module specification

ST5073 - Biomechanics of Human Movement and Dance Technique (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Biomechanics of Human Movement and Dance Technique
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 150
34 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
6 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
110 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Practical written report 1 (1500 words)
Unseen Examination 50%   Written examination (1 hour)
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Thursday Afternoon

Module summary

This module focuses on understanding the principles of human movement in terms of anatomy and biomechanics. In addition the module provides examples of the application of this knowledge to performance analysis, the development of sporting excellence, and injury prevention. A practical programme explores in more detail topics covered in the lectures with dance specific material.

The aims of this module are aligned with the qualification descriptors within the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications. This module aims to: provide an understanding of human movement and its control in terms of biomechanical and anatomical principles; illustrate how this knowledge may be applied to the analysis and development of dance performance, and the prevention and treatment of injuries; and, develop critical thinking skills of data analysis and interpretation of results. These aims have been aligned with the qualification descriptors published by the Quality Assurance Agency’s Framework for Higher Education Qualifications.


Movement of inanimate objects: linear and rotation movements and their explanation in terms of forces and torques LO1, LO2
Forces involved in selected athletic movements; movement description: principles and techniques LO1, LO2, LO3
Cell and tissue biomechanics related to sports performance LO2
Projectile motion, impact, elasticity; spin. LO1, LO2
Static posture and gait analysis:  description of relevant movements, muscles and forces; differences between walking and running. LO1, LO2 , LO3
Fluid mechanics: fluid resistance; drag; relative motion; flotation, particular reference to swimming. LO1
Practical applications of biomechanical to specific sports or dance: quantitative and qualitative analysis; use of video; identifying, evaluating and correcting faults in technique. LO1, LO2, LO3

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Knowledge of the subject matter will be communicated through lectures (28 hours) and tutorials (6 hours) along. Appropriate supporting materials will be provided for these class sessions, together with a wider range of web-based learning resources and other student-centred learning opportunities (110 hours). Practical classes (6 hours) will be used to further develop understanding of biomechanical principles and their application to practice in sports or dance, as well as expertise with data collection and evaluation. Self managed time and private study should be distributed over the whole semester and not left until the final weeks. Students’ study responsibilities are further articulated in the FLS Staff/Student Agreement which is available via the Faculty Web site.

Learning and teaching



Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
1. Give an account of underlying mechanical principles relevant to human movement and dance technique
2. Apply underlying mechanical principles and a knowledge of anatomy to the explanation of human movement and dance technique
3. Conduct a set of practical exercises relevant to dance science, and write a report of these in appropriate scientific style

Assessment strategy

1 x Practical written report, each 1500 words, showing understanding of biomechanical concepts and interpretation & recommendations based on experimental results (LO 1, 2, 3)

Examination: Based on lectures (LO 1, 2)




Core Text: 

Ackland, T.R., Elliott, B.C. and Bloomfield, J. (2009) Applied anatomy and biomechanics in Sport, 2nd edn. Leeds, UK: Human Kinetics. (ISBN 978-0-7360-6338-8)

Blazewich, A.J. (2010) Sports biomechanics: The basics: Optimising human performance, 2nd edn. London: A & C Black. (ISBN 978-1408127490)

Grimshaw, P. and Burden, A. (2006) BIOS Instant notes in sport and exercise biomechanics. Oxon, UK: Taylor & Francis. (ISBN 978-1859962848)

Hall, S. (2014) Basic biomechanics. New York: McGraw-Hill Higher Education. (ISBN 978-0-07-337644-8)

Payton, C. and Bartlett, R. (2007) Biomechanical evaluation of movement in sport and exercise: The British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences guide. Abingdon: Routledge. (ISBN 978-0415434690) [Core Text]
Other Texts:

Bartlett, R. (2007) Introduction to sports biomechanics, 2nd edn. London: Routledge. (ISBN 978-0415339940)

Bartlett, R. and Bussey, M. (2011) Sports Biomechanics: Reducing injury risk and improving sports performance, 2nd edn. London: Routledge. (ISBN 978-0415558389)

Clippinger, K. (2007) Dance anatomy and kinesiology. Chicago, IL: Human Kinetics. (ISBN 978-0-88011-531-5)

Enoka, R.M. (2008) Neuromechanics of human movement, 4th edn. Chicago, IL: Human Kinetics. (ISBN 978-0736066792)

Griffiths, I. W. (2006) Principles of Biomechanics and Motion Analysis. Philadelphia, Williams and Wilkins.

Hamill, J., and Knutzen, K.M. (2010) Biomechanical basis of human movement, 4th edn. Philadelphia, USA: Lippincott, Williams and Wilkins. (ISBN 978-1-4511-7730-5)

Kerr, A. (2010) Introductory biomechanics. London: Churchill-Livingstone. (ISBN 978-0443069444)

McGarry, T., O'Donoghue, P., and Sampaio, J. (2013) Routledge handbook of sports performance analysis.  Abingdon: Routledge.

O'Donoghue, P. (2014) An introduction to performance analysis of sport. Abingdon: Routledge.

Rosenbaum D.A. (2009) Human motor control, 2nd edn. London: Academic Press. (ISBN 978-0123742261)

Schmidt R.A. and Lee, T.D. (2011) Motor control and learning, 5th edn.  Chicago, IL: Human Kinetics. (ISBN 978-0736079617)

Schmidt R.A. and Wrisberg C.A. (2007) Motor learning and performance, 4th edn. Chicago, IL: Human Kinetics.  (ISBN 978-0736069649)