Integrative Musculoskeletal Research Lab

lab members outside the ALC at the U of M

Objectives | Areas of Focus | Overview of Current Research Projects | Primary Investigator | Graduate Students | Undergraduate Students | Lab Alumni | Collaborators | Publications | Funding Sources


Dr. Scribbans’ innovative research program aims to delineate how the nervous, musculoskeletal and fascial (neuromyofascial) systems interact to produce and influence movement and force production of the upper limb in healthy individuals and those with shoulder disorders. Importantly, knowledge regarding the function of and interaction between these systems will elucidate modifiable biomechanical risk factors and targets for preventative and rehabilitative strategies to reduce the incidence and duration of shoulder disorders. Dr. Scribbans’ program is unique, using an integrative approach to examine multiple systems at a variety of biological levels (molecular, cellular, tissue and organs to clinical studies) that is driven by her diverse research experience, education and clinical expertise.

Area(s) of Focus

Upper limb kinematics, scapular position and movement (e.g. scapular dyskinesis), motor variability (global muscle level and individual motor units), high-density surface electromyography (HD-sEMG), sex-differences in task performance and motor variability, anatomical factors contributing to differing task performance (e.g. fibre-type distribution, capillary density), low back pain, validation of clinical measures, neuromuscular adaptations to acute and chronic contractile activity.

Overview of Current Research Projects

  • Characterizing the role of the differing portions of the trapezius muscle during scapular elevation, retraction and depression at differing contraction intensities and repetitions,
  • Determining the distribution of muscle activation within the upper, middle and lower trapezius in individuals with and without scapular dyskinesis when the scapula is stationary and in motion and its relationship to scapular kinematics,
  • Determining the validity of the scapular dyskinesis test to measure differences in scapular kinematics,
  • Determining whole-muscle and individual motor unit strategies present within the sexes in response to fatiguing isometric contractions,
  • Characterize differences in fatigability within several upper limb muscles (trapezius, biceps, pectorals major, etc.) in response to different contraction intensities, intermittent and continuous contractions and different work-rest ratios,
  • Determine the temporal response of neuromuscular variables (whole-muscle and individual motor unit variability) following the cessation of an acute fatiguing task,
  • Examining the neuromuscular and kinematic response of the lumbar spine and paraspinal muscles in response to a prolonged standing task.

Primary Investigator

trisha scribbans

Dr. Trisha Scribbans

Dr. Trisha Scribbans' research focuses on understanding the neuromuscular mechanisms that control of force production and movement of the upper extremity, with a particular emphasis on the role of scapular position and movement in shoulder and scapulothoracic mechanics/pathomechanics. She is also interested in identifying novel treatment/prevention strategies to reduce the incidence and duration chronic shoulder pathologies, individual responses to rehabilitative exercise strategies, and the development of anatomical and educational models for the improvement of manual skill acquisition in novice health care providers.

Graduate Students

zach henderson

Zachariah Henderson, MSc (PhD Student)

Zachariah Henderson is completing his PhD in Applied Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba under the supervision of Dr. Trisha Scribbans and Dr. Cheryl Glazebrook. He obtained his Honours Bachelor of Kinesiology and Master of Science from Lakehead University, where he studied the effects of ankle bracing on physical performance and lower extremity biomechanics. In the future, he hopes to study the effects of long term cryotherapy on mechanisms of fatigue development in the upper extremity.

brad bergen

Brad Bergen, CAT(C) (M.Sc. Student)
Brad is in his first year of a Master of Science degree in Kinesiology. Brad graduated from the University of Manitoba in 2014 with a Bachelor of Kinesiology specializing in Athletic Therapy where he spent time working with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Manitoba Bison Basketball. He has worked as a Certified Athletic Therapist at Victory Therapy for the past 5 years, where he continues to work during his Masters degree. Brad has interests lie in exercise and the neuromuscular adaptations that occur from training, which will be the focus of his thesis.

amanda slagerman

Amanda Slagerman, B.Kin (M.Sc. Student)

Mark Dacany, CAT(C), RMT (M.Sc. Student)

Sarah Bohunicky, CAT(C) (M.Sc. Student)

Undergraduate Students

suzanna faulk

Susana Garcia (Field Work Placement Student, Fall 2018)

josee rochon

Josée Rochon (CIHR Summer Studentship Award winner [2018]; Directed Studies Student [Fall, 2018])
Josée Rochon is completing her Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology at the University of Manitoba. She currently works as a Research Assistant under the supervision of Dr. Trisha Scribbans in the field of musculoskeletal health.

Nate Simon

Kara Fulawka

Lucas Forsyth


Lab Alumni

  • Sabrina Rossi (UG Research Award winner [2017], PERS 4600 Directed Studies student) Currently in MSc, PT Program at the University of Manitoba
  • Alice Yip (Work-study Program employee) Currently in Respiratory Therapy Program, Thompson Rivers University
  • Harram Memom (Directed Studies Student [Fall, 2018])
  • Mia Nguyen
  • Oksana Sovinska
  • Urvashi Gupta



Gurd, B.J., Patel, J., Edgett, B.A., Scribbans, T.D., Quadrilatero, J. and Fischer, S.L., 2018. The efficacy of a whole body sprint-interval training intervention in an office setting: A feasibility study. Work, (Preprint), pp.1-7.  

Scribbans TD, Edgett BA, Bonafiglia JT, Boonstra K, Quadrilatero J, and Gurd BJ. (2017).  A systematic upregulation of nuclear and mitochondrial genes is not present in the initial post-exercise recovery period in human skeletal muscle. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism 999: 1-8.

Carson IN, Batson MJ, Tranmer JE, Scribbans TD, Gurd BJ and Pyke KE. (2017). Cardiovascular and cortisol reactivity to acute mental stress in female shift and non-shift workers: a pilot study. SAGE Open Nursing 3, 2377960817709181.

Bonafiglia JT, Edgett BA, Scribbans TD, Little JP, and Gurd BJ. (2017). Examining the Impact of Different Exercise Protocols on PGC-1α and FNDC5 mRNA Expression in Human Skeletal Muscle.The FASEB Journal 31 (1 Supplement), lb736-lb736

Scribbans TD, Vecsey S, Hankinson PB, Foster WS, and Gurd BJ. (2016). The effect of training intensity on VO2max in young healthy adults: A meta-regression and meta-analysis. International Journal of Exercise Science 9(2):230-247.

Edgett BA, Scribbans TD, Raleigh JP, Matusiak JB, Boonstra K, Simpson CA, Perry CG, Quadrilatero J, Gurd BJ. (2016). The impact of a 48-hour fast on SIRT1 and GCN5 in human skeletal muscle. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. May 5(ja).

Raleigh JP, Giles MD, Scribbans TD, Edgett BA, Sawula LJ, Bonafiglia JT, Graham RB, Gurd BJ. The impact of work-matched interval training on VO2peak and VO2 kinetics: diminishing returns with increasing intensity. (2016) Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. Feb 29(ja).

Gurd BJ, Giles MD, Bonafiglia JT, Raleigh JP, Boyd JC, Ma JK, Zelt JG, Scribbans TD. (2015) Incidence of nonresponse and individual patterns of response following sprint interval training. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. Nov 3;41(3):229-34.

Walsh JJ, Scribbans TD, Bentley RF, Kellawan JM, Gurd B, Tschakovsky ME. (2015) Neurotrophic growth factor responses to lower body resistance training in older adults. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism. Nov 18;41(3):315-23.

Joanisse S, McKay BR, Nederveen JP, Scribbans TD, Gurd BJ, Gillen JB, et al. (2015) Satellite cell activity, without expansion, following non-hypertrophic stimuli in humans. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol: ajpregu-00249.

Scribbans TD, Ma JK, Edgett BA, Vorobej KA, Mitchell AS, Zelt JG, et al. (2014). Resveratrol supplementation does not augment performance adaptations or fibre-type specific responses to high-intensity interval training in humans. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 39(11), 1305-1313.

Scribbans TD, Edgett BA, Vorobej K, Mitchell AS, Joanisse SD, Matusiak JBL, et al. (2014). Fibre-Specific Responses to Endurance and Low Volume High Intensity Interval Training: Striking Similarities in Acute and Chronic Adaptation. PLoS ONE 5;9(6):e98119. 

Scribbans TD, Berg K, Narazaki K, Janssen I, Gurd BJ. (2014). Heart rate during basketball game play and volleyball drills accurately predicts oxygen uptake and energy expenditure. J Sports Med Phys Fitness.  

Williams CB, Hughes MC, Edgett BA, Scribbans TD, Simpson CA, Perry CGR, et al. (2014). An Examination of Resveratrol's Mechanisms of Action in Human Tissue: Impact of a Single Dose In Vivo and Dose Responses in Skeletal Muscle Ex Vivo.

Moro C, editor. PLoS ONE 9(7):e102406.

Ma* JK, Scribbans* TD, Edgett BA, Colin Boyd J, Simpson CA, Little JP, et al. (2013). Extremely low-volume, high-intensity interval training improves exercise capacity and increases mitochondrial protein content in human skeletal muscle. OJMIP 03(04):202–10. *Authors contributed equally to this manuscript. 

McRae G, Payne A, Zelt JGE, Scribbans TD, Jung ME, Little JP, et al. (2012). Extremely low volume, whole-body aerobic-resistance training improves aerobic fitness and muscular endurance in females. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab.

Funding Sources