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From The CriticsReviewer: Jonathan Dugas, PhD (UIC College of Applied Health Sciences)
Description: This is the third edition of a well-written, well-organized, and well-referenced book that would be a great resource in an undergraduate, or perhaps even a graduate, biomechanics course. The second edition was published in 2003.
Purpose: The goal is "to provide an introductory text in biomechanics that integrates basic anatomy, physics, calculus, and physiology for the study of human movement." The authors do a nice job of introducing some foundational concepts of human movement in part one. Follow that with an above average section on functional anatomy in part two. And, end with part three, which provides a mechanical analysis of human motion. Dividing the text in this manner, gave the authors an organized framework that allowed them to integrate anatomy, physics, calculus, and physiology, with an emphasis on the quantification of human movement.
Audience: The authors do not specify if the book is intended for undergraduate students or graduate students, but they note that it contains introductory material. The book is most appropriate for upper level undergraduate students who have completed courses in anatomy, physics, calculus, and maybe even a basic introduction to biomechanics. It also could be used at the graduate level for students who have not had a biomechanics course.
Features: This well-organized book reviews foundational concepts of human movement, discusses anatomy in relation to movement, and provides a quantitative analysis of human motion. First, the table of contents nicely outlines the three sections. Second, each section clearly lists the chapters in the section. Third, each chapter notes the main headings on the first page of the chapter. The glossaries after each chapter are unique and informative. The review questions are great tools for students and instructors alike. Furthermore, the authors have done a good job of citing the current literature and providing a succinct, yet helpful, summary at the end of each chapter. The only shortcomings are that the some of charts are small in font and the figures are not in color, which students often indicate enhances their understanding of the material.
Assessment: This is an excellent book. It goes beyond an entry-level biomechanics book, uses the current literature, offers applicable examples, and is well organized. As an instructor, I especially appreciate the organization of the book. The third edition is justified with its updated literature and additional supplemental items. It is easier to read, more evidence-based, and more applicable for our students than two similar books: Basic Biomechanics of the Musculoskeletal System, 3rd edition, Nordin and Frankel (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2001) and Basic Biomechanics, 5th edition (McGraw Hill, 2007).