Jessica L. Joly, third year doctoral student in the physical therapy program, was nominated by faculty and selected by Provost Sharon L. Vasquez to present her research to the University of Hartford Board of Regents at the December, 2010 meeting.
Her work involves the study of the kinetic chain. In describing the kinetic chain, Joly sang the familiar lyrics: the foot bone's connected to the leg bone... the leg bone's connected to the thigh bone and so on. Continuing in a more serious vein, Joly explained that "movement that happens at the foot directly effects movement of the leg. For example, some people have low arches or are in a pronated posture while others have high arches and are in a supinated posture. Differences between foot types could account for pain up this kinetic chain resulting in low back pain." As a future physical therapist, Joly told her audience that she must look at the entire chain prior to treating a patient.
Her research took place over the past two years in the human performance research lab in Dana Hall. The lab contains state of the art equipment including a 3-dimensional motion analysis camera system to record movement. Kevin Ball, associate dean for graduate study and research in the College of Education, Nursing and Health Professions and John Leard, assistant professor of physical therapy guided her work.
Joly earned her BS in Movement Science at the University of Michigan. She moved to Connecticut in 2008 to begin the University of Hartford's DPT program. Her future goals are to return to her home state and work as a clinical practitioner in the University of Michigan's health system. She is certain that research will play a part in her future professional roles as well.