Defining motion at the Granata Biomechanics Lab
The Kevin P. Granata Biomechanics Lab (Granata Lab) at Virginia Tech has been directed by Dr. Robin Queen since 2015. Currently, the Granata Lab consists of two spaces: the Granata Biomechanics Lab and the Granata Treadmill Lab, both of which are located in Norris Hall on the Virginia Tech Blacksburg campus. Dr. Queen and her team investigate a wide array of biomechanics issues, including injury prevention and recovery as well as athletic performance.
Most of the laboratory space is used for motion capture as well as biofeedback training. All of the laboratory equipment is around the perimeter of the lab, which allows for ample open floor space for all necessary training.
Granata Biomechanics Lab
The Granata Biomechanics Lab uses a state-of-the-art motion capture system to monitor three-dimensional kinematics. This system is comprised of ten cameras and digitally integrated with four embedded AMTI BP600600 force plates, a Delysis EMG system, and a Pedar in-shoe pressure measurement system.
Through the integration of these various technologies, the lab is able to explore multiple research questions related to functional outcomes following injury and surgical intervention as well as defining optimal motion in healthy control participants to serve as a benchmark for its intervention studies.
The cameras are used in conjunction with the QTM and Visual3D software to allow for real-time data collection and the display of specific outcome measures that can be used to drive visual biofeedback applications.
In addition to the injury prevention and functional return projects being completed in the Granata Biomechanics Lab, the team also focuses on understanding and enhancing sports performance through a variety of biomechanical and functional assessments. Through this work, lab staff members are able to provide the player, coach, and medical staff with information that is not otherwise available during traditional athletic assessment. This data allows for better planning and training for both healthy athletes as well as those rehabilitating from an injury.
In addition to the QTM software, which is used for data collection and reduction, the Granata Lab uses Visual3D (C-Motion, Germantown, MD) software for the processing and reduction of all motion analysis data. Finally, the lab utilizes custom written Matlab software to complete any additional data processing.
Granata Treadmill Lab
The Granata Treadmill Lab opened in January of 2017 as an additional resource for the Granata Biomechanics Lab as well as other members of the Virginia Tech Biomechanics community who were in need of an instrumented treadmill for research projects. Dr. Queen and a collaborator, Dr. Alan Asbeck, were awarded an NSF MRI (Major Research Instrumentation) Award for the purchase of an AMTI fore-aft split-belt treadmill, which is the cornerstone of the Granata Treadmill Lab.
In addition to the treadmill, an eight camera Miqus system has been installed and digitally integrated for the collection of walking and running kinematics and kinetics.
Similar to the Granata Biomechanics Lab, the Granata Treadmill Lab utilizes the QTM software as well as Visual3D and custom MATLAB code to complete research projects and clinical assessments in a variety of populations. The Qualysis Running PAF is also used for all clinical running assessments that are completed in the Granata Treadmill Lab.
We need to develop assessment methods that allow us to monitor patients and athletes during various activity outside of the lab setting. The ability to translate our work onto the field and into the clinic is essential for performance enhancement, injury prevention and the development of effective rehabilitation programs.Dr Robin Queen