Principal Investigator


Dr. dawn mackey

Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology, Simon Fraser University

Associate Member, Department of Gerontology, Simon Fraser University

Core Member, Centre for Hip Health and Mobility, University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute

Scholar, Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research

Phone: (778) 782-9330
Fax: (778) 782-3040

The goal of my research is to positively impact health, wellbeing, and quality of life for older adults.

Dr. Dawn Mackey is passionate about helping older adults to maintain mobility and independence. In her Aging and Population Health Lab (APHL) at Simon Fraser University, Dr. Mackey and her team are focused on designing, evaluating, and implementing effective strategies to support older adult mobility and health behavior change. Her current areas of concentration are physical activity, falls and injuries, and fatigability.

Dr. Mackey’s research with older adults spans community to long-term care settings. Her work is applied in nature and solutions focused. Her research is embedded in a knowledge exchange framework that supports translation of insights into actions. As such, she engages with stakeholders to design, conduct, and disseminate research to ensure impact.

Dr. Mackey received her BSc Honours and MSc in Kinesiology from Simon Fraser University. She received her PhD in Epidemiology from the University of California, Berkeley, and she continued her training in Epidemiology through a post-doctoral fellowship at the San Francisco Coordinating Centre at the University of California, San Francisco. Now as a faculty member, she is committed to providing outstanding mentorship to her trainees.

Dr. Mackey’s research incorporates methods and techniques from epidemiology, biostatistics, and knowledge translation. These include clinical trials, feasibility and proof-of-concept studies, longitudinal cohort studies, causal inference, laboratory experiments, qualitative inquiries, knowledge synthesis, meta-analysis, and formative evaluation.


Older adult mobility
Physical activity
Lifestyle behaviour change
Fall and injury prevention
Physical function

Long-term care
Intervention and observational studies
Core outcome sets
Knowledge synthesis
Knowledge translation



Timothy Ainge

MSc Student (

Tim is an MSc student in the APHL at SFU. Tim previously earned concurrent BSc and BBA degrees at SFU, reflecting his passion for problem solving at the intersection of research and practice. His thesis research involves leveraging big-data methods from the field of business analytics to explore relationships between physical activity, chronic disease, and healthcare treatment costs in the Canadian older adult population. These new methods could eventually provide a means to optimize the delivery of physical activity promotion interventions for older adults, such that they are likely to be cost-beneficial. In his free time, Tim enjoys playing and coaching soccer, playing guitar (poorly), and running on the local trails as he trains for his next ultramarathon.


Ashley Kwon (nee Collins)

MSc Student (

Ashley is an MSc student in the APHL. She previously completed her BSc in Kinesiology from SFU. Her current research is focused on providing pre-dialytic exercise for hemodialysis patients. She has also completed past research on fall and injury prevention interventions for seniors. Ashley works for Fraser Health as a Coordinator for Patient Safety and Injury Prevention. In her free time, Ashley enjoys travelling, dancing and spending time adventuring outside.  


Stephanie Maganja

MSc Student (

Stephanie began as a co-op student (Research Assistant, VPR URSA) in the APHL in the spring of 2015. She completed her BSc degree in Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology at SFU that same year. Stephanie is now an MSc student in the BPK program at SFU. In previous research positions, she has worked on projects involving patients with hospital-acquired delirium, delayed umbilical cord clamping, respiratory disease, and mobility and physical activity promotion in older adults. Stephanie’s research interests include promotion of health and quality of life. Currently, her primary research is focused on the criterion validity and test-retest reliability of commercial-grade activity monitors in mobility-intact and mobility-limited older adults during over-ground walking. Outside of research, Stephanie loves to travel and attend live events around BC. She also enjoys participating in and organizing team sports.



Undergraduate Student (

Rania is a BSc student in Biomedical Physiology at SFU. Rania joined the APHL in September 2018 as a Directed Studies student (BPK 498) and Research Coordinator. She is currently managing the FLIP Study where she focuses on assessing the impact of compliant flooring on fall-related injuries in long-term care. Outside of research, she volunteers and works for programs such as Let’s Talk Science and Science in Action where she teaches Science in French and English to K - 12 students in the Lower Mainland. In her free time, she enjoys watching soccer and listening to French music.



Undergraduate Student (

Aksel is a 5th year Kinesiology major completing his BSc Honours. He seeks to find ways to better promote health and wellbeing in at-risk, disadvantaged and under-represented populations. In the APHL, Aksel is working on a project using activity monitors to measure daily walking patterns in people with knee osteoarthritis who have recently received an intra-articular injection. With this study, he hopes to contribute to the development of systems that aid in the management of chronic disease. Aksel also spends his time exploring BC, hiking and camping wherever he can, and playing music with friends.


Nicole Whittle

Undergraduate Student (

Nicole is currently completing her BSc in Kinesiology at SFU. She is interested in improving the health of the older adult population and investigating the impacts and roles of exercise on the general population. Nicole joined the APHL in May 2018 as a co-op and USRA student. Currently, Nicole is working on a systematic literature review researching the effects of financial incentives on the adherence to physical activity in older adults. Outside the lab, Nicole spends her time hiking, going to the beach, and enjoying the city of Vancouver.



Undergraduate Student (

Amanda is working towards her BSc in Kinesiology, concentrating in Active Health and Rehabilitation at SFU. In September 2018, Amanda began as a Directed Studies student and Research Assistant in the APHL. She is currently assisting with data collection and entry for the FLIP Study and conducting a data analysis project for her directed studies course. She is passionate about helping others and being involved in the community, as seen through her volunteer work at the Physical Activity Research Centre at ICORD. In her spare time, Amanda enjoys running, hiking, playing volleyball, and has recently taken an interest in yoga.



Kristina collins, Msc

Project Manager (

Kristina manages APHL projects, specifically the FLIP Study investigating the impact of compliant flooring on fall-related injuries in long-term care. Her MSc thesis in Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology at SFU focused on using a novel exercise intervention to reduce the energy cost of walking among older adults with mobility limitation. She is interested in promoting health and well-being throughout the aging process by supporting physical activity and mobility strategies across all ages. Outside of research, she enjoys playing sports all year-round, and exploring the beautiful outdoors in BC.


Emaan abbasi

Research Assistant (

Emaan is a BSc student in Biomedical Physiology at SFU. Emaan joined the APHL in January 2018 as a co-op and USRA student. She worked on a systematic review investigating the use of financial incentive to promote physical activity in older adults, and she is currently assisting with the FLIPS study. Emaan loves being involved in the community and is an active volunteer at the Jim Pattison Outpatient Care Centre as a cardiac rehabilitation exercise assistant. In her free time, Emaan enjoys playing field hockey, cooking, and writing poetry.