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Human Performance Biopsychology Laboratory

Studying the Neural and Biopshychological Basis of Human Performance 

Men participating in a running race

Welcome to the Human Performance Biopsychology Laboratory. The laboratory is located in the Department of Kinesiology within the University of Maryland College Park School of Public Health.

Department: Kinesiology
Room Number: 2302
Director: Bradley D. Hatfield

Office Phone Number: (301) 405-2485
Email: bhatfiel@umd.edu

The Human Performance Biopsychology Laboratory studies the neural and biopsychological basis of elite human performance. More specifically, we examine the brain dynamics of performers from a neurocognitive, affective and psychomotor perspective. Much of our work centers around the concept of psychomotor efficiency and utilizes various psychophysiological measures to further our understanding of high-level cognitive-motor performance. 

Specific areas of interest include cognitive/mental workload, mental stress and resilience, mental preparation, practice methodologies, biofeedback, mindfulness, sleep, and team dynamics. The laboratory is equipped for testing and analyzing human performance with electroencephalography (EEG), electromyography (EMG), eye-tracking, motion analysis, and dynamometry.

We are very proud of our collaborations with:

  • Army Research Laboratory Aberdeen Proving Grounds
  • Auburn University, School of Kinesiology 
  • Brain and Behavior Initiative
  • Defense Science Organization, Singapore
  • Department of Aerospace Engineering, Vertical Lift Research Center of Excellence(AGRC), University of Maryland, College Park 
  • Institute of Systems Research, A. James Clark School of Engineering, University of Maryland, College Park
  • Lockheed Martin Corporation
  • National Taiwan Normal Univeristy, Department of Physical Education 
  • Program in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science, University of Maryland, University of Maryland, College Park
  • Reserve Officers Training Corps University of Maryland, College Park 
  • Shanghai University of Sport
  • The School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies, University of Maryland, College Park 
  • The University of Florida, Department of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology 
  • The University of Maryland Athletic Department
  • The United States Military Academy West Point
  • The United States Naval Academy
  • United States Department of Defense
  • Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niteroi, Brazil
  • University of Maryland at Baltimore Medical School
  • University of Ulsan, School of Sport and Exercise Science, South Korea
  • Veteran's Administration Hospital Baltimore and Washington 
  • Walter Reed National Military Medical Center

Faculty

Bradley D. Hatfield, faculty member of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Bradley D. Hatfield 
CV/Resume

Dr. Hatfield is Professor and Chair of the Department of Kinesiology and Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland, College Park with adjunct appointments in the Neuroscience and Cognitive Sciences (NACS) as well as the Center on Aging and a secondary appointment in the School of Medicine (Department of Epidemiology and Public Health). He is a Fellow and President-elect of the National Academy of Kinesiology, and Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine, the Research Consortium of the American Alliance of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (AAHPERD), and he is a charter Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology (AAASP).  His current research is focused on 1) the assessment of cognitive load based on cerebral cortical dynamics during motor performance (funded by Lockheed-Martin Corporation) and 2) the role of physical activity and genetics in mental health. 

Rodolphe Gentili, faculty member of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Rodolphe Gentili

Dr. Gentili is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Program in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science (NACS), Maryland Robotics Center. The central theme of Dr. Gentili's research is to understand the brain processes underlying human motor behavior by employing, experimental cognitive-motor neuroscience, computational modeling and robotics-based approaches. Dr. Gentili uses electroencephalography (EEG), functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), kinematics, dynamics, electromyography (EMG), computational modeling and robotics to examine the brain processes underlying human cognitive-motor adaptation, learning and performance. 

 

 

Hyuk Oh, alumnus of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Hyuk Oh Ph.D. 
CV/Resume

Hyuk has a background in computer science and computational neuroscience at the University of Southern California and then at the University of Maryland College Park. His research focuses on developing neurally inspired network models to inform the cognitive-motor behavior in human as well as on neuroimaging data processing.   

 

Li-Chuan Lo Ph.D. 
CV/Resume

Li-Chuan is recently graduated with a doctoral degree Kinesiology from the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park. She is a collaborative human behavioral researcher with a background in education psychology and training is psychophysiology. She has over 10 years of experience conducting observational experiments whose focus was to investigate the effect of stress on human attention and cognitive motor performance. She has served as a project manager and team leader executing data collection and analyses. 

Yue Du, alumnus of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Yue Du Ph.D. (Post-Doctoral Scholar) 
CV/Resume

DY is recently graduated with a doctoral degree in Kinesiology from the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park. He is currently a post-doc co-supervised with Dr. Jane Clark and Dr. Bradley Hatfield. His research is focused on how distinct learning processes interactively act during motor sequence learning and their functional roles in learning and memory that operate across different timescales (i.e., consolidation, retention and generalization). His long-term goal is to understand motor learning as well as its computational, cognitive, and neural underpinnings and use these motor learning principles to unravel the processes underlying the age-related development of motor learning. 

Graduate Students

Kyle Jaquess, doctoral student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Kyle Jaquess M.A. (Ph.D. Student) 
CV/Resume

Kyle is currently a doctoral student in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. His research primarily focuses on the cognitive and neural mechanisms underlying the optimal learning state, based upon the challenge point framework which can elucidate details regarding the effective learning of cognitive-motor skills and to further the fields of kinesiology, psychology, cognitive-neuroscience, and ergonomics. Constructs of interest include expertise, engagement, self-control, learning and memory, mental workload, and the optimal challenge point.

Bradley Ritland, doctoral student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Bradley Ritland DPT, OCS (Ph.D. Student) 
CV/Resume

Bradley, is currently a doctoral student in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. His research focuses primarily on how sleep levels impact human performance on (cognitive, psychomotor, and physical tasks). He is currently investigating how a short-term sleep extension intervention may impact/enhance performance on a cognitive and motor test battery. 

 

Drew Ginsberg, doctoral student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Drew Ginsberg MAT (Ph.D. Student) 
CV/Resume

Drew is currently a doctoral student in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. His research primarily focuses on understanding mental preparation from a psychophysiological perspective. He seeks to identify mechanisms explaining the mental preparation (psyching) force production relationship by combining neurophysiological, physiological, psychological and biomechanical measures using electroencephalography (EEG), electromyography (EMG), and isokinetic dynamometer to examine this relationship. 

 

 

Calvin Lu, graduate student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Calvin Lu (MA Student) 
CV/Resume

Calvin in currently a masters student in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. His research primarily focuses on how deep diaphragmatic breathing is able to alter autonomic and central nervous system activities. And its ability to improve human performance. Along with the possibility of utilizing deep diaphragmatic breathing as a treatment or rehabilitation technique.

 

Steve Kahl, doctoral student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Steve Kahl M.S. (Ph.D. Student) 
CV/Resume

Steve is currently a doctoral student in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park pursuing a degree in Kinesiology. His research primarily focuses on analyzing the connection between sleep and human performance from both a physical and mental perspective. He seeks to investigate the decision making the process of the elite performer under physical and mental load. 

 

Visiting Faculty 

Yingzhi Lu, visiting professor from Shangai University of Sport

Yingzhi Lu Ph.D. 
CV/Resume

Yingzhi is a visiting professor from Shanghai University of Sport. Her primary research focuses on two aspects. One is the cognitive processing of highly experienced athletes (such as prediction, decision-making, etc.), and another is the motor performance and brain activities with different emotions (negative vs. positive; fear vs. disgust, etc.). To address these issues, the event-related potentials (ERPs), techniques of electroencephalography (EEG), and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) were used in her research.

Mingjung Woo Ph.D. 
CV/Resume

Mingjung is a visiting professor from the School of Exercise and Sport Science University of Ulsan, South Korea. Her reserach is focused around exercise, gene and cognition in the developing brain. In addition her research is centered on the psychophysical aspect of exercise and sport with a focus on the role of neurofeedback training for peak performance. Techniques she utilizes includes electroencephalography (EEG) and event-related potentials (ERP's). 

Undergraduate Students 

Eric Elue, student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Eric Elue

Eric is currently a sophomore undergraduate kinesiology student in the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland College Park. He hopes to attend medical school and pursue a career in medical research. 

 

 

 

 

Josh Teso, student of the School of Public Health at the University of Maryland

Josh Teso

Josh is currently an undergraduate rising senior at the University of California Santa Cruz. From his Intensive Psychology degree he hopes to attend a cognitive psychology Phd program. 

Summer 2018 

Dissertation Defense 
Kyle Jaquess successfully defended his dissertation. Congrats Dr. Jaquess. 

Summer 2018 

Dissertation Defense 
Bradley Ritland successfully defended his dissertation. Congrats Dr. Ritland. 

Summer 2018

New Student
Welcome to Josh Teso (University of California, Santa Cruz) as he joins the lab as an undergraduate student.

Spring 2018

Award
Calvin Lu was awarded the Jacob K. Goldhaber Travel Grant. 

Spring 2018

Award
Kyle Jaquess was awarded The James H. Humphrey Graduate Student Published Research Award for his article titled: Empirical Evidence for the Relationship Between Cognitive Workload and Attentional Reserve. 

Spring 2018

Presentation
Dr. Hatfield gave The 2018 Bernard B. Ramsey Lecture Series Lecture produced by the Department of Kinesiology in the College of Education at The University of Georgia titled: The Brain and Mind of the Elite Performer: Efficient, Refined, and Resilient to Stress.

Spring 2018

Presentation
Drew Ginsberg presented at The Sixth Annual Public Health Research @ Maryland Conference titled: The Effect of Mental Preparation on Voluntary Torque Production and Cortico-Cortical Communication. 

Spring 2018

Presentation
Calvin Lu presented at The Sixth Annual Public Health Research @ Maryland Conference titled: Indexing Attentional Focus: A Critical Neural Element of Athletic Performance.

Fall 2017 

Award 
Congratulations to Bradley Ritland who was awarded the Department of Kinesiology graduate student grant program, Graduate Research Initiative Project (GRIP) to assist in funding his dissertation project. 

Fall 2017 

Presentation 
Kyle Jaquess presented at the Mid-Atlantic Region Conference of the American College of Sports Medicine in Harrisburg, PA titled: Memory Systems Engagement as a Potential Neurocognitive Mechanism Underlying the Effectiveness of Self-Regulated Practice.

Fall 2017 

Presentation 
Eric Elue presented at the Mid-Atlantic Region Conference of the American College of Sports Medicine in Harrisburg, PA titled: Psyching Effects on Voluntary Torque Production and Cortico-Cortical Communication using EEG. 

Fall 2017 

Presentation 
Calvin Lu presented at the Mid-Atlantic Region Conference of the American College of Sports Medicine in Harrisburg, PA titled: Indexing Attentional Focus: A Critical Neural Element of Athletic Performance.

Fall 2017 

Presentation 
Drew Ginsberg presented at the Mid-Atlantic Region Conference of the American College of Sports Medicine in Harrisburg, PA titled: The Effect of Mental Preparation on Voluntary Torque Production and Cortico-Cortical Communication. 

Fall 2017

Presentation 
Kyle Jaquess gave a presentation at Neuroscience 2017, in Washington D.C. titled: The Relationship Between Cognitive Workload and Attentional Reserve: An empirical investigation. 

Summer 2017

Job 
Visiting Student Yingzhi Lu was named an assistant professor at Shanghai University of Sport. Congratulations to the new professor! 

Summer 2017 

New Student 
Welcome to Eric Elue as he joins the lab as an undergraduate student.

Summer 2017

Fellowship 
Drew Ginsberg received the Graduate School Summer Research Fellowship which allowed him the opportunity to concentrate fully on scholarly activities and research. Congratulations Drew! 

Summer 2017 

Presentation 
Kyle Jaquess presented at the North American Society for Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity in San Diego, CA titled: Changes in Mental Workload and Motor Performance During the Learning of a Novel Cognitive-Motor Task Over Practice Sessions. 

Spring 2017 

Visiting Professor 
Dr. Mingjung Woo from the University of Ulsan, South Korea joined the lab as a visiting professor.

Spring 2017

Promotion 
Congratulations to Dr. Hyuk Oh as he was named a Research Assistant Professor within the Kinesiology Department, School of Public Health University of Maryland College Park. 

Spring 2017 

Grant 
Dr. Hatfield is awarded a grant from the Department of Defense: Army-Aviation Applied Technology Directorate. Title: Influence of Brain Processes on Cognitive Workload under Varying Levels of Challenge in a Degraded Visual Environment During Helicoptor Flight

Spring 2017

Dissertation Defense 
Yingzhi Lu successfully defended her dissertation. Congratulations Dr. YZ!