My interests focus on the psychological and neural mechanisms underpinning the acquisition and performance of the key perceptual-cognitive and perceptual-motor skills that impact on the development of expertise and expert performance. I have broad interests in facilitating understanding of how people become experts across domains as well as in exploring how skills may be learnt in high-performance settings or relearnt in various clinical domains.
My research examines how neurological injury or disease affects common, yet complex, activities in daily life (e.g., turning around a corner, walking while talking). Focusing on the intersection of biomechanics and neural control during real-world locomotion, my long-term goal is to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and functional rehabilitation of populations with impaired mobility.
My research focuses on how the nervous system learns to perform motor actions, especially in the presence of neurological disease or injury. Long-term, I want to improve our understanding of the mechanisms underlying therapeutic interventions, to ultimately create more efficient, individualized rehabilitation approaches and improve the quality of life for individuals with disabilities.
My primary research interest focuses on the psychosocial factors influencing injury recovery and return to high-performance among injured athletes, elite performers (e.g., dancers, military personnel) and chronic pain sufferers. My ultimate aim is to demonstrate the efficacy of psychosocial strategies in enhancing the likelihood of personal growth following injury occurrence. Additional areas of research relate to psychosocial determinants of physical activity and health and well-being among athletes (e.g., athlete burnout).
Brad Fawver, PhD
My research aims to improve our understanding of the perceptual, cognitive, and motor skills utilized by various high-level performers and aid in the training of domain-specific motor expertise across numerous health and performance domains. This work also has application for training resilience and developing efficacious treatments for emotional and stress disorders.
Tiphanie Raffegeau, PhD
My research explores the relationship between gait and cognitive control across the lifespan, focusing on mobility and fall prevention in older adults. I conduct translational research that combines expertise from cognition, motor development, and gait biomechanics to study the association between cognition and locomotor control. Primarily using dual-task experiments, I have investigated the complex interaction of cognitive and locomotor control resources required to walk while performing daily activities and how this changes with age. I have used these methods to explore walking, obstacle crossing, cycling, and elliptical exercise, and the findings from this work have challenged commonly held theories governing dual-task performance.
Current Doctoral Trainees
- Rhiannon Cowen
- Anupriya Pathania
- Joe Thomas
- Mindie Clark
- Brady DeCouto