Minnesota Rehabilitation Biomechanics Lab

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The Minnesota Rehabilitation Biomechanics Lab (MRBL) investigates musculoskeletal injury and disease with a focus on rehabilitation. 

We aim to understand mechanical contributors to the development or progression of pain and dysfunction, to enhance treatment, and to develop preventive programs. We benefit from the collaborations of clinicians and scientists locally, nationally, and internationally. The lab uses state-of-the-art measurement techniques to produce clinically relevant research, and to educate the next generation of clinical biomechanics researchers.

Studies

The Biomechanics Lab is now seeking research study participants for the following studies:

Shoulder Joint Study
The purpose of this study is to investigate the utility of a clinical exam to classify individuals with excessive shoulder motion. We are seeking healthy individuals without shoulder pain and competitive swimmers with shoulder pain.

To fill out a secure questionnaire, read the study information (healthy shoulders flyer / swimmers with shoulder pain flyer)  and scan the QR code, or go directly to: U of MN Swimming Shoulder Study.

People

The lab is directed by Paula M Ludewig, PhD, PT & Ward M Glasoe, PhD, PT, ATC.

Dr. Ludewig is a Professor in the Program in Physical Therapy, and Director of Graduate Studies for the Program in Rehabilitation Science. Her expertise is in shoulder biomechanics and rehabilitation. She also serves as Associate Editor for the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy.

Dr. Glasoe is Assistant Professor in the Program in Physical Therapy. His expertise is in foot biomechanics and rehabilitation. 

Students in the lab include those pursuing doctoral degrees in Rehabilitation Science, entry level DPT students completing group research projects, and undergraduate research students.
 

Research Areas

Shoulder Biomechanics & Rehabilitation

Shoulder disorders are the second-most common musculoskeletal complaint in many populations. Our Lab seeks to understand the underlying mechanisms of common shoulder dysfunction, extend the scientific basis for improving diagnosis and treatment, test intervention effectiveness, and develop preventative programs. Our focus is predominately applied, translational human subjects testing, but also incorporates cadaveric and outcomes investigations.

Foot Biomechanics

Progressive foot deformities are common. Ongoing research is using fluoroscopy to examine 3D kinematics of the foot and ankle to better understand deformity disablement. Characterized as risk factors, alterations in tarsal bone alignment may inform non-operative treatment strategies. As well, the biomechanical techniques currently being developed in the biomechanics lab to investigate foot disorders may be adopted by researchers to investigate other sequential human body movements and musculoskeletal injury.

Edema and Cancer Rehabilitation

Dr. Koehler’s area of interest includes lymphatic related disorders, physiological lymphedema measures, cancer rehabilitation, and patient outcome measures. Her research focus is on axillary web syndrome, lymphedema development, and cancer related symptoms in women with breast cancer. Her research includes collaboration with oncology, intervention radiology, vascular medicine, and experts in shoulder dysfunction, instrumentation, and epidemiology.

Equipment & Facilities

  • Optical and electromagnetic motion capture
  • Image reconstruction software
  • Electromyography
  • C-Arm Fluoroscopy
  • Musculoskeletal Modeling Software

For data acquisition, visualization, and analysis, this lab uses The MotionMonitor by Innovative Sports Traning, Inc.

Contact us

Whether you're interested in a research study, or in talking with someone in the lab, we can be reached through our direct emails, or by phone at 612-626-3298. 

MRBL group photo

Lab Directors

Arin Ellingson
Program in Physical Therapy 
ellin224@umn.edu

Paula M. Ludewig
Program in Physical Therapy 
ludew001@umn.edu

Ward M. Glasoe
Program in Physical Therapy
612-624-9894
glaso008@umn.edu