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Research Members

Kiyotaka KAMIBAYASHI

Kiyotaka KAMIBAYASHI
Associate Professor, Faculty of Health and Sports Science



Faculty of Health and Sports Science –Staff

Research Activities in the Space-DREAM Project

Humans can walk while maintaining an unstable standing posture with two legs. For walking, the regulation of the rhythmic activity in various muscles, especially the lower limb is required. These muscle activities are produced by inputs to motoneurons from higher centers such as the cerebral cortex and brain stem as well as neural circuits in the spinal cord and are regulated by information from sensory sensors. Among the sensory information, the load-related afferent information is considered to play an important role in modifying muscle activity during walking.
In space, the gravity is 3/8-G on Mars and 1/6-G on the Moon, compared to 1-G on Earth. Therefore, it is expected that the magnitude of loading and the associated sensory information during walking on Mars and the Moon would be quite different than on Earth. It will be an interesting research topic to clarify how the nervous system to produce walking movements is modify to adapt to changes in the gravitational environment. Using a special treadmill that can support body weight during walking by air pressure, we are currently studying changes in muscle activation patterns and spinal reflex excitability under body weight conditions similar to those on Mars and the Moon.