Skip to Content
Report an accessibility problem
Barbara Ainsworth

Barbara Ainsworth

Regents Professor Emerita, School of Nutrition and Health Promotion, College of Health Solutions


School of Nutrition and Health Promotion
Arizona State University, Downtown Phoenix campus
500 N. 3rd St.
Phoenix, AZ 85142


  • Distinguished Sustainability Fellow, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory
  • Regents Professor Emerita, School of Nutrition and Health Promotion, College of Health Solutions


Barbara E. Ainsworth is a Regents Professor Emerita in the Exercise Science and Health Promotion Program and Associate Director for Health Promotion Faculties in School of Nutrition and Health Promotion at Arizona State University. Her research relates to physical activity and public health with focus on the assessment of physical activity in populations, the evaluation of physical activity questionnaires, and physical activity in women. Dr. Ainsworth is best known as the lead author for the Compendium of Physical Activities, an exhaustive list of the energy cost of human physical activities. Dr. Ainsworth is a Past President of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the National Academy of Kinesiology. She is a recipient of the ACSM Citation Award and the AAHPERD McKenzie Award. In 2015 she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition and has also has served on the President’s Council and the California Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sport Scientific Committees. She is a life-long advocate of active living and spends her free time maintaining her mini-ranch in Arizona, gardening, and hiking.



  • MPH, Epidemiology, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, 1989
  • PhD, Exercise Physiology, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, 1987
  • MA, Education/Physical Education, University of Minnesota-Duluth, 1975
  • BA (cum laude), Physical Education, California State University-Fresno, 1974

External Links

Journal Articles


Ainsworth, B., L. Cahalin, M. Buman and R. Ross. 2015. The current state of physical activity assessment tools. Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases 57(4):387-395. DOI: 10.1016/j.pcad.2014.10.005. (link )

Smith, L. L., S. J. Wherry, L. K. Larkey, B. E. Ainsworth and P. D. Swan. 2015. Energy expenditure and cardiovascular responses to Tai Chi Easy. Complementary Therapies in Medicine 23(6):802-805. DOI: 10.1016/j.ctim.2015.09.004. (link )


Buman, M. P., E. A. Winkler, J. M. Kurka, E. B. Hekler, C. M. Baldwin, N. Owen, B. E. Ainsworth, G. N. Healy and P. A. Gardiner. 2014. Reallocating time to sleep, sedentary behaviors, or active behaviors: Associations with cardiovascular disease risk biomarkers, NHANES 2005-2006. American Journal of Epidemiology 179(3):323-334. DOI: 10.1093/aje/kwt292. (link )

Kurka, J. M., M. P. Buman and B. E. Ainsworth. 2014. Validity of the rapid eating assessment for patients for assessing dietary patterns in NCAA patients. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 11:Art. 42. DOI: 10.1186/s12970-014-0042-y. (link )

Larkey, L. K., C. Keller, D. McClain, B. E. Ainsworth, P. Ohri-Vachaspati, L. L. Smith and M. Jeong. 2014. A biobehavioral model of weight loss associated with meditative movement practice among breast cancer survivors. Health Psychology Open 1(1):2055102914565495. DOI: 10.1177/2055102914565495. (link )

Smith, L. L., L. K. Larkey, D. J. Roe, J. A. Bucho-Gonzalez, K. Saboda and B. E. Ainsworth. 2014. Self-reported physical acivity patterns among low-income Latina women in Arizona. Women's Health Issues 24(3):e353-e361. DOI: 10.1016/j.whi.2014.02.009. (link )


Adams, M. A., D. Ding, J. F. Sallis, H. R. Bowles, B. E. Ainsworth, P. Bergman, F. C. Bull, H. Carr, C. L. Craig, I. De Bourdeaudhuij, L. F. Gomez, M. Hagstromer, L. Klasson-Heggebo, S. Inoue, J. Lefevre, D. J. Macfarlane, S. Matsudo, V. Matsudo, G. McLean, N. Murase, M. Sjostrom, H. Tomten, V. Volbekiene and A. Bauman. 2013. Patterns of neighborhood environment attributes related to physical activity across 11 countries: a latent class analysis. International Journal of Behavioral Nurtrition and Physical Activity 10:Art. 34. DOI: 10.1186/1479-5868-10-34. (link )

Ding, D., M. A. Adams, J. F. Sallis, G. J. Norman, M. F. Hovell, C. D. Chambers, C. R. Hofstetter, H. R. Bowles, M. Hagstromer, C. L. Craig, L. F. Gomez, I. De Bourdeaudhuij, D. Macfarlane, B. E. Ainsworth, P. Bergman, F. C. Bull, H. Carr, L. Klasson-Heggebo, S. Inoue, N. Murase, S. Matsudo, V. Matsudo, G. McLean, M. Sjostrom, H. Tomten, J. Lefevre, V. Volbekiene and A. Bauman. 2013. Perceived neighborhood environment and physical activity in 11 countries: Do associations differ by country?. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 10:Art. 57. DOI: 10.1186/1479-5868-10-57. (link )

Kerr, J., J. Sallis, N. Owen, I. De Bourdeaudhuij, E. Cerin, T. Sugiyama, R. Reis, O. Sarmiento, K. Fromel, J. Mitas, J. Troelsen, L. B. Christiansen, D. Macfarlane, D. Salvo, G. Schofield, H. Badland, F. Guillen-Grima, I. Aguinaga-Ontoso, R. Davey, A. Bauman, B. Saelens, C. Riddoch, B. Ainsworth, M. Pratt, T. Schmidt, L. Frank, M. Adams, T. Conway, K. Cain, D. Van Dyck and N. Bracy. 2013. Advancing science and policy through a coordinated international study of physical activity and built environments: IPEN adult methods. Journal of Physical Activity and Health 10(4):581-601. DOI: 10.1123/jpah.10.4.581. (link )


Larkey, L., L. Szalacha, C. Rogers, R. Jahnke and B. E. Ainsworth. 2012. Measurement pilot study of the Meditative Movement Inventory (MMI). Journal of Nursing Measurement 20(3):230-243. DOI: 10.1891/1061-3749.20.3.230. (link )

Rogers, C. E., C. Keller, L. K. Larkey and B. E. Ainsworth. 2012. A randomized controlled trial to determine the efficacy of Sign Chi Do exercise on adaptation to aging. Research in Gerontological Nursing 5(2):101-113. DOI: 10.3928/19404921-20110706-01. (link )