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Alicia Maria Gal

Phone:613-520-2600 x 2402

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Ottawa-Carleton Institute for Biomedical Engineering, Carleton University, Systems and Computer Engineering, Doctoral candidate in Biomaterials & Biomechanics – READi Trainee


I am a doctoral candidate and NSERC CREATE READi (research and education in accessibility, design and innovation) trainee in the Department of Systems and Computer Engineering, Carleton University. Upon graduation I will be one of the first three individuals nationwide to be certified in universal and inclusive design. I give back to the Carleton community as Chapter President, Science, and Engineering Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering (CU-WISE), teaching fitness on campus, and as the Ravens Varsity Soccer Biomechanics Coach.

Research Interests and societal interests

My research interests focus on the physics of body motion and how bone placement throughout a task affects task performance. Bone location changes how the body’s lever systems work in turn introducing deviation from peak performance in a cascading effect (movement is produced as a linked system). Specifically, I use technology such as motion capture, force plates, surface electromyography (sEMG), and inertial measurement units (IMUs) to investigate the skating motion in para ice hockey. By gaining sport-specific analytics such as speed, acceleration, balance, etc., we may then provide knowledge to improve performance. More importantly, due to the biomechanics of the skating motion in para ice hockey, improving performance also provides injury preventative knowledge/techniques.

Expectations as a QES Scholar during the Mobility Period

The QES program will be a life changing experience for me. I am both excited and anxious for my mobility period in Mzuzu, Malawi. I am fearless to the notion of loneliness as everyone I meet tells me how friendly society is, and how exciting I will be to the children. This makes the adventure that much more, as I will be leaving knowledge opposed to a physical item. I hope to expand the understanding of the FUNdamentals to body motion. I am particularly excited for my field work interacting directly with the immobile populations. Learning can be fun, especially when involving physical activity. By incorporating physical components to my workshops and lecture series I hope to provide maximal retention abilities for my fellow sports enthusiasts and academics.

The QES Project and Advancement of your Career

My proposed work supports Carleton University’s current drive as a leader in accessibility demonstrating the importance of READi. Through my mobility period interactions, I hope to create a network of people who embrace the READi vision. There are two ways to create a more mobile society: 1) physically, and 2) educationally. Expanding the understanding of mobility, and how the human body interacts with different environments is the corner stone to a more mobile society. Providing hands on experiences and training allows for this knowledge to be transferable. Those individuals with mobility issues have just become reachable and teachable, improving their quality of life and ability to be a contributing member in their community.