International Society of Biomechanics
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March 2024

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Welcome to the first ISB Now newsletter for 2024! I hope you all had a Happy New Year and enjoyed some form of end-of-year break! Being in the Southern Hemisphere I’ve been on Summer break in January, and just getting back into our first week of teaching in mid-February.

Over the past 3 months the ISB Council has been conducting some planning and collaborative activities which I am happy to share with you. We have been planning for our 2024 Council meeting, which will be held in Edmonton, Canada, just before the Canadian Society for Biomechanics Conference. One of the main activities at these even-year Council meetings is to review bids for the ISB Congress 3 years later. We are still seeking bids for the ISB 2027 Congress, so if you have an interest in hosting an ISB Congress, please reach out to us as soon as possible because the applications will be due in the coming months (before the next Newsletter).

In preparation for discussion at the next Council meeting, we are also looking at ways to update the ISB website and sponsorship offerings, and I am hoping to start work on an ISB Strategy. I have been learning from some of our ISB affiliate societies the processes they used to develop their strategic plans. This will include an opportunity for consultation and input from ISB members, which may be in the form of a survey sent to members, or it may be in person at an AGM, depending on how quickly we are able to progress this. This will be your chance to have a say for the direction of the society – which activities are most important to you etc. I will share more information with you all about our progress with these activities throughout the year.

I have also had a couple of meetings recently with representatives from our new affiliate society, International Women in Biomechanics (IWB). We are discussing ways of collaborating to help support and advance Women in the field of Biomechanics. The IWB Wiki bomb event is in full swing, and I have been learning about the IWB Nominate Women initiative, which aims to increase nominations for women for awards, speaking events, board positions etc. I have asked for IWB to contribute a short description to the next newsletter so that ISB members can learn more about this initiative, so watch out for this in the next newsletter!

Finally, I’d like to draw your attention to the Biomechanics Through Time article in this current ISB Now edition, where our Archives Officer, John Challis, takes us back in time to an early ISB Newsletter article discussing links between Gulliver’s Travels and Biomechanics. These articles are entertaining and enlightening, and I hope you all enjoy this one and others to come!


Elizabeth Clarke

ISB President 


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I hope that everyone is off to a great start to the semester!

Upcoming Selected Events

December 2023          Australian and New Zealand Society of Biomechanics Regional

April 2024                   British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences Student Conference

April 2024                   Conference of the German Society of Biomechanics

July 2024                    International Society of Biomechanics in Sports Conference

July 2024                    Congress of the European Society of Biomechanics

August 2024               American Society of Biomechanics Meeting

August 2024               Canadian Society of Biomechanics Conference

December 2024          International Symposium of 3-D Analysis of Human Movement

Let us know what other upcoming events you want to spread the word about!


Science in the Break (SitB)

Science in the Break (SitB) is a communication platform that makes research more accessible and provides more visibility to young researchers in a fun, informal, and entertaining way (check out their excellent work on youtube). Yes, it is a virtual coffee break, but we promise a comfortable atmosphere to talk about your passion for science. As ISB, we are started a collaboration with SitB and we are going to chat about:

  • Student funding
  • Spotlight: In action! – show your lab activities
  • Equity, diversity, and inclusion: Stories outside the box


Be sure to watch the latest videos on Youtube!

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Are you interested in participating?

Did we miss a topic you would like to chat about?

Do you want to learn how to interview people or edit videos professionally?

Reach out to us via email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Twitter (@ISBiomechanics and @ScilnTheBreak). We are always excited to connect with passionate students – we look forward to chatting with you and sharing your experiences/research with the community!


Keep in touch!

Stay up to date with ISB by liking our ISB Facebook page, joining the Student Members Facebook page, and following ISB on Twitter. Please reach out to me with any comments, questions, suggestions, or just to talk. You can contact me at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Best Wishes,

Shaye Tiell

ISB Student Representative:


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The next set of student grant program deadlines are here!
The Technical Group Travel Grant (TGTG), offered to student members of the ISB attending the affiliated Technical Group meetings, will be accepting applications with a deadline of March 15th, 2024. This grant will provide up to $500 USD to students who will be presenting their research results at one of the ISB affiliated Technical Group meetings.

The second round of for the International Travel Grant Program (ITG) will be accepting applications with a deadline of May 15th, 2024. This long-standing student grant allows student members to travel abroad to experience science in other countries and cultures, and to build up international collaborations. The ITG grant has been increased from $2500 USD to $3500 USD this year to better offset travel costs.

Friendly reminder: you and your advisor must be active financial members of the ISB to participate in these grant programs. Don’t forget to renew to your membership for 2024!
More details are available at


Erica Bell, PhD

ISB Executive Council Student Awards Officer

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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Here, you will uncover historical information about the society. Enjoy these nuggets curated by John Challis, our Archives Officer.  



Ever since its publication in 1726 Jonathan Swift's Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World by Lemuel Gulliver, commonly known as Gulliver's Travels, has been popular. The book offers a satirical perspective of the politics of the time, and an examination of whether human nature is inherently corrupt or just susceptible to corruption. Modern readers may miss some of these elements but be intrigued by Gulliver’s travels to different (fictitious) lands. In Part I he finds himself in Lilliput where the inhabitants are less than 6 inches (~15 cm) tall. While in Part II he finds himself in Brobdingnag where the inhabitants are about 72 ft (~22 m) tall. For the biomechanist these different heights raise questions about how human movement scales with such extremes in standing height.

Questions about body size are not new and were considered before Swift, for example by Galileo Galilei (1637). The ISB has been producing newsletters for its members for over 40 years. In 1993 in issue 49, Jan Oderfeld, professor at the Warsaw University of Technology, presented an analysis of aspects of Gulliver’s time in Lilliput and Brobdingnag. For Lilliput his analysis focused on: the machine used to transport Gulliver; Gulliver’s ability to tow most of the fleet of an enemy; and the jumping ability of the Lilliputians. For Brobdingnag his analysis focused on the production of vocal sounds by the people of Brobdingnag. Oderfeld was able to conclude that the majority of Swift’s mechanical analyses were correct. To provide context, writing on the systematic application of dimensional analyses to mechanical phenomena did not occur until after 1726 (De A. Martins, 1981), and its formalization occurred much later (e.g., Buckingham, 1914). Swift’s ability to correctly scale many aspects of human movement is all the more impressive considering Swift, a graduate from Trinity College Dublin, had focused his studies on subjects required for the priesthood.

In Part I, Chapter 3 there is the following text,

“…the emperor stipulates to allow me a quantity of meat and drink sufficient for the support of 1724 Lilliputians. Some time after, asking a friend at court how they came to fix on that determinate number, he told me that his majesty’s mathematicians, having taken the height of my body by the help of a quadrant, and finding it to exceed theirs in the proportion of twelve to one, they concluded from the similarity of their bodies, that mine must contain at least 1724 of theirs…”

Swift’s assumption here is that energy consumption is proportional to body mass. For geometrically similar objects their mass (M) is proportional to their height cubed (H3), therefore if Gulliver was 12 times taller than the average Lilliputian then his energy consumption would be greater by a factor of 123 = 1728 ≈ 1724. Measurements of basal metabolic rate (P) indicates P does not scale so that P ∝ M, for example Sarrus and Rameaux (1839) argued that P ∝ M2/3. Kleiber (1932) presented evidence that the relationship might be P ∝ M3/4. While the value of the exponent and the mechanisms governing it are hotly debated (e.g., Glazier, 2022) it is typically less than 1, suggesting that Gulliver was provided with too much food. Swift’s assumption about the amount of food his protagonist would need was in error in light of more recent studies, but it is clear that the amount of food specified was based on a reasonable, albeit incorrect, assumption.

For more analysis of the scaling featured in Gulliver’s Travels see the old ISB newsletter article by Jan Oderfeld.



  • Buckingham, E. (1914). On physically similar systems; illustrations of the use of dimensional equations. Physical Review,  4(4), 345-376.
  • Galilei, G. (1637). Dialogues Concerning Two new Sciences (H. Crew & A. DeSalvio, Trans.). New York: Macmillan.
  • Glazier, D. S. (2022). Variable metabolic scaling breaks the law: from ‘Newtonian’to ‘Darwinian’approaches. Proceedings of The Royal Society B, 289(1985), 20221605
  • Kleiber, M. (1932). Body size and metabolism. Hilgardia, 6(11), 315-353.
  • De A. Martins, R. (1981). The origin of dimensional analysis. Journal of the Franklin Institute, 311(5), 331-337.
  • Sarrus, F., & Rameaux. (1839). Rapport sur un memoire adresse a l" Academie Royale de Medicine. Bull Acad. Roy. Med. Belg, 3, 1094-1100.

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Comparative Neuromuscular Biomechanics Technical Group



The Comparative Neuromuscular Biomechanics (CNB) technical group was out in full force at the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) conference held January 2-6 2024 in Seattle, USA. SICB attracted more than 2000 conference attendees and really is a global hub of comparative biomechanics. Here are just some of the CNB Group highlights from the SICB conference:


  • Workshop on Advancing accessibility, collaboration, and training in use of model-based and analytical tools in organismal biology led by Board member Monica Daley.
  • Symposium talks by Board members Chris Richards, Armita Manafzadeh, and Taylor Dick.
  • CNB Poster led by Board member Jonas Rubenson.
  • Presentations at the Division of Comparative Biomechanics and Division of Vertebrate Morphology member meetings to share CNB’s mission.


One of the CNB highlights of the conference was the CNB Social which attracted many biologists to a local pub to talk science and catch up with old and new friends and colleagues.


Upcoming CNB events:

American Society for Biomechanics, Madison WI, USA, 5-8 August 2024

The CNB is coordinating a thematic poster session at this years meeting for the American Society for Biomechanics to be held in Madison Wisconsin, USA in August. To facilitate coordination of CNB relevant sessions, we ask individuals to add ‘comparative’ as a keyword during the abstract submission if they feel that their work would suit a broader comparative theme (yes humans are animals too). Stay tuned for details of a CNB social gathering in Madison.

International Society of Biomechanics in Sockholm, Sweden,  27-31 July 2025

CNB is collaborating with researchers at the University of Jyväskylä to host a satellite symposium in association with the next International Society of Biomechanics meeting in Stockholm, Sweden in July 2025. The program planning is well underway…stay tuned for more updates soon.

Stay tuned for upcoming activities and events by joining the CNB email list ( and follow us on Twitter @CNBiomechanics.

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The International Society of Biomechanics (ISB) Technical Group on the 3-D Analysis of Human Movement provides a platform for discussing all matters concerning the measurement of human movement in three dimensions. This is primarily achieved through the organization of international symposia, typically held biennially. The Group owes its establishment primarily to the endeavours of Paul Allard and Jean-Pierre Blanchi, who spearheaded the first symposium in Montréal in 1991 and contributed to organizing subsequent symposia in Poitiers, Stockholm, and Grenoble. The International Society of Biomechanics officially recognized the organization as a Technical Group in 1995 and the inaugural meeting took place in Grenoble on July 1, 1996.

For the first time in Latin America (Dec. 3-6, 2024), and with studies focused on Tango as a local highlight, 3DAHM 2024 will be held in Montevideo, Uruguay. The event aims to foster collaboration among scientists across all continents in Biomechanics. We cordially invite scientists from Latin America and around the globe to join us in this endeavour, contributing their expertise to advance the field and create connections that transcend geographical boundaries. Particularly, students are warmly welcomed to participate, as their fresh perspectives are vital for the future of Biomechanics. A student prize will be awarded for the best papers. The conference will provide an excellent opportunity to exchange knowledge, forge new partnerships, and collectively drive innovation in 3D Human Movement Science.


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ISG 2024 will be hosted by York University in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on June 4th and 5th ( Keynote speakers Julie Côté and Clark Dickerson are already arranged, and two full days of exciting shoulder research are planned! 

The International Shoulder Group (ISG) is a collaboration of mostly biomechanically oriented research groups, whose main interest is in the shoulder. The ISG has been a Technical Group of the International Society of Biomechanics since 1999. The ISG aims to enhance shoulder research by creating a platform for discussion and the exchange of information, software and data (

Early bird registration for ISG 2024 ends March 31, 2024. More conference details can be found at Keep checking for updates!

If you haven’t already done so, please consider becoming a member of ISG and joining the mailing list ( where you will receive updates regarding the conference and other resources related to shoulder biomechanics. Please direct any questions regarding the conference to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

We look forward to seeing many of you and engaging in some fantastic discussions of cutting-edge shoulder research in June!

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The ISB 2025 Congress is scheduled to take place from July 27th to July 31st 2025 in the vibrant city of Stockholm.  Catch a glimpse of what awaits the global biomechanics community by watching the video below. We are thrilled and eagerly anticipating the scientific, cultural, and social opportunities!


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National Biomechanics Day in Nigeria

The Institute Since 2021, Nigeria has hosted the National Biomechanics Day (NBD) to introduce biomechanics to high school students in the country as part of strategy to get more people into biomechanics and  biomechanics-related disciplines. Hundreds of undergraduates, high school students and their teachers have participated in these events over the last three years.

This year, Dr Sunday Adelakun at the Federal University of Technology, has received an Outreach Award from the Biomechanics Initiative, the parent body of the national biomechanics day, to organize NBD in Nigeria. This year’s event which is schedule to hold on the 3rd of April 2024, will be co-hosted by the biomechanics communities at Elizade University and Federal University of Technology, Akure, both in Nigeria. We are hoping to use this avenue, like always, to stimulate more young Nigerians to pursue careers in biomechanics and biomechanics-related disciplines. The program will include presentations from great biomechanists from around the globe as well as a tour of biomechanics research facilities at these two Universities.


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From Brazil to the World: Unifesp's Biomechanics-Driven Orthotics Project Leads Post-Stroke Rehabilitation Innovations


The Institute of Science and Technology of the Federal University of São Paulo (ICT-Unifesp) in Brazil has secured a significant grant of US $115,000.00 from the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) for a pioneering project focusing on orthoses innovation and development. This collaboration extends to partner universities in Latin America and Africa.

Entitled "Upper Limb Orthoses for Post-Hospital Rehabilitation of Individuals with Stroke Sequelae: Virtual Production Planning Using Additive Manufacturing and Technical Training in the Area," the project was driven by the urgent need to address the escalating challenges posed by the rise in post-pandemic stroke cases, impacting over 100 million individuals worldwide.

Professor Dr. Maria Elizete Kunkel, vice-president of the Brazilian Society of Biomechanics and project coordinator, underscores the relevance of the initiative in light of Brazil's mounting cases, particularly among young adults aged 30 to 39, leading to lasting motor disabilities. The project aims to revolutionize post-stroke rehabilitation by leveraging Health 4.0 technologies to produce personalized upper limb orthoses. This approach is inspired by the success of Unifesp's Mao3D Extension Program in manufacturing upper limb prostheses.

Collaborating with esteemed institutions such as the University of Vale da Paraíba (UNIVAP), Universidad de La Frontera in Chile (UFRO), and Queen Njinga a Mbandi University (URNM) in Angola, Africa, the project emphasizes interdisciplinary cooperation to address global rehabilitation challenges. Besides enhancing patient outcomes, the project prioritizes training healthcare professionals to implement these advancements effectively, bridging technological innovations with clinical needs.

Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Clinical trials will be conducted under the supervision of UNIVAP's physiotherapy team, involving volunteers and post-stroke patients treated by the Brazilian Unified Health System (SUS), thereby validating the efficacy of these orthoses. Furthermore, professionals from URNM in Africa will undergo training in active methodologies and benefit from artificial intelligence assistance. This training program will be organized by the Ideaufro - Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship of UFRO, with facilitation provided by the Unifesp team at the URNM.

Professor Maria Elizete highlights the project's potential impact beyond scientific realms, emphasizing the significance of interdisciplinary collaboration in driving innovation and technological advancement in prosthetics and orthotics.



Insights from the “X International Congress on Rehabilitation Research” at the National Institute of Rehabilitation in México City, México

 We are happy to share highlights from the recent “X International Congress on Rehabilitation Research”, held at the National Institute of Rehabilitation in Mexico City a few months ago. Among the presentations, Alberto I Pérez S, Elisa Romero A, María C Arquer R, Victor M Araujo M, Jorge A Mercado G, Felipe Mendoza C, and Ariadna Del Villar M presented their work titled "Enhancing Biomechanical Perception among High School Students through the National Biomechanics Day."

Their study showed the outcomes of a National Biomechanics Day event conducted last year at the National Institute of Rehabilitation, where high school students engaged in activities centered around biomechanics. To assess the impact of the event and the students’ perceptions, a pre-and-post questionnaire was administered across five domains.

The results revealed a significant increase in students' confidence in understanding biomechanics after the event. This positive shift in perception not only reflects an enhanced understanding of the complexities of biomechanics but also suggests an increased inclination toward pursuing biomechanics-related careers. This highlights the effectiveness of immersive experiences in educational settings.


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The ISB Executive Council is currently accepting bids to host the 2027 Congress. The Executive Council of the ISB is responsible for selecting the site for the biennial International Congress of the Society and for offering guidance and assistance to the Organizing Committee. Interested prospective organizers are encouraged to contact Felipe Carpes (President-Elect) via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for guidance on bidding guidelines and additional information. The ISB looks forward to partnering with a dedicated host to create a high-quality and impactful XXXI Congress that advances the field of biomechanics and fosters collaboration among global experts.

The deadline for submitting bids to the ISB 2027 Congress has been extended to May 15th.


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