department of kinesiology

25 Independence Way, Kingston, RI 02881


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Mary (Molly) Greaney

Mary Greaney
  • Associate Professor, Health Studies Director
  • Kinesiology/Health Studies
  • Phone: 401.874.7499
  • Email:
  • Mailing Address: Independence Square, RM 224


The rapid increase of overweight/obesity and other chronic diseases associated with health-related behaviors requires the development of efficacious interventions that are implemented across the lifespan. Developed interventions need to recognize that individual, interpersonal, community, and environmental factors influence both health behaviors and health status, while being sustainable and scalable. Furthermore, escalating healthcare costs point to the need for prevention and encouraging patient activation regarding healthful lifestyle choices. These ideas provide the foundation for Dr. Greaney’s current and future research program, which aims to: 1) identify personal, social, and environmental factors associated with physical activity and other healthful behaviors; and 2) identify sociodemographic, behavioral, and health-related factors associated with intervention engagement. Dr. Greaney’s future research efforts are focused on promoting physical activity, healthful eating and other healthful behaviors using participatory research methods and ecological models.


  • Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Rhode Island
  • Ph.D., University of South Carolina
  • M.P.H., University of Massachusetts (Amherst)
  • A.B., Mount Holyoke College



Greaney, M.L., Puleo, E., Sprunck-Harrild, K., Haines, J., Houghton, S.C., Emmons, K.M. (2017). Social support for changing multiple behaviors: factors associated with seeking support and the impact of offered support. Health Education and Behavior, Jul 1:1090198117712333. doi: 10.1177/1090198117712333. [Epub ahead of print].

Lindsay, A.C., Greaney, M. L., Wallington, S.F., Wright, J.A., Hunt, A.T. (2017). Depressive symptoms and length of U.S. residency are associated with obesity among low-income Latina mothers: A cross-sectional analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(8): 10.3390/ijerph14080869.

Rodger, R.F., Peterson, K.E., Hunt, A.T., Spadano-Gasbarro, J.L.,  Richmond, T.K.,  Greaney, M.L.,  Bryn Austin, S. (2017). Racial/ethnic and weight status disparities in dieting and disordered weight control behaviors among early adolescents. Eating Behaviors, 26:104–107.

Lindsay, A.C., Wallington, S.F.,  Greaney, M.L.,  Hasselman, M.H.,  Tavares Machado, M.M.,  Mezzavilla, R.S.(2017). Brazilian Immigrant Mothers’ Beliefs and Practices Related to Infant Feeding: A Qualitative Study. Journal of Human Lactation, 33(3):595–605.

Xu, F., Greaney, M., Marchand, S., Baruch, J., Corcoran, C., DiBiasio, H., Riebe, D., & Greene, G. (2017). The Impact of a community-based childhood obesity prevention program on children’s physical activity and fitness. Journal of Physical Activity Research, 2(1): 44-49. doi:10.12691/jpar-2-1-8.

Lindsay, A.C., Greaney, M.L.,  Wallington, S.F.,  Mesa, T.,  Salas, C.F. (2017). A review of early influences on physical activity and sedentary behaviors of preschool-age children in high-income countries. Journal for Specialists in Pediatric Nursing, 22(3): 10.1111/jspn.12182.

Greaney, M.L.,  Askew, S.,  Foley, P.,  Wallington, S.F.,  Bennett, G.G.(2017). Linking patients with community resources: use of a free YMCA membership among low-income black women. Translational Behavioral Medicine, 7(2):341–348.

Lindsay, A.C., Wallington, S.F.,  Greaney, M.L.,  Hasselman, M.H., Machado, M.M.T.,  Mezzavilla, R.S., Detro, B.M.(2017). Sociocultural and Environmental Influences on Brazilian Immigrant Mothers’ Beliefs and Practices Related to Child Feeding and Weight Status. Maternal and Child Health Journal, 21(5): 1085–1094.

Lindsay, A.C.,  Sitthisongkram, S.,  Greaney, M.L.,  Wallington, S.F.,  Ruengdej, P.(2017). Non-responsive feeding practices, unhealthy eating behaviors, and risk of child overweight and obesity in southeast asia: A systematic review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(4): 10.3390/ijerph14040436.

Lindsay, A.C., Greaney, M.L., Wallington, S.F., Sands, F.D., Wright, J.A., Salkeld, J. (2017). Latino parents’ perceptions of the eating and physical activity experiences of their pre-school children at home and at family child-care homes: A qualitative study. Public Health Nutrition, 20(2): 346–356.

Greaney, M.L.,  Lees, F.D.,  Blissmer, B.J.,  Riebe, D.,  Clark, P.G.(2016). Psychosocial factors associated with physical activity in older adults. Annual Review of Gerontology and Geriatrics, 36(1): 273–291.

Ruddy, K. J., Greaney, M. L., Sprunck-Harrild, K, Meyer, M. E. Emmons, K. M.; & Partridge, A. H.(2015). A qualitative exploration of supports and unmet needs of diverse young women with breast cancer. Journal of Community and Supportive Oncology, 13(9): 323-9. 

Greaney, M. L., Hardwick, C. K., Spadano-Gasbarro, J. L., Megzgebu, S., Horan, C., Schlotterbeck, S., Austin, S. B. & Peterson, K. E.  (2015). Implementing a multi-component schoolbased obesity prevention Intervention: a qualitative study. JNEB, doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2014.04.293. [Epub ahead of print].

Greaney, M. L., Puleo, E., Sprunck-Harrild, K., Syngal, S., Gonzalez-Suarez, E., &  Emmons, K. M. (2014). Changes in colorectal cancer screening intention among people aged 18-49 in the United States. BMC Public Health, 14:901. doi: 10.1186/1471-2458-14-901.

Lindsay, A. C., Greaney, M. L., Sussner, K. M., Pfeiffer, E., & Peterson, K. E. (2014). Sociocultural, organizational, and community level influences on physical activity levels of Latino preschool-age children: a qualitative study. International Journal of Child Health and Nutrition, 3: 27-40.

Kim, J. & Greaney, M. L. (2014). Prevalence of physical activity, screen time, and obesity among US Children by the service type of special health care needs. Disability and Health Journal, 7(3):318-24. doi: 10.101.

Greaney, M. L , De Jesus, M,Sprunck-Harrild, K., Tellez, T, Bastani, R, Battaglia, T. A. Michaelson, J. S., & Emmons, K. M.(2014) Designing Audience-Centered Interactive Voice Response Messages to Promote Cancer Screenings Among Low-Income Latinas. Prev Chronic Dis, 13(11):E40. doi: 10.5888/pcd11.130213.

Greaney, M. L., Puleo, E., Sprunck-Harrild, K., Bennett. G. G., Haines, J., Viswanath, K. V., & Emmons, K. M. (2014). Factors associated with choice of intervention modality in the Healthy Directions 2 study. Health Education & Behavior, 41(1): 52-62.


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