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Dr. Oliver named President-Elect of ABBS

Oliver, Giordano win research award at Orthopedic Summit

Kevin Giordano with his winning poster.

Dr. Gretchen Oliver and former doctoral student Kevin Giordano were awarded second place in the International Journal of Sports Physical Therapy Research Symposium at the Orthopedic Summit in Las Vegas in December 2021. The paper was The Role of Spinal Manipulation as a Moderator of Cervical Spine Position on Shoulder Rotation Strength. 

Giordano, who graduated with his doctoral degree from Auburn in August 2021, is currently in a tenure track assistant professor at Creighton University’s Physical Therapy Department in Phoenix, Arizona.  He teaches Movement Science, Exercise Physiology and Emergency Medical Responder.  He is the director of two research laboratories totaling about 3000’ sq., which includes motion capture, isokinetic dynamometry, force plates, an instrumented, split-belt treadmill, driving simulator, Zero-G, amongst other equipment to help his research lines of injury prevention of the overhead athlete, and spinal posture’s influence on shoulder function.


Dr. Oliver named President-Elect of American Baseball Biomechanics Society

School of Kinesiology Professor Gretchen Oliver, director of the Sports Medicine and Movement Lab, has been elected President-Elect of the American Baseball Biomechanics Society.


The American Baseball Biomechanics Society, or ABBS, is a not-for-profit organization that was established in February 2020. The first purpose of the organization is to provide valid, valuable biomechanical information to baseball players, coaches, teams, and organizations. The second purpose of the organization is to set standards for biomechanical evaluations and analyses within a baseball setting.

Learn more about ABBS at


Sports Medicine and Movement Lab remembers Dr. Jane B. Moore

Auburn Athletics pioneer Dr. Jane B. Moore passed away July 9, 2021, at the age of 85. Moore was instrumental to the growth of the School of Kinesiology and the Sports Medicine and Movement Lab. 


In 2016, the lab created an Executive Board to advise, support and mentor the mission of the lab in baseball and softball injury prevention and performance enhancement research. Dr. Moore was one of the initial Executive Board members, and she played an intricate role in supporting and mentoring the Sports Medicine & Movement Lab. Since the inception of the Executive Board and Dr. Moore’s involvement, the Sports Medicine & Movement Lab has increased visibility, research production and research impact. The Sports Medicine & Movement Lab has lost a key player, who will never be replaced. We are thankful for the wisdom, guidance, and encouragement Dr. Moore gave us. The Sports Medicine & Movement Laboratory and the Executive Board cherish the knowledge she gave; we look to emulate her leadership and compassion. Thank you, Dr. Jane B. Moore, for all that you gave!


To read more about Dr. Moore’s legacy, go to


Her obituary is available online at


Mary Beth McCullough wins College of Education award at 2021 Student Research Symposium


Mary Beth McCullough was the named the Undergraduate Oral Winner for the College of Education during the 2021 Student Research Symposium. Mary Beth won the honor for her oral presentation, “Stride Hip Internal Rotation is Associated with Pain in Collegiate Softball Pitchers.” The full abstract is below.

Stride Hip Internal Rotation is Associated with Pain in Collegiate Softball Pitchers

Regarding the windmill pitch used in softball, there is a paucity of data about the association between lower extremity (LE) kinematics and pain. The purpose of this study was to gain insight on differences in LE kinematics and clinical measures (CM) between collegiate softball pitchers who experience pain and those who do not. It was hypothesized that LE kinematics and CM would differ between pitchers with and without pain. 36 collegiate softball pitchers (22.3±1.7 yrs, 173.1±7.5 cm, 80.3±10.0 kg) performed three fastball pitches at regulation distance to a catcher. All participants answered a survey question on if they experience pain; those who said yes and no were separated into the pain or no-pain group, correspondingly. Kinematic data were obtained using an electromagnetic motion tracking system. Data were averaged across the 3 trials, and the max value across the entire pitching motion was analyzed. Bilateral hip internal (IR) and external rotation (ER) strength and range of motion (ROM) were collected using a handheld dynameter and digital inclinometer, respectively. Data were non-normally distributed therefore a Mann-Whitney U test was performed to determine any differences between pain and no-pain groups. Mann-Whitney test revealed a significant difference in stride hip IR max velocity during the entire pitching motion between those with and without pain (U=87.0, p=0.018). Specifically, those with pain had a greater amount of stride hip IR velocity than pitchers who did not have pain. Test also revealed a significant difference in stride hip IR ROM (U=97.0, p=0.042). Pain group had significantly more IR ROM. There were no other significant differences between groups for LE kinematics and CM. Higher IR velocity and IR ROM in the stride hip was associated with pain. It is unknown whether this difference is the result or cause of pain in pitchers. The results of the current study provide further evidence of the association between LE kinematics and pain.

Molly Cassidy wins University-Wide award at 2021 Student Research Symposium

Molly Cassidy.jpeg

Molly Cassidy won third place for University-Wide undergraduate poster presentation in the category for human sciences, social sciences, creative arts, nursing and humanities. Molly presented “Electromyographic analysis of shoulder rotation strength testing positions.” The full abstract is below.

Electromyographic analysis of shoulder rotation strength testing positions

BACKGROUND: Shoulder strength is essential for upper extremity function during overhand sports tasks. Clinicians perform shoulder rotational strength tests in various positions to examine shoulder function; however, shoulder function may vary between positions. The purpose of this study was to compare peak torque and muscle activation between two shoulder rotational strength testing positions.


METHODS: Eighteen participants (12 females, 6 males, age: 21.2±2.9 y, height: 170.7±8.3 cm, weight: 73.8±9.3 kg) performed isometric shoulder internal and external rotation strength tests using an isokinetic dynamometer in the following positions: (1) supine with arm abducted at 90° in the frontal plane, and (2) seated with arm abducted at 90° in the frontal plane and internally rotated 45°. The elbow was flexed 90° in both positions. Electromyographic data were collected on the posterior (PD) and anterior deltoid (AD). Maximum voluntary contraction (MVC) testing established baseline muscle activity to which subsequent trials were normalized. A 2 (position) x 2 (direction) repeated measures analysis of variance (RM·ANOVA) compared torque values between testing positions for external and internal rotation tests. A second 2 (muscle) x 2 (position) RM·ANOVA compared muscle activation (%MVC) between testing positions for AD and PD muscles.


RESULTS: The first RM∙ANOVA did not reveal a significant position by direction interaction. The second RM∙ANOVA did reveal a significant muscle by position interaction [F(1, 17) = 5.414, p = 0.033]. Post hoc analysis showed a difference between supine (mean: 25.2, SD: ± 3.3 %MVIC) and seated (mean: 32.2, SD: ± 3.8 %MVIC) positions for AD activation, where greater activation was measured in the seated position (p = 0.025).


CONCLUSIONS: Although peak torque differences were not observed between positions, clinicians should note that the AD may have a greater contribution to overall shoulder strength in the seated position versus supine.

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