Biomechanics is the study of the structure and function of biological systems by means of the methods of mechanics. Therefore biomechanics uses expertise from disciplines such as engineering, anatomy, aerospace, rehabilitation, medicine, orthopaedics, sport science, and many others. It studies animal, human, and plant structure and motion.
Major research thrusts include the application of biomechanical principles to motor control and neurological problems, understanding how muscle properties dictate the coordination of movement, exploring the mechanical behavior of musculoskeletal structures at the tissue level, and exploring innovative solutions to orthopaedic problems.
The internationally-recognized Biomechanics Laboratory houses the majority of the faculty and graduate student research. These state-of-the-art facilities are expressly designed for the measurement and investigation of human motion in sport, health, and disease.
Seventy-two visiting scholars and researchers from twenty-seven foreign countries have participated in the research programs of the laboratories for periods ranging from two months to two years, and over seventy master's and over seventy doctoral students have completed their degrees in the Biomechanics laboratory to date.
Learn more about the faculty members who mentor Biomechanics graduate students at Penn State:
- John H. Challis, Professor of Kinesiology
- Robert B. Eckhardt, Professor of Developmental Genetics and Evolutionary Morphology
- Jinger S. Gottschall, Associate Professor of Kinesiology
- Stephen J. Piazza, Professor of Kinesiology
- Neil A. Sharkey, Interim Vice President for Research; Professor of Kinesiology, Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation
- Jonas Rubenson, Associate Professor
Additional faculty who have an interest in this area: