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University of Central Lancashire - International PhD Scholarship

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  • University of Central Lancashire - International PhD Scholarship

    International PhD Scholarship
    Project Title: Quality of movement in obesity - exploring methodological issues of biomechanical assessment in obesity.
    University of Central Lancashire - School of Health

    Reference No INT-014Sutton

    Applications are invited for a full-time scholarship available in the School of Health. The scholarship is tenable for up to 3 years for a PhD (via MPhil route) [subject to satisfactory progress] and is open to international applicants only. UK/EU applicants are not eligible to apply. The scholarship will provide £15000 towards the cost of the International tuition fee over 3 years.

    Project Title:

    Quality of movement in obesity – exploring methodological issues of biomechanical assessment in obesity.

    Project Description:
    Obese people may adapt movement for various reasons, e.g. the increased loads through joints, relating to their weight and shape. The few studies of biomechanics in obese cohorts provide support for movement differences between obese and non-obese people, suggesting the obese have shorter and wider stride patterns and spend longer time in double stance. A gait study undertaken by the supervisors demonstrated that the normalised adduction moment at the knee was significantly lower in obese than in non-obese participants, suggesting that a change in moments may be a compensatory mechanism to reduce the relative knee joint loads and associated pain when walking. Some exercises may therefore increase the risk of musculoskeletal pain or injury in obese groups, potentially causing reduced exercise compliance.

    Advances in movement capture techniques and biomechanical modelling allow assessment of all three body planes and a more complex multi-planar analysis of activities, providing potentially unique insights into functional limitations with differing anthropometry. However there are methodological difficulties in undertaking biomechanical measurements in obese people, including the identification of joint centres and soft tissue movement artefacts, which both have direct effects on kinematics. There are also largely unexplored issues relating to the statistical analysis of the resulting multi-dimensional data used to assess differences in movement patterns.

    Applicants should have, or expect to receive a qualification equivalent to a high class honours degree in a relevant subject.

    Informal project related enquiries may be directed to Dr Chris Sutton email Tel + 44 (0)1772-892783

    Application Forms can be found at:

    Completed application forms should be emailed to

    The closing date for applications to the Graduate Research Office:
    Friday 13 May 2011 5pm British Summer Time

    Proposed Interview Date: 6 June 2011