- Ph.D. at University of Iowa, 1979
- Licenciado at Universidad Complutense, 1973
- Assistant Professor, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
- School of HPER Outstanding Researcher Award
- Geoffrey Dyson Award of the International Society for Biomechanics in Sports
- United States Olympic Committee Sports Medicine Research Associate
- International Olympic Committee Speaker's Appreciation Award
My area of research is sport biomechanics. When a good performance is achieved in a sport, this is due in part to the athlete's physical condition. But in part it is also due to the athlete's technique: to the amount of skill in the athlete's motions. The main goal of sport biomechanics is to understand the cause-effect mechanisms that make some sport techniques better than others, and ultimately to find the optimum technique.
The main research tool in sport biomechanics is motion analysis, in which the three-dimensional (3D) locations of a number of anatomical points are obtained through film, video, or other opto-electronic methods during a sports activity, and then used as input to computer programs for the calculation of other mechanical information.
The standard 3D data capture procedure used at our laboratory.
At the Biomechanics Laboratory in the HPER Building, we develop new research methodologies for biomechanics, investigate the techniques used in a variety of sports, and apply the information obtained through this research to the improvement of the techniques of elite athletes.
Our work on methodology development has included 3D motion analysis methods, computer graphics, calculation of mechanical parameters of human motion, and computer simulation. We have analyzed the techniques used in running, jumping, and throwing in track and field, pitching and batting in baseball/softball, the tennis serve, and soccer kicking, among other sports activities. Our laboratory has received funding from USA Track & Field, the U.S. Olympic Committee, and the International Olympic Committee to analyze the techniques of elite track and field athletes in various events, and to provide advice to their coaches. For further information, see: http://www.indiana.edu/~sportbm/research.html
Gulledge, J.K. & Dapena, J. (2008). A comparison of the reverse and power punches in oriental martial arts. Journal of Sports Sciences 26:189-196.
Gordon, B. J., & Dapena, J. (2006). Contribution of joint rotations to racquet speed in the tennis serve. Journal of Sports Sciences, 24, 31-49.
Dapena, J. (2005). The "loud gun" starting system currently used at the Olympic Games does not work properly. http://www.trackandfieldnews.com/features/2005/start-problem.html (accessed March 29, 2006).
Dapena, J., Gutiérrez-Dávila, M., Soto, V. M., & Rojas, F. J. (2003). Prediction of distance in hammer throwing. Journal of Sports Sciences, 21, 21-28.
LeBlanc, M. & Dapena, J. (2002). Optimal system values for producing a large velocity of the distal endpoint during flail-like motion. Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 18, 278-286.
Dapena, J. The high jump. (2000). In V. Zatsiorsky (Ed.), Biomechanics in Sport (pp. 284-311). Blackwell Science: Oxford.
Levanon, J. & Dapena, J. (1998). Comparison of the kinematics of the full-instep and pass kicks in soccer. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 30, 917-927.
Courses Recently Taught
HPER P391 Biomechanics
HPER K530 Mechanical Analysis of Human Performance
HPER K630 Biomechanics of Human Performance
HPER K631 Quantitative Mechanical Analysis of Human Motion