Devin Jindrich
Devin Jindrich
Associate Professor of Kinesiology

Office: UH 310
Phone: 760-750-7334

LIMB lab logo

Dr. Jindrich directs the Laboratory for Integrative Motor Behavior (LIMB) lab. Research in the LIMB Lab focuses on the interactions between biomechanics and motor control that result in effective movement, or “neuromechanics.” We seek to advance our fundamental understanding of how biomechanical and neural systems interact during movement, and apply neuromechanical principles to biomedical applications. Whereas simple mechanical models can describe important aspects of constant-speed forward locomotion, the mechanics and control of maneuvering (changing movement direction) or remaining stable (maintaining a desired movement direction) are less well understood. Consequently, we investigate the mechanisms used by insects, humans, and other animals to maneuver and remain stable during rapid locomotion, towards developing a general framework for understanding the control of maneuverability and stability. The results of these experiments support the hypothesis that musculoskeletal design and physiology can simplify the control requirements for maneuvering and remaining stable. A second focus of the LIMB lab is on using neuromechanics to prevent injuries. We use experimental studies and computer  simulations to assess the potential for injuries associated with emerging multitouch computer input devices, with the ultimate goal of helping designers create sets of multitouch gestures that minimize future injury risk. Neuromechanical principles can also make important contributions to improving motor function following injuries. Using rodent and primate animal models, we use neuromechanical techniques to develop more effective therapies and technological interventions for restoring function after neuromotor injury.

LIMB lab logo

Research in the LIMB lab seeks to discover fundamental principles of biomechanics and motor control, interpret these principles in the context of the physical and occupational environment, and apply basic research discoveries to problems in biomedicine and public health.

Current research areas:

(1) characterizing the dynamic requirements for maintaining stability and maneuvering during locomotion
(2) discovering the behavioral strategies for controlling unsteady locomotion, and the relative roles of musculoskeletal properties and neural output in maneuvering and stability
(3) using biomechanics to prevent workplace injury
(4) developing methods to quantitatively assess locomotor and upper-extremity function following neuromotor impairment such as spinal cord injury, stroke, and traumatic brain injury
(5) developing and evaluating novel approaches for restoring motor function following spinal cord injury; and
(6) understanding the mechanisms of spinal learning.

We use comparative experimental studies using a diversity of animals (humans, rodents, primates, insects, birds) to develop and test conceptual and mathematical models. Biomechanical (kinematics, force) and neurophysiological (EMG) measurements describe motor control, and are interpreted in the context of musculoskeletal and neural anatomy and function. Computer simulations can also be valuable tools for hypothesis generation, sensitivity analysis, and engineering design. Overall, the laboratory is committed to using discoveries from basic research to prevent injuries, and develop effective methods for rehabilitation and functional restoration following neuromotor injury. We also seek to develop new and interesting ways to communicate the excitement of new discoveries.

Please refer to the PROJECTS tab for more detailed explanations of research projects in the lab.

Thinking in Motion


(Many courses taught multiple semesters -- only representative syllabi are below)


(I have a 10-lecture series on scienfic writing for undergraduate/graduate students. Below is a 1-pager about overall paper structure for reference)



In their book, “Scientific Teaching,” Handelsman et al. emphasize the value of “backwards” course design: of beginning the course development process with learning outcomes and assessments, and then designing course activities to achieve these outcomes. They write, “Attention is thereby focused on successful learning, rather than exclusively on teaching.” In this vein, it makes sense to begin a reflection at the end – in the sense of the purpose, or objectives of the learning that I try to encourage through my courses.
   At the most general level, I strive for no less than for my courses to be transformative – to expose students to truly novel concepts, and help students learn new ways of thinking that affect the way they approach problems for years to come. Inherent in this admittedly ambitious goal is a dilemma: the transformation and life-long learning that I seek to encourage cannot be easily assessed over the course of a single semester. However, this overall objective influences the structure of my courses and my specific teaching approach.

I seek to help students acquire the knowledge and critical thinking skills necessary to critically understand biological problems. I encourage students to evaluate biological evidence, construct reasoned arguments, and make judgments between alternative hypotheses. I employ an inquiry-based teaching approach, as advocated by the Boyer Commission's Report on Undergraduate Education at Research Universities (Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for America's Research Universities).

My specific educational goals are focused on four primary outcomes that I seek to contribute to in every course.

OUTCOME 1. Critical thinking. Critical thinking is a very common, but also very challenging, learning outcome. I define “critical thinking” to mean having the background knowledge, research and investigative skills, and reasoning skills necessary to develop and defend conclusions based on scientific hypotheses. I base my approach in part on the hypothesis that students can occupy several positions of thinking (Table 1). In the first position,Dualism, students assume that ideas or facts can be unequivocally known as true or untrue. Authorities, such as textbooks or professors, are considered to have knowledge of true facts that they can disseminate to students. Students also consider authorities as responsible for teaching students to distinguish between correct and incorrect ideas. In the second position, Multiplicity, students question the absolute truth or falsehood of facts. Instead, different opinions are considered equally valid in many areas. Students consider the purpose of education to be encouraging independent thinking and developing individual perspectives. Finally, Critical understanding involves acknowledging that facts or ideas are not equally valid, but necessarily situated in evidentiary (and even cultural) contexts. The contextual reference of facts and the possibility of competing ideas do not, however, prevent commitments to specific ideas or courses of action. Uncertainty can be overcome by critical evaluation of evidence, and reasoned conclusions can be reached by weighing evidence.

Table 1: Positions of thinking

Dualism ---->


Multiplicity ---->

Critical Understanding

Assumed nature of knowledge


True or false ideas or facts exist.


Absolutely true or false ideas or facts do not exist. All opinions are equally useful.


Facts and ideas depend on available evidence and context. However, some facts or ideas can be better supported than others.

Process of learning

Communication of facts and techniques from authorities.

Independent exploration. Acknowledging different opinions.

Gathering evidence and constructing arguments.

Role of student

Memorize or understand factual information.

Think independently. Form opinions.

Critically evaluate alternative hypotheses based on evidence. Commit to best supported ideas.

Simplified from:

Perry, W.G. (1970). Forms of intellectual and ethical development in the college years: a scheme. New York: Holt, Reinhart and Winston.

Baxter Magolda, M.B. (1992). Knowing and reasoning in college: gender-related patterns in students' intellectual development. San Francisco: Jossey Bass.

These “Positions of thinking” are complimentary to Bloom’s Taxonomy, with the emphasis that learning how to weigh uncertainty is important for judgment and evaluation. Moreover, this modified Perry/Baxter Magolda Model offers a progression that can be followed to achieve critical understanding or evaluation: the highest level of Bloom’s Taxonomy.

OUTCOME 2. Developing conceptual frameworks. Firm theoretical frameworks help organize data and generate hypotheses (The National Academies, “How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School,” 2000). I assume that structuring a course of study around recurring conceptual frameworks or themes can help students understand general principles. Frameworks can also help students learn the terminology and knowledge that are important to kinesiology, biology and other natural sciences. For example, energy flow in biological systems is a framework for my Comparative Biomechanics and Physiology courses. Energy flow can help to understand material behavior and failure, fluid mechanics, locomotion, and injury mechanisms. Mechanical energy flow can be linked to metabolic energy requirements to better understand physiology, ecology, and evolution. My motor control course, KINE 301, is structured around several frameworks including behavior as an emergent property, the importance of intrinsic dynamics, and desirable difficulties.
   Mathematical relationships can be useful quantitative frameworks. Even simple mathematical descriptions of biological processes can identify important variables and reveal the overall behavior of complex systems, and can offer useful frameworks for understanding. For example, I use fundamental electrical engineering concepts of resistance (conductance), potential differences, and Ohm's law to explain many physiological processes, such as thermoregulation, osmoregulation and gas transport, and reveal common principles underlying these processes. Frameworks from physics, mechanical engineering, fluid dynamics, and controls systems theory can serve to link and explain many aspects of morphology, physiology, and behavior.

OUTCOME 3. Understanding the scientific process.  Scientific facts are usually discovered through a series of experimental processes that measure and explain natural phenomena. Consequently, research findings are limited, to greater or lesser extents, by the theoretical, technological and even cultural environment of these processes. Whenever possible, I present content knowledge by tracing the scientific process that led to its discovery. I use figures from primary literature sources (instead of, or to support, textbook schematics) to illustrate principles. I expose students to the variability and sources of uncertainty inherent to experimental research. I also seek to involve students in hands-on scientific inquiry. Experience with different types of experiments is useful for helping students to critically evaluate different types of data.

OUTCOME 4. Being able to understand and evaluate current research. I seek to integrate current research into every aspect of my teaching, as advocated by the Carnegie Foundation's Boyer Commission report. Motor control, biomechanics and physiology research are ideal fields for training students to think critically and gain the skills and confidence necessary to evaluate research findings. These fields integrate information from many active research areas, including cell physiology (neural properties, muscle physiology), anatomy (neural organization, musculoskeletal structures), and behavior (mechanical task requirements, mechanical and sensory interactions with the environment) to understand function. I seek to guide students through the process of using concepts learned from chemistry, physics, and biology, to gain critical understanding of, and explore application to, current research problems.

To achieve these 4 outcomes, I employ a variety of approaches, including lectures, online lecture segments, class discussions, in-class activities, group projects, written assignments, and oral presentations. Some of the approaches that I emphasize are:

APPROACH 1. Challenging students to learn thinking skills. I structure the scope of my courses based on two principles. First, that students will rise to [reasonable] expectations set for them. Second, transformative learning (such as developing critical thinking skills) involves both skill learning and declarative learning. Skill learning requires making mistakes: trial and correction. By bumping students out of their “comfort zone” by challenging them to think in ways that are unfamiliar to them, I encourage students to think and reason more carefully and critically. Consequently, when teaching I focus less on facts, definitions, and quantity of information and more on logic and reasoning using new ideas and principles introduced to the students. My primary teaching objective is to maximize the learning of new thinking skills, and skill learning requires challenge, practice, and mistakes.

APPROACH 2. Inquiry-Based Education. Lectures and textbooks can be useful tools to introduce and explain terminology, concepts, models, and hypotheses. However, short-term case-studies and longer-term projects, internships, and research participation that require students to synthesize and use their knowledge are also important for consolidating skills and developing critical thinking. My inquiry-based projects include at least three aspects: 1) reference to primary literature, to expose students to scientific methods, encourage selective reading skills, and provide experience with variability and uncertainty; 2) hypothesis generation, to encourage reinforce content understanding through creative synthesis; and 3) hypothesis testing through reasoning, to develop critical understanding. Wherever possible, students express understanding through written and oral presentations. Through mentoring students and inquiry-based coursework, I seek to prepare students to critically understand and evaluate the complex problems that will confront them in their academic and professional careers.

APPROACH 3. Leveraging new technology.  New technologies hold a tremendous potential to contribute to education and the development of critical thinking. The broad amount of information available to students and the public through media and the Internet requires people to evaluate data and arrive at reasoned judgments. Memorizing facts will become less and less important as more information is immediately available to everyone.  I have long been committed to utilizing new opportunities presented by technology to enhance undergraduate education. For example, when I taught Evolution with David Wake at Berkeley, we used a class website to conduct a "Virtual Discussion Group". The Virtual Discussion Group used electronic mail and the Internet to allow students direct access to the authors of the papers in their course reader.  Students were able to ask questions of active researchers at universities around the world. More recently, I have extensively used technology such as online lectures to facilitate active learning within the classroom.

   Instructors contribute to teaching and student success in many ways. I focus on four roles of instructors when designing courses and learning experiences. First, instructors facilitate learning, acting as “Guides on the side.” Guiding learning involves designing activities that lead students through the process of discovery and learning, providing encouragement and constructive criticism, identifying important questions and encouraging students to become actively engaged in their own inquiry. Second, instructors provide examples of the thinking process of their disciplines. Setting an example involves demonstrating the creative process that leads to new ideas (i.e. testable hypotheses), and modeling the evaluation and judgment that underlies critical understanding. Third, instructors determine the level of academic rigor required of the students. Determining rigor involves determining the level of thinking required for each course, designing assessments that allow students to demonstrate thinking, and clearly communicating expectations to students. Instructors are responsible for maintaining academic standards and integrity.
   Although some would perhaps not agree, I think that instructors have a fourth responsibility that in some ways conflicts with the concept of a “Guide on the side.” Although guidance, clarity, and communication may be effective for knowledge learning, excessive guidance can actually be detrimental for skill learning.  Improving writing, or analysis, or evaluation skills requires attempting to perform tasks without complete guidance – in the presence of perceived uncertainty both in the desired outcome and the best path to reach the outcome. Skill learning depends on making mistakes: having expectations that are not completely structured and allow for errors, trial and correction, and the potential for frustration. Therefore, instructors have a responsibility to cover some areas of uncertainty or at the limits of understanding, and to leave some tasks open-ended: requiring interpretation and problem solving. Unfortunately, in my experience many students relate that they are not accustomed to uncertainty, do not like it, and view uncertainty in both content and process as evidence of ineffective teaching. However, in my estimation, an effective course is both engaging but also challenging in many respects.

            I therefore consider it a responsibility of responsible instructors to remain focused on both knowledge and skill learning outcomes, and to maintain a level of rigor appropriate for college courses. I also consider it a responsibility of instructors to respect their students’ potential, and expectthat students from all backgrounds, at every institution, can achieve comparable levels of mastery. Although I appreciate that individual differences can have a significant influence on learning and must be accounted for by the instructor, I do not consider it ethical to allow assumptions about the capabilities of different student populations to influence learning outcomes. I consider it the responsibility of an instructor to ensure that courses and degree programs at their institution are comparable to the most prestigious and selective nationwide.



Department of Kinesiology
California State University, San Marcos
333 S. Twin Oaks Valley Rd.
University Hall 302
San Marcos, CA  92096


2001  Ph.D.  University of California, Berkeley  Integrative Biology

                       (Emphasis on comparative biomechanics and physiology).

1993   B.A.    University of California, Berkeley  Integrative Biology


2002   World Congress of Biomechanics Calgary Award finalist.

1996   National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship awardee.

1996   Department of Defense Graduate Fellowship Honorable Mention.

1995   Acceptance to the Santa Fe Institute's Complex Systems Summer School, full funding  (attended).

1990   Pacific Rim Scholarship to attend the University of California's Education Abroad field biology course in Monteverde, Costa Rica.


06/16-present    Associate Professor, Kinesiology        California State University, San Marcos

01/16-06//16     Chair, Kinesiology                                California State University, San Marcos

01/12-05//16     Assistant Professor, Kinesiology        California State University, San Marcos

05/10-01/12       Assistant Professor, School of Life Sciences             Arizona State University

                          Graduate faculty in Mechanical Engineering             Arizona State University

01/07-05/10       Assistant Professor, Kinesiology                               Arizona State University

*Director, The Laboratory for Integrative Motor Behavior. Discovering fundamental principles of biomechanics and motor control, interpreting these principles in the context of the physical and occupational environment, and applying basic research discoveries to problems in biomedicine and public health.

04/04-12/06       Assistant Researcher                          UCLA

*Understanding neuromuscular plasticity towards restoring function after spinal cord injury. Research in musculoskeletal biomechanics, motor control, and neural plasticity towards improving rehabilitation treatments and developing neural prostheses for improved function after spinal cord injury. V. Reggie Edgerton, P.I.

06/01-10/03       Research Fellow                                 Harvard School of Public Health

*  Finger mechanics during typing: towards improved keyboard and workstation design to prevent musculoskeletal disorders. Conducted experiments to measure forces of tendons, muscles and bones in the hand as a function of computer keyswitch design and posture to estimate musculoskeletal exposure during computer keyboard and workstation use. Funded by the Whitaker foundation, Jack Dennerlein, P.I.

8/95-05/01         Graduate Research Assistant             University of California at Berkeley

*Locomotion biomechanics and biological inspiration of robot design. Initiated, designed, implemented and published original research on the stability, maneuverability and control of rapid running in insects. Worked with team of scientists and engineers on a multidisciplinary computational neuromechanics project sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) Controlled Biological Systems Program and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).  Developed two experimental techniques new to biology that allowed measurements previously impossible using existing methods. These experiments developed and verified of new analytical and mathematical models of stability and maneuverability during rapid locomotion. Worked with engineers to apply these findings to robot design (prototypes were built at McGill University and Stanford University, and subjects of current study at more than six research laboratories).

* Dynamic computer simulation. With engineers at M.I.T. and The University of Michigan, and mathematicians at Princeton and Cornell, developed 2-D mathematical models of animal locomotion and 3-D, dynamic computer simulations using MATLAB, ADAMS and Boston Dynamics (implemented in C using SD-FAST) packages.

8/95-8/97           Representative                                    UCB Instructional Technologies

*Instructional technology. Represented graduate students from the biological sciences to the U.C. Berkeley Instructional Technologies Program. Designed and implemented websites for poly-pedal lab and several courses in the Integrative Biology department. Initiated a project to develop a 'Virtual Classroom Kit', and contributed to the development of a 'Shared Discoveries' program to facilitate the use of current research in instruction.

* Scientific visualization. Contributed to structuring the Department of Integrative Biology's Scientific Visualization Center. Advised purchase of over $1.3 million in equipment and software. Set up and maintained the center six months before permanent staff were hired. Sought collaboration with companies interested in biological data through presentation and booth at 1996 ACM SIGGRAPH.

6/93-7/95            Research Assistant                             University of California at Berkeley

* Experimental design. Contributed to the development of a novel technique using photoelastic gelatin to make the first simultaneous measurements of single-leg ground-reaction forces in arthropods.

* Physiological ecology. Tested hypothesis that nocturnal lizards exhibit lower metabolic cost of transport (energy per unit distance) than diurnal lizards.

* Technology support. Maintained a heterogeneous computing environment of Apple Macintoshes, Windows 98 and NT machines, and Silicon Graphics workstations.

7/91-8/92              Research Assistant                                                                 InfoUse, Emeryville, CA

* Public health research. Research on nutrition and cancer for Phase I interactive computer program. Implemented a pilot Expert System using the Level V language to assist vocational rehabilitation case workers.



Curriculum development and administration

2011          Graduate of the HHMI and National Academies’ Summer Institute (undergraduate instruction)

2010-11     Member, Curriculum Reform Committee, School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University       

2009-10    Director, Graduate Studies, Dept. of Kinesiology, Arizona State University

Courses Taught

Kinesiology 301 – Motor Control and Learning (CSUSM)

Biology 181 – Introduction to Biology (ASU)

Kinesiology 494/598  -- Comparative Biomechanics and Motor Control (ASU)

Kinesiology 345  -- Motor Control, Development, and Learning (ASU)

Integrative Biology 150 (Berkeley) -- Physiological Ecology. GSI with Professor Robert J. Full.

   Integrative Biology 150L (Berkeley) -- Physiological Ecology Laboratory. GSI with Professor Robert J. Full.

   Integrative Biology 160 (Berkeley) -- Evolution. GSI with Professor David Wake.


English (primary), Spanish (Conversational)



Journal Referee

   Ad-Hoc reviewer for: Journal of Experimental Biology, Journal of Biomechanics, Journal of Neuroscience, Exercise and Sport Sciences Reviews, Integrative and Comparative Biology, Journal of Neurophysiology, Medical Engineering and Physics, Transactions on Neural Systems & Rehabilitation Engineering, IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, Journal of Experimental Zoology, Journal of Theoretical Biology, Journal of Mathematical Biology, Journal of Applied Biomechanics, Biological Cybernetics, Chaos, Neuroscience, Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, PLoS Computational Biology, Ergonomics, Journal of Human Evolution, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, PLoS One, Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Journal of the Royal Society Interface, Physical Biology, SpringerPLUS

Grant Reviewer

2015   Ad-Hoc reviewer for Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs Spinal Cord Injury Research Program (SCIRP) (Department of Defense, December, 2015)

2014    Ad-Hoc reviewer for Joint Warfighters MRP (Department of Defense, December, 2014)

2014    Panelist reviewer for Joint Warfighters Medical Research Program (Department of Defense, June, 2014)

2012    Panelist reviewer for Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs Spinal Cord Injury Research Program (SCIRP) (November, 2012)

2012    Panelist reviewer for Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs Spinal Cord Injury Research Program (SCIRP) (January, 2012)       

Ad-Hoc reviewer for: National Science Foundation, Craig H. Neilsen Foundation.



2012-2013 CEHHS Representative, Long-term Academic Master Plan (LAMP) committee (CSUSM)



2013-2014 Kinesiology Representative, Budget and Academic Planning (BAPC) committee (CSUSM)

2012-2013 Kinesiology Representative, Dean’s Advisory committee (CSUSM)



2012-2015 Faculty Advisor, Pre-Physical Therapy option (~70 students) (CSUSM)

2010-11     Member, Curriculum Reform Committee, School of Life Sciences, Arizona State University       

2009-10    Director, Graduate Studies, Dept. of Kinesiology, Arizona State University



  1. 2016    M. Qiao and D. L. Jindrich. Leg Joint Function During Walking Acceleration and Deceleration. Journal of Biomechanics. (In Press).
  2. 2016    M.B. Trudeau, D.S. Asakawa, D.L. Jindrich and J.T. Dennerlein. Two-handed grip on a mobile phone affords greater thumb motor performance, decreased variability, and a more extended thumb posture than a one-handed grip. Applied Ergonomics 52:24e28.
  3. 2015    J.H. Lee, D.S. Asakawa#, J.T. Dennerlein and D.L. Jindrich. Finger muscle attachments for an OpenSim upper-extremity model. PLoS One. 2015 Apr 8;10(4):e0121712.
  4. 2015    B. K. Hillen, D. L. Jindrich, J. J. Abbas, G T. Yamaguchi, R. Jung. Effects of spinal cord injury induced changes in muscle activation on foot drag in a computational rat ankle model. Journal of Neurophysiology. 2015 Apr;113(7):2666-75.
  5. 2015    J.H. Lee, D.S. Asakawa#, J.T. Dennerlein and D.L. Jindrich. Extrinsic and intrinsic index finger muscle attachments in an OpenSim upper-extremity model. Annals of Biomedical Engineering. 2015 Apr;43(4):937-48.
  6. 2014    M.B. Trudeau, E.M. Sunderland, D.L. Jindrich and J.T. Dennerlein. A data-driven design evaluation tool for handheld device soft keyboards. PLoS One. 2014 Sep 11;9(9):e107070.
  7. 2014    M. Qiao and D. L. Jindrich. Compensations during unsteady locomotion. Integrative and Comparative Biology. 54(6):1109-21.
  8. 2014    M. Qiao, B. Brown*, and D. L. Jindrich. Compensations for increased rotational inertia during human cutting turns. Journal of Experimental Biology. 217(3): 432-43.
  9. 2013    M.B. Trudeau, P.J. Catalano, D.L. Jindrich, J.T. Dennerlein. Tablet Keyboard Configuration Affects Performance, Discomfort and Task Difficulty for Thumb Typing in a Two-Handed Grip. PLoS One. 8(6): e67525.
  10. 2012    M. Qiao, D.L. Jindrich. Task-level strategies for human sagittal-plane running maneuvers are consistent with robotic control policies. PLoS One.7(12):e51888
  11. 2012    M.B. Trudeau, J.G. Young, D.L. Jindrich, J.T. Dennerlein. Thumb motor performance varies with thumb and wrist posture during single-handed mobile phone use. J Biomech. 45(14):2349-54.
  12. 2012    W. L. Johnson, D. L. Jindrich, R. R. Roy, and V. R. Edgerton. Quantitative metrics of spinal cord injury recovery in the rat using motion capture, electromyography and ground reaction force measurement. J Neurosci Methods. 206(1):65-72.
  13. 2011    A. Takeoka, D. L. Jindrich, C. Munoz-Quiles, H. Zhong, R. van den Brand, D. Pham, M. Ziegler, A. Ramon-cueto, R. Roy, V. R. Edgerton, and P. Phelps. Functional axon regeneration occurs after OEG transplantation. Journal of Neuroscience, 16;31(11):4298-310.
  14. 2011    D.L. Jindrich, G. Courtine, H.L. McKay, R. Moseanko, T.J. Bernot, R.R. Roy, H. Zhong, J.J. Liu, M.H. Tuszynski,  V.R. Edgerton. Unconstrained three-dimensional reaching movements by Rhesus monkeys. Experimental Brain Research, 209:35-50.
  15. 2011    W. L. Johnson, D. L. Jindrich, H. Zhong, R. R. Roy, and V. R. Edgerton. Application of a rat hindlimb model: A prediction of force spaces reachable through stimulation of nerve fascicles. IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering, 58(12):3328-38.
  16. 2010    E. S. Rosenzweig, G. Courtine, D. L. Jindrich, J. H. Brock, S. Strand, A. R. Ferguson, Y. Nout, R. R. Roy, D. Miller, M. Beattie, L. A. Havton, J. Bresnahan, V. R. Edgerton, and M. H. Tuszynski. Extensive Spontaneous Plasticity of Corticospinal Projections After Primate Spinal Cord Injury. Nature Neuroscience, 13(12):1505-10.
  17. 2009    D.L. Jindrich, M. S. Joseph, C.K. Otoshi, R.Y. Wei, H. Zhong, R. R. Roy, N.J.K Tillakaratne., V.R. Edgerton. Spinal learning in the adult mouse using the Horridge Paradigm. Journal of Neuroscience Methods, 182(2):250-4.
  18. 2009    D.L. Jindrich and M. Qiao. Maneuvers During Legged Locomotion. Chaos, 19(2), 026105.
  19. 2009    D. L. Lee, P-L. Kuo, D.L. Jindrich, J. T. Dennerlein. Computer Keyswitch Force-Displacement Characteristics Affect Muscle Activity Patterns During Index Finger Tapping. Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology,19(5):810-20.
  20. 2008    R.M. Ichiyama, Y. Gerasimenko, D. L. Jindrich, H. Zhong, R. R. Roy, V. R. Edgerton. Combining epidural stimulation and the 5-HT agonist quipazine induces acute plantar stepping after a complete spinal cord transection in adult rats. Neuroscience Letters. 438: 281-285.
  21. 2008    Johnson, W.L., Jindrich, D.L., Roy, R.R., Edgerton, V.R. A musculoskeletal model of the rat hindlimb.  Journal of Biomechanics,41:610-619.
  22. 2008    M.D. Kubasak, D.L. Jindrich, Zhong H, Takeoka, A, McFarland, KC, Munoz-Quiles, C, Roy RR, Edgerton VR, Ramón-Cueto A, Phelps PE. Step training enhances improvements in hindlimb plantar stepping and step kinematics promoted by OEG transplantation in adult paraplegic rats. Brain,131(1):264-76.
  23. 2007    Petruska, J.C., Ichiyama, R.M., Jindrich, D.L., Crown, E.D., Tansey, K.E., Roy, R.R., Edgerton, V.R., Mendell, L.M. Changes in Motoneuron Properties and Synaptic Inputs Related to Step Training Following Spinal Cord Transection in Rats. Journal of Neuroscience. 27(16):4460–4471.
  24. 2007    Jindrich, D. L., Smith, N., Jespers, K., and Wilson, A.M. Mechanics of cutting maneuvers by ostriches (Struthio camelus). Journal of Experimental Biology 210: 1378-1390.
  25. 2006    Kuo, P-L., Lee, D.L., Jindrich, D. L. and Dennerlein, J.T. Finger joint coordination during tapping. Journal of Biomechanics, 39(16):2934-42.
  26. 2006    Balakrishnan, A.D.*, Jindrich, D. L. and Dennerlein, J.T. Horizontal force components can reduce finger joint torques during tapping on a computer keyswitch. Human Factors. 48(1):121-9.
  27. 2006    Jindrich, D. L., Besier, T. F. and Lloyd, D. G. A hypothesis for the function of braking forces during running turns. Journal of Biomechanics, 39: 1611-1620.
  28. 2004    Jindrich, D. L., Balakrishnan, A.D. and Dennerlein, J.T.  Keyswitch design and finger posture affect finger joint impedance during tapping on a computer keyswitch. Clinical Biomechanics, 19:600-608.
  29. 2004    Jindrich, D. L., Balakrishnan, A.D. and Dennerlein, J.T. Finger joint impedance during voluntary tapping on a computer keyswitch. Journal of Biomechanics, 37: 1589-1596.
  30. 2003    Jindrich, D.L., Zhou, Y., Becker, T. and Dennerlein, J.T. Non-linear viscoelastic models predict fingertip pulp force-displacement characteristics during voluntary tapping. Journal of Biomechanics. 36(4) 497-503.
  31. 2002    Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. Dynamic stabilization of rapid hexapedal locomotion. Journal of Experimental Biology. 205,2803-2823.
  32. 1999    Jindrich, D.L. and Full, R. J. Many-legged maneuverability: dynamics of turning in hexapods. Journal of Experimental Biology202, 1603-1623.
  33. 1999    Autumn, K., Jindrich, D.L., deNardo, D., and Mueller, R. Locomotor performance at low temperature and the evolution of nocturnality in geckos. Evolution. 53(2),  580-599.
  34. 1995    Full, R. J., Yamauchi, A. and Jindrich, D. L. Maximum single leg force production: cockroaches righting on photoelastic gelatin. Journal of Experimental Biology, 198, 2441-2452.

 Submitted Publications

  1. 2015    D. Asakawa, J.T. Dennerlein and D. L. Jindrich. Performance and Index Finger Kinematics For Common Touchscreen Gestures. (In Re-review).

 *Mentored undergraduate. Mentored graduate #Mentored post-doctoral


  1. 2014    Deanna S. Asakawa, Jack T. Dennerlein and Devin L. Jindrich. Comparison of Task Completion Time, Finger Joint Angles, and the Pressure Applied by the Fingers for 7 Common Gestures on a Touchscreen Computing Device. World Congress of Biomechanics. (06-11 July, 2014. Boston, MA).
  2. 2014    M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich. The Functional Preference among the Joints in the Lower Extremities during Walking Maneuvers. World Congress of Biomechanics. (06-11 July, 2014. Boston, MA).
  3. 2013    Devin L. Jindrich, Deanna S. Asakawa, Jong Hwa Lee, Cecil A. Lozano, Jack T. Dennerlein. Finger and arm control during interactions with multitouch devices. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting. (9-13 November, San Diego, CA).
  4. 2013    Jong Hwa Lee, Deanna S. Asakawa, Cecil A. Lozano, Jack T. Dennerlein and Devin L. Jindrich. A data-driven optimization method to determine muscle-tendon paths of the index finger. American Society of Biomechanics. (04-07 September 2013, Omaha, NE).
  5. 2013    Deanna S. Asakawa, Cecil Lozano, Jong Hwa Lee, Jack T. Dennerlein and Devin L. Jindrich. Joint angles of the fingers and thumb during 8 different gestures on a touchscreen computing device. American Society of Biomechanics. (04-07 September 2013, Omaha, NE).
  6. 2013    M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich. Using perturbations to understand the neuromechanical control of unsteady locomotion. Southern Biomedical Engineering Conference. (03-05 May, 2013, Miami, FL)
  7. 2013    D.L. Jindrich and M. Qiao. Compensations for increased rotational inertia during human cutting turns. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. (03-07 January 2013, San Francisco, CA).
  8. 2012    D.L. Jindrich. The LIMB Lab: comparative biomechanics and physiology at CSU San Marcos. 1st Annual Southwest Regional Joint DVM&DCB meeting of SICB (California State University at San Bernardino (CSUSB) October 13th, 2012)
  9. 2012    M. Qiao, D.L. Jindrich, and M. Hughes. Response to medio-lateral perturbations of human walking and running. American Society of Biomechanics. (August 15-18, 2012, Gainesville, FLA)
  10. 2012    D.L. Jindrich and M. Qiao. Active control of unsteady locomotion. Dynamic Walking 2012.  (21-24 May 2012, Pensacola, FLA).
  11. 2011    M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich. Effects of increasing inertia on sidestep cutting turns. American Society of Biomechanics. (10-12 August 2011).
  12. 2011    K. Rich, J. Prince, M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich. An instrumented split-belt treadmill system using commercial parts. American Society of Biomechanics.(10-12 August 2011).
  13. 2011    M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich. Comparing stride local stability during walking and running. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting.(03-07 January 2011).
  14. 2010    M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich. Comparing dynamic stability during walking and running. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2010).
  15. 2010    L.F. Friedli, E.S. Rosenzweig, D. Jindrich, S.C. Strand, A.R. Ferguson, P. Musienko, R.R. Roy, H. Zhong, M.S. Beattie, J.C. Bresnahan, M.H. Tuszynski, V.R. Edgerton, G. Courtine. Non-human primates show extensive functional recovery compared to rats after partial spinal cord injuries. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2010).
  16. 2010    D.C. Dunbar, E. Rejc, S. Zdunowski, A. Sotolongo, D. Jindrich, R.R. Roy, H. Zhong, G. Courtine, J. Liu, T. Bernot, R. Moseanko, M. Tuszynski, V. R. Edgerton. Role of motor pool recruitment and coordination in food-grasping and spring-pull tasks by Rhesus monkeys after a spinal hemisection. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2010).
  17. 2010    M. Qiao and D. L. Jindrich. Whole-body local dynamic stability during walking and running.  American Society of Biomechanics (10-13 August 2010), Providence, RI.
  18. 2010    D. L. Jindrich and M. Qiao. How do humans stabilize running? Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting (3-7 January 2010), Seattle, WA.
  19. 2010    D. Morrison and D. L. Jindrich. Contributions of active muscles to joint impedance in rats. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting (3-7 January 2010), Seattle, WA.
  20. 2010    T. Dawson and D. L. Jindrich. Mechanical properties of rat hindlimbs during locomotion. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting (3-7 January 2010), Seattle, WA.
  21. 2010    B. Brown and D. L. Jindrich. Effects of increased rotational inertia on the mechanics of human cutting turns. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting (3-7 January 2010), Seattle, WA.
  22. 2009    M. Qiao and D. L. Jindrich. Do humans stabilize running like robots? Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2009), Chicago, Il.
  23. 2009    M. S. Joseph, Y. Faynerman, R. Cruz, S. Sasthri-rajaputrage, P. B. Duong, Y.-S. Lee, D. L. Jindrich, H. V. Zhong, R. R. Roy, A. Silva, V. R. edgerton, N. J. K. Tillakaratne. Paw withdrawal learning is impaired in spinal cord transected adult transgenic mice that unable to phosphorylate cyclic AMP response element binding protein (CREB). Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2009), Chicago, Il.
  24. 2009    S. Sidique and D. L. Jindrich. Towards a meta-analysis of spinal cord injury therapies. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2009), Chicago, Il.
  25. 2009    D. L. Jindrich and M. Qiao. Mechanical Contributions to Controlling Maneuvers During Bipedal Locomotion Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (13-17 November 2009), Chicago, Il.
  26. 2009    M. Qiao and D. L. Jindrich. Do humans stabilize running like robots? American Society for Biomechanics annual meeting (August 2009), College Park, PA.
  27. 2009    D. L. Jindrich, G. Courtine, J. J. Liu, H.L. McKay, R. Moseanko, T.J. Bernot, R.R. Roy, H. Zhong, M.H. Tuszynski, V.R. Edgerton. Gravity dominates unconstrained reaching movements by Rhesus monkeys. American Society for Biomechanics annual meeting (August 2009), College Park, PA.
  28. 2008    D.L. Jindrich, G. Courtine, J. J. Liu, H.L. McKay, R. Moseanko, T.J. Bernot, R.R. Roy, H. Zhong, M.H. Tuszynski,  V.R. Dynamics of unconstrained three-dimensional reaching movements by Rhesus monkeys. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 15-19 2008), Washington, DC.
  29. 2008    D Protas, B Brown, R Jung, and D L Jindrich. Selective Neurotransmitter Blockers Affect Motor Evoked Potentials in Anesthetized Rats. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 15-19 2008), Washington, DC.
  30. 2008    B. K. Hillen, D. Jindrich, J. J. Abbas,  R. Jung. Computational model of the effects of muscle activation profile on foot drag in the SCI rat. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 15-19 2008), Washington, DC.
  31. 2008    A Takeoka, DL Jindrich, H Zhong, MD Ziegler, C Mũnoz-Quiles, A Ramón-Cueto, RR Roy, VR Edgerton, PE Phelps. Evidence for functional reconnectivity of descending motor pathways in adult rats after complete spinal cord transection and olfactory ensheathing glia transplantation. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 15-19 2008), Washington, DC.
  32. 2008    B. Hillen, J.J. Abbas, D.L. Jindrich and R. Jung. Effects of muscle strength and activation profile on foot drag in a simulated SCI rat. Organization for Computational Neurosciences Annual Meeting, (July 2008), Portland, OR.
  33. 2007    Jindrich, D.L.. Objective methods for assessing rat locomotor kinematics. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 3-7 2007), San Diego, CA.
  34. 2007    E. S. Rosenzweig, M. D. Culbertson, J. H. Brock, L. Lu, T. Bernot, R. Moseanko, G. Courtine, D. L. Jindrich, J. J. Liu, V. R. Edgerton, L. A. Havton, M. H. Tuszynski. Spontaneous plasticity of corticospinal projections after primate spinal cord injury. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 3-7 2007), San Diego, CA.
  35. 2007    D. C. Dunbar, D. jindrich, N. Hamouda, R. Roy, H. Zhong, G. Courtine, J. Liu, T. Bernot, R. Moseanko, M. Tuszynski, V. Edgerton. Manual prehension strategies in rhesus monkeys before and after cervical hemisection. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, (November 3-7 2007), San Diego, CA.
  36. 2007    Jindrich, D.L.. Mechanics of Bipedal Running Turns. American Society of Biomechanics Annual Meeting, (August 2007), Stanford, CA.
  37. 2006    Jafari, R., Jindrich, D.L., Edgerton, V.R., Sarrafzadeh,M. CMAS: Clinical Movement Assessment System for Neuromotor Disorders. IEEE Biomedical Circuits and Systems Conference (BioCAS), (November-December 2006), London, UK.
  38. 2006    Otoshi, C.K., Jindrich, D.L., Wei, R.Y., Fong, A.J. Cai, L.L., Ali, N.J., Zhong, H. Tillakaratne, N.J.K., Roy, R.R., Edgerton, V.R. Application of the Horridge Paradigm in the Adult Spinal Mouse. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (October 14-18, 2006).
  39. 2006    Jindrich, D.L., Courtine, G. McKay, H.L., Bernot, T., Moseanko, R.,  Roy, R.R., Zhong, H., Rosenzweig, E., Havton, L.A., Tuszynski, M.H., Edgerton, V.R.  Effects of cervical hemisection on locomotion and prehension in Rhesus monkeys. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (October 14-18, 2006).
  40. 2006    Jafari, R., Jindrich, D.L., Edgerton, V.R., Sarrafzadeh,M. Quantitative Assessment of Neuromotor Disorders Using a Wearable Sensor Network. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (October 14-18, 2006).
  41. 2006    Johnson, W.L., Jindrich, D.L., Roy, R.R., Edgerton, V.R. Muscle origin and insertion coordinates relative to bone landmarks in the rat hindlimb – toward a musculoskeletal model. Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting (October 14-18, 2006).
  42. 2006    Jafari, R., Jindrich, D.L., Edgerton, V.R., Sarrafzadeh,M. CMAS: Clinical Movement Assessment System for Neuromotor Disorders. Tenth International Symposium on Wearable Computers (October 11-14, 2006).
  43. 2005    Jindrich, D.L., Courtine, G. McKay, H.L., Betts, S.L., Bernot, T., Roy, R.R., Zhong, H., Liu, J.J. Gupta, R.K. Yang, H., Havton, L.A., Tuszynski, M.H., Edgerton, V.R. Effects of cervical hemisection on prehension in Rhesus monkeys. Society for Neuroscience 2005 meeting (November 2005).
  44. 2003    Jindrich, D.L., Kuo, P-L, Balakrishnan, A.D. and Dennerlein, J.T. (2003) Keyswitch design and finger posture affect joint impedance when tapping on computer keyswitches. Proc. Amer. Soc. Biomech. 243.
  45. 2002    Jindrich, D.L. (2002) Dynamic stabilization of rapid hexapodal locomotion. Proc. Fourth World Congress of Biomechanics. 878.
  46. 2002    Jindrich, D.L. and Dennerlein, J.T. (2002) Impedance models of finger joints during typing. Proc. Fourth World Congress of Biomechanics. 5263.
  47. 2002    Jindrich, D.L., Becker, T. and Dennerlein, J.T. (2002) Fingertip pulp mechanics during voluntary tapping. Proc. Fourth World Congress of Biomechanics. 866.
  48. 2000    Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. (2000) Dynamic stabilization of rapid hexapodal locomotion. Am. Zool. 40(6), 1077-1077.
  49. 1999    Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. (1999) Kinematic variability during constant average speed running in cockroaches. Am. Zool. 38:81A.
  50. 1998    Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. (1998) Requirements for self-stabilizing running in 3D hexapods. Am. Zool. 37:176A.
  51. 1996    Full, R.J. and Jindrich, D. L. (1996) AAPE: 3D data acquisition, analysis, presentation and exchange. ACM SIGGRAPH 96 Visual Proceedings. 108.
  52. 1995    Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. (1995) Mechanics of turning in hexapods. Proc. Amer. Soc. Biomech. 19: 105-106.
  53. 1995    Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. (1995) Dynamics of turning in a running cockroach. Physiol. Zool. 68: 57.
  54. 1994    Jindrich, D.L. and Full, R.J. (1994). Turning behavior of cockroaches. Amer. Zool. 34: 38A.


  1. 2015 Jindrich, D.L. Comparative studies to understand body- and joint- level mechanics and control of unsteady locomotion. Dynamic Walking. (20-24 July, 2015. Columbus, OH).
  2. 2014 Jindrich, D.L. and Qiao, M. Terrestrial Dynamics and Control of Unsteady Locomotion. World Congress of Biomechanics. (06-11 July, 2014. Boston, MA).
  3. 2014   Jindrich, D.L. and Qiao, M. Compensations during unsteady locomotion. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting, Terrestrial Locomotion Symposium. (03-07 January 2014. Austin, TX).
  4. 2013   Jindrich, D.L. The LIMB Lab at CSUSM: Comparative Neuromechanics with Applications to Ergonomics and Rehabilitation. CSU San Marcos presentation to KPBS (18 April 2013)
  5. 2013   Jindrich, D.L. From invertebrates to iPads: applying basic neuromechanics research to biomedicine and public health. San Diego State University (11 March 2013)
  6. 2012   Jindrich, D.L. From invertebrates to iPads: applying basic neuromechanics research to biomedicine and public health. U.C. Irvine Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department Seminar (28 September 2012)
  7. 2012   Jindrich, D.L. Are constraints the mother of invention? Northeastern University (Boston, MA 07 June 2012)
  8. 2011   Jindrich, D.L. The LIMB Lab: Comparative Neuromechanics, with Applications to Ergonomics and Rehabilitation. Northern Arizona University (Flagstaff, AZ, October 2011)
  9. 2011   Jindrich, D.L. Task-Level Control of Unsteady Locomotion in Humans. Progress in Motor Control VIII (Cincinnati, OH, July 2011).
  10. 2008   Jindrich, D. L. Biomechanics and Motor Control of Unsteady Locomotion, with Applications. Johns Hopkins University. (Baltimore, MD. 19 November 2008).
  11. 2006   Jindrich, D. L. Functional recovery following spinal cord injury in Rhesus Monkeys. UCLA Neural Repair Seminar Series. (Los Angeles, CA. 28 April 2006).
  12. 2005   Jindrich, D. L. Strategies for restoring function following spinal cord injury.  Institute for Neuromorphic Engineering Workshop. (Zurich, Switzerland, 21-25 August 2005).
  13. 2005   Jindrich, D. L. Unsteady Locomotion.  Society for Experimental Biology Annual Meeting Symposium. (Barcelona, Spain, 11-15 July 2005).
  14. 2004   Jindrich, D. L. Stability and maneuverability of locomotion, with applications.  Harvey Mudd College Biology Department seminar. (Claremont, CA., 17 November 2004).
  15. 2004   Jindrich, D. L. Stability and maneuverability.  University of Southern California seminar series. (Los Angeles, CA., 7,11 October 2004).
  16. 2004   Jindrich, D. L. Unsteady locomotion in bipeds and polypeds.  Royal Veterinary College seminar series. (Brookman's Park, U.K. 19 July 2004).
  17. 2003   Jindrich, D. L. Running Roaches and Repetitive Motions: Studying the Mechanics of Movement.  Stanford University Biomechanical Engineering Seminar. (Palo Alto, CA. 02 May 2003).
  18. 2002   Jindrich, D. L. Stability, maneuverability, and control of rapid cockroach locomotion.  M.I.T. Computational Motor Control seminar. (Boston, MA. 28 August 2002).
  19. 2002   Jindrich, D. L. Stability, maneuverability, and control of rapid cockroach locomotion. Harvard School of Public Health Work in Progress seminar. (Boston, MA. 05 March 2002).
  20. 1998   Jindrich, D. L. and Full, R. J. Stability and maneuverability: theoretical models and empirical correlates. 1998 DARPA Michigan Site Visit. (Ann Arbor, MI. 9 December 1998).
  21. 1997   Jindrich, D.L. Control strategies for dynamic locomotion. Workshop on Modeling and Simulation of Biomechanical Systems. (Bielefeld, Germany. 5-6 June, 1997).
  22. 1997   Jindrich, D. L. Preflexes and stability during rapid locomotion. Office of Naval Research Legged Locomotion Workshop. (Cambridge, MA. 28-31 May, 1997).
  23. 1997   Jindrich, D.L. Using internet information servers to provide resources for research, instruction, and community outreach programs. Colloquium on Using the Internet for Instruction and Outreach. (Berkeley, CA. 1997).
  24. 1996   Jindrich, D. L. The AAPE center at U. C. Berkeley: using data acquisition, analysis, presentation, and exchange to address biological complexity. ACM SIGGRAPH. (New Orleans, LA, 1996).
  25. 1995   Jindrich, D. L. Locomotor behavior of the cockroach: mechanics and nervous organization. Santa Fe Institute's Complex Systems Summer Program. (Santa Fe, NM. 1995).


 A. Current (funded)

TITLE: HCC Medium: A toolkit to evaluate the effect of multitouch interaction on musculoskeletal system and design safe multitouch systems


PERIOD: 2010-2014

STATUS: Funded: NSF 0964220


BUDGET: $1,200,000


DESCRIPTION: Proposal to develop a toolkit to aid in the design of multitouch interfaces to prevent injuries.


B. Submitted (pending)

C. In Revision

TITLE: Neuromotor control of unsteady locomotion


PERIOD: 2013-2016

STATUS: Submitted 06/2013


BUDGET: $370,000


DESCRIPTION: Proposal to measure and model stability of human walking and running.

TITLE: A Biomechanics-Based Neuoprosthetic Controller for Locomotion



STATUS: Submitted to NIH, Not Funded.


BUDGET: $275,000


DESCRIPTION: Proposal to develop a neuroprosthetic control system for locomotion that takes advantage of the energy-saving and intrinsically-stabilizing mechanical mechanisms used by animals during locomotion.

TITLE: Using Ultrasound to Stimulate Spinal and Peripheral Neurons



STATUS: Submitted to DoD CDMRP, Selected as Alternate


BUDGET: $136,000


DESCRIPTION: Proposal to evaluate the potential for non-invasive ultrasound to modulate spinal and peripheral neural circuitry.

TITLE: A Meta-Analysis of Spinal Cord Injury Therapies

SOURCE: NSF (RAPD), Neilsen Foundation, CDRF


STATUS: Submitted to DoD CDMRP, Not Funded


BUDGET: $136,000


DESCRIPTION: Proposal to perform a meta-analysis of treatments for spinal cord injury.


D. In Preparation

TITLE: Morphological and Physiological Interactions Underlying Unsteady Locomotion.



STATUS: In Preparation.




DESCRIPTION: Proposal to better understand the interactions among size, phylogeny, and morphology that underlie the performance and control of stability and maneuverability.


E. Completed

TITLE: Plasticity and Regeneration in the Primate Spinal Cord

SOURCE: National Institutes of Health

PERIOD: 2006-2011

STATUS: Approved


ROLE: Researcher

DESCRIPTION: Continuation of a project to understand the functional and anatomical consequences of spinal cord injury in primates, and evaluate therapeutic strategies. I managed the UCLA contribution of this successful collaborative proposal between UCLA, UCSD, and UCD.

TITLE: Combined OEG transplantation and step training promote regeneration in adult SCI

SOURCE: National Institutes of Health

PERIOD: 2006-2010

STATUS: Approved


ROLE: Researcher

DESCRIPTION: Proposal to evaluate the effectiveness of olfactory ensheathing glial cells and step training in improving locomotion following spinal cord injury. This project will also use neurophysiological studies to investigate the mechanisms of improved function following treatment with OEG cells. I contributed to the overall design of the study,  oversaw the functional analysis of the data, and contributed to writing  the proposal.

SOURCE: National Science Foundation

PERIOD: 1996-1998

STATUS: Completed

TYPE: Graduate Research Fellowship

COSTS: Stipend: $15,000 / year

DESCRIPTION: Fellowship granted for graduate study in Integrative Biology at the University of California, Berkeley.


A. Graduate





Mu Qiao


ASU Kinesiology

Dissertation Advisor

Jong-Hwa Lee


ASU Mechanical Engineering

Dissertation Advisor

Mark Hughes


ASU Mechanical Engineering

Thesis Advisor

Bryan Morrison


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

Cecile Lozano


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

Daisuke Shibata


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

Wanyue Wang


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

Qiushi Fu


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

Mallika Fairchild


ASU Bioengineering

Committee Member

Brian Hillen


ASU Bioengineering

Committee Member

Charla Lindley


ASU Bioengineering

Committee Member

James Waters



Committee Member

Anne Curzon


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

Giridar Hegde


ASU Kinesiology

Committee Member

B. Undergraduate

Adam Schmalz


Alejah Tabulah


Severne Herida


Amy Clark


Ryan Martineau


Marc Surdyka


Rachelle Holt


Kathryn Cotten


Brett Hughes


Danielle Protas


Brianna Angeleri


Elizabeth Drummond


Lacey Doerfler


Brian Brown


Nikki Castel


David Morrison


Tasha Cheshko


Tricia Dawson


Tim Hinton


Alex Wilson


Robert Wei


Sumaya Sidique


Ravi Gupta


Ara Austin


Kathleen (Kat) Yaphockun


Zachary Gilbert


Aristakes Mnatsakanyan


Josh Pfent


Aruna Balakrishnan



“Method and Apparatus for Quantitative Assessment of Neuromotor Disorders.” M. Sarrafzadeh, R. Jafari, V.R. Edgerton, and D.L. Jindrich, inventors. USPTO Application # 20100113979. 


   Articles about my research have appeared in Science, Scientific American, LiveScience, Science et Vie, Fox News, and Wissenschaft-online among others.


CockroachCockroach on photoelastic gelatin

   I direct the Laboratory for Integrative Motor Behavior (LIMB) lab. Research in the LIMB lab aims to discover fundamental principles underlying the biomechanics and neural control of movement, interpret these principles in the context of the physical and occupational environment, and apply basic research discoveries to current problems in biomedicine and public health. My research approach is integrative: addressing many levels of organization to better understand and contextualize motor function and control. I use theoretical models, computer simulations, and experimental studies in animals and humans to address basic and applied research questions. Research in my laboratory primarily focuses on three areas: (1) Conducting basic research to understand the mechanics and motor control of unsteady locomotion (stability and maneuverability); (2) Applying biomechanical and motor control principles to prevent injuries associated with human-computer interactions; and (3) Developing effective strategies for restoring function following neuromotor injuries (i.e. spinal cord injury). I am currently involving both undergraduate students and post-doctoral trainees in several projects related to each of these areas. Below are brief descriptions of the projects, research findings to date, and plans for continuing the research at CSU San Marcos.


    The mechanics and control of stability and maneuverability are little understood compared to constant-average-speed locomotion (Jindrich and Qiao (2009) Chaos, 19(2): 026105). Current research focuses on characterizing the task-level control strategies that are used to control unsteady locomotion: to generate maneuvers and to maintain stability. Experimental studies will contribute to the ultimate goal of identifying the specific control policies used by the CNS to account for complex system dynamics when planning and executing movements to attain behavioral goals. Our experimental focus is on identifying the task-level parameters that are actively controlled during walking and running maneuvers within the framework of a simplified mathematical model. I am also interested in the extent to which active control of unsteady locomotion can be separated from the inverted-pendulum and spring-mass “templates” that govern locomotion mechanics.


Background: In initial studies on horizontal-plane maneuverability, I introduced the hypothesis that two mechanical requirements constrain the mechanisms available for maneuvering in the horizontal plane (i.e. turning): A) The movement direction of the center of mass (COM) must be changed, and B) the body must be rotated to face the new direction of COM movement. A force impulse must deflect the COM movement direction, and an appropriate torque impulse must also be generated to rotate the body. Based on these force and torque requirements, I developed a simple mathematical model of the task requirements for maneuvering that made specific predictions of the force production necessary to turn during running. I initially tested the model using insects and found that it was able to describe leg force production for each of the legs (Jindrich and Full, (1999). J. exp Biol. 202: 1603-1623).

In collaboration with Thor Besier and David Lloyd (at Stanford and University of Western Australia, respectively), I tested the model on human cutting maneuvers during running. We found that this simple algebraic model could explain 70% of the variance in braking forces during sidestep cutting maneuvers of different degrees, and surprisingly even of crossover cutting maneuvers (Jindrich et al. (2006), J Biomech, 39: 1611-1620). Braking forces observed during running turns contributed to prevent body over-rotation during turning. Subsequent experiments in collaboration with Alan Wilson at the Royal Veterinary College (U.K.) have shown that the simple model can also explain the ground-reaction forces used by ostriches to turn. Based on morphology and behavior, ostriches were observed to require less braking force than humans during running turns, consistent with predictions of the model (Jindrich et al. (2007), J Exp Biol, 210(8), 1378-90).


InertiaHuman Inertia Increaser

TrackwaySmall animal maneuvering trackway

Current Research: Humans. Studies in my lab currently seek to understand how the nervous system works within the mechanical constraints and capabilities of the musculoskeletal system to achieve stable maneuvers. Working with an undergraduate student (Brian Brown) and Ph.D. student (Mu Qiao), we conducted experiments to assess the behavioral consequences of perturbations to two morphological parameters of the maneuvering model: mass (M) and rotational inertia (I). We constructed a rigid backpack frame with poles attached at the waist, extending fore and aft. The apparatus weighs 5.7 kg. The pack is tightly fitting and adjustable to each participant. By adding mass to different locations fore and aft of the center of mass (COM), M and I can be independently changed. Changes in M of approximately 15% can increase I about the vertical axis by 1-3 times. We collected kinematics using a VICON® 3-D motion tracking system, and ground-reaction forces using two force platforms (Bertec) covered by rubber mats to obscure their location. Subjects ran at 3 m/s and executed sidestep cuts with their right leg. Contrary to our hypothesis that increasing I would decrease braking forces, braking forces remained consistent at different rotational inertias, facilitated by anticipatory changes to horizontal plane body rotational speed. Moreover, increasing inertia revealed that the opposing effects of several turning parameters (i.e. initial rotation and rotation due to medio-lateral forces) result in a system that is robust to changes in rotational inertia. These results suggest that in submaximal effort turning, legged systems may be robust to changes in morphological parameters, and that compensations can involve relatively minor adjustments between steps to change stance initial conditions. We have published a manuscript describing these results (M. Qiao, B. Brown, and D. L. Jindrich. J Exp Biol 217(3): 432-43)

RatRodent traversing miniature force platform

Current Research: Animals. I have made preparations for studies using the comparative method to identify general principles underlying maneuverability performance. I worked with two undergraduates (Alex Wilson and Ara Austin) to design experiments and build equipment necessary to determine the biomechanics and motor control of rats performing two different types of maneuvers (incline running and turning).


CannonDirect perturbations of locomotion to investigate stability

Background: Important aspects of constant-speed locomotion in the sagittal plane can be described by a relatively simple mechanical analog, the spring-loaded inverted pendulum (SLIP). In addition to well-established energetic benefits of SLIP mechanics, appropriately-designed SLIP systems can also be inherently stabilizing. Stability in this context refers to re-entrant patterns of movement that persist and can attenuate the effects of small perturbations over time. With minimal or no control, bipedal walking and running systems can theoretically exhibit stable behavior if they are appropriately designed. Minor adjustments to leg stiffness and geometry afford a degree of dynamic stability in the sagittal plane when subject to larger perturbations. Humans have been shown to use some of these passive dynamical stabilizing mechanisms to simplify locomotion control.

   In addition to passive dynamics, musculoskeletal structure and physiology can contribute to stabilizing rapid locomotion (Jindrich and Full (2002). J. exp Biol. 205, 2803-2823). Inherent properties of active muscles can serve to reject perturbations and alter or reduce the requirements for neural control. However, although passive physiological properties can contribute to locomotion stability, they are insufficient to explain the capabilities and behavior of walking and running animals and humans. Active control of dynamic stability is therefore necessary. I therefore seek to determine how neural control interacts with passive dynamic and muscle physiology to power and stabilize locomotion.

Control PlotsStability strategies used by humans are consistent with robotic control algorithms

Current Research: To investigate the task-level control policies used by humans to stabilize locomotion, I worked with a graduate student (Mu Qiao). To date, there has been little research on the control policies used by bipeds to maintain stability during locomotion. However, in the 1980s, Raibert and colleagues designed and built dynamically-stable robots inspired by running animals. The controller for these bouncing robots could maintain stable running by independently controlling hopping height, body attitude, and forward running speed without requiring complex, global models of locomotion dynamics. These parameters could, in turn, be controlled by adjustments to initial foot placement, leg stiffness, and by generating torques about the hip. Despite its simplicity, Raibert’s controller could be used to control multiple legs in two- and three-dimensional movements. Raibert’s robots demonstrated that relatively simple control strategies are capable of stabilizing SLIP systems. Humans have the capacity for substantially more sophisticated motor control of locomotion than used by Raibert’s robots. However, the active, task-level control policies used by humans to stabilize legged locomotion are not well understood.

   We conducted experiments to test whether humans use control strategies analogous to those used by Raibert’s robots to stabilize running. Specifically, we tested the hypotheses that: 1) humans control running height by modulating leg force (not stance duration), 2) humans control running speed by changing stance leg placement relative to a “neutral point”, and 3) humans control body attitude using hip torques. We studied movements and forces of humans performing five running tasks that changed body height, speed, and orientation. The strategies used to perform these tasks were most often consistent with robotic control principles. Leg force was linearly related to running height. Running speed was changed by adjusting fore-aft foot placement. Body orientation could be modeled as a first order proportional-derivative feedback system. These results suggest that the interaction of independent feedback control strategies could be employed by humans to maintain stable running. (M. Qiao and D.L. Jindrich (2012) PLoS One. 7(12):e51888).

Research Plans at CSUSM: Humans


Split-belt instrumented treadmill system

BullyPerturbation apparatus

I plan to conduct experiments to understand the relative contributions of musculoskeletal, reflex, and higher-order neural systems to stabilizing locomotion using biomechanical, neurophysiological, and direct perturbation studies. My ultimate goal is to identify general, task-level control principles that govern stability and maneuverability, and understand the underlying physiological mechanisms. Initial experiments will investigate whether humans use common control strategies to generate the active perturbations used to maneuver, and to stabilize locomotion when subject to external perturbations. To this end, I built a custom split-belt, force-sensor-mounted treadmill and a perturbation device based on a linear motor.


Research Plans at CSUSM: Animals

Animal experiments sought to investigate whether perturbations of body weight (i.e. as caused by obesity) affected maneuverability, and resulted in other effects such as increased exposure to mechanical loading that could be associated with inflammatory syndromes (i.e. osteoarthritis and Type II diabetes). Animal experiments also sought to understand maneuverability in a comparative, evolutionary context. I am planning to investigate whether these studies can be continued in some form with animals that do not require vivarium facilities (e.g. crabs).


A second aspect of my research is using basic research in biomechanics and motor control to prevent injuries. I have focused on evaluating human-computer interfaces, towards interventions that reduce injuries associated with computer work and the next generation of multi-touch and gestural interfaces. Understanding the mechanics and motor control of multi-touch/gestural interfaces involves basic research on the generation of sequences of complex fine motor movements, with direct public health implications.

Background: Since 1980, there has been a rise in the incidence rates of chronic musculoskeletal disorders, such as low back pain and carpal tunnel syndrome, reported in the United States (BLS Data,  From 1980 to 2000, across all industries, the incidence rate increased from 3.6 to 26 new cases per 10,000 workers. Although the injury mechanisms of chronic musculoskeletal disorders are not well understood, work-related physical risk factors include repetition rate, force, and posture.

FingerFinger mechanics during keyboard use

   Working with Jack Dennerlein at the Harvard School of Public Health, I conducted studies to characterize finger mechanics and motor control during tapping on a computer keyswitch, towards understanding the causes of upper-extremity musculoskeletal disorders and improved keyboard design. We tested several hypotheses, among them: 1) finger joints act similarly during tapping in terms of kinematics, torque production, and energy production; 2) A simple lumped-parameter model can describe finger impedance during tapping; and 3) Humans employ postures and

generate horizontal forces against keyswitches that result in joint torque and energy transfer minimization. We collected simultaneous measurements of finger joint kinematics and endpoint force production during tapping on different types of computer keyswitches. These experiments show that finger joints act differently when tapping. The proximal (metacarpo-phalangeal) joint, flexes and produces the energy necessary to depress the keyswitch. However, during the contact phase of tapping, the distal joints extend and then flex, absorbing and releasing energy in a spring- like manner. A simple spring-damper model can describe the behavior of the distal joints. Humans do not appear to employ postures or patterns of force production that result in torque or energy transfer minimization during tapping on keyswitches (Jindrich et al. (2004) J.Biomech., 37: 1589-1596). We therefore proposed a new keyswitch design to reduce joint loading during typing (Balakrishnan, Jindrich and Dennerlein, Human Factors (2006) 48(1): 121-9).

Current Research: At ASU, I initiated a collaboration with Kanav Kahol of the Department of Biomedical Informatics, Arizona State University, and with my former mentor, Jack Dennerlein, to continue this research to prevent potential injuries associated with multitouch and gestural input devices. We secured a $1.2 million grant from the National Science Foundation to perform this collaborative research.

iPhoneFinger mechanics during multitouch device use

   The next generation of human-computer interfaces using gestural and multitouch technology is currently under development, and we are within a narrow window of opportunity to influence interface design to reduce injury risk. The overall objective of this project is to use basic research on hand and arm function while using gestural, multitouch systems (i.e. systems like Apple’s iPhone and iPad) to prevent future injuries associated with using these new types of human-computer interfaces. I worked with two undergraduate students (Brianna Angeleri and Josh Pfent) and a post-doctoral researcher (Cecil Lozano) to design and conduct experimental studies on the movements and muscle activities associated with multitouch tasks.

   We have completed several studies of the motor control of the hand and arm during multitouch interactions. Our results demonstrate that different gestures are associated with different levels of muscle activity and subjective discomfort. Muscle activity associated with multitouch devices is substantial despite the small forces required for these interactions.

   We are also working to develop a complete, freely-accessible musculoskeletal model of the arm and hand (based on the OpenSim arm model developed by Scott Delp, Wendy Murray and Kate Holzbaur). I worked with an ASU graduate student (Jong-Hwa Lee) to use anatomical data from the literature to model the intrinsic muscles of the hand, adding to the existing simulation of the elbow and shoulder. We have published two papers from this study (Lee et al. 2015a, Lee et al., 2015b).

Research Plans at CSUSM

With the successful transfer of the NSF grant to CSU San Marcos and hiring of new post-doctoral researcher (Deanna Asakawa), the project is continuing. The complex, multi-joint gestures used in multitouch systems are poorly understood, and this project will provide information as to the potential for repetitive use injuries when using multitouch systems. The project will also contribute to a fundamental understanding of the mechanics and control of complex hand and finger movements. The information, recommendations, and simulation toolkit that emerge from this research will ultimately allow designers to create devices that reduce the potential for injury due to long-term use. We seek to provide designers of the next generation of technology interfaces with the tools necessary to make injury prevention a central design criterion. Both by its specific objectives, and the precedent it would set, we believe that this project could have an enormous impact on public health for years to come.


A third research effort of mine has been to use principles derived from basic research in biomechanics and motor control to restore function following neuromotor injury. I have focused on efforts to stimulate functional recovery following spinal cord injury (SCI), both by encouraging spinal repair and by developing engineering approaches to augment or replace motor output.

Background: In the U.S., approximately 10,000 people annually suffer spinal cord injury (SCI), and the population of chronically injured exceeds 250,000, including at least 42,000 veterans with spinal cord injuries (Stovers and Fine, 1986; VA, 2007).  Paralysis resulting from neuromotor injuries incurs substantial direct and persistent medical costs. For example, yearly costs to the Veterans Health Administration were estimated to average $28,334 per person for cervical complete SCI to $16,792 for thoracic incomplete SCI (French et al., 2007). These direct costs, however, are potentially only a small fraction of the total costs associated with paralysis as they do not factor in other costs such as lost wages, unpaid care, and decreased productivity. Most importantly, however, paralysis exacts enormous personal costs on individuals and their families.

   There are currently two broad categories of treatment aimed at functional recovery from neuromotor trauma or disorder. One is to strengthen the residual capacity of the person, for instance by training a limb or regenerating neural pathways. The other is to use a technological intervention, such as functional neuromuscular stimulation or robotics. Each of these approaches holds promise, and they are not mutually exclusive. For example, in addition to directly restoring the ability to activate and exercise muscles, neuromuscular stimulation can contribute to repairing the nervous system by encouraging adaptive plasticity. Consequently, neuromuscular stimulation is likely to be a component of many types of integrative approaches to functional restoration following SCI.

UltrasoundSpinal (CPG) and peripheral nerve stimulation using pulsed ultrasound

   Working with Reggie Edgerton at UCLA among others, I have gained experience with both approaches to improving function following SCI. Space does not permit a discussion of all of the projects initiated in my lab related to restoration of function after SCI. Because Kinesiology does not have access to vivarium space at CSUSM, most of these projects cannot continue because they depend on rodent models. However one project may be possible if shifted to another animal model.

Current Research: Using ultrasound to activate spinal circuitry. Neuroprosthetic systems require some way to activate nerves and/or muscles. Pharmacological, electrical, magnetic, and photonic methods can be used to stimulate neuronal circuits. For example, although electrical stimulation represents a relatively simple method, it suffers from several drawbacks. Among them are that electrodes often must be chronically implanted using invasive procedures, and electrical stimulation can result in non-natural patterns of nerve recruitment (i.e. reverse-recruitment of muscle fibers). The recruitment of large, fatigable muscle fibers before small, fatigue-resistant fibers presents difficulties both for controlling muscle forces and for prolonged or repeated movements (such as locomotion). Although strategies for selective stimulation of neurons within nerves have been developed, they typically require complicated stimulus waveforms and invasive implantation of nerve cuffs.

   Consequently, I have initiated an effort to determine whether low-intensity, low-frequency ultrasound (LILFU) can be used for the noninvasive excitation or suppression of spinal and peripheral neurons with properties similar to biological activation. Recent in vitro data illustrate that LILFU is capable of exciting central neurons by activating voltage-gated sodium channels and voltage-gated calcium channels in a manner sufficient to elicit action potentials and trigger neurotransmitter release (Tufail et al., 2010). These observations raise numerous possibilities for the use of pulsed ultrasound (US) in controlling neuronal activity. However, explorations into the use of ultrasound (US) as a neurostimulation tool have been relatively sparse. Coupling its ability to directly stimulate neuronal activity and its noninvasive transmission through bone and other biological tissues in a focused manner, US holds promise as a potentially powerful neuromodulation tool. However, the potential for using ultrasound to stimulate spinal or peripheral neurons to generate functional muscle activation has not been thoroughly investigated.

   Two important approaches to restoring function following spinal cord injury (SCI) could potentially benefit from minimally-invasive stimulation with US. First, direct stimulation of spinal circuitry, via general excitatatory (i.e. epidural) stimulation or through targeted microstimulation can lead to a wide range of behavior such as standing or different forms of locomotion depending on the stimulation parameters. LILFU presents the possibility of non-invasive excitation of spinal circuitry without requiring extensive surgical or pharmacological intervention, which would be useful in many rehabilitation contexts. Second, stimulation of peripheral nerves can be used therapeutically (to prevent muscle atrophy, for example), or in engineered systems to restore motor function through functional neuromuscular stimulation. Recent work has shown that stimulation of peripheral nerves using channelrhodopsin-facilitated optical excitation results in more normal muscle fiber recruitment patterns than electrical stimulation. This presents the additional question of whether the recruitment patterns elicited by LILFU stimulation are superior to those observed with electrical stimulation. At ASU, I worked with Jamie Tyler in the ASU School of Life Sciences and three undergraduate researchers (Zach Gilbert, Tasha Cheshko and Nikki Castel) to determine whether US can be used to activate spinal pattern generators and provide the basis for patterned locomotory movement. In November 2009 I submitted a Hypothesis Development Award proposal about this research to the Department of Defense that was selected as an Alternate. Although funding was ultimately not available, I am confident that this project could be externally supported in the near future.

Research Plans at CSUSM

 A long-term plan is to investigate if using an invertebrate model (e.g. lobsters or crabs) is feasible.


   My research is well suited to working with both undergraduate and graduate students. Research in neurophysiology and biomechanics draws analytical and experimental techniques from many fields, including functional morphology, comparative physiology, neuroscience, mechanical engineering and controls systems theory. Students working in the LIMB lab and associated courses are exposed to a diversity of theoretical paradigms and research techniques necessary to conduct integrative research on neuromuscular control. Although this research draws from many advanced techniques in biology and engineering, at the same time experiments in motor control are uniquely accessible to students. Experimental data on movement can often be directly visualized. Students are able to immediately apply concepts learned in basic biology and physics courses to problems involving motor tasks which are relevant and intuitive. Whole-body movements during locomotion or limb movements are familiar to students and provide a firm grounding which facilitates the understanding of more abstract concepts.

   My approach to working with undergraduate students is based on the students assuming responsibility for individual projects and following the project through from start to finish. At the outset, I explain to students the level of commitment, initiative, and hard work that this entails. Over the course of the project, I try to meet with each student for one hour a week to discuss progress and help overcome any challenges that have arisen. There are also aspects of each project that require my support (i.e. writing animal care and use/human subjects protocols, purchasing equipment and supplies, computer programming and some aspects of data analysis). I perform these tasks as needed, often at the direction/request of the student. Although I maintain ultimate oversight of the direction of each project, I think that this partial inversion of roles furthers my educational objectives of encouraging students to be independent thinkers and actors. I am looking forward to involving more CSUSM students in my research.