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Biomechanics

Within the field of kinesiology, many different job opportunities are available.Biomechanics, ‘the study of the structure and function of biological systems using the methods of mechanics? (Hatze, 1974, p. 189) is a fairly new title for an old practice. The idea of biomechanics has been around since Aristotlefirst wrote, On the Movement of Animals (Hamill, 1995).Since then it has slowly evolved until the1960’s when it received the name of biomechanics and now is gaining more attention.Biomechanics is a potentially large field of study, but employers need to find ways to utilize this opportunity.
Joseph Hamill describes the history of biomechanics as a long and gradual progression.Many past philosophers and scientists have made significant advancement in biomechanics.Galileo found equations for constant acceleration.One of Galileo’s students, Alfonso Borelli demonstrated that animals are similar to machines in that they are a system of pulleys and levers, and that muscles functioned according to mathematical concepts. Leonardo da Vinci was probably thefirst biomechanist. He was interested in human movement both as science and as art. He made the relationship between biomechanical concepts and the musculoskeletal system.Sir Isaac Newton was not a biomechanist, but he did help the cause by providing us with his three laws of motion.In the 1800’s two photographers, Etienne Jules Marey and Eadward Muybridge both made advancements for biomechanics.He measured step frequency and related it with speed.He founded methods for automatic timing of events as well.Muybridge used multiple cameras to take pictures of an animal in motion. He took them along the cardinal axis to break each bit of motion into different pieces. A.V. Hill created a velocity curve for sprinting, and considered air resistance when running. Herbert Elftman focused on the movement of muscle using film data. Finally in the 1960’s biomechanics labor…

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