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Moving through Menopause

Key External Collaborators


This programme of research extends our knowledge of women’s health and wellbeing, through a focus on physical activity during the menopause. Using a range of qualitative methods, including go-along interviews, arts-based methods, and qualitative surveys, we are exploring women’s often hidden embodied experiences of the menopause (including early menopause and peri-menopause) and how these can impact their movement practices. This research gives voice to women whose menopausal bodies have primarily been discussed and given meaning through a Westernised biomedical lens, with less attention being given to the spatial, temporal, relational and embodied dimensions of this transition.


Pair of older women running.Photo credit: Peter Kindersley (Centre for Aging Better).


Narratives of Menopausal Moving Bodies

In this PhD research project, Jo Ann Kay uses go-along life-story interviews and creative workshops with active women to elicit stories of menopause and gain a deeper understanding into the role of women-only activity spaces (running, sea-dipping, cycling) in shaping these experiences.

Supervisors: Cassandra Phoenix and Jane Macnaughton.



This study examines the impact of sensations associated with menopause on experiences of movement. MoveMeno is an international collaboration with UBC and McMaster University in Canada. It is both methodological investigation into the potential of qualitative surveys for researching sensitive topics, and an ongoing commitment to developing a conceptually rich knowledge of what it means to move through menopause from the perspective of women around the world.

Researchers: Cassandra Phoenix, Erica Bennett, Meridith Griffin.



Long, J., Macnaughton, J. & Phoenix, C. (2022). Active women’s stories of menopausal experiences. Poster presentation at the 7th International Conference of Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise. Durham. UK.

Phoenix, C. Researching Embodiment in Multi/Interdisciplinary Spaces. Keynote Address at the 2022 eass & ISSA World Congress of Sociology of Sport. Tübingen, Germany.

Phoenix, C. (2022) Workshop on Ageing & Physical Activity at: Physical Activity Inequalities – Collaboration through Research, Policy and Practice. Co-hosted by Department of Sport & Exercise Sciences, Durham University and County Durham Sports.

Phoenix, C. Moving through Menopause. Presentation at the: Institute of Medical Humanities (Durham University) and Centre for Medical Humanities and Bioethics (Linköping University, Sweden) joint workshop. April 2022, Durham UK.

Cover image credit: Synchronised Swimming by Tara O'Brien.