Scientific Basis of Human Movement

SAR PT 550

This course provides an overview of current theory and data that address the question of how humans select, perform, and learn skilled actions. Students will learn to apply basic principles of sensorimotor coordination and control to physical therapy evaluation and intervention planning, and learn how these principles can be used to guide treatment of dysfunctional movements, regardless of the type of underlying disease/injury, impairment, activity limitation or participation restriction. Emphasis will be placed on: (1) understanding how movements emerge from the interaction of individual, task, and environmental constraints; and (2) understanding the resources that the individual brings to any given skilled action (biomechanical, neuromuscular, sensory, cognitive and cardiopulmonary systems). The basic systems approach proposed by Bernstein for an adequate motor control theory will be used as a way to critique theories currently used as a basis for physical therapy, and to introduce the concepts of system constraints and of dynamical systems theory. The ways in which the constraints/dynamics approach can be integrated with the disablement model adopted by the APTA in its clinical practice guidelines (the World Health Organization's ICF model) will be identified. The results will allow the student to gain insight into how to conceptualize a holistic model of the factors that influence the patient's behavior, identify causes of problems, and learn a thought process for evaluation and treatment.

FALL 2014 Schedule

Section Instructor Location Schedule Notes
A1 Saltzman GCB 205 M 12:00 pm-2:00 pm

Note that this information may change at any time. Please visit the Student Link for the most up-to-date course information.