Meet Your Executive – Alberto Leardini

Posted on September 30, 2014

I am Alberto Leardini and I am one of your new executives on the ISB council, where I have been given the responsibility for the Student Awards. I am enjoying this work, which gives me the opportunity to track and support the research that the younger members of the society are doing, and at the same time I can discuss the major issues of this community with senior experts in biomechanics. Presently, I am the Technical and Scientific director of the Movement Analysis Laboratory at the Istituto Ortopedico Rizzoli located in Bologna, Italy, and the Coordinator within the Institute of the Special Reference Centre on Biomechanics of the Foot and Ankle. I have been working for this Institute since 1990, but concurrently, from 1996 to 2000, I have done my DPhil at University of Oxford, working with Professor John O'Connor and his group of Orthopaedic Engineering on the mechanics of the natural and replaced ankle joint. This work resulted in a new total ankle replacement now successfully implanted in many patients.


The comprehension of the mobility and stability of the joints of the lower limb has been later extended to the knee, both natural and replaced, by experimental measurements and computer models: a number of current and possible new prosthesis designs have been assessed. The functional and clinical assessment of joint prostheses has also implied work in three-dimensional videofluoroscopy and radiostereometry. The long term and close relation with physicians in orthopedics at the Rizzoli has contributed also to my concomitant interests in human movement analysis (working for a long time with prof Cappozzo and Cappello) and surgical technology (with collaborations with the major relevant companies). In both fields I have the pleasure to be involved in the design and development of biomechanical research studies on methodological issues together with on relevant clinical questions.


It has been among my personal missions to participate in the activities of scientific communities, not only for the scope of promoting the relevant discipline, but primarily of providing education and opportunities for younger and emerging researchers. I have served for many years the Società Italiana di Analisi del Movimento in Clinica (SIAMOC) and the ISB Technical Group of 3-D Analysis of Human Movement, and I have contributed to the start of the International Foot & Ankle Biomechanics community (i-FAB). For these communities I have hosted in Bologna one of their congresses, which I believe are extraordinary opportunities for personal and professional growth. My most recent commitment is with the ISB Council, after much participation to its biannual congress, which I have always enjoyed for the number and quality of new research, very much close to my areas of interest.


From these two professional overall experiences I have learned a lot. Biomechanics in its own right has now the opportunity to develop much faster with the knowledge, instrumentations and techniques built up and made recently available. On the other hand, many physiological and clinical problems remain unresolved, and a strict communication with also these relevant communities is perhaps fundamental for a common evolution, particularly in the interest of the patients. The critical role of industry shall also be not misunderstood or underestimated, for its potential to provide important solutions and resources for these developments. In these years, I will be pleased to talk to you and to provide my two cents in these matters.

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