Grant TypeDissertation Fieldwork Grant
Institutional AffiliationIllinois, Urbana, U. of
Grant numberGr. 9456
Approve DateApril 25, 2017
Project TitleFox, Maria C., U. of Illnois, Urbana, IL - To aid research on 'The Biomechanical Consequences of Body Size Differences in Humans,' supervised by Dr. John D. Polk
MARIA C. FOX, then a graduate student at University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois, was awarded a grant in April 2017 to aid research on “The Biomechanical Consequences of Body Size Differences in Humans,” supervised by Dr. John D. Polk. This research examined how body size influences human morphology and behavior in four areas: 1) scaling of linear anthropometric dimensions; 2) scaling of stiffness, force, displacement, and leg spring angle during running; 3) quiet standing postural sway and stance characteristics; and 4) variability and scaling patterns in bone microstructure of the femur. The first study indicated that most of the anthropometric dimensions studied scale uniformly with body size within sexes. The second study suggested that size-varying humans in this sample had similar movement patterns (i.e., dynamic similarity) when running at the same relative speeds. The third study revealed that stance characteristics were strongly related to sex and some extent body size, and that postural sway metrics were dominated primarily by stance characteristics. The fourth study indicated large variability in bone microstructure and indistinct scaling patterns in the properties analyzed when examined across the joint surface of the distal femur. Each study revealed slightly different results for how body size influenced the parameters tested, but all indicated a large amount of variability in the observed patterns. Humans are highly variable in morphology and behavior, but this variability appears to affect relationships with body size differently on the macro- and micro-scale.