Alan Needle



  • Doctor of Philosophy, Biomechanics & Movement Science, University of Delaware
  • Master of Science, Exercise Science / Sports Medicine, University of Delaware
  • Bachelor of Science, Athletic Training, Boston University

Teaching Specialties

  • Evaluation and treatment of athletic injuries and illnesses
  • Physiologic implications of injury
  • Utilizing evidence to guide clinical decision-making in sports medicine
  • Implementation of screening & treatment programs to reduce injury risk in clinical practice

Current Teaching

  • AT 5200 - Functional Human Anatomy
  • AT 5300 - Examination, Diagnosis, and Treatment I
  • AT 5350 - Physiology of Injury
  • AT 5570 - Clinical Inquiry I
  • AT 5690 - Athletic Training Clinical Experience III
  • AT 5830 - Applied Health & Prevention Strategies
  • AT 5970 - Clinical Inquiry II 
  • ES 5720 - Motor Behavior for Sport & Performance

Professional Affiliations / Organizations

  • Member, National Athletic Trainers Association
  • Member, American College of Sports Medicine
  • Certified Athletic Trainer (ATC)
  • North Carolina Licensed Athletic Trainer (LAT)
  • Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS)

Laboratory Affiliation

Research Interests

  • Neuromechanical implicatons of joint injuries
  • Impact of attention and cognition on joint stability
  • Central nervous system adaptations to training and rehabilitation
  • Data processing & analysis in exercise science & sports medicine

Selected Publications

Bruce AS, Howard JS, van Werkhoven H, McBride JM, Needle AR. The effects of transcranial direct current stimulation on chronic ankle instability. Med Sci Sport Exerc. 2020; 52(2):335-344. 

Needle AR, Rosen AB. Why re-think injury rehabilitation? Athl Train Sport Health Care. 2020; 12(6):243-244.

Kaminski TW, Needle AR, Delahunt EA. Prevention of Lateral Ankle Sprains. J Athl Train.2019. In press.
Burcal CJ, Needle AR, Custer LC, Rosen AB. The effects of cognitive loading on motor behavior in injured individuals: a systematic review. Sports Med. 2019. In press.

Stirling AM, McBride JM, Merritt EK, Needle AR. Nervous system excitability and joint stiffness following short-term dynamic ankle immobilization. Gait Posture. 2018;59(Supplement C):46-52.

Rosen AB, Needle AR, Ko J. Ability of Functional Performance Tests to Identify Individuals With Chronic Ankle Instability: A Systematic Review With Meta-Analysis. Clin J Sport Med. 2017;In Press

Needle AR, Lepley AS, Grooms D. Evidence of Neurological Adaptation after Ligamentous Injury: A summary of assessment, findings, and clinical interpretation.  Sports Med. 2017. 47(7): 1271-1288.

Kim AS, Needle AR, Thomas SJ, Higginson CI, Kaminski TW, Swanik CB. A sex comparison of reactive knee stiffness under cognitive loads. Clin Biomech (Bristol, Avon). 2016; 35: 86-92. 

Needle AR, Swanik CB, Baumeister J, Schubert M, Reinecke K, Higginson JS, Farquhar WB, Kaminski TW, Higginson JS. Decoupling of Laxity & Cortical Activation in Unstable Ankles during Ligamentous Loading. Eur J Appl Phys. 2014; 114:2129-2138.

Needle AR, Baumeister J, Kaminski TW, Farquhar WB, Higginson JS, Swanik CB. Neuromechanical coupling in the regulation of muscle tone and joint stiffness. Scand J Med Sci Sport. 2014; 24 (5): 737-748.

Needle AR, Palmer JA, Kesar TM, Binder-McLeod SA, Swanik CB. Brain regulation of muscle tone in healthy and functionally unstable ankles. J Sport Rehab. 2013; 22(3):202-11.

My NCBI Bibliography

ResearchGate Profile

Google Scholar Profile


Title: Associate Professor, Ph.D., Biomechanics and Movement Science, Graduate Faculty

Email address: Email me

Phone: (828) 262-4039

Fax: (828) 262-3138

Office address
Leon Levine Hall 422