Associate Professor Lythgo's research primarily focuses upon the biomechanical aspects of sport, exercise and physical activity in both pathological and non-pathological populations, and across the lifespan. He has conducted research on people recovering from stroke, joint replacement and amputation, and upon people, including children, dealing with movement dysfunction arising from conditions such as Dystonia, Parkinson’s disease, Muscular Sclerosis, Duchene’s disease, Cerebral Palsy, spasticity, spinal cord injury and Developmental Coordination Disorder. Another area of research focuses on gait dysfunction due to slow development, aging or pathology. It is well known, for example, that gait dysfunctions appear in older adults but there is no clear consensus as to when or why these behaviours emerge. His research and consultancy activities have also focused on improving athletic and sporting performance, reducing injury, developing devices to capture motion and for biofeedback in sport and exercise training, and developing and evaluating instrumentation to record physical activity. Recently, Associate Professor Lythgo assembled a reference database for the basic gait characteristics of Australian children and adults (n = 1,098). A major focus of this research is to better understand gait development in children and gait dysfunction in older adults.
Associate Professor Lythgo is a member of the International Biomechanics Society.
Projects and consultancies
Associate Professor Lythgo is currently working on a pressure socket casting project (PCAST) with Associate Professor Peter Lee (University of Melbourne) for amputees in Vietnam. This system produces good fitting lower limb sockets that are inexpensive and require little or no input from a senior prosthetist. Pressure casting socket methods have the potential, in conjunction with the use of low cost International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) polypropylene prosthetic components, to significantly reduce prosthesis cost and increase fitting opportunities for lower limb amputees in developing countries such as Vietnam. This project is funded by the CASS Foundation ant the Richmond Rotary Club (Victoria, Australia). He is also working with Professor Franz Fuss (RMIT University) on smart ball technology (instrumented balls) and Dr Florian Mueller (RMIT University) on exertion games.
Scholarship and the advancement of knowledge and its applications have been achieved through 34 peer-reviewed journal papers (international), 53 conference/symposium publications (international/national), 77 conference presentations (international/national), and 27 seminar/workshop presentations (e.g. CCRE in Clinical Gait Analysis and Gait Rehabilitation, Tennis Coaches Australia). In 2004, Associate Professor Lythgo published a book in the field of Biomechanics. This text was used extensively in the Bachelor of Exercise Science Degree at the Australian Catholic University and its content was used in an “in-house” publication for the Movement Analysis unit taught at Deakin University from 1997. He has been an expert witness for significant court proceedings on ten occasions working in conjunction with Perform Enhance Pty Ltd. Other examples include the provision of consultancy work for Con Hatzilas’s “zygo” soccer boot (seen on the ABC New Inventors show). This investigation compared the performance (accuracy and curvature) of three soccer boot designs on a kick for goal around a wall representative of a group of defenders. Consultancy work for Spinal Bed Support Systems Pty Ltd has tested their product claims. This work is continuing and may lead to a standardised bed test protocol for the Bedding Industry.
- Honorary Senior Research Fellow, University of Melbourne
- Honorary Research Fellow, Australian Catholic University
Associate Professor Lythgo delivers courses in the fields of Biomechanics, Kinesiology, Strength and Conditioning within the Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise and Sport Science) Degree Program. He also supervises Honours students and HDR students and is Program Coordinator for the Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise and Sport Science).
- PhD, Victoria University (Australia), 2003.
- MAppSci, Victoria University (Australia), 1995.
- Grad Dip Ex & Sport Sci, Victoria University (Australia), 1992.
- BEd, Deakin University (Australia), formerly Victoria College Rusden Campus, 1983.
At the Australian Catholic University (1989-04), Associate Professor Lythgo played a major role in the development and delivery of units within the Bachelor of Education (Primary and Secondary), Diploma of Education (Secondary), Bachelor of Applied Science (Human Movement), Bachelor of Health Science (Human Movement), Bachelor of Exercise Science, Honours, Masters and Doctoral Degree Programs. His work in Exercise Science involved six levels of teaching; 1st, 2nd and 3rd year levels of the Bachelor of Exercise Science, Honours, Masters and Doctoral levels. He developed and taught units in Biomechanics, Motor Control, Skill Acquisition, Data Analysis, Experimental Design and Statistics (Honours and post-graduate), Research Methods (Honours and post-graduate), Human Physiology, Exercise and Nutrition, General Principles and Practices of Teaching, Outdoor Education, Recreation and Physical Education. In 1997, he was invited by the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences at Deakin University to write the lecture and laboratory content for a core unit (HMS202 Movement Analysis) within the Bachelor of Health Science (Human Movement) Degree Program and taught that unit (sessional lecturer) for Deakin University from 1997 to 1999. From 2004 to 2010, Associate Professor Lythgo was a Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Director of the Rehabilitation Sciences Research Centre (University of Melbourne) based at the Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Hospital.
- Ilett, P.,Lythgo, N.,Martin, C.,Brock, K. (2016). Balance and gait in people with multiple sclerosis: A comparison with healthy controls and the immediate change after an intervention based on the bobath concept In: Physiotherapy Research International, 21, 91 - 101
- Wahid, F.,Begg, R.,Lythgo, N.,Hass, C.,Halgamuge, S.,Ackland, D. (2016). A multiple regression approach to normalization of spatiotemporal gait features In: Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 32, 128 - 139
- Said, C.,Galea, M.,Lythgo, N. (2014). Obstacle crossing following stroke improves over one month when the unaffected limb leads, but not when the affected limb leads In: Gait and Posture, 39, 213 - 217
- Lee, P.,Lythgo, N.,Laing, S.,Lavranos, J.,Thanh, N. (2014). 10Pressure casting technique for transtibial prosthetic socket fit in developing countries In: Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development (JRRD), 51, 101 - 110
- Xanthos, P.,Lythgo, N.,Gordon, B.,Benson, A. (2013). The effect of whole-body vibration as a recovery technique on running kinematics and jumping performance following eccentric exercise to induce delayed-onset muscle soreness In: Sports Technology, 6, 112 - 121
- Said, C.,Galea, M.,Lythgo, N. (2013). People with stroke who fail an obstacle crossing task have a higher incidence of falls and utilise different gait patterns compared with people who pass the task In: Physical Therapy, 93, 334 - 344
- Phan, P.,Blennerhassett, J.,Lythgo, N.,Dite, W.,Morris, M. (2013). Over-ground walking on level and sloped surfaces in people with stroke compared to healthy matched adults In: Disability and Rehabilitation, 35, 1302 - 1307
- Lythgo, N.,Benson, A.,Gordon, B. (2012). Accuracy of the positional activity logger#2 (PAL2) to identify human posture and movement In: 30 International Conference on Biomechanics in Sports (2012), Melbourne, Australia, 2-6 July, 2012
- Edbrooke, L.,Lythgo, N.,Goldsworthy, U.,Denehy, L. (2012). Can an accelerometer-based monitor be used to accurately assess physical activity in a population of survivors of critical illness? In: Global Journal of Health Science, 4, 98 - 107
- Lythgo, N.,Cofre Lizama, L. (2012). Relationship between ankle plantar flexor power and EMG muscle activity during gait In: ISBS 2012 International Society of Biomechanics in Sports, Melbourne, Australia, 2-6th July, 2012
2 PhD Current Supervisions