This study investigates the physical demands related to the execution of key tasks performed by military personnel, such as load carrying and manual handling.

The project is conducted at the Institute for Health and Sport (IHES) at Victoria University, in collaboration with the Defence Science and Technology Group, Melbourne.

Participants can receive a report describing the outcome measures of their performance and will be reimbursed with a gift card up to $100 value.

About the project

This study will investigate the physical demands military specific tasks place on the body. Injuries from such tasks places a burden on manpower and financial resources.

Results from this biomechanical research project will be used to develop injury risk management strategies for military personnel.

Participants may choose to take part in one or all three of the military task studies. The total testing time for each visit will be no more than 3 hours (9 hours total).

Part A – change in steady state

You will be requested to complete two protocols — a 'stop start protocol' and a 'change in direction protocol'.

You’ll be requested to walk around the laboratory at different speeds, while wearing an operationally relevant load of 25 kilograms, which represents a light marching order. This will be distributed between a weighted vest and a medium-sized backpack.

Part B & C – spine load & exosuit

You will perform common military tasks with and without the exosuit.

Participants will undergo the following assessments free of charge:

  • Vicon 3-dimensional motion capture
  • wearable Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) motion capture
  • force plate ground reaction force data collection
  • muscle activity data collection through surface electromyography (sEMG).
 A person wearing electrodes reaches down to pick up a heavy load as part of a study.


Inclusion criteria for this study:

  • participants must be between 18-40 years of age.

Additional information:

  • you will be requested to complete a medical questionnaire. This pre-exercise screening tool aims to identify individuals at high risk of sustaining an adverse event during exercise
  • if you have a recent injury that has a risk of reinjury, or will inhibit your ability to complete the manual handling tasks in a normal manner, you will be unable to take part in the study.

Expression of interest

If you are between the ages of 18-40 and would like to learn learn about your ability to carry out military specific tasks, please register your interest below.

All trials will be conducted at the Institute for Health and Sport (IHES), Victoria University, Footscray Park Campus.

Register your interest

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