Human movement is dependent upon central and peripheral neural strategies that must integrate to activate and coordinate skeletal muscle; with differing mechanical properties and across various situations. The primary goal of research in the Neuromuscular Physiology Laboratory is to provide a better understanding of this neural integration through the study of the motor unit, as it relates to the production and control of force. For this purpose, we measure both neural signals and motor output eg) strength, force and steadiness. Our studies concentrate on both normal physiology and its variance across AGE and between SEXes, as well as in altered situations of Parkinson ’s disease, Obesity, and high performance training. Our funded work has both an applied and basic research ‘arm’.
Primary tools in my lab include: surface and indwelling electromyography (EMG), electrical muscle stimulation, force steadiness in static and dynamic voluntary contractions, as well as ultrasonography to measure muscle and tendon. I have established collaborations to supplement these tool with magnetic cortical stimulation, motion analysis, blood flow and metabolites. As a member of the Institute of Health Living and Chronic Disease Prevention there is research capacity and collaborations where we extend both the lab and community studies to enhance population health.