Victoria Neilson

Doctoral Candidate

Victoria obtained her Bachelors and then Masters degrees in Mechanical engineering in 2005. She then worked on dynamics and control systems designs for wind turbines and washing machines from 2005 – 2015. She worked for Mighty River Power in New Zealand and then University of Strathclyde in the UK, before joining Fisher and Paykel appliances in NZ. In 2016, Victoria decided to pursue a PhD in a multidisciplinary field of mechatronics and biomechanical engineering. She would like to understand how to best use technology to achieve sports injury prevention.

Victoria’s research aims to understand the motor synergy of a full body sports task within the framework of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury prevention. A randomised control trial will be conducted on recreational sports players learning a rugby sidestep technique aimed at ACL injury prevention. Augmented visual and verbal feedback will be provided during training. A motor synergy approach, the uncontrolled manifold hypothesis, will be used to analyse the motor control strategy adopted by the central nervous system (CNS) developed during the training. Results from this project will add more evidence for the effectiveness of using augmented feedback in ACL injury prevention; understanding of the motor control strategy learned by the CNS to perform a sports task when provided with verbal and visual feedback; and examine the possibility of using motor synergy approaches to design effective augmented feedback for motor learning.