Section Neuromechanics

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Our research integrates neurophysiology and biomechanics (neuromechanics) to better understand the functioning of the neuromusculoskeletal system. We are interested in the study of normal function and elite performance, as well as altered function and dysfunction in injuries and diseases that impact on the neuromusculoskeletal system.

We are particularly interested in the relation between changes in the neuromusculoskeletal system and its neural control. We focus on injury and disease, ageing, treatment, recovery and adaptation. Our research questions are generated from both theoretical constructs and practice, solving problems in areas such as orthopedics, rehabilitation, physiotherapy, ergonomics and sports. Our goal is to contribute to prevention, treatment and rehabilitation with respect to musculoskeletal and movement disorders. We translate fundamental insights into practical applications and develop measurement tools that can be used both inside and outside the laboratory context. This translational effort is faciliated through collaborations with clinicians, epidemiologists and biomedical industry.

As reflected in the term ‘neuromechanics’, it is our view that human movement should be understood by studying structure, function and control of the musculoskeletal system in conjunction. We use observational and experimental studies on human participants to unravel the interplay of the various aspects of the neuromusculoskeletal system .We supplement these approaches with anatomical studies, animal models, and computer simulation, to allow more adequate characterisation of and control over physiological and anatomical constraints.

Currently, our main focus areas are: the control of posture and gait with an emphasis on the mechanics of the lower extremities, spine and pelvis; mechanical and physiological aspects of repetitive and ballistic upper extremity movements; clinical diagnosis and management of neuromusculoskeletal conditions; mechanisms of pathology and treatment; ambulatory measurement and augmented feedback.