Research spotlight: Vassilios Vardaxis

September 1, 2008 —

Vassilios G. Vardaxis, Ph.D., is an associate professor at Des Moines University in the doctor of physical therapy program specializing in human biomechanics and gait analysis.

His interest in human movement studies started as a young athlete back in Greece, he started his research career in sports biomechanics at McGill University in Montreal Canada studying the differences in sprinting technique between individuals of national and international ability level. Recently Vardaxis’ research is focusing in Clinical and Rehabilitation Biomechanics in collaboration with local hospitals (Mercy and Iowa Orthopaedic Center), the Des Moines University Clinics (Physical Therapy and Foot and Ankle Institute) and industry (Allsteel, Inc). Vardaxis is director of the Human Performance Laboratory (HPL), director of research for the College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery and adjunct professor with the anatomy department of Des Moines University. Dr. Vardaxis is on the executive committee of the Gait and Clinical Movement Analysis Society (GCMAS).

Facts about Dr. Vardaxis:

  • FiliaHometown: A small village named “Filia” on the “Lesvos” island of Greece.
  • Education:
    Ph.D.
    McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada 1996
    Concentration: Kinesiology, Biomechanics of Human Movement 
    Dissertation: “Learning Adaptations in Performance Production Measures of Novel Multijoint Tasks

    M.A.
    McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada 1988
    Concentration: Kinesiology, Biomechanics of Sports 
    Thesis: “The mechanical power analysis of the lower limb action during the recovery phase of the

    B.Sc.
    University of Athens, Athens, Greece 1981
    Concentration: science in physical education

  • Hobbies: Writing computer code, mind challenging games and gardening vegetables
  • My favorite color is: Green
  • Dr. Vardaxis’ thing to eat is: Greek food, extra strong cheddar cheese, and nice all grain bread

Current research projects:

  • Differences in the short and long term rehabilitation between two commonly used total knee replacement surgical procedures
  • The “Des Moines University Foot Model” a dynamic biomechanical paradigm shift in the foot mobility/compliance evaluation
  • Early identification of individuals with predisposition to falls

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