Rosalind L. Heckman, PT, DPT, PhD
School of Pharmacy and Health Professions
- Physical Therapy
- Assistant Professor
- Health Conditions for the Physical Therapist
- Integrated Laboratory V
- Heckman RL, Ludvig D, Perreault EJ. Motor planning associated with voluntary and involuntary movements occurs equally fast. Program No. 401.21. 2018 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. San Diego, CA: Society for Neuroscience, 2018. Online, 2018
Research and Scholarship Interests
- My long-term objective is to improve the preparation and performance of whole-body movements in indivduals impacted by neurological injury or disease.
One focus of my research is understanding the role of motor planning on movement impairments observed following a neurological injury, especially a stroke.
Another focus of my research is understanding how movement quality matters in the performance of daily tasks, like standing, sitting, getting up from a chair and reaching, even in the presence of impairments due to neurological conditions or typical aging processes. This research aims to address the biomechanical and neural factors that contribute to the reliance on assistive devices and limitations due to musculoskeletal pain that I have seen clinically in these populations.
Current Research Projects
- My current research focus is investigating the impact of a stroke on the preparation of reaching movements. We use a startling acoustic stimulus to evoke the involuntary release of a prepared motor plan which allows us to differentiate impairments in motor planning from impairments in movement initiation. In order to investigate the acute impact of stroke on reaching movements, my laboratory is developing a cost-effective, portable research setup to collect kinematic and electrophysiological data in an inpatient rehabilitation hospital.