Veterinary Biomechanics Laboratory

This Laboratory has been specially designed to investigate veterinary musculoskeletal biomechanics indoors and outdoors and deliver original educational resources for our students in animal biomechanics and gait analysis.

In this lab, Surrey students of Veterinary Medicine, Veterinary Biosciences and Engineering programmes have the opportunity to do their research project with us and/or become Post Graduate students.

Musculoskeletal biomechanics is the study of the mechanical laws relating the structure and function of movement of animals (including humans). It consists in the analysis of movement (kinematics) and the forces (kinetics) that allow locomotion (jumping, trotting, flying, etc.) and many specialized movements and postures during activities such as respiration and feeding (e.g. mandibular movement). The gait of the animals can be quantified and described in healthy animals, geriatric animals, diseased animals, animal athletes performing sport disciplines and training. Although it most commonly used in dogs in horses, it can be used to study any specie from mice to elephants.

Musculoskeletal biomechanics during lameness and disease

The effect of surgical, medical and rehabilitation treatments can be objectively quantified with biomechanical tools to produce evidence-based information directly benefiting patients.

Performing gait analysis during rehabilitation provides an excellent biofeedback to tailor the use of physiotherapy, rehabilitation and controlled exercise programmes to each individual.

The Laboratory contributes to many modules across the undergraduate veterinary curriculum at Surrey.

It produces material to cover teaching on animal movements, gait and posture adaptations in health and also during lameness, including orthopaedic and neurological diseases, in years one and two of the curriculum.  

It is also used from year one to understand gait analysis as a diagnostic tool, aiding the objective evaluation of treatment and rehabilitation.

Undergraduate and postgraduate students have the opportunity to engage in fascinating research projects in a range of species.

Our research team is a multidisciplinary group of professionals with multispecies expertise and background knowledge from research in humans.

The latest and most innovative technology of the Laboratory allows us to perform indoor and outdoor studies, including the use of motion capture camerasfoot pressure analysisaccelerometer-based systems (inertial measurement units) and more.

We are able to perform studies in our facilities at Surrey, out in the field and at partner venues by using mobile and/or wireless equipment.

Currently, our research aims to study dog and horse biomechanics, particularly lameness, core strength and posture, and physiotherapy and rehabilitation.

We closely collaborate with Centre for Biomedical Engineering and other research groups from the University and abroad, carrying out studies in key areas of musculoskeletal biology.

Our team

Name Role
Constanza Gomez Alvarez Head of the Veterinary Biomechanics Laboratory
Alexander Humpries Research Fellow in Animal Biomechanics
Ali Landucci PhD student, Biomechanics of equine physiotherapy
Bridget Roberts Clinical Skills Manager 
Aliah Shaheen Lecturer in Human Movement Science

Contact us

Find us

Vet School Main Building (VSM)
Daphne Jackson Road
University of Surrey