Why do we run the way we run? Event as iCalendar


13 March 2017

12:30 - 1:30pm

Venue: Room 721.234, Tāmaki Innovation Campus

Location: 261 Morrin Road, St Johns, Auckland

Exercise Sciences Research Seminar



Professor John A. Mercer
Department of Kinesiology & Nutrition Sciences
School of Allied Health Sciences
University of Nevada, Las Vegas


Running is a seemingly simply task - but actually is a complex movement that involves recruiting the appropriate muscles at the appropriate time and generating the right amount of force in applying the force in the right direction at the right time. This all happens while taking in sensory information about the environment as well as physiological state to decide where and when to place the foot for the next step. In this presentation, I will review factors from energetic cost of locomotion to muscle activity to ground reaction forces while running in different shoes, different physiological states (e.g. fatigue), different body weight support mechanisms, and different environments (e.g., running in the water) in an effort to understand why we run the way we run.


Dr Mercer earned his B.S. from Buffalo State College of New York, his M.S. from the University of North Texas, and his Ph.D. from the University of Oregon. He is a professor in the department of Kinesiology and Nutrition Sciences at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Dr Mercer’s research emphasis is on human locomotion and sport performance. In particular, Dr Mercer has a focused line of research on biomechanical and physiological responses while running to understand factors that drive running style, influence performance, and minimize risk of overuse injury. For example, he has explored physiological and biomechanical factors while running with body weight support, different physiological states (e.g., fatigue), speeds, styles, foot strike patterns, shoes, as well as in running in the water. He also has conducted research on biomechanical and physiological responses while cycling, playing lacrosse, and simulated swimming, for example.

Map and location of Tāmaki Innovation Campus