Principles of Biomechanics: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Principles of Biomechanics

1st Edition

By Ronald Huston

CRC Press

442 pages | 286 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2008-12-22
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Research and study in biomechanics has grown dramatically in recent years, to the extent that students, researchers, and practitioners in biomechanics now outnumber those working in the underlying discipline of mechanics itself. Filling a void in the current literature on this specialized niche, Principles of Biomechanics provides readers with a solid grasp of the fundamentals and the enabling procedures of this rapidly expanding field, placing a sharp focus on dynamic phenomena in the area of whole-body biomechanics.

Applies Biodynamic Models to Everyday Activities

Emphasizing biodynamic modeling and the analysis of human body models, the book begins with a review of gross human anatomy and a summary of basic terminology. It describes various methods of analysis, including elementary mathematics, elementary mechanics, and the fundamental concepts of the mechanics of materials. Later chapters discuss the modeling of biosystems, tissue biomechanics, biodynamics, kinematics, kinetics, and the inertial properties of human body models. The book concludes with a review of sample applications of biodynamic models in activities such as lifting, maneuvering in space, walking, and swimming, as well as crash victim simulation.

Uses simple language to convey complex principles

With numerous professionals in a range of areas entering this field daily, there is a pressing need for a book which captures for a wide audience the principles of biomechanics analysis. Readily accessible to those with only a basic background in engineering fundamentals, mathematics, and physics, this text enables readers to understand virtually all areas of human body dynamics ranging from simple movements to optimal motions to accident victim dynamics.

Table of Contents


Principal Areas of Biomechanics

Approach in This Book

Review of Human Anatomy and Some Basic Terminology

Gross (Whole-Body) Modeling

Position and Direction Terminology

Terminology for Common Movements

Skeletal Anatomy

Major Joints

Major Muscle Groups

Anthropometric Data

Methods of Analysis I: Review of Vectors, Dyadics, Matrices, and Determinants


Vector Algebra—Addition and Multiplication by Scalars

Vector Algebra—Multiplication of Vectors


Multiple Products of Vectors



Relationship of 3 X 3 Determinants, Permutation Symbols and Kronecker Delta Functions

Eigenvalues, Eigenvectors, and Principal Directions

Maximum and Minimum Eigenvalues and the Associated


Methods of Analysis II: Forces and Force Systems

Forces: Vector Representations

Moments of Forces

Moments of Forces About Lines

Systems of Forces

Special Force Systems

Principle of Action–Reaction

Methods of Analysis III: Mechanics of Materials

Concepts of Stress

Concepts of Strain

Principal Values of Stress and Strain

A Two-Dimensional Example—Mohr’s Circle

Elementary Stress–Strain Relations

General Stress–Strain (Constitutive) Relations

Equations of Equilibrium and Compatibility

Use of Curvilinear Coordinates

Review of Elementary Beam Theory

Thick Beams

Curved Beams

Singularity Functions

Elementary Illustrative Examples

Listing of Selected Beam Displacement and Bending Moment Results

Magnitude of Transverse Shear Stress

Torsion of Bars

Torsion of Members with Noncircular and Thin-Walled Cross Sections

Energy Methods

Methods of Analysis IV: Modeling of Biosystems

Multibody (Lumped Mass) Systems

Lower Body Arrays

Whole Body, Head/Neck, and Hand Models

Gross-Motion Modeling of Flexible Systems

Tissue Biomechanics

Hard and Soft Tissue


Bone Cells and Microstructure

Physical Properties of Bone

Bone Development (Wolff’s law)

Bone Failure (Fracture and Osteoporosis)

Muscle Tissue



Scalp, Skull, and Brain Tissue

Skin Tissue

Kinematical Preliminaries: Fundamental Equations

Points, Particles, and Bodies

Particle, Position, and Reference Frames

Particle Velocity

Particle Acceleration

Absolute and Relative Velocity and Acceleration

Vector Differentiation, Angular Velocity

Two Useful Kinematic Procedures

Configuration Graphs

Use of Configuration Graphs to Determine Angular Velocity

Application with Biosystems

Angular Acceleration

Transformation Matrix Derivatives

Relative Velocity and Acceleration of Two Points Fixed

on a Body

Singularities Occurring with Angular Velocity Components

and Orientation Angles

Rotation Dyadics

Euler Parameters

Euler Parameters and Angular Velocity

Inverse Relations between Angular Velocity

and Euler Parameters

Numerical Integration of Governing Dynamical Equations

Kinematic Preliminaries: Inertia Force Considerations

Applied Forces and Inertia Forces

Mass Center

Equivalent Inertia Force Systems

Human Body Inertia Properties

Second Moment Vectors, Moments and Products of Inertia

Inertia Dyadics

Sets of Particles

Body Segments

Parallel Axis Theorem

Eigenvalues of Inertia, Principal Directions

Eigenvalues of Inertia: Symmetrical Bodies

Application with Human Body Models

Kinematics of Human Body Models

Notation, Degrees of Freedom, and Coordinates

Angular Velocities

Generalized Coordinates

Partial Angular Velocities

Transformation Matrices—Recursive Formulation

Generalized Speeds

Angular Velocities and Generalized Speeds

Angular Acceleration

Mass Center Positions

Mass Center Velocities

Mass Center Accelerations

Summary—Human Body Model Kinematics

Kinetics of Human Body Models

Applied (Active) and Inertia (Passive) Forces

Generalized Forces

Generalized Applied (Active) Forces on a Human Body Model

Forces Exerted Across Articulating Joints

Contribution of Gravity (Weight) Forces to the Generalized

Active Forces

Generalized Inertia Forces

Dynamics of Human Body Models

Kane’s Equations

Generalized Forces for a Human Body Model

Dynamical Equations

Formulation for Numerical Solutions

Constraint Equations

Constraint Forces

Constrained System Dynamics

Determination of Orthogonal Complement Arrays


Numerical Methods

Governing Equations

Numerical Development of the Governing Equations

Outline of Numerical Procedures

Algorithm Accuracy and Efficiency

Simulations and Applications

Review of Human Modeling for Dynamic Simulation

A Human Body in Free-Space: A ‘‘Spacewalk’’

A Simple Weight Lift



Crash Victim Simulation I: Modeling

Crash Victim Simulation II: Vehicle Environment Modeling

Crash Victim Simulation III: Numerical Analysis

Burden Bearing—Waiter/Tray Simulations

Other Applications

Appendix A

Anthropometric Data Tables




About the Author

Huston\, Ronald

About the Series

Mechanical Engineering

A Series of Textbooks and Reference Books

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Forensic Science
MEDICAL / Biotechnology
SCIENCE / Mechanics / General