University News

New Equipment Gives Kinesiology Students an Opportunity for Research

A new anti-gravity treadmill was recently acquired by the University’s Department of Kinesiology

A new anti-gravity treadmill recently acquired by the University’s Department of Kinesiology for its Human Performance Laboratory provides the department’s students and faculty with enhanced opportunities for teaching and research in areas such as athletic training and physical rehabilitation.

Currently, William Paterson is believed to be the only college or university in the area with the AlterG anti-gravity treadmill, which uses technology patented by NASA to reduce the effects of gravity on individuals who use the device.  The machine uses differential air pressure to unweight an individual; its special design allows one to train or rehabilitate an injury with less impact on the joints.

“This technology is starting to be utilized in many of the industries our students will be involved in when they graduate,” says Michael Figueroa, assistant professor of kinesiology and director of the graduate program in exercise and sport studies.  “Many of our students are also involved in research projects, allowing them to apply their knowledge to research that is cutting edge.”

One recent research project has focused on the physiological responses of subjects when jogging at 100 percent, 90 percent, and 80 percent of body weight.  In addition, two of the department’s graduate students are exploring how an athlete can use the treadmill to maintain cardiovascular conditioning and decrease the time for recovery after an injury.

“The AlterG expands on our teaching by comparing the effects of training with such a device compared to traditional forms of exercise,” Figueroa adds.  “Many of the student’s inquiries have and will continue to lead to new areas of research and investigation.”