Research at the Division of Training and Movement Sciences is conducted in the field of sport sciences. The primary aims of our Division are to increase motor performance and to promote public health through physical activity. Our research and scientific priorities include diverse research areas (e.g., health promotion, athletic training, performance assessment) in different populations (e.g., children, young and old adults, and elite [youth] athletes) and diverse settings (e.g., recreational and high-performance sports). Research at the Division of Training and Movement Science is closely oriented to the aims and scope of the Faculty of Human Sciences (Link: http://www.uni-potsdam.de/en/humfak/scienceandresearch.html).
The main research aim is the investigation of muscular strength, power, and balance as well as the development, implementation, and evaluation of measures and procedures to increase motor performance and promote public health and physical activity in a broad population ranging from children to old adults and from untrained to elite athletes recruited from settings such as schools, sport clubs, and health centers. Targeted interventions to improve measures of balance and muscle strength, power, to optimize training, reduce injuries in different disciplines (e.g., soccer, judo) and to prevent falls in everyday life are the key components of our research projects.
Basic principles of our research projects are:
Fundamental research questions cover the fields of biology and physiology of human movements and include the implementation of theories on motor control and on training-induced adaptive processes. Among the primary research aims is the development of innovative experimental paradigms to examine motor-cognitive control and adaptive mechanisms during movements.
The complexity of our research area requires close collaborations between the Division of Training and Movement Sciences and adjacent/related departments and divisions of related research areas. Thus, we have established collaborations with the following partners: Division of Sports Education and Didactics, Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology, Division of Social and Preventive Medicine, Division of Cognitive Psychology, and Unit of Cognitive Sciences. Further, we have established collaborations with Olympic training centers, sports associations, and industrial partners. Consequently, both, the university internal as well as external partners enable us to realize various, interdisciplinary research projects in diverse settings and populations.
Training interventions and movements involve a diverse number of biological systems of the human locomotor system. The integration of several biological subsystems (e.g., muscles, ligaments, bones, and the central nervous system) requires a complex methodology to assess motor functions. The simultaneous applications of kinematic and kinetic assessment tools (i.e., external motor performance) and their internal representations (i.e., neural adaptation) are a core component of our research approach.