Dr Nigel Harris

Nigel Harris is a Senior Lecturer in Exercise Science at Auckland University of Technology with a research focus on exercise prescription for general metabolic health, and well-being.

Nigel’s research activities are centred on the assessment and improvement of metabolic health through exercise, with an emphasis on resistance training and high intensity intermittent exercise. The additive effects of such exercise with a nutritional approach emphasizing whole food that is nutrient dense, low in refined carbohydrate, and high in healthy fats and protein is an additional area of research interest.

PRESENTATION: Strenuous Muscular Contractions: A Preemptive Polypill for the Pervasive Penias 

Movement aplenty is clearly fundamental to our health and well-being.  But, some strenuous muscular contractions (SMC) exert a potent stimulus that transcends a multitude of outcomes broadly benefiting our physical, physiological, and psychological health.   In particular, some habitual SMC during youth most probably serve as an important component in staving the malignant tripartite of dynapenia, sarcopenia, and osteopenia.

This presentation briefly examines some of the mechanisms underpinning such effects and considers how dosing the SMC polypill could be implemented in our modern environment, with youth that are ostensibly suffering prematurely from these conditions, prior to the remedial action typically prompted by affronting symptomatic disorder later in life.


  • Overview the positive adaptations consequential from strenuous muscular contractions.
  • Consider the link between earlier life dynapenia and sarcopenia, and osteopenia, as precursors to pathology later in life.
  • Review the prescription required from both a theoretical and practically applicable perspective.