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The Best Things I Read In November

The Best Things I've Read This Month
Welcome to my monthly update.
There are two sections: ‘What Have I Been Up To?’ and ‘What Have I Been Reading?
Here’s what I would like to share with you this month…

What Have I Been Up To?
Jump and sprint momentum: What factors affect the relationship between jump momentum and sprint momentum? Previous research has suggested that vertical jump take-off momentum should be used to predict sprint momentum in collision sport athletes. We simulated and varied the correlation between jump height and sprint velocity, as well as the inter-individual variation in body mass and jump height. You can read the full paper here, a Twitter thread summary here, or watch a 4 min video here.
Teaching Videos: I am trying to convert some of my biomechanics and research methods teaching into small summary videos for a wider audience. These will all be added to my YouTube channel, and the first three are available now. These cover ‘Gait cycle phases, events, and normalisation’, ‘How muscles work’, and ‘What is momentum?
The Science of Cricket: I am also hosting a series of online lectures on the science of cricket. Topics include biomechanics, skill acquisition, and factors related to injury risk. You can see a full schedule of lectures here, or check out the playlist so far. Each video will be added to the playlist, so you can check that or subscribe to the channel to stay updated.
Science of Cricket: Expert Lectures
Science of Cricket: Expert Lectures
What Have I Been Reading?
Now for the main part of the newsletter…
Logical writing flow: This article provides a useful step-by-step guide for creating logical flow when writing scientific articles, with examples throughout. For more scientific writing hints and tips, check out these free resources.
Principles of writing: Similarly, I enjoyed David Perell’s three principles of writing mini-essay: write from abundance (take notes), write from conversation (talk through your ideas), and write in public (publish ideas, encourage discussion, and reflect on feedback).
How we learn to use muscles: I really enjoyed reading this article by Gerald Loeb, and got a lot from it. The main discussion points are whether the musculoskeletal system is redundant or overcomplete, whether muscle synergies reduce the dimensionality of motor control, and what neural mechanisms are responsible for motor behavior.
Eccentric exercise and sarcomerogenesis: This editorial by Walter Herzog and Heiliane de Brito Fontana is an excellent (fairly short) read. The editorial discusses adaptations in the number and length of sarcomeres in muscle following eccentric exercise. I always enjoy reading or watching anything by Walter Herzog, and this piece is no exception.
Lumbar bone adaptation in cricketers: What technique factors are associated with the aetiology of lumbar bone mineral adaptation in adolescent cricket fast bowlers? This study aimed to answer that question, reporting associations with thoracolumbar and lumbopelvic motion, but not vertical ground reaction force independent of body mass.
IOC sports biomechanics textbook: I don’t claim to have read this cover to cover, but the IOC have made their ‘Biomechanics in Sport’ textbook freely available to download. Worth grabbing a copy before they change their mind!
Escape velocity: This Twitter thread explains the concept of escape velocity in physics, and uses it to teach some life lessons. If you’re a fellow maths / physics geek, you’ll enjoy the optional working out in here, but if not then you can hopefully still get something useful from the main text.
ISBS Newsletter and Videos: The recent ISBS newsletter (my first as VP Publications) contains 36 pages of content, including updates on conferences and grants, as well as student updates and the experiences of biomechanists at the Olympics and Paralympics in Tokyo. On a related note, we launched the ISBS video repository in the members area of the website. This includes all presentation videos from the 2021 conference, 2021 mid-year symposium (both for members only), 2020 conference, and Sports Biomechanics Lecture Series.
Is academic publishing broken? Whilst this is a podcast episode and not something I read, it’s worth a mention. This was one of the best podcast episodes I’ve listened to in a while. Grant Abt and Vanessa Yingling discuss the merits and challenges of the academic publishing system, and what can be done to improve it.
Outlook Calendar Tips: Another one that’s not technically a ‘read’, but I got a lot from this video series by Research Masterminds. The three short videos are great to help you get the most out of Outlook Calendar. There are so many functions that I wasn’t aware of and will be using from now on.
Thank You
That’s all for this month. If you found it useful, please forward this email or share this link with friends, colleagues, or on social media.
What Have You Read Recently?
If you’ve read anything particularly interesting or useful recently, please reply to this email and let me know. I read all of the replies and I’m always looking for good reading suggestions.
Take care, and thank you for reading.
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Stuart McErlain-Naylor
Stuart McErlain-Naylor @biomechstu

Each month I share the best things I read all month.

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