Chapter 3: Limb Mechanics (under construction)

Last updated Dec. 26 2015 by Francisco Valero-Cuevas


Limb mechanics involve limb kinematics, and the forces and torques that cause limb loading and motion. Mechanics can be both static and dynamic depending on whether motion is prevented or not, respectively. Studying limb motions that result from applied forces and torques falls within the realm of rigid-body dynamics, which is a specialized branch of mechanics. However, I will mostly consider the case of static mechanics because it suffices to illustrate and debate important concepts in neuromechanics. This chapter focuses on presenting some fundamental concepts of how limbs produce static forces.

Forum and commentary:

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Additional references and suggested reading:

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References in book:

  1. T. Yoshikawa, Foundations of Robotics: Analysis and Control (MIT Press, Cambridge, 1990)
  2. R.M. Murray, Z. Li, S.S. Sastry, A Mathematical Introduction to Robotic Manipulation (CRC, Boca Raton, 1994)
  3. B.Siciliano, O.Khatib, Springer Handbook of Robotics (Springer, Berlin, 2008)
  4. G.T. Yamaguchi, Dynamic Modelling of Musculoskeletal Motion: A Vectorized Approach for Biomechanical Analysis in Three Dimensions (Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston, 2001)
  5. T.R.Kane, D.A.Levinson, Dynamics,Theory and Applications (McGrawHill, NewYork, 1985)
  6. F.C. Moon, Applied Dynamics: with Applications to Multibody and Mechatronic Systems (Wiley, New York, 2008)
  7. G. Strang, Introduction to Linear Algebra (Wellesley Cambridge Press, Wellesley, 2003)
  8. F.J. Valero-Cuevas, A mathematical approach to the mechanical capabilities of limbs and fingers. Adv. Exp. Med. Biol. 629, 619–633 (2009)
  9. F.J. Valero-Cuevas, F.E. Zajac, C.G. Burgar, Large index-fingertip forces are produced by subject-independent patterns of muscle excitation. J. Biomech. 31, 693–703 (1998)


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© Francisco Valero-Cuevas 2015