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Stuart McErlain-Naylor

Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Biomechanics

Loughborough University

Biography

Dr Stuart McErlain-Naylor is a Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Biomechanics at Loughborough University, UK. He is currently Vice President (Publications) of the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports.

Alongside a passion for engaging the wider audience in all things sports biomechanics, Stuart’s research interests include the application of wearable technology and computer simulation methods to investigate the human body’s response to sporting impacts.

Stuart organised and hosted the Sports Biomechanics Lecture Series , and is Social Media Editor for the journal Sports Biomechanics.

To discuss collaboration or consultancy, just send a mesage. For the best things I read each month, as well as publication, presentation, and project updates, please subscribe to my monthly newsletter.

Interests

  • musculoskeletal modelling
  • wearable technology
  • sporting technique
  • flywheel exercise

Education

  • PhD in Sports Biomechanics, 2018

    Loughborough University

  • Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice (Fellow of the Higher Education Academy), 2020

    University of Suffolk

  • BSc in Sport and Exercise Sciences, 2013

    Loughborough University

Content and Resources

  • Publications: View and search open access versions of my publications and related resources

  • Lectures: 28 free expert lectures on sports biomechanics, as well as tutorials and research presentations

  • Resources: Recommended free resources for every stage of the research process

  • Newsletter: A monthly update of the best things I’ve read recently, as well as publications and resources

Research Projects

Impact Modelling and Monitoring

Applying wearable technology and computer simulation to investigate the body’s response to sporting impacts

Cricket Biomechanics

The biomechanical determinants of cricket batting/bowling performance

Badminton

The biomechanical determinants of badminton jump smash performance

Flywheel Exercise

Flywheel (isoinertial) eccentric overload exercise induced post-activation performance enhancement

Most Recent Publications

Surface measured accelerations during cricket fast-bowling

The aim of this research was to quantify the magnitude and timing of surface measured accelerations during the fast-bowling action. Eleven males performed 6 maximum velocity deliveries with accelerometers positioned over: both ankles; knees; hips; L5; L1; and the C7 vertebrae. Accelerometer signals exhibited decreased peak and increased time to peak acceleration from the ankle to the C7 sensor. Even when distal accelerations were largest at front foot contact, the body was still able to dissipate more than 90% of the acceleration. Active and passive mechanisms such as joint compliance and spinal compression within the body therefore likely contribute to the progressive attenuation of accelerations. The effects of such compliance on investigations of the intersegmental forces and moments during cricket fast-bowling via inverse dynamics warrants further investigation.

Variability of ball release properties and pitch length accuracy in cricket fast bowling

Accurate ball pitch length in cricket fast bowling is potentially achieved from a redundant combination of four ball release parameters. Yet, it is unknown how parameter co-variations affect pitch accuracy. This study investigates whether pitch length variance is determined by coordinated ball release parameter co-variability. Twelve fast bowlers performed 18 trials at a target length and ball kinematics were captured from an indoor 3D camera setup. Multi-linear regression analysis showed that the four release parameters accounted for 79% of pitch length variance, where vertical velocity variance accounted for the most variance. When each release parameter was independently shuffled across trials, a pitch length model showed no indication of coordinated co-variability between input parameters. Therefore, pitch length accuracy was achieved by independent control of vertical velocity.

Elite female cricket power-hitting batting technique differs between fast and spin bowling deliveries

The purpose of this study was to determine if elite female cricket batters’ body or bat kinematics differed when facing fast or spin bowling in a power-hitting task. Six elite female cricket batters completed a straight drive power hitting task against both fast and spin bowling, captured by a 3D motion capture system. Select kinematic variables were analysed using Visual 3D software. Elite female batters may use the increased movement time afforded by the slower spin bowling speed to enhance bat-ball impact, bat speed and launch angle through reducing distance from the pitch of the ball to impact, and increasing thorax-pelvis separation (X-Factor) and top wrist ulnar deviation compared with facing fast bowling.

The effect of flywheel inertia on peak power and its inter-session reliability during two unilateral hamstring exercises: leg curl and hip extension

This study investigated the effect of flywheel moment of inertia (0.029, 0.061, and 0.089 kg·m2) on concentric and eccentric peak power and eccentric:concentric peak power ratio during unilateral flywheel leg curl and hip extension exercises. Moreover, the inter-session reliability of peak power was analyzed during both exercises. Twenty amateur male soccer athletes attended five visits—performing three sets of eight repetitions of either unilateral leg curl or hip extension (all three moments of inertias) during each visit. For the unilateral leg curl, there were no differences in any measure between moments of inertia (p = 0.479) but a higher eccentric than concentric peak power for all moments of inertia (p < 0.001). For the unilateral hip extension, differences between moments of inertia were reported for all measures (p < 0.05). Specifically, the lowest moment of inertia elicited the greatest concentric peak power (p = 0.022), there were no differences with the medium inertia (p = 0.391), and the greatest moment of inertia obtained the greatest eccentric peak power (p = 0.036). Peak power measures obtained acceptable to excellent reliability while the eccentric:concentric ratio reported unacceptable to good reliability for both exercises. A variety of moments of inertia can elicit high eccentric knee flexor demands during unilateral leg curls, whereas higher moments of inertia are needed to achieve an eccentric-overload in peak power during hip extensions. Different exercises may have different inertia-power relationships. Concentric and eccentric peak power measures should continue to inform training, while the eccentric:concentric ratio should not be used.

Hitting for Six: Cricket Power Hitting Biomechanics

Drs Stuart McErlain-Naylor, Chris Peploe, Paul Felton and Professor Mark King discuss biomechanical principles underpinning maximising power hitting success in cricket.