Skip to main content

National Biomechanics Day 2024

April 15, 2024

We once again partnered with the NC Math and Science Education Network (MSEN) to host our Biomechanics Day Event as part of their annual MSEN Day. This year, unlike last year, the event was held on Centennial Campus which meant that we could bring students to the labs in addition to our regular expo-type activities.

Gabby showed students how we can we use a force plateĀ to determine jump forceĀ and hang time

Almost as high as Michael Jordan!

Sandra used our hand-crank tensile tester to show students how different material properties need different amounts of force to break

Jenn and Nooshin had a hands-on activity to teach students about how material properties are a factor when developing hydrogels

Amy and Jingjie showed students an arm model that we use in some of our classes

And also demonstrated how muscle moment arms can make you seem very strong (or very weak!)

Derek’s group had a VR food fight to show how we can capture human movement and use it in biomechanics research

And Kristen showed off a powered exoskeleton that can be controlled with an app!

Until next year!

National Biomechanics Day 2023 (aka MSEN Day)

April 25, 2023

This year, rather than hosting our own event, we were asked by the organizers of the NC Math and Science Education Network (MSEN) to do an expo event as part of their annual MSEN Day. This event brought over 300 students from 6th through 12th grade from across the state to NC State’s campus for a day of competition, fun, and science! About half of these students rotated through our expo, having time to browse through our wide array of biomechanics-focused activities. Due to pre-planned travel, pending exams, and the event date having to be rescheduled, much of our group was unavailable to help. But Jacque, Jason, Katie, and Kyla were awesome enough to help out and did a great job engaging the students with some biomechanics.

You can learn more about the MSEN program here and National Biomechanics Day here.

Breaking Bones: we used a hand-crank 3 point bending system to show how different materials might have different properties, and how we can measure things like failure.

Kyla demonstrates how we can use a laser doppler flowmeter to measure blood flow.

A student tries to lift a pole with a 5lb bag of flower taped to it at different distances from the fulcrum to demonstrate the idea of muscle moment arm, and how that distance affects strength (force). 

There were also plenty of non-OML-led activities for everyone to check out

These 3D stacking puzzles help students think about how we can make a 3D model from 2D images

A student checks out an interactive arm model to learn how muscles work together to move the arm

Demonstrating a powered exoskeleton that can be controlled with an app

Group photo

Group photo with Jacque!

National Biomechanics Day 2022

April 25, 2022

Last Friday we celebrated National Biomechanics Day at NC State. We missed the official National Biomechanics Day (April 6) due to travel and other obligations, so we opted to hold our event a few weeks later. But we’re pretty sure the students didn’t mind.

This year we decided to re-envision the event from what we’ve done in the past. In previous years, we’ve had an expo-style event with labs leading short demos or activities related to their research. These events had 100-200 attendees. But this year we wanted to foster more meaningful connections with attendees, so we pared it down to 35 students and guided them through an engineering challenge. We chose the one from Teach Engineering made by Biomedical Engineers at UVA (find it here). It’s the year 2050 and Bill was hit by a car. A section of his bone, muscle, and skin were damaged beyond repair and need to be totally replaced by 3D bioprinting. The students have been hired as biomedical engineers to help print bone, muscle, and skin grafts for Bill.

We divided the students into groups of four, where they first brainstormed the problem, reading over information on their tissue type and thinking about how they could print it. They then broke into groups, assembled their bioprinters, and then got to making solutions.

Showing off their designs:

The amazing Plaster of Paris wranglers. By the end of the day, none of their clothing had been spared from the wrath of Plaster of Paris powder!

At the end of the day, the groups all shared out their designs. We also had a teacher help us award a “superlative” to each group. The winners included:

  • Perseverance in the face of glue that wouldn’t stick
  • Most laughing
  • Runniest plaster masterpiece
  • Most creative
  • Muscle masterpiece
  • Fantastic femur

Group Photo:

More Papers from OML!

April 6, 2020

We’ve had a couple new papers published recently that we’re excited to share with you:

  • Stephanie published some awesome findings that National Biomechanics Day can improve student attitudes toward engineering and biomechanics: DOI: 1016/j.jbiomech.2020.109683.
  • Nicholas, Sandra, and Elizabeth (undergrad alumnus) published about using Laser Doppler flowmetry in measure blood perfusion in mice: DOI: 10.1016/j.mex.2020.100814
  • Amir’s paper with collaborator Simon Roe on the tension band wiring project is out. DOI 10.1111/vsu.13350
  • A paper from Nicholas, Andy and several of our amazing undergrads studying how stroke impacts exercise-induced gains to bone composition and microstructure. DOI: 10.1115/1.4045113
  • A paper resulting from our ongoing collaboration with David Muddiman looking at Mass Spec imaging. DOI: 10.1039/C9AY01886G

Head to our publications page to see more of our work. 

National Biomechanics Day 2019

April 16, 2019

Our lab, along with other labs in the Biomedical Engineering department and other labs within the College of Engineering recently hosted the fourth annual National Biomechanics Day! We brought about 150 students from local high schools to Centennial Campus to learn more about biomechanics, engineering, and why they should come to NC State for college! We took tons of pictures, and NC State’s Bulletin came to talk to people and take pictures. We’ll share their article and photos once we have it, but here are some photos to hold you over in the meantime! You can see more on Jacque’s Twitter Feed. 


National Biomechanics Day Awards

June 20, 2018

Our lab and department has won not one but TWO awards for our National Biomechanics Day efforts!

First of all, Stephanie and Maggie won the Biomechanics Art competition. Check out their awesome graphic:

Also, we won one of the 2018 Greatest Impact awards for our event in April. Congratulations to Nicholas, who put the entry together, and everyone who helped us to have a successful event. Check out the Facebook post to see the award announcement.

National Biomechanics Day 2018

April 12, 2018

Yesterday was our favorite day of the year, once again! No, not Christmas (though we do love presents)… it was National Biomechanics Day! We had nearly 250 students and teachers come visit us at NC State. Due to having so many visitors, we split the event between Engineering Building 3 (our home) and the nearby Hunt Library. The visiting students had a great time, and we like to think they learned something. The scientists also had a great time getting students more excited about biomechanics.

We can’t wait until 2019!  In the meantime, check out some photos of our lab in action.


Maggie and Stephanie win NBD Art Competition

April 11, 2018

Maggie and Stephanie won the 2018 National Biomechanics Day Art Competition, with their photo submission. The competition was sponsored by Stanford Sports Science. See the announcement on Twitter:

And check out their entry (click to enlarge)!

BME Department Wins NBD Student Competition

June 20, 2017

This year, for the second annual National Biomechanics Day (NBD), the first NBD Competition was carried out. The purpose of this competition was to both increase enthusiasm surrounding NBD and recognize programs that put together exemplary NBD presentations. Created by the Student Advocacy Committee, the NBD Competition was divided into two primary categories: content and impact.

We received thirteen entries from three different countries. After careful review and collaborative deliberation, we are proud to announce the winners and honorable mentions of the 2017 NBD competition!

The content category was created to recognize schools and labs who utilized engaging, useful, and both cost and time efficient lab demonstrations. Labs were encouraged to upload their demonstrations to the ASB Teaching Repository, for future replication by others. The winners and their submission representatives are as follows (in no particular order):

  1. North Carolina State/University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (Stephanie Teeter): This group uploaded their demos to the ASB Teaching Repository, allowing others the opportunity to recreate them. The NC State/UNC team consisted of six independent laboratories who hosted unique demos covering a wide variety of topics in biomechanics and motor control, ranging from applications of material property testing in orthopedic care to the design of exoskeletons used to assist human locomotion. This group also hosted a scavenger hunt based on the demos to further engage the students. Overall, this event was an interactive and exciting showcase of biomechanics which introduced the students to biomechanics research and the impact it can have on the world!