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Elizabeth Russell Esposito

Faculty Photo

Affiliate Assistant Professor
Mechanical Engineering


  • Ph.D. in Biomechanics and Motor Control, University of Massachusetts, 2011
  • M.S. in Biomechanics and Motor Control, University of Massachusetts, 2009
  • B.S. with Honors in Biomechanics, University of Delaware, 2005

Previous appointments

  • DoD-VA Extremity Trauma and Amputation Center of Excellence, 2013-present

Research Statement

Dr. Russell Esposito's research is focused on the biomechanics and energetics in individuals with lower limb musculoskeletal trauma. The goals of this research are to optimize prosthetic/orthotic device prescription and improve rehabilitation care. 

Current projects

An Advanced Biomechanical Model to Guide Prosthetic Prescription and Rehabilitation after Amputation

This collaborative study with Dr. Ross Miller at the University of Maryland will analyze how prosthesis parameters interact with patient fitness to affect rehabilitation in individuals with limb loss.

Real Time Bio-Feedback during Running Rehabilitation

This project aims to develop a feedback strategy to improve running mechanicsand reduce biomechanical risk factors for injury in active individuals using lower limb prosthetic and orthotic devices.

Women's-Specific Footwear with Prosthetic Feet

This project aims to characterize perceived limitations in footwear experienced by women prosthesis users and identify how different shoes affect the rigorously engineered mechanical properties of prosthetic feet.

Select publications

  1. Schmidtbauer KA, Russell Esposito E, Wilken JM. Ankle-foot orthosis alignment affects running mechanics in individuals with lower-limb injuries. Prosthetics Orthotics International, 43(3), 316-324, 2019.
  2. Russell Esposito E, Schmidtbauer KA, Wilken JM. Experimental comparisons of passive and powered ankle-foot orthoses in individuals with limb reconstruction. Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, 15(1):111, 2018.
  3. Highsmith MJ, Goff LM, Lewandowski AL, Farrokhi, Hendershot BD, Hill OT, Rábago CA, Russell Esposito E, Orriola JJ, Mayer JM. Low back pain in persons with lower extremity amputation: A systematic review of the literature. The Spine Journal, Aug 24. pii: S1529-9430(18)31099-4, 2018.
  4. Russell Esposito E, Miller, RH. Maintenance of muscle strength retains a normal metabolic cost in simulated walking with below‐knee limb loss. PLoS One, 13(1):e0191310, 2018.
  5. Russell Esposito E, Rábago CA, Wilken JM. The influence of traumatic transfemoral amputation on metabolic cost across walking speeds. Prosthetics Orthotics International, 42(2): 214-222, 2018
  6. Russell Esposito E, Lipe DH, Rábago CA. Creative prosthetic foot selection enables successful ambulation in stiletto high heels. Prosthetics Orthotics International, 42(3): 344-349, 2018.
  7. Brown SE, Russell Esposito E, Wilken JM. Effect of ankle foot orthosis alignment on muscle activity. Journal of Biomechanics, 61:51-57, 2017.
  8. Russell Esposito E, Ranz EC, Schmidtbauer K, Neptune RR, Wilken JM. Ankle-foot orthosis bending axis influences power production during running. Gait & Posture, 56: 147-152, 2017
  9. Russell Esposito E, Stinner DJ, Fergason JR, Wilken JM. Gait biomechanics following lower extremity trauma: Amputation vs. Reconstruction. Gait & Posture, 54: 167-173, 2017.
  10. Russell Esposito E, Choi HS, Darter BJ, Wilken JM. Can real-time visual feedback during gait retraining reduce metabolic demand for individuals with transtibial amputation? PLoS One, 9(2): e0171786, 2017.
  11. Kaufman K, Miller E, Kingsbury T, Russell Esposito E, Wolf E, Wilken J, Wyatt M. Reliability of 3D gait data across multiple laboratories. Gait & Posture, 49: 375-381, 2016.
  12. Ranz EC, Russell Esposito E, Wilken JM, Neptune RR. The influence of passive-dynamic ankle-foot orthosis bending axis on gait performance in individuals with lower-limb impairments. Clinical Biomechanics, 10(37): 13-21, 2016.
  13. Russell Esposito E, Whitehead JA, Wilken JM. Step-to-step transition work during level and inclined walking using passive and powered ankle-foot prostheses. Prosthetics and Orthotics International. 40(3): 311-319, 2016.
  14. Russell Esposito E, Whitehead JA, Wilken JM. Sound limb loading in individuals with unilateral transfemoral amputations across a range of walking velocities. Clinical Biomechanics. 30(10): 1049-1055, 2015.
  15. Russell Esposito E, Choi H, Wilken JM, Owens J, Blanck RV. Biomechanical response to ankle-foot orthosis stiffness during running. Clinical Biomechanics. 30(10): 1125-1132, 2015.
  16. Russell Esposito E, Rodriguez KM, Rábago CA, Wilken JM. Does transtibial amputation lead to greater metabolic demand during walking? Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development, 51(8): 1287-1296, 2014.
  17. Russell Esposito E, Wilken JM. Biomechanical risk factors for knee osteoarthritis when using passive and powered ankle-foot prostheses. Clinical Biomechanics, 29(10):1186-1192, 2014.
  18. Russell Esposito E, Wilken JM. The relationship between pelvis-trunk coordination and low back pain in individuals with transfemoral amputations. Gait & Posture, 40(4):640-646, 2014.
  19. Russell Esposito E, Blanck RV, Guckert NL, Hsu JR, Wilken JM. How does ankle-foot orthosis stiffness affect gait in patients with lower limb salvage? Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research, 274(10): 3026-2035, 2014.
  20. Harper, NG, Russell EM, Wilken JM, Neptune RR. Selective laser sintered versus carbon fiber passive-dynamic ankle-foot orthoses: a comparison of patient walking performance. Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, 136(9): 091001, 2014.