After completing his degree in Physics with Astrophysics at Leicester University, Matt obtained an MSc in Applied Geophysics from Birmingham University. He then started in the Biomechanics Lab at Birmingham University before moving to carry on his postgraduate studies in biomechanics at Penn State University in the USA where he graduated with a PhD in 1999.  Matt then started as a Lecturer at Loughborough University in 2000.

Matt has published over 70 peer reviewed academic journal papers, supervised 18 PhD students to completion, has secured external income of over £1 million as PI and over £2.25 million as CI, and given many invited presentations. 

His research has led to him being involved with dozens of television and radio programmes, including the Royal Institute Christmas Lectures and BBC's Horizon, and presenting his work at the Science Museum.

Whilst at Loughborough, as well as developing and teaching on a dozen different modules over the years, Matt developed the first MSc in Sports Biomechanics in the UK and ran it for five years.  He was then Programme Director for the Sport and Exercise Science BSc for six years, was in charge of Education for the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine East Midlands for five years, and was discipline lead for the Sports Biomechanics and Motor Control Learning and Teaching Group for five years.

Matt's sporting interests are the martial arts in which he has been training for 40+ years.

Matt's research interests are in developing a greater understanding of maximal volitional human performance during dynamic actions in sport and everyday living by studying the biomechanical, neuromuscular and neural factors that underpin such performance.  The key areas he has been working on are soft tissue motion during impacts, gross human response to impacts, maximal voluntary and stimulated muscular actions and their neural control.  These are all fundamental areas underlying performance and injury mechanisms in combat, contact and power-based sports, as well as being relevant to neuro-muscular performance in other dynamic events such as jumping, sprinting and weightlifting.  These have led naturally to further research developing in the area of motor control, specifically timing coordination limits and the control of balance, which are essential to dynamic human movement and recently concussion.

This research utilises: 3D motion measurement of intra-limb motion and whole body movements; surface electromyography and neuromuscular stimulation; iso-velocity torque measurements of strength and power; medical imaging; force and pressure measurements from human-surface interactions; and computer simulations.

He has also worked with over a dozen sports as a consultant on a wide range of projects to monitor and improve athlete performance and been an expert witness in major criminal cases regarding the biomechanics of injury causation and human movement. 

As well as being a reviewer for over 30 journals and publishers and having been on the conference and scientific committees of over a dozen international conferences, Matt has held a range of educational, editorial and grant reviewing panel positions.


  • Associate Editor, Journal of Applied Biomechanics
  • Board of Consulting Editors, Journal of Biomechanics
  • Programme co-chair and editor, Proceedings of the 10th International Symposium on Computer Science in Sport, Loughborough, UK, September, 2015

Grant Reviewing

  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
  • Medical Research Council
  • National Science Foundation, USA
  • Finnish Research Council of Biosciences, Health and Environment
  • Academy of Finland panel member
  • Leverhulme Trust


  • Contributor to The University of Western Australia’s secondary teacher’s program, SPICE
  • Contributor to CD in Edexcel A Level Science: AS Physics Students' Book, Pearson
  • Research Councils UK Science Learning Centre CPD courses

Featured publications

  • Voukelatos, D., Evangelidis, P.E., and Pain, M.T.G.  2022.  The hamstrings to quadriceps functional ratio expressed over the full angle-angular velocity range using a limited number of data points. Royal Society Open Science, 9,210693. DOI: 10.1098/rsos.210696.
  • Glendon, K., Blenkinsop, G., Belli, A., and Pain, M.  2021. Does Vestibular-Ocular-Motor (VOM) Impairment Affect Time to Return to Play, Symptom Severity, Neurocognition and Academic Ability in Acutely Concussed Student-Athletes?  Brain Injury. DOI: 10.1080/02699052.2021.1911001.
  • Furlong, LA.M, Voukelatos, D., Kong, P.W., and Pain, M.T.G.  2020. Changes in inertial parameters of the lower limb during the impact phase of dynamic tasks.  Journal of Biomechanics, 99, 109488. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2019.109488.
  • Infantolino, B.W., Forrester, S.E., Pain, M.T.G., and Challis, J.H.  2019. The influence of model parameters on model validation. Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, 22, 997-1008.  DOI: 10.1080/10255842.2019.1614173.
  • Voukelatos, D., Kirkland, M., and Pain, M.T.G., 2018. Training induced changes in quadriceps activation during maximal eccentric contractions. Journal of Biomechanics, 73, 66-72. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2018.03.025.
  • Blenkinsop, G. M., Pain, M. T. G., and Hiley, M. J., 2017. Balance control strategies during perturbed and unperturbed balance in standing and handstand. Royal Society Open Science 4:161018. DOI: 10.1098/rsos.161018.
  • Jessop, D.M. and Pain, M.T.G., 2016. Maximum velocities in flexion and extension actions for sport. Journal of Human Kinetics, 50, 37-44. DOI: 10.1515/hukin-2015-0139
  • Voukelatos, D., and Pain, M.T.G., 2015. Modelling suppressed muscle activation by means of an exponential sigmoid function: Validation and bounds. Journal of Biomechanics, 48(4), 712-715. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2015.01.009.
  • Pain, M.T.G., 2014. Considerations for Single and Double Leg Drop Jumps: Bilateral Deficit, Standardising Drop Height and Equalising Training Load. Journal of Applied Biomechanics, 30(6), 722-727. DOI: 10.1123/jab.2014-0035.
  • Pain, M.T.G., Young, F., Kim J.W., and Forrester, S.E., 2013.  The torque–velocity relationship in large human muscles: maximum voluntary versus electrically stimulated behaviour. Journal of Biomechanics, 46, 645-650. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2012.11.052.
  • Tsui, F., and Pain, M.T.G., 2012.  Utilising human performance criteria and computer simulation to design a martial arts kicking robot with increased biofidelity.  Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part P, Journal of Sports Engineering and Technology, 226, 244-252. DOI: 10.1177/1754337112439275.
  • Forrester, S.E., Yeadon, M.R., King, M.A., and Pain, M.T.G., 2011. Comparing different approaches for determining joint torque parameters from isovelocity dynamometer measurements.  Journal of Biomechanics, 44, 955-961. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2010.11.024.
  • Yeadon, M.R., King, M.A., Forrester, S.E., Caldwell G.E., and Pain, M.T.G., 2010.  The need for muscle co-contraction prior to a landing. Journal of Biomechanics, 43, 364-369. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2009.06.058.
  • Pain, M.T.G., and Forrester, S.E., 2009.  Predicting maximum eccentric strength from surface EMG measurements.  Journal of Biomechanics, 42, 1598-1603. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2009.04.037.