Biodynamics Research Laboratory
Research in the Biodynamics Research Laboratory aims to achieve two broad long-term goals. First we look to understand the full spectrum of lower extremity injury consequences such as structural adaptations, sensorimotor and neurophysiological alterations, and behavioral changes. Second, we apply our understanding of lower extremity consequences to improve therapeutic intervention effectiveness for lower extremity injuries to improve both short and long term outcomes. Our research endeavors use both human and animal models and span a range of discipline areas including athletic training, biomechanics, motor control, neuroscience, pathophysiology, and rehabilitation sciences. The Biodynamics Research Lab is also a constituent laboratory within the Center for Biomedical Engineering and Science at UNC Charlotte.
The Biodynamics Research Laboratory is comprised of 4 rooms that occupy more than 2500 ft2 and provide space for personnel, equipment, data collection, and data analysis. We house two large experimentation areas used primarily to house data collection equipment for human movement studies including gait analysis and to perform data collections. The space also provides patient preparation areas, multiple work stations for research assistants, a small conference room, and multiple computers.
The Biodynamics Research Lab houses two Bertec non-conductive force platforms and an an AMTI Accusway force platform. The lab is also equipped with a Biodex System 3 isokinetic dynamometer to measure joint torques. Attachments are available for upper and lower extremity evaluation as well as lift simulations and closed kinetic chain assessments.
The Biodynamics Research Lab uses a new Vicon motion capture system with 10 (MX-T40S) cameras and the capability to synchronize collection of analog data. The LifeScience suite of software including Body Builder, Nexus, WorkStation, Polygon, and Plug-in-Gait and their associated plug-ins as well as Visual3D are used to generate and evaluate kinematic and kinetic parameters of interest. For measuring the spatiotemporal kinematics of gait, the lab has a 5 meter OptoGait system.
Measuring Neurophysiologic Outcomes
The Biodynamics Research Lab houses multiple 16-channel biological data acquisition systems (BIOPAC Systems) complete with transducers and amplifiers to capture muscle activity. In addition, the lab houses a 32-channel EEG system with a NuAmps Amplifier and Curry 7 software (Compumedics USA), a Magstim Super Rapid2 to conduct Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) assessments, and a Digitimer DS7AH stimulator for evaluating neuromuscular excitability.
Other piece of equipment in our laboratory available for use are a custom-built instrumented ankle arthrometer., multiple 3-D triaxial accelerometers, and various pieces of clinical equipment, such as hand-held dynamometers, digital goniometers, and Semmes-Weinstein monofilaments.
Lab Graduate Students
Chris Burcal is a 3rd year PhD student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. His background includes a bachelor’s degree in Athletic Training from UNC Charlotte and an MSc in Biomechanics from Liverpool John Moores University in England. Chris’ research interest involve the reweighting of sensory information in the central nervous system as a result of chronic ankle instability.
Ashley Duncan is a 2nd year MS student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. Her background includes a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science from UNC Charlotte. Her research interests focus on gait alterations from dual task interference in those with chronic ankle instability.
Gavin Stuart is a 2nd year MS student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. His background includes a bachelor’s degree in Clinical Exercise Science from Grand Valley State University. His research interests focus the effect of warm-up duration on performance and joint biomechanics.
Jason Cline is a 2nd year MS student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. His background includes a bachelor’s degree in Athletic Training from UNC Charlotte. His research interests include the effects of Kinesio Tex tape on dynamic balance in those with chronic ankle instability.
Steven Pfeiffer is a 2nd year MS student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. His background includes a bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science from Greensboro College. His research interests focus on improving biomechanical imbalance in patients following ACL reconstruction.
Katie Collins is a first year MS student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. Her background includes a bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology from The Pennsylvania State University. Her research interests focus on gait alterations and plantar cutaneous sensation deficits in patients following ACL reconstruction.
John Gonzales is a first year MS student in the Biodynamics Research Lab. His background includes a bachelor's degree in Health and Exercise Science from Wake Forest University. His research interests focus on dual task interference and its effect on balance training in those with chronic ankle instability.
Recent Conference Presentations
International Ankle Consortium