December 2017 Issue

Posted on December 20, 2017

ISB Now - December 2017

President's Blog       December, 2017

It has been several months since we last met in Brisbane, Australia for the ISB Congress that was, in everyone’s eyes, a very successful event. I would like to belatedly congratulate the organizers of that Congress, including ISB President Andrew Cresswell, for their hard work. There were a number of other ISB members on the organizing committee that I will not mention specifically but they should be noted for their excellent work. More than 80% of delegates came from over 50 countries, thus the aim of hosting a truly international congress was achieved. Personally, this congress was the epitome of what a scientific congress should be and I hope that future ISB congresses follow the example of the XXVI Congress.

Many ISB members are now gearing up for the World Congress of Biomechanics meeting in Dublin, Ireland this summer (July 8-12, 2018). ISB will have a significant presence at this Congress with a plenary session and three sessions sponsored and organized by ISB. The invited speaker for the plenary session is Professor Toni Arndt from Sweden, currently the ISB President-Elect. The three other sessions were organized by two ISB Technical Groups and an ISB Working Group. Each of these three sessions will have two keynote speakers and several speakers who submitted abstracts specifically foe these sessions. ISB session 1, organized by the Technical Group on Computer Simulation is titled ‘Computer Simulation of Human Movement and will have keynote speakers Brian Umberger (University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA) and Jeff Reinbolt (University of Tennessee, USA). ISB session 2 was organized by the Footwear Biomechanics Group wand will have keynote speakers Sharon Dixon (University of Exeter, UK) and Wolfgang Potthast (German Sports University Cologne, Germany). The third session is being organized by the Motor Control working group with keynote speakers Antonie van den Bogert (Cleveland State University, USA) and Robert Gregg (University of Texas-Dallas, USA). In addition, there are several ISB members who are organizing other sessions for the WCB meeting.

ISB will also be prominent at the International Society of Electrophysiology and Kinesiology (ISEK) meeting that will also be held in Dublin (June 30-July 2, 2018). ISB speakers at this conference will include Roger Enoka (University of Colorado, USA), Walter Herzog (University of Calgary, Canada) and Taija Finni (University of Jyväskylä, Finland).

Finally, I would like to announce the formation of a committee of accomplished ISB scientists to produce an ISB White Paper regarding the standardization of kinetic results for presentations at professional symposia and publishing in professional journals. This committee is ably led by Professor Tim Derrick (Iowa State University, USA) with members Alberto Leardini (Istituto Ortopedico Rizzoli, Italy), Andrea Cereatti (University of Sassari, Italy), Antonie van den Bogert (Cleveland State University, USA), Glen Lichtwark (University of Queensland, Australia), Raphael Dumas (University of Lyon, France) and Silvia Fantozzi (University of Bologna, Italy).

At this time of year, we all look forward to our holidays and I wish all a pleasant holiday and a Happy New Year.

Joseph Hamill, Professor Emeritus, University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA

President, International Society of Biomechanics

Students' Corner

First, I’d like to give a huge thanks to Kirsty McDonald for all of her work as Student Representative the past two years. She has led great efforts throughout her term and the student events she organized at the XXVI Congress in Brisbane all went exceptionally well.

Past Student Representative, Kirsty (left), and incoming Student Representative, Melissa (right) in Brisbane.

ISB 2017: Brisbane

The students at ISB enjoyed events both during and outside of the congress. Thank you to everyone who helped with planning, volunteered time at, and participated in these events!

Both mentoring roundtable lunches were very successful, and students received great advice from the mentors who participated.

Student Night Out: We also enjoyed a fun night out together in Brisbane!

Recommended Reads in Biomechanics

Before her term concluded, Kirsty reached out to ISB Fellows who kindly put together a set of ‘Recommended Reads.’ This was a great idea and an excellent source of biomechanics readings, which can be found here.

World Congress of Biomechanics Student Event

We will hold an event for the ISB students in Dublin during the World Congress of Biomechanics. The event will be held on Sunday evening, the first day of the congress (8 July 2018), with more details to follow. Looking forward to seeing familiar faces from Brisbane and meeting new student members!

Connect with ISB on Social Media

Keep up to date with ISB by liking our ISB Facebook Page, joining the Student Members Facebook Page and following ISB on Twitter!. If you have any feedback, comments, suggestions or questions please feel free to contact me at

Kind regards,

Melissa Boswell


Student Travel Grant Report from Nuno Morais, Patrick Bakenecker & Allison Clouthier

  • Nuno Morais

I would like to thank the ISB for the generous Congress Travel Grant of $1000. This was a fundamental financial assistance to participate in the XXVI Congress of the International Society of Biomechanics, in Brisbane, Australia. I feel very privileged to have attended this congress, having the opportunity to discuss formally (during sessions) and informally (e.g., during coffee breaks) with well renowned researchers in biomechanics, particularly in musculoskeletal and clinical/rehabilitation biomechanics.

The congress was extremely well organized. Social activities, oral and poster presentations, keynote sessions, exhibitors’ sessions were all orchestrated and the delegates could easily master the extensive program by simply navigating, selecting, and scheduling the events using the congress app. For example, the most relevant presentations in the field of my doctoral work (on shoulder kinematics and rehabilitation) were in different sessions but it was not difficult to plan to attend those with the highest significance using the congress app.

I would like to highlight the Student Round Table Lunch. This was a fundamental event to integrate all students in the spirit of sharing experiences, expectations, discuss career opportunities with some of the most influential researchers such as Professors Walter Herzog (winner of the Muybridge Award) and Joseph Hammill.

A rewarding experience with the hope to repeat in the near future.

Sincerely, Nuno Morais         31 October 2017

Polytechnic Institute of Leiria School of Health Sciences (ESSLei) Leiria – PORTUGAL


  • Patrick Bakenecker

For me the ISB2017 was a very successful and interesting conference in the field of biomechanics attending very interesting talks and meeting many other delegates working in my field of expertise. Thank you for the opportunity to attend and having a contribution to the Congress. It was an exciting event, which had wonderful vibe and atmosphere over the five days.

The conference started for me on Sunday with the offered tutorials. For me it began with the tutorial to “biologically-inspired concepts guiding lower-limb exoskeleton design” which focused on the basic science of human-machine interaction in the context of lower-limb exoskeletons that target the human ankle during locomotion. The most interesting part was a live demonstration showcasing the function of an unpowered elastic ankle exoskeleton that can reduce the metabolic energy cost of human walking. I also attended the tutorial to “ultrasound techniques for muscle-tendon imaging” which was very interesting for me, because I am also using ultrasound to detect fascicle behavior during my PhD work. This tutorial presented an overview of the ultrasound methods that enable muscle and tendinous tissues to be imaged in real time. It introduced B-mode imaging and advanced methods to assess displacements within the muscle-tendon unit and the issue of probe positioning for 2-D measurements were discussed through examples of the human medial gastrocnemius muscle.

In the following days I mostly attended the sessions with talks to Musculoskeletal Biomechanics with amazing speakers like Taija Finni, Ben Hoffman, Bart Bolsterlee, Taylor Dick or Dominic Farris. But there were also some interesting talks under the topic of Motor Control. There was the talk from Glen Lichtwark to “the potential influence of tendon compliance on sensory feedback from lower limb muscles” which I still have in mind.

The contribution to the congress on my site was my poster presentation where I had the opportunity to present a part of my PhD work with the topic “residual force enhancement is muscle length-dependent in the human knee extensors”. I can say that it was a successful poster presentation as I had very interesting discussions with other delegates who showed interest into my work.

At the end the most inspiring talk gave Walter Herzog during the Muybrige Award Lecture with the topic “Reflections on Muscle: or the Accidental Scientist” where he spoke about his hole scientific career with all his challenges and the way to success while working in your passion.

The conference ended with a great closing ceremony. The dinner and the entertainment were fantastic and enjoyed it very much.

Beside the conference it was a pleasure to visit Brisbane as a wonderful city with so much opportunities to have great food and many activities to do in your spare time.


  • Allison Clouthier

I was able to attend the International Society of Biomechanics conference in Brisbane this July. Travelling from Canada to Australia is expensive, and the Congress Travel Grant made my travel possible. The conference was an amazing experience. I had the opportunity to share my research and receive useful feedback, to engage with other researchers in my area, and to learn about the new and exciting research happening in biomechanics around the world. The mentorship programs provided a great way to meet people with established careers in biomechanics and receive useful advice. I was able to meet up with old colleagues and to make new contacts and organization and content of the conference was exceptional.

Thank you to the ISB for providing me with this grant that made travel to a fantastic conference possible!

Allison Clouthier

Me (right) with my supervisor Mike Rainbow and fellow Queen’s student Lauren Welte at the conference banquet.



Name of Investigators: K. Michael Rowley, BS, BA, Advisor: Kornelia Kulig, PT, PhD, FAPTA

Name of Grant: Interfering with conscious motor processing during dynamic balance: Investigating persons with and without recurrent low back pain

The International Society of Biomechanics’ Matching Dissertation Grant was used to investigate the effects of dual-task interference on trunk control during a dynamic unstable balance task in participants with and without recurrent low back pain (LBP). Associations between these effects and psychometric and motor control measures were tested in order to better our understanding of interactions between cognition, posture, and a history of pain.

Twenty-one participants with recurrent low back pain and twenty-two pain-free control participants were recruited and tested. First, the balance-dexterity task was characterized by investigating associations between task performance, trunk coordination, and various electromyographic and psychometric measures. Then, groups were compared. Persons with a history of low back pain exhibited reduced trunk coupling – meaning more dissociated or independent motion of the thorax and pelvis segments. This reduced trunk coupling was associated with the ratio of lumbar multifidus activation to lumbar erector spinae activation. In pain-free control participants, there was no uniform change in trunk coupling from single- to dual-task conditions – some participants became more tightly coupled in the trunk and some increased independent motion of the trunk segments (less coupling). Participants with recurrent low back pain, however, showed a uniform increase in trunk coupling from single- to dual-task conditions.

These findings will support the use of the balance-dexterity task in clinical and research evaluations of trunk control. In addition, the findings are important for informing rehabilitation given that dual-tasking is often prescribed during rehab to practice real-life situations. Findings from continued work on this study will help us learn more about interactions between attention, psychometric measures, and motor control measures in patients with recurrent low back pain. Understanding these interactions will enhance multi-modal treatments, which up until now have been marginally successful.

I am very grateful to the International Society of Biomechanics for the support in completing this Dissertation.


EDC Officer Report

  • Felipe P Carpes

Dear ISB members. 2017 is almost over, but we still have time to send some information regarding the biomechanics in the EDC.

Biomechanics library and a new laboratory in Cuba

Books donated by professor Julie Steele arrived in Cuba. Professor Carlos Días sent photos of the lab organization and a message of thanks to Julie and ISB for making the arrangement so that his group is now benefit by a number of books and journals about biomechanics. But this is not the only advance of Biomechanics in Cuba. After a couple of months negotiating, professor Días told us that his institution was able to buy a 3D motion capture system, which means that the island will have the first motion capture laboratory to leverage biomechanics research. This is a historic fact, and ISB will be following and supporting professor Días group as possible towards the full establishment of the laboratory and the research group. If you want to help, please let us know.

A new Biomechanics society is born

We have been in contact with a very active group of biomechanists from Pakistan. In the past two years or so, a biomechanics society has been organized in Pakistan. In 2017, the society was registered as the Pakistan Society of Sports Biomechanics. The first president is professor Muhammad Asghar Javed. Everybody who wants to learn about the society is invited to make contact by the e-mail address or cell phone # 00923334395306 + whatsapp.

Student grants to join Technical Group Meetings

EDC students are encouraged to apply for the technical group meeting travel grant program. This grant is offered to the student members of the ISB attending the affiliated Technical Group meetings. It helps reducing the travel expenses to attend meetings of the 3-D Analysis of Human Movement (3DAHM), International Shoulder Group (ISG), Footwear Biomechanics Group (FBG), and Technical Group on Computer Simulation (TGCS). By virtue of the need to move the meetings among different continents, it is often very difficult for students to afford to travel to the meetings or to pay the registration fee if they can travel. However, we will offer travel grants (up to $US 500) to the students who will be presenting their research results at the aforementioned Technical Group meetings. Application forms are available in the ISB website and applications are to be received by February 28th 2018. Applicants will be notified by May 1st 2018.


List of new members

  • Ross Sanders
  • Saša Ćuković
  • Ursula Trinler
  • Jordan Andersen
  • Yo Shih
  • Kristen Lipscomb
  • chenglong feng
  • Stephen Cobb
  • Carlton Cooke
  • Daiani de Campos
  • Carl Berkowitz
  • Emily Gerstle
  • Angelo Macaro
  • Ata Babazadeh
  • Erica Casto
  • Munavvar Juman
  • John-Paul Donlon
  • Pengfei Yang
  • Joe Testa
  • Moiyad Aljehani
  • Maria Bisele
  • Marc Portus
  • Heiko Wagner
  • Mahboobeh Mehdikhani
  • Adam Hunter
  • Adam Bryant
  • Ross Wilkinson
  • Tomas Rusnak
  • Natalia Alfaro
  • Molly Connolly
  • Ben Bugden
  • Robert Stephenson
  • Gretchen Roman
  • Ramona Ritzmann


Save the Date: ISB 2019

Preparations for ISB 2019 in Calgary are going well. The Convention Center is booked, hotel arrangements for your convenience have been made, and a preliminary schedule will be posted on the ISB 2019 website early in the New Year (

Most important, at this point, is to reserve the dates:

July 31st to Aug 4th, 2019

The ISB conference will be held in conjunction with the meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics and the support of the Canadian Society for Biomechanics.

The Footwear Biomechanics Group has already scheduled a satellite symposium at the beautiful Kananaskis Delta Hotel preceding the ISB conference (July 27-July 30, 2019).

Also at the Kananaskis Delta Hotel, we are planning a symposium on skeletal muscle mechanics (from Molecules to Muscle Function, July 27-July 29, 2019).

We have received great support from various faculties, departments and institutes of the University of Calgary, and from Delsys Inc., for travel/reduced registration for students from economically developing countries attending ISB 2019. Details of this program will be forthcoming.

Brisbane 2017 has barely gone, and what a success it was! And here we are, with ISB 2019 just around the corner (at least from our point of view). Please send us any ideas about special symposia and featured speakers that you might like to see. We are starting to prepare the program at this time and any input is greatly appreciated and welcome.

On behalf of the organizing committee, we are looking forward to welcoming you all to beautiful Calgary and the incomparable Rocky Mountains.

With warm regards,

Walter Herzog


Save the Date: National Biomechanics Day, April 11, 2018,

October 15, 2017

Hello Biomechanists Worldwide,

Ready…Set…Blast Off, NBD 2018!

Registration is now open for the third annual National Biomechanics Day. We stunned ourselves by hosting over 7,000+ high school students in synchronized, around-the-world NBD events in 2017! Now we are ready to stun the world with truly vast numbers of Biomechanists and high schoolers participating in National Biomechanics Day 2018. Our goal is 20,000 to 30,000 high school students enjoying NBD 2018 and we can reach this goal with your participation. We all make NBD so successful and greater than the sum of its parts because through NBD we’ve created a collaborative framework within which we all enthusiastically and jointly celebrate Biomechanics. While many people host wonderful individual Biomechanics demonstrations, our combined NBD events unify Biomechanics around the world providing a coordinated and exciting Biomechanics extravaganza. Pretty cool. Those of you new to NBD will be so surprised by the joy created through NBD participation, joy in Biomechanists and joy in high schoolers. I am not kidding or exaggerating.

While many people have made similar statements here I include Justus Ortega’s simple wisdom about NBD 2017, “It was awesome…and it was inspiring.” This year we enact our mantra, we make Biomechanics the Breakthrough Science of the 21st Century.

Click Here to register for NBD 2018:

Students’ Corner

Posted on July 4, 2017

G’day all,

Incoming Student Representative

I’d like to begin by introducing your new Student Representative for the 2017-19 term, Melissa Boswell.  Melissa is a Bioengineering PhD student at Stanford University.  She will take over official duties at the end of the Brisbane Congress.  Congratulations Melissa!



 ISB2017 is right around the corner!  I can’t wait to meet those of you who are making the trip Down Under.  As you are all probably aware, we have three exciting student activities lined up.

  1. Student Night Out*

This will be a great opportunity to meet students from all across the globe, learn about the exciting work they do, and of course - to make some new friends!

Dandy’s is right across the street from the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre and is a part of the Fox Hotel (the official watering hole of ISB2017).  All the important details are below.

Date:  Monday June 24, 2017

Time:  7:30pm

Location:  Dandy’s Rooftop Bar (

Address:  71-73 Melbourne Street, South Brisbane

Dress:  Smart Casual

Tickets:  Provided with your registration package (required for entry).

ID Requirements:  18+ years of age, a form of photo identification will be required to enter the venue (note international travellers require a passport, domestic citizens can use a drivers license or government issued photo ID card)

  1. Student Roundtable Lunches*

Chat with an expert in your field over lunch!  Due to popular demand, we will be hosting two student mentor round table lunches.  If you originally registered for the event, you would have recently received an RSVP request to attend one of the following sessions:

Session One

Date: Tuesday 25 July 2017

Time: 1:00-2:00pm

Location: Room M1

Tickets: Provided with your registration package (required for entry)

Catering: Lunch service available outside Room M1 for all attendees

Session Two

Date: Wednesday 26 July 2017

Time: 12:00-1:00pm

Location: Room M1

Tickets: Provided with your registration package (required for entry)

Catering: Lunch service available outside M1 for all attendees

  1. Mentor-Match Program*

Over 190 students attending ISB2017 have been matched with a mentor who they will meet with during the Congress.  A huge thank you to all our mentors who volunteered to be a part of this exciting event.  Mentees - don’t forget to come armed with some career or field-specific questions for your mentor to make the most of the time you have together!

*Please note, all events were opt-in fields on the registration form, while the night out and roundtable lunches required further RSVPs via an email link sent to original attendees.

For all attending, I hope you enjoy the activities.  If you have any questions about the events, please feel free to get in touch.


ISB Fellows Recommended Reads

 Earlier this year, our ISB Fellows were asked if they would like to contribute some recommended reading relevant to their various fields of research.  The responses have been compiled and uploaded to the ISB website.  Personally, I feel like I’ve already gained a lot from following the links on the list, and I hope you will too!  This resource is exclusively for you, our members, and can be accessed at the following link (once logged in):

A huge thank you to all the ISB Fellows who kindly contributed content for this project!


Advice to Students

The final video in our eight-part series, ‘Advice to Students’, is available online now.  In this instalment, we hear from Dr. Veronique Feipel from the Université libre de Bruxelles who speaks to the importance of collaboration, with specific reference to clinical applications.  You can view Dr. Feipel’s contribution here. You can also access the entire playlist here.

Once again, thank you very much to our eight contributors!



This is my final ISBNow.  While I will continue as Student Rep until the end of the Brisbane Congress, I would just like to take this opportunity to thank you all for making this such a fun and fulfilling experience!  I hope to meet many of you Down Under!

As always, if you have any questions, feedback or suggestions, please feel free to get in touch.

Kind regards,

Kirsty McDonald

Tagged as: Comments Off

Students’ Corner

Posted on March 27, 2017

Firstly, it is my pleasure to announce our short-listed candidates for 2017-19 Student Representative - Kevin Boldt and Melissa Boswell.  Kevin and Melissa’s biographies can be seen here, and voting will commence shortly.  Good luck to both candidates!

I am looking forward to meeting many of you in Brisbane this July for ISB2017!  Don’t forget that the early-bird registration period ends on April 7th.  Click here to register now!

Planning for the student excursion is well underway (more details to follow shortly), and I am excited to announce that we will be running a mentor-matching system which you can sign up for at the time of registration.  This is a unique opportunity to be paired with a senior delegate with whom you will organize a one-on-one meeting at some stage during the conference.

I would like to encourage you to discuss accommodation sharing opportunities via our Student Members Facebook Group.  If you do not use Facebook, please feel free to contact me and I will do my best to connect you to other students who are also looking to share accommodation.

Finally, if you are seeking additional funding to support your trip to Brisbane, you might consider applying for a Delsys Student Travel Grant or a Force & Motion Foundation Quarterly Academic Travel Scholarship.


Advice to Students

It’s time for our seventh instalment of the Advice to Students project…

In this clip, we hear from Prof. Maarten Bobbert of VU University Amsterdam who discusses hypothesis-driven research.  I hope you enjoy the video and, once again, a big thank you to Dr. Bobbert, and our team of contributors, for generously volunteering to impart some wisdom!


International Travel Grant

A reminder that applications for the International Travel Grant (ITG) program are due on May 30, 2017.  The ITG provides financial support of up to $US2500 for travel related to biomechanics research. The primary goal of the ITG is to create opportunities for students to travel abroad to experience science in other countries and cultures, and to build up international collaborations.  If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out.


Social Media

Stay in the loop – visit the ISB Facebook page, join our Student Members Facebook Group and follow us on Twitter for ISB related updates.

As always, I’d love to hear any feedback or suggestions you may have and am always happy to answer your questions, so please feel free to get in touch.


Finally, don't forget to vote for your new student representative! Biographies can be found elsewhere in this issue.


Kind regards,

Kirsty McDonald

Tagged as: Comments Off

Students’ Corner

Posted on December 22, 2016


I hope you’ve all had a productive 2016. As the year comes to a close, don’t forget to renew your ISB membership! You can do so here.

Lots of exciting things are in store for 2017. In July, we head Down Under to Brisbane, Australia for the XXVI Congress of the International Society of Biomechanics. As a student member, you’ll be entitled to a substantial discount on your conference registration. I am currently in the process of planning a student excursion, mentoring program and roundtable discussion for the meeting, so please keep an eye on your emails as we get closer to the date.

As many of you may be aware, the call for abstracts is currently open for ISB2017 and will be due on January 13, 2017.

Other important dates for your calendar are:

  • Notification to successful Congress Travel Grant applicants = Feb 1, 2017
  • Notification of ISB2017 abstract acceptance = Feb 28, 2017
  • Applications due for Technical Group Travel Grant (TGTG) = Feb 28, 2017*
  • Early bird registration closing = March 17, 2017
  • Notification to successful TGTG applicants = May 1, 2017


*The TGTG of up to $US500 is offered to help reduce the travel expenses to attend one of the following meetings:

  • Technical Group on Computer Simulation

Date: July 20-22, 2017

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

Abstract Submission Deadline: Feb 20, 2017


  • Footwear Biomechanics Group

Date: July 20-22, 2017

Location: Gold Coast, Australia

Abstract Submission Deadline: Feb 13, 2017



Advice to Students

This edition of our Advice to Students project features Prof. Peter Milburn from Griffith University, Australia and can be viewed here:

I really enjoyed speaking with Dr. Milburn whilst preparing this video. The messages he shares in the clip made me reflect on my own experience as a graduate student and got me pondering how well I utilize the resources around me. His first message; “learn from your peers”, is something that can be easily overlooked. The graduate students I share the Pennsylvania State University Biomechanics lab with have a vast knowledge and a broad range of practical skillsets. It’s useful to recognise that we have a lot to offer each other and may continue to collaborate well into the future!

Secondly, Dr. Milburn touches on networking – specifically, approaching more senior delegates at conferences. He provides a useful perspective, encouraging us to be bold and initiate discussions because “biomechanists like nothing more than to talk about their work!” Dr. Milburn also offers some useful tips for getting the conversation started.

As always, stay in the loop by connecting with us via our social media channels (Facebook page, Student Members Facebook Group and Twitter feed). If you have any feedback, questions or comments, I’d love to hear from you.


Kind regards,

Kirsty McDonald


Tagged as: Comments Off

Students’ Corner

Posted on September 26, 2016

ISB2017 Update

As I write, it’s just over 300 days until the XXVI Congress of the ISB in Brisbane!  I’m already looking forward to saying “G’day” to all those making the trip Down Under - as the conference website explains, you have to cut the “g” sound short and emphasise the “day”.  Our non-Aussie friends have plenty of time to perfect the national greeting, and I, for one, can’t wait to hear your interpretations!

A few key dates for your diary:

  • Call for abstracts: November 1, 2016
  • Abstract deadline: January 13, 2016
  • ISB Congress Travel Grant deadline: December 15, 2016

The Congress Travel Grant (CTG) program is designed to provide financial assistance to student members who will be joining us in Brisbane.  The society will provide support of $US600-1200, depending on the distance the successful applicant is required to travel.  More information can be found here, and please feel free get in touch ( if you have any questions about the application process.  The CTG is a great opportunity and I really encourage you all to submit an application.


Council Meetings and ASB2016

As some of you will know, the ISB Exec. Council meets in the Congress off-year, typically just prior to a meeting hosted by one our affiliated societies.  This year, we descended on Raleigh for the 40th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics.  It was great to get the opportunity to meet some of you at our Aussie night, and at various other events throughout the week.

The council meetings are an exciting time to discuss the current student resources and to propose some new initiatives. Based on feedback from those who completed the Survey Monkey earlier this year (thanks again!) I was able to target some of the key issues that are important to our student body.  There were some exciting conversations about an upcoming short video series trial being organized by our Education Officers – Glen Lichtwark and Taija Finni, so keep an eye out the first instalment!

Based on feedback regarding ‘job alerts’, our website management company recommended using the Google Alerts service, available at:

You simply plug in a few details and some keywords (I’d specifically recommend using ‘Biomch-L’ as one), and you’ll receive notifications about relevant postings.  Best of all, it took me less than a minute to set up!

google alerts screenshot

At the council meetings we also discussed student events for ISB2017 including mentoring sessions, the potential for a cheaper student accommodation option, and the student excursion.  Stay tuned for more information in upcoming editions of ISBNow.


Advice to Students

We are up to our fifth video already!  If you are new to the Society, our Advice to Students project involves eight short clips of ISB2015 delegates imparting some wisdom they’ve acquired during their time in the field of Biomechanics.  The latest instalment comes from Prof. Taija Finni (our ISB Education Officer), and can be viewed here.  Dr. Finni adds a unique flavour to the series, raising the issue of work-life balance.  Thank you very much again to all our presenters.  Keep an eye out for our next video – Prof. Peter Milburn.  Although he doesn’t say “G’day” during the clip, Dr. Milburn is from Griffith University (an ISB2017 hosting institute), so he’ll give you a taste of the Aussie accent (and some great advice of course!).

As always, stay in the loop by connecting with us via our social media channels (Facebook page, Student Members Facebook Group and Twitter feed).  If you have any feedback, questions or comments, I’d love to hear from you.


Kind regards,

Kirsty McDonald

Tagged as: Comments Off

Conference navigation tips for students!

Posted on June 20, 2016

Conference season is well underway! For a busy graduate student, attending any form of academic meeting can be a stressful experience but also a very rewarding one. In this issue of the Student Section, I’ve tried to compile some hints and tips that I hope you’ll find useful.


  1. Finding the right meeting

 There are so many meetings to choose from! I didn’t realize this until I started compiling material for the ISB social media channels. As an Australian studying in America, I was well aware of the upcoming 10th Australasian Biomechanics Conference, and the 40th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics, as well as some other meetings hosted by our ISB Affiliated Societies.

However, I was surprised to find a lot of smaller meetings that were very applicable to my own research. Through talking with my PhD advisor, I learnt of the Biomechanics and Neural Control of Movement (BANCOM 2016) meeting – a six day-long event to be hosted at a serene lodge on the edge of a beautiful lake in Ohio (USA). If this wasn’t enough to lure me, when I read the list of invited speakers, I couldn’t have been more excited!

Of course, being a graduate student doesn’t come without its time/cost limitations so this will definitely narrow the window of opportunities. That being said, you may find a gem every now and again if you know where to look. Your advisor, and other biomechanics-related mentors could be a good place to start. If they are aware of the nature of your work, they may be able to point you in the right direction. Due to their larger networks, they are often on mailing lists for such events.

You can also connect with us via our social media channels (Facebook page, Student Members Facebook Group, Twitter feed and LinkedIn group). I try to keep these updated with meeting information such as dates and locations, abstract deadlines etc. The primary search tool I use for compiling these notifications is the Biomch-L Events and Conferences Forum:


  1. Financing the trip

 Beyond the opportunities available to you through your University, there are a range of awards/grants that exist to financially support domestic and international student travel. For example, you are probably aware that the ISB offer Congress Travel Grants for our biennial meeting (applications will be due in Dec 2016, for ISB2017). We also offer Technical Group Travel Grants, for student members presenting at our Technical Group meetings.

Many of our affiliated societies also offer similar grant opportunities for student members to attend their meetings – examples from 2016 include the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports, the American Society of Biomechanics, the Canadian Society for Biomechanics, the European Society of Biomechanics and the German Society for Biomechanics.

You may also find instances where your national society offer travel grants to a variety of international meetings. For example, this year the Australian and New Zealand Society of Biomechanics offered their student members the opportunity to apply for financial support to attend the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports (ISBS), the American Society of Biomechanics (ASB), the European Society of Biomechanics (ESB) or the International Society of Electrophysiology and Kinesiology (ISEK) meetings.

Delsys and the AMTI Force and Motion Foundation also offered student travel grants this year. I aim to promote all of the above on our social media channels, but you can also search for available funding by visiting the relevant conference and/or Biomechanics Society websites.

If you have any questions about the ISB Travel Grant Program please feel free to get in touch!


  1. Presenting your research

 Oral Presentations

For this, I found a fantastic blog on Scitable (by Nature Education). I’ve summarized the main points below but if you have the time, I’d definitely recommend reading the entire post as it includes lots of good tips.

  • “Written documents are for convincing with detailed evidence; oral presentations, on the other hand, are for convincing with delivery — both verbal and nonverbal.”
  • Be selective with the material you include, allow adequate time for Q&A and try to anticipate questions.
  • For your introduction, lead with an attention grabber, a presentation outline and a statement of the principal message.
  • Describe only methods you feel will help to convince the audience of your principal message.
  • Consider the body of the presentation as a tree-structure (vs. a chain-structure). Select two to five key statements that support your principal message, and two to five sub points that support each key statement.
  • Strongest arguments should be placed first and last, with weaker arguments between.
  • End with “a review, a conclusion, and a close”: review the presentation, conclude with the principal message and other applications of your results. Close by “indicating elegantly and unambiguously to your audience that these are your last words. Although there are many ways to do so, one that works well is to make the link back to your attention getter: By referring back to your initial question, analogy, picture, etc., you indicate that you have completed the loop”.


Poster Presentations

If you are presenting a poster this conference season, the following link will take you to a very useful video. I’ve outlined the key points below, but it’s definitely worth a watch:

  • “Don’t read your poster! Use your poster as a visual tool.”
  • Prepare a 2-3 minute talk, predict questions like: “what was your research about?” and “what were the main findings?”
  • Only highlight the most important information on the poster, and don’t be afraid to bring handouts to supplement potential discussion points.
  • Creating a small handout summarizing your poster may be useful if your abstract was not included in an abstract book.
  • Have contact details ready for follow up discussions, especially relevant if you cannot answer a question on-the-spot (e.g. business cards).
  • Be honest if something is outside the scope of your research.
  • Always prioritize the viewer over social interaction with friends etc.


  1. Networking

 In the latest instalment of the ‘Advice to Students’ project, Prof. Brian Davis (a former ISB President), conveniently discusses approaching a ‘big name’ at a conference. You can view the video here. It’s often daunting to do this, especially when there are no mutual contacts to make the initial introduction. However, Prof. Davis was one of the kindest people I had the pleasure of meeting at ISB2015 in Glasgow, and his words left a lasting impression. ‘Never be afraid to go up to some big name in the field, introduce yourself, and ask for their opinion on almost anything’. At first, I was a little sceptical, and doubted that any well-known Professor would take time out of their Conference schedule to speak with me. However, I dived in at the deep end to test this theory and was very pleasantly surprised by the welcoming reception I received. I picked up some good advice and new perspectives on my work, gained a greater understanding of the industry, learned the difference between an American and Canadian accent (thanks Prof. Joe Hamill!), and had a lot of fun along the way. We’ve all got to start somewhere!

Finally, I’d like to share something I’ve come to realize over the past few years of graduate school – your peers are the next generation of ‘big names’. At large meetings, it is easy to get ‘tunnel vision’ as you look to establish ‘big name’ connections. However, try not to lose sight of the amazing resource we have in each other. The students you meet at your next conference may be future collaborators, travel companions for upcoming meetings, peer mentors, a source of information about the industry in different countries, etc. I’m personally looking forward to meeting many of you this time next year in Brisbane!

Before I sign off, I’d just like to say a huge thank you to everyone who took the time to respond to the online survey I posted in April. It was great to get your feedback and I am actively working to transform our resources to better suit your needs. At our upcoming ISB Executive Council meeting (in August), I look forward to representing the Student Membership and tabling ideas for new initiatives to enhance your member experience. It will take a little time to get things ‘up and running’, but keep an eye out for some exciting updates in the future!

Kind regards,


Kirsty McDonald

Tagged as: Comments Off

Students’ Corner

Posted on March 22, 2016

International Travel Grant

First and foremost, I’d like to begin by announcing that we have another upcoming student grant deadline! As student members, you are all welcome to apply for the International Travel Grant (ITG) Program; an exciting initiative that offers recipients up to $US2500 for travel related to biomechanics research.  The primary goal of the ITG is to create opportunities for students to travel abroad to experience science in other countries and cultures, and to build up international collaborations. The next round of ITG applications are due May 30, 2016 which gives you plenty of time to work on a proposal. If you need some inspiration, you can view travel reports from previous recipients here. And if you have any questions, as always, please feel free to contact me at Good luck to all who apply!


Affiliated Societies Student Travel Grants

A few of our affiliated societies offer travel grants you may be eligible for. The societies with upcoming deadlines include:

  1. International Society of Biomechanics in Sports, Deadline = April 30, 2016; Value = up to €500.
  1. Canadian Society for Biomechanics, Deadline = May 1, 2016; Value = up to $CAD300.
  1. European Society of Biomechanics, Deadline = May 9, 2016; Value = €400.
  1. German Society for Biomechanics, Deadline = March 31 2016; Value = up to €500.

Additional Travel Grant Opportunities

In 2016, Delsys will also offer 25 graduate student travel grants to support students travelling to the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Society of Biomechanics, the European College of Sport Science or the Society for Neuroscience meetings.  Grants are valued at $USD400 per student and applications are due April 29.

The Force and Motion Foundation also offer quarterly academic travel scholarships for scientific posters and podium presentation abstracts.  Up to ten $500USD travel scholarships are awarded by the foundation.

Advice to Students

Our ‘Advice to Students’ YouTube playlist is growing! This quarter, we have a short clip from Dr. Andrea Hemmerich from Queen’s University who encourages us to pursue our passion and take time to listen to those around us. The video can be viewed here. Thank you to Dr. Hemmerich for her contribution. She joins Dr. Walter Herzog and Dr. Joseph Hamill who together, provide a broad range of inspiring advice. Stay tuned for Dr. Brian Davis (The University of Akron) whose video will be released with the next edition of ISB Now.

Embracing Failures in Science

“Success is advancing from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm”. I recently came across a Naturejobs podcast (Careers in science: celebrate the failures) which discusses the inevitable presence of failure in science and its impact on young researchers, making reference to the ‘pressure to publish’. What defines a failure in science, and how can we embrace our failures to learn from them? Take a listen!

Social Media

Stay in the loop – ‘like’ the ISB Facebook page, join our Student Members Facebook Group and LinkedIn Group and follow us on Twitter for ISB related updates.

As always, I’d love to hear any feedback or suggestions you may have and am always happy to answer your questions, so please feel free to get in touch.

Students’ Corner

Posted on December 23, 2015

What an exciting year 2015 has been for the Society! We have a remodelled website which you can view here. It’s very user-friendly and definitely worth having a look around. I recommend the Tutorials and Lectures section which includes a Grant Writing Workshop, Keynotes from previous meetings, special lectures on a range of topics, and more.

The Student Section of the website is also looking great. As most of you will know, the Student Grant information was updated in early November, ahead of our December application deadline. Those of you who applied for the Matching Dissertation Grant (MDG), International Travel Grant (ITG) and International Affiliate Development Grant (IADG) Programs will be notified on the outcome of your application by February 1, 2016 – good luck to everyone who applied!

Technical Group Meeting Travel Grant (TGTG) applications are also due on February 28, 2016. Technical Group Meetings to be held in 2016 include:

  • 14th International Symposium on the 3-D Analysis of Human Movement (website)
  • 11th Conference of the International Shoulder Group (website)

The ISB offers up to $500USD to support student members attending Technical Group meetings to present their research.

The Society reached an exciting milestone earlier in the year, hosting the 25th Congress of the ISB in Glasgow, Scotland. We had a great attendance from Student Members – thank you to everyone who joined us. I hope many of you are starting to think about our 2017 meeting in Brisbane, Australia! The Organising Team is working hard to bring you updates and they even have a Congress App you can download for all the important Conference information.

As you may remember from the previous ISB Now, I’ve started a YouTube playlist titled ‘Advice to Students’. During the 2015 Congress, I asked eight delegates for a small piece of advice I could share with the ISB student community. The second instalment features our President-Elect, Dr. Joseph Hamill from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and can be viewed here. Interestingly, the topic of the clip is the importance of attending conferences and how this can be beneficial to your research. Our next video will feature Dr. Andrea Hemmerich from Queen’s University. Once again, a very big thank you to all our contributors!

Keep in the loop – ‘like’ the ISB Facebook page, join our Student Members Facebook Group and LinkedIn Group and follow us on Twitter for ISB related updates.

As always, if you have any feedback, comments, suggestions or questions I’d love to chat. Contact me on the email address below, or via our social media channels.

And last, but certainly not least – please don’t forget to renew your ISB membership for 2016, which you can do here.

Kind regards,

Kirsty McDonald


Student Travel Grants

Delsys are very generously offering 25 Graduate Student Travel Grants for 2016. In lieu of more traditional holiday gifts, Delsys has set aside $10,000 USD ($400/student) to aid Graduate Students attending domestic and international conferences in 2016.

Graduate students attending ACSM, ECSS, ASB and SFN conferences are encouraged to apply. Abstracts accepted for oral or poster presentation will be reviewed for the award. Deadline for submission is April 29, 2016.

See for further information.


Tagged as: Comments Off

Students’ Corner

Posted on September 30, 2015

I’d like to begin by acknowledging the great work of outgoing Student Representative, Kelsey Collins. A big thanks to Kelsey for all she has done throughout her two year term, including her efforts in organising a really engaging program of student events at the XXV Congress of the ISB in Glasgow.

Glasgow 2015

The ‘Outreach’ and ‘Cool Under Pressure’ sessions occurred simultaneously on Monday morning, followed by the very popular ‘Mentoring Session’ over lunch. Later that afternoon we headed to Aberfoyle for the ‘Student Excursion’. Fortunately, Scotland provided some beautiful weather as we made our way around a scenic tree top adventure trail. The massive zip lines were a definite highlight!

ISB Student member in the treetops in Scotland!

ISB Student member in the treetops in Scotland!

On the second day of the Congress we were treated to a ‘Mock Academic Interview’, and an informal discussion with ISB Student Awards Officer, Alberto Leardini, regarding Student Grant applications. On Thursday, the ‘Inaugural Women in Science Lunch’ was a great chance to celebrate female Biomechanists and their contribution to the field. Thank you to all who volunteered their time to present at the various events.

Advice to Students

During the Congress, I asked eight delegates for a small piece of advice I could share with the ISB student community. I’ll begin by apologising for the video quality – the clips were filmed around the Conference venue so there’s a bit of background noise…and I definitely don’t have the steadiest of hands!

However, I was personally really inspired after speaking with each contributor. Everyone brought their own unique flavour to the project, and topics ranged from conference networking, to conducting research, to having a fulfilling work-life balance.

Our first video features Dr. Walter Herzog from the University of Calgary, and can be found here.

I hope you’ll all get as much out of these short clips as I did. I will upload one with each new issue of ISB Now. If you have any comments, thoughts or feedback, we’d love to generate some discussion so feel free to comment the video or post on the ISB Student Members Facebook Group.

Keep your eyes peeled for the next video from Dr. Joseph Hamill, University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Thank you so much to all who contributed.

Professor Joe Hamill giving advice during a student mentoring session.

Professor Joe Hamill giving advice during a student mentoring session.

Student Grants Update

After feedback from our Student Grants discussion in Glasgow, the International Travel Grant (ITG) and Congress Travel Grant (CTG) guidelines have been expanded. The updated descriptions will appear on our website ( shortly, with the next round of applications due in December 2015.

Top Ten from Mary!

Words of wisdom on getting a good start in research from the interview with Mary Rodgers:

  1. “My path has been a long winding road – be open to diverse opportunities in research.” It’s OK to participate in a variety of research projects and research environments to figure out your niche.
  2. Be ready to put yourself out there and develop an idea of what to do and where you want to go – this can [and likely will] change!
  3. Everyone has their own path – find good collaborators and find good mentors at every stage of your career!
  4. Mentors can be professional mentors or personal mentors! Sometimes identifying someone with a strong work-life balance can be an incredibly valuable asset to your training.
  5. When looking for mentors, think outside your lab.
  6. Good mentorship relationships manifest when the mentee expresses (1) her goals, (2) has a direction, and (3) her vision is aligned with the work of the mentor.
  7. Mentorship can result from different people in different ways. Maybe someone can’t meet weekly, but they might be willing to read over your grants, or teach you a new method.
  8. Some grants require a mentorship plan – take advantage of this commitment from your mentors and execute this plan (see below)! This may also be used as a framework to create effective mentorship relationships.
  9. If mentorship or collaborations don’t work out, learn from them. Take these experiences forward and help them guide your future guide future collaborative and mentorship relationships.
  10. Take advantage of leadership roles in Biomechanics Societies.

Need tips on creating a mentor plan? Some Advice from Mary:


  1. Description of mentors role in detail – what exactly will they provide?
  2. For grants, a letter of support – this is an opportunity for the mentor to demonstrate their commitment to the mentee
  3. Describe what the expectations are for communication. What is the frequency of communication? Where and when will meetings be conducted?
  4. Specific areas of development for mentee – what can the mentor teach the mentee? How will this relationship grow as the mentee develops?
  5. Specific training goals – grants, learning new methods, coaching to leadership positions, teaching skills to be an effective mentor, etc.

Social Media

Stay in the loop – ‘like’ the ISB Facebook page, join our Student Members Facebook Group and LinkedIn Group and follow us on Twitter for ISB related updates.

If you have any feedback, comments, suggestions or questions please feel free to contact me at

Kind regards,

Kirsty McDonald


Tagged as: Comments Off

Students’ Corner

Posted on June 30, 2015

mcdonaldCongratulations to our 2015-2017 student representative, Kirsty McDonald, from University of Western Australia. Kirsty is supervised by Dr. Jonas Rubenson (Pennsylvania State University/UWA), Dr. Brendan Lay (UWA) and Dr. Cyril Donnelly (UWA). She loves the collaborative and translational nature of the field of Biomechanics, and is excited to contribute to the council. I am confident that Kirsty will bring lots of enthusiasm and exciting ideas!


We are approaching the XXV Congress of the ISB in Glasgow, and I wanted to remind you that the following sessions are being offered:

Outreach Session - Monday 13th July - 10:20-11:10 – still open for registration!

Are you interested in engaging the public with your work? Unsure how to write a lay abstract? Struggling with engaging industry? Want to maximize the impact if your findings? This lunch and learn provide tips to increase outreach and translation of your work.


  • Mary Rogers (National Institutes of Health, University of Maryland, USA)
  • Eric Rohr (Brooks Running, USA)
  • Darren Stefanyshyn (Human Performance Laboratory, University of Calgary)
  • Jill McNitt-Gray (Biomechanics Research Laboratory, Director, University of Southern California, USA)

Mentoring Session - Monday 13th July – 12:40 – 13:30 – still open for registration!

Over lunch, get a chance to chat with experts in our field about student-suggested topics. If you are a student and wish to attend the student excursion you must attend this session. This session is open to all ISB Student members.

Topics for Discussion:

  1. Preparing for life after graduate school – Discussed by Walter Herzog (Human Performance Laboratory, University of Calgary, Canada) and Paul DeVita (East Carolina University, USA)
  2. Data issues and technology advancement in Biomechanics – Discussed by Brian Davis (University of Akron, USA) and Julie Steele (University of Wollongong, Australia)
  3. Sports biomechanics and performance – Discussed by Darren Stefanyshyn (Human Performance Laboratory, University of Calgary, Canada) and Joe Hamill (University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA)
  4. Cultivating international collaborations in Biomechanics - Veronique Feipel (Université libre de Bruxelles, Belgium) and Felipe Carpes (UNIPAMPA - Federal University of Pampa, Brazil)

Mock Academic Interview - Tuesday 14th July - 12:40 - 13:30 – still open for registration!

Interested in pursuing a career in academic? Curious about the Academic Interview Process? Come watch a mock academic interview with a keen Post Doc (played by Prof. Phil Rowe). The audience will have the chance to quiz the candidate, and at the end of the session, decide if he gets the job! Open to ISB student members.

Organized by Enrica Papi (Imperial College, London, UK)

Interview Panel:

  • Walter Herzog (Human Performance Laboratory, University of Calgary, Canada)
  • Alison McGregor (Imperial College, London, UK)


Cool Under Pressure – still open for registration!

Monday 13th July - 10:20-11:10 

Stress is the adverse reaction that people have to excessive pressure or other types of demand placed upon them’. Do you feel stressed? Come to this lunch and we will provide you with few tips and tools on how to manage stress, keep calm and stay positive. You will also get the chance to experience a few minutes of relaxation techniques to boost your attention for the next conference session!

Organized by Enrica Papi (Imperial College, London, UK)


  • Professor Ilse Jonkers (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium)
  • Professor Phillip Rowe (University of Strathclyde, Scotland)

Inaugural Women in Science Lunch – still open for registration for ISB members - Thursday 16th July – 12:15 – 13:00

Open to ISB members - A Networking and conversation forum to celebrate contributions from the women of ISB over lunch. Short talks from some super-star women in biomechanics! You don’t want to miss this!


Monday July 13th - ISB GoApe Aberfoyle Student Event – Registration is Full! Look for pictures on our Facebook and twitter pages. Contact to be added to the waitlist.

Go Ape! - image from

Go Ape! - image from

I look forward to seeing you in Glasgow! As this is my last official Student’s Corner post as ISB Student Representative, I would like to thank all of you for your ideas and participation. Our strong sense of community sets the ISB apart as a professional group, and it has been a pleasure to be part of the Executive.

As always, feel free to contact myself or Kirsty with any questions or suggestions. Don’t forget to follow @ISBiomechanics (twitter), International Society of Biomechanics (Facebook), International Society of Biomechanics Student Group, and the International Society of Biomechanics members LinkedIn page.

See you in Glasgow,

Kelsey Collins

Tagged as: Comments Off