fall into three areas: exercise and health for organ transplant recipients; the social determinants of physical activity and health inequalities; advanced and innovative methodologies.


  • Member of the Research Advisory Group for Parkrun research.
  • Peer reviewer for: Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health; BMJ Open; Sport, Education and Society; Health Promotion Journal of Australia; Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy; International Review for the Sociology of Sport; and European Physical Education Review.


Invited talks and recent conference presentations:


  • Wiltshire, G. & Bescoby, C. “The personal perspective of the transplant athlete”, World Transplant Games Federation Symposium, August 2019, Newcastle University, UK.
  • Wiltshire, G. “What can sociology contribute to physical activity and public health research?”, Centre for Exercise, Nutrition & Health Sciences Seminar, University of Bristol, September 2018.
  • Wiltshire, G. (2018). “How can school-based interventions make more of a difference?” Symposium at the International Society for Physical Activity and Health Congress, London, October 2018.
  • Wiltshire, G., Clarke, N. J., Phoenix, C., & Bescoby, C. (2018). Showing off my new lungs: and interpretive phenomenological analysis of organ transplant recipients’ experiences of physical activity and sport. Paper presented at Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise, Vancouver, Canada.


Public engagement:

  • Ronkainen, N. J., & Wiltshire, G. (2019). Rethinking validity in qualitative sport and exercise psychology research: a realist perspective. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 1-16.
  • Wiltshire, G., Lee, J. & Williams, O. (2019). Understanding the reproduction of health inequalities: physical activity, social class and Bourdieu’s habitus. Sport, Education and Society, 24(3), 226-240.
  • Wiltshire, G. (2018). A case for critical realism in the pursuit of interdisciplinarity and impact. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 10(5), 525-542.
  • Wiltshire, G. & Stevinson, C. (2018). Exploring the role of social capital in community-based physical activity: qualitative insights from parkrun. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 10(1), 47-62.
  • Wiltshire, G., Fullagar, S. & Stevinson, C. (2018). Exploring parkrun as a social context for collective health practices: Running with and against the moral imperatives of health responsiblisation. Sociology of Health and Illness, 40(1), 3-17.
  • Wiltshire, G., Lee, J. & Evans, J. (2017). “You don’t want to stand out as the bigger one”: exploring how PE and school sport participation is influenced by pupils and their peers. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 22(5), 548-561.
  • Stevinson, C., Wiltshire, G. & Hickson, M. (2015). Facilitating Participation in Health-Enhancing Physical Activity: A Qualitative Study of parkrun. International Journal of Behavioural Medicine, 22 (2), 170-177.
  • Clarke, N. J., Willis, M. E. H., Barnes, J. S., Caddick, N., Cromby, J., Mcdermott, H. & Wiltshire, G. (2015). Analytical Pluralism in Qualitative Research: A Meta-Study. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 12(2), 182-201.