Personal profile

Personal information

  • Full professor of Biomechanics
  • Head of the department of Human Movement Sciences, Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences, VU Amsterdam
  • Head of the Neuromechanics section


My research group concentrates on the effects of ageing, musculoskeletal and neurological disorders on human movement with as main focus the stability of posture and gait. Our goal is to contribute to prevention, treatment and rehabilitation with respect to musculoskeletal and movement disorders, by increasing our understanding of movement-related causes and consequences of these disorders and related impairments.

We use observational and experimental approaches to unravel the interplay between organismic, task-related, and environmental constraints as co-determinants of motor behavior. We have established a team, including national and international external collaborators, with a broad range of expertise and skills, to tackle these problems from a multi-discpiplinary perspective.

We aim to translate fundamental insights into clinically applicable procedures and to develop measurement tools that can be used outside the laboratory context. We collaborate with applied researchers, epidemiologists and biomedical industry, to achieve translation of our results to practice, and highly value contacts with practice. 



  • 2022 k€ 1600 JPND project Steps against the burden of Parkinosn’s Disease.
  • 2022 k€ 280 from TNO for PhD project on effects of impact loading on the spine.
  • 2020 k€ 40 NWO-TTW: Run event guide. Take-off grant for start-up.
  • 2020 k€ 25 ZonMW: Serious-gaming in rehabilitation of post-Covid-19 patients.
  • 2020 k€ 250 “Heijnestichting” Effects of sttretching in patients with contractures.
  • 2019 k€ 35 ILE/ECCO: biomechanical testing of shoe designs
  • 2019 k€ 100 EU/Eurobench: benchmarking gait stability
  • 2018, k€ 200 TNO: trunk exoskeletons.
  • 2018, k€ 7 Mainstay medical: Reliability and responsivity of parameters quantifying changes in trunk control with low-back pain.
  • 2018, k€ 164 NWO: PhD project of Meta Wildenbeest: Motor learning and low-back pain.
  • 2018, k€ 164 NWO: PhD project of Florian Abu Bakar: Movement variability in low-back pain.
  • 2018, k€ 1000 STW Wearable robotics: trunk exoskeletons
  • 2017, k€ 164 NWO: PhD project of Mohamed el Hadouchi: Power training in the elderly.
  • 2017, k€ 300 EU: ITN, Keep Control: Balance training in older adults
  • 2016 EU Horizon 2020 grant: PreventIT (co-PI)
  • 2015 EU Horizon 2020 grant: SPEXOR
  • 2013 STW / Symbionics grant: Co-adaptive support of trunk and head in relation to arm movements (Co-PI)
  • 2010 EU Erasmus Mundus grant: MOVE-AGE 

Prizes and Awards

2016: co-winner of the 2015 IEA/Liberty Mutual Medal, awarded by the  International Ergonomics Association.

Ancillary activities

  • Heliomare Research and Development | Wijk aan Zee | Adviseur | 2017-07-01 - present
  • Frontiers | Lausanne | Specialty Chief Editor of Biomechanics and Control of Human Movement | 2019-01-01 - present
  • MSG netwerk | Amsterdam | Adviseur | 2021-09-01 - present
  • PeerJ | San Diego | Editor | 2021-10-01 - present

Ancillary activities are updated daily

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy


  • QM Human anatomy
  • biomechanics
  • QP Physiology
  • motor control


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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