The Human Performance Laboratory at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital occupies 900 square feet in the Kmart St. Jude Life Building, located next to the After Completion of Therapy Clinic. It is staffed with five certified clinical exercise physiologists and one physical therapist. Physical function assessments are performed on patients ranging in age from 18 months to 70+ years, and patients range from newly diagnosed to 50+ year survivors of all types of childhood cancer. Approximately 50 patients participate in research testing each week.
The Human Performance Laboratory is a part of Epidemiology and Cancer Control.
Manager, Clinical Research Operations
B.S. Exercise Science, University of Kansas, 2006
M.S. Exercise, Sport, and Movement Sciences, University of Memphis, 2008
Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, National Strength and Conditioning Association, 2006
Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist, American College of Sports Medicine, 2010
Certified Clinical Research Professional, The Society of Clinical Research Associates, 2017
Senior Exercise Physiologist
B.S. Exercise Science, Central Connecticut State University, 2010
M.S. Kinesiology, University of Connecticut, 2012
Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist, American College of Sports Medicine, 2012
B.S. Exercise Science, Georgia Southern University, 2018
M.S. Kinesiology, Exercise Physiology Concentration, Western Kentucky University, 2020
B.S. Exercise Science, Central Michigan University, 2016
M.A. Exercise Physiology, Central Michigan University, 2018
Registered Clinical Exercise Physiologist, American College of Sports Medicine, 2018
B.S. Exercise Science, University of Louisville, 2017
M.S. Exercise Physiology, University of Louisville, 2019
Certified Clinical Exercise Physiologist, American College of Sports Medicine, 2020
B.S. Exercise Science, University of Central Missouri, 2018
M.S. Cancer Care, Exercise Oncology Concentration, Saint Francis University, 2020
Certified Cancer Exercise Trainer, American College of Sports Medicine/American Cancer Society, 2020
B.S. Kinesiology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 2013
DPT Doctor of Physical Therapy, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 2016
Board Certified Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist, American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties, 2020
The Human Performance Lab evaluates long term survivors of childhood cancer, ranging in age from 6 to 74 years old as a part of the St. Jude Life study. Leukemia, lymphoma, and brain tumors are the most common diagnoses, but many more survivors treated for other types of cancer are also assessed.
Pediatric patients newly diagnosed with brain tumors, leukemia, and lymphoma are evaluated for physical performance at various time points throughout treatment and early remission.
The Human Performance Lab is equipped with two MGC Diagnostics Ultima CPX metabolic stress test systems, complete with two treadmills, one adult cycle ergometer, one pediatric cycle ergometer, and one arm ergometer. Maximal graded exercise testing is performed to determine fitness levels (maximal oxygen uptake; peak VO2). Resting energy expenditure is also assessed for some research protocols.
Muscular strength and endurance are tested with two Biodex System 4 Pro Isokinetic Strength Testing Systems. The Biodex systems can accommodate patients of all ages and sizes, and measure isokinetic, isometric, and isotonic strength. Speeds of movement, resistance, or limb positioning are modified depending on the needs of the research protocol.
Balance is assessed with two Neurocom Equitest systems with Computerized Dynamic Posturography. The ability of the individual to maintain an upright position while responding to a variety of inputs to the eyes, the inner ear and the sensory organs of the legs and feet are tested. The System utilizes a dynamic 18"x18" dual force plate with rotation and translation capabilities to measure the vertical forces exerted by the patient's feet; and a moveable visual surround.
Hand held dynamometry, myometry, range of motion, flexibility, and sensory testing equipment are also available. Patients are also assessed for activities of daily living and fine and gross motor tasks.
Full time undergraduate and graduate internships are available in the Human Performance Lab in the spring, summer, and fall semesters for Exercise Science, Exercise Physiology, or Kinesiology majors (or equivalent). Internship hour requirements are dependent upon the requirements of the student’s university. Internships are full time (40 hours per week) and cannot be part time. You will learn how to perform physical function assessments on childhood cancer survivors and complete research projects.
In order to apply for an internship in the Human Performance Lab, the following criteria must be submitted to HPLab@stjude.org:
*Academic Eligibility Requirements:
(Meeting these requirements does not guarantee acceptance into program
Of note, if you are from outside the Memphis area, this internship is unpaid and you will be responsible for finding housing for the internship. We do have individuals that can assist in finding housing, but the cost will be covered by the student.
If you are accepted as an intern, it is required to carry a $1,000,000 liability insurance policy. The typical cost is $30-40 for coverage for one year.
One day shadowing opportunities are available for undergraduate or graduate students who otherwise do not meet requirements for an internship. Please submit the following to HPLab@stjude.org: