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Marcel B. Lanza, PhD

Academic Title:

Research Associate

Primary Appointment:

Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science


100 Penn Street

Phone (Primary):

(410) 706-3242

Education and Training

  • 2005               Bachelor in Physical Education, Federal University of Acre, Brazil.
  • 2006               Specialization in Sports Training Methodology, IBEPEX- Brazil.
  • 2011               Master in Mechanical Engineering, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil
  • 2018               Ph.D. in Sports, Exercise and Health Sciences. Loughborough University –UK
  • 2019-2019     Post-doctoral fellow at Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazi
  • 2019 - 2021   Post-doctoral Fellow UMANRRT (University of Maryland Advanced Neuromotor Rehabilitation Research Training), Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, University of Maryland Baltimore


Dr. Lanza has a Ph.D. from Loughborough University (Uk)which focused to investigate the underlying neural mechanisms of force production across different muscle lengths in a young healthy population. As a postdoctoral fellow at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, he established the importance of training configuration on functional performance and found that neuromuscular activation and muscle size were influenced by exercise type and the time the muscle was under tension. After that, as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Maryland, Dr. Lanza research was investigating the underlying neural and morphological mechanisms of falls after a loss of balance in older adults and stroke individuals. Currently, as a Research Associate, his focus has been understanding the physiology and neuromuscular function of muscles in relation to physical function and exercise interventions across ages and in stroke individuals.

Research/Clinical Keywords

Muscle activation, muscle structure, physical function, balance, falls, exercise intervention, aging, stroke.

Highlighted Publications

Lanza, MB, Balshaw TG, Folland JP. Do changes in neuromuscular activation contribute to the knee extensor angle-torque relationship? Exp Physiol. 2017 Aug 1;102(8):962-973. doi: 10.1113/EP086343. 2017 Jul 12. PMID: 28594464.

Lanza, MB; Balshaw, TG; Massey, GJ; Folland, JP. Maximum m-wave normalization of voluntary EMG accounts for the influence of electrode location but does not fully remove the influence of subcutaneous tissue thickness. Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports. 28(12): 2558-2566. PMCID: 30030921 

Lanza MB, Balshaw TG, Folland JP. Is the joint-angle specificity of isometric resistance training real? And if so, does it have a neural basis?. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2019 Dec;119(11-12):2465-2476. doi: 10.1007/s00421-019-04229-z. 2019 Sep 14. PMID: 31522276.

Lanza MB, Addison O, Ryan AS, J Perez W, Gray V. Kinetic, muscle structure, and neuromuscular determinants of weight transfer phase prior to a lateral choice reaction step in older adults. J Electromyogr Kinesiol. 2020 Dec;55:102484. doi:10.1016/j.jelekin.2020.102484. Epub 2020 Nov 2. PMID: 33176230.

Lanza MB, Rock K, Marchese V, Addison O, Gray VL. Hip Abductor and Adductor Rate of Torque Development and Muscle Activation, but Not Muscle Size, Are Associated With Functional Performance. Front Physiol. 2021 Oct 14;12:744153. PMCID: PMC8551702. 

 Lanza MB, Arbuco B, Ryan AS, Shipper AG, Gray VL, Addison O. A systematic review of the importance of hip muscle strength, activation, and structure in balance and mobility tasks. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2022 Jan 5:S0003-9993(21)01771-8.PMID: 34998714. 

Lanza MB, Martins-Costa HC, De Souza CC, Lima FV, Diniz RCR, Chagas MH. Muscle volume vs. anatomical cross-sectional area: Different muscle assessment does not affect the muscle size-strength relationship. J Biomech. 2022 Jan 11;132:110956. PMID: 35033973.