New HPU lab to have global footprint

Nov. 15, 2012 @ 03:24 PM

Not only will some elite athletes seek treatment at a new High Point University biomechanics laboratory, much of the research based on their treatments will be available around the world.

The world-class Biomechanics and Human Physiology Laboratory will be affiliated with the Institute for Human Health & Sports Science Research, Daniel Erb, dean of the HPU School of Health Sciences, said Wednesday during a reception in the former Circuit City building at Oak Hollow Mall. There also will be a Team Clinic to help athletes prevent injuries.

“The research which has already begun will be published and will help athletes,” Erb said.  “This facility will change the lives of students and help prepare them to make their communities better.”

A top-rated college basketball player has already sought HPU for treatment so she can play the game better, Erb said.

“She passed by two leading medical centers to come here,” Erb said. “This is one example of the impact of High Point University.”

Athletes will be able to test their skills and injury recovery on artificial turf and hardwood while students and professors study injury prevention and rehabilitation methods in the lab. Using  a camera system equipped with high-speed, 3-D motion analysis capabilities, students will observe exercise motions.

Student laboratory work has started. Exercise Science has become HPU’s third-largest major with 200 students, said Dennis Carroll, HPU’s provost and vice president for academic affairs.

The lab has medical equipment used to analyze breathing, blood flow and muscle function during exercise. The specialized equipment is found only at military research centers and at the most elite sports training facilities and universities.

HPU President Nido Qubein said that High Point Regional Hospital will be associated with the project.

“Together, we the community at large have done this,” Qubein said. “We should be grateful and proud that we have an institution like this in our community. This facility is an extension of the city.”

Eric Hegedus, chairman of the HPU department of physical therapy, said he has been most impressed with the culture “of giving and sharing” success he has found among students and faculty.

“You just don’t see that everywhere,” he said.

dnivens@hpe.com|888-3626