Prosthetic Configuration Affects Running Biomechanics and Economy for Athletes with Transtibial Amputations

A Physiology Brownbag Seminar

Owen Beck, Ph. D.
Departments of Mechanical Engineering
School of Biological Sciences
Georgia Institute of

Athletes with transtibial amputations use running-specific prostheses to run. Running-specific prostheses are passive-elastic carbon-fiber devices that attach in-series to residual limbs. These devices are available across many different models, stiffness categories, and heights. Typically, prosthetic stiffness and height are set based on the respective manufacturer’s recommendation. This talk presents evidence that current prosthetic model, stiffness, and height recommendations do not optimize running biomechanics or economy for athletes with unilateral or bilateral transtibial amputations. Therefore, the distance-running performance of athletes with transtibial amputations can be further enhanced by updating prosthetic configuration recommendations.

About the Speaker
Owen Beck is a postdoc in Dr. Greg Sawicki’s Physiology of Wearable Robotics Lab. He has a B.S. in Kinesiology from Humboldt State University and a Ph.D. in Integrative Physiology from the University of Colorado Boulder. For his doctorate, Owen investigated how prosthetic configuration affects distance-running and sprinting performance for athletes with unilateral and bilateral transtibial amputations. At Georgia Tech, Owen’s research focuses on tuning assistive devices to biological leg characteristics, with the goal of augmenting locomotion performance.

Physiology Brownbag Seminars
The Physiology Group in the School of Biological Sciences hosts Brownbag Lunchtime Seminars twice a month on Wednesdays at noon in room 1253 of the Applied Physiology Building located at 555 14th Street NW, Atlanta, GA 30318. You are welcome to bring a lunch and join us as we ruminate with us on topics in Physiology! A full listing of seminars can be found at

Event Details


  • Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - 12:00pm

Room 1253, 555 14th Street NW

For More Information Contact

Greg Sawicki, Ph. D.