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Dr. Sarah Jane Hobbs

Dr. Sarah Jane Hobbs

Reader in Equine Biomechanics

School of Sport and Wellbeing

Darwin Building, DB201

+44 (0) 1772 89 3328

Dr Hobbs is employed at the university as a Reader in Equine Biomechanics and she teaches biomechanics at postgraduate and undergraduate levels. She is the research lead in equine biomechanics at the university and as such is responsible for development of local and international equine research collaborations. She is also the lead for the Research and Consultancy in Equine Surfaces (RACES) team at UCLan.

Dr Hobbs is research active within the area of sport and exercise science and is a member of the Centre for Applied Sport and Exercise Sciences.

Full Profile

Dr Hobbs gained her PhD in 2006 in equine biomechanics. Her work involved developing instrumentation to measure internal hoof strain and using 3D motion capture techniques to track motion of the horse's forelimb. Eight years on she has developed a number of important collaborative links with equine research centres around the world including with Dr Hilary Clayton, formerly chair of the Mary Anne McPhail Equine Performance Center at Michigan State University, Dr Theresia Licka at Vetmeduni in Vienna, Dr Willem Back in the Department of Equine Sciences at Utrecht University, Prof Mick Peterson from the University of Maine, Prof Lars Roepstorff at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Dr Sandra Nauwelaerts at the University of Antwerp. As part of the RACES team Dr Hobbs works closely with colleagues from Anglia Ruskin University and Myerscough College and as a team they have built the first Orono Biomechanical Hoof Tester to be located in the UK in collaboration with it's designer Prof Mick Peterson. In her teaching Dr Hobbs usually incorporates aspects of horse and rider biomechanics and most of the techniques and theory that are used in her research work are directly transferrable to the applied biomechanics modules she delivers.



Hobbs, S.J., Baxter, J., Broom, L., Dagg, L.-A., Sinclair, J.K. and Clayton, H.M. (2014). Posture flexibility and grip strength in horse riders. Journal of Human Kinetics. 42:113-125. DOI: 10.2478/hukin-2014-0066.

Hobbs, S.J., Northrop, A., Mahaffey, C., Martin, J., Clayton, H.M., Murray, R., Roepstorff, L. And Peterson, M. (2014). Equine Surfaces White Paper. FEI Publications.

Hobbs, S.J., Richards, J. and Clayton, H.M. (2014). Sagittal plane moments around the centre of mass in trotting horses. Journal of Biomechanics.

Curtis, S. Martin, J. and Hobbs, S.J. (2014). The hoof renewal time of Thoroughbred foals from birth. The Veterinary Journal. DOI:10.1016/j.tvjl.2014.04.012.


  • Kinetics and kinematics of equine gait
  • Equine surface mechanics and hoof-horse-surface interactions
  • Muscle activity during movement
  • Rider posture, flexibility, strength and balance and horse/rider interactions
  • Rehabilitation techniques for sports horses
  • Hoof structure, growth and mechanic

Teaching Activities

  • Sports Biomechanics
  • Practical and Applied Biomechanics
  • Biomechanics of Posture and Injury in Sport
  • Advanced methodologies in Sports Biomechanics
  • Contemporary Issues in Biomechanical Measurement


  • Doctor of Philosophy, UCLan (2006)
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Research Supervision, UCLan (2009)
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in HE, UCLan (2002)
  • BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering - First Class, UCLan (2000)
  • Member of BASES (British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences)
  • Member of IEBWA (International Equine Body Workers Association) and (EBW) Equine Body Worker (2008)

Postgraduate supervision and examinations

Internal examiner for 2 PhD, 1 MD and 1 MSc.
External examiner for 1 PhD by publication (University of Bristol) and 1 MSc (University of Edinburgh).
Currently supervising 3 MPhil/PhD students
Successful completions 3 MPhil/PhD (2 as DoS) and 5 MSc by Research completions (4 as DoS)

Invited Speaker

2013. Myerscough Research Conference, Lancs, invited speaker on the Equine Surfaces White Paper.
2013. Myerscough Mustad Conference, Lancs, invited speaker on the influence of footing on hoof mechanics.
2011. Myerscough Research Conference, Lancs, invited speaker on standing and reaching balance in horse riders.
2011. Alltech Conference, Hartpury College, keynote speaker on lower limb biomechanics.
2011. Havemeyer Symposium, invited speaker on torque about the centre of mass in horses, New Orleans, USA.
2006. Havemeyer Symposium, invited speaker on the development of 3D kinematic measurement techniques for horses, Costa Rica.