James Chagdes, Ph.D.

Dr. James Chagdes

Associate Professor

56K Garland Hall

Research Interests

  • Nonlinear dynamical systems
  • Controls
  • Robotics/Haptics
  • Rehabilitation/Medical Device Engineering
  • Biomechanics


  • Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering
    Purdue University
  • B.S., Mechanical Engineering
    Purdue University

Research Bio

Dr. Chagdes joined Miami University in 2015 after completing a postdoctoral research appointment spanning from 2013 to 2015 jointly between the Department of Health and Kinesiology and the School of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University. He received a B.S. and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Purdue University.

His research interests are in the areas of nonlinear dynamical systems, biomechanics, and controls which he plans to use to examine the interaction of the neural, muscular, and mechanical systems to develop safe, balanced, and skillful movement. Dr. Chagdes’ research incorporates the use of simple everyday devices such as cell phones and clothing (shoe insoles, pants, shirts) with embedded sensors to provide valuable information for health monitoring. His long-term goal is to develop smart assistive, diagnostic, and rehabilitative robotic devices capable of improving the quality of life of people, reducing their risk of fall, helping them prevent injuries, and maintaining independence.

One of Dr. Chagdes’ current projects aims to understand the control of upright human balance and how the stability of upright balance is lost through the process of aging or the onset of neurological impairment. As part of this research, his team is working to develop new methods capable of detecting early signs of manifestations of impaired balance and identify the mechanism responsible. In these methods, he manipulates the environment using technologies such as balance boards and virtual reality to examine changes in balance control.

Dr. Chagdes is in an active collaboration with the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Human Performance directorate for developing biomechanical models to better understand human motor control. Through this research, Dr. Chagdes aims to better understand the complex interactions of human-machine interfaces by investigating the nonlinear interactions that occur in bio-robotic systems.

Dr. Chagdes has developed collaborations across Miami’s campus including researchers from the Department of Kinesiology and Health, Scripps Gerontology Center, the Department of Computer and Software Engineering, and the Armstrong Institute for Interactive Media Studies. As co-director of the Miami University Center for Assistive Technology, he plans to use this understanding to develop smart assistive, diagnostic, and rehabilitative devices to increase functional independence for people with physical disabilities and neurological impairments.

Years of Service on this Faculty

  • 2015–June 2021  Assistant Professor
  • July 1, 2021   Associate Professor 

Related Experience

  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Joint Appointment with School of Mechanical Engineering and Department of Health and Kinesiology, Purdue University, June 2013–May 2015
  • Purdue University Visiting Assistant Professor, School of Mechanical Engineering, Purdue University, January 2013–May 2013

Scientific and Professional Society Membership

  • American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
  • American Society of Biomechanics (ASB)
  • International Society of Posture and Gait Research (ISPGR)

Honors and Awards

  • Excellence in Teaching, Department of Mathematics, Purdue University, November 2011

Professional Development Activities

  • Mathematics Teaching Workshops, Department of Mathematics, Purdue University, August 2007–May 2010
  • Preparing Future Faculty, Graduate School, Purdue University, January 2011–May 2011
  • Scientific and Grant Writing, Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, Purdue University, January 2014–May 2014

Principal Publications

Journal Articles

  • Chagdes, J.R., Rietdyk, S., Haddad, J.M., Zelaznik, H.N., Raman, A., “Dynamic stability of a human standing on a balance board,” Journal of Biomechanics, Vol. 46, pp. 2593-2602, 2013.
  • Chagdes, J.R., Rietdyk, S., Haddad, J.M., Zelaznik, H.N., Raman, A., Rhea, C.K., and Silver, T.A., “Multiple timescales in postural dynamics associated with vision and a secondary task are revealed by wavelet analysis,” Experimental Brain Research, Vol. 197(3), pp. 297-310, 2009.


  • Chagdes, J.R., Haddad, J.M., Rietdyk, S., Zelaznik, H.N., and Raman, A. “Understanding the role of time-delay on maintaining upright stance on rotational balance boards,” Proceedings of the ASME 2015 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences & Computer and Information in Engineering Conference, Boston, MA, August 2015.
  • Chagdes, J.R., Haddad, J.M., Rietdyk, S., Zelaznik, H.N., Cinelli, M.E., Denomme, L.T., Powers, K.C., and Raman, A. “Limit cycle oscillations in upright human posture of individuals with neurological impairment,” International Society of Posture and Gait Research World Congress 2015, Seville, Spain, June-July 2015.
  • Beltran-Pulido, A.F., Chagdes, J.R., Zelaznik, H.N., Chiu, G., Haddad, J.M., Rietdyk, S., and Raman, A. “Fitts’ law behavior when producing rapid aiming movements with delayed visual feedback,” Proceedings of the North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity, Portland, OR, June 2015.
  • Cruise, D., Chagdes, J.R., Raman, A. “A dynamic balance board to diagnose and improve balance instabilities,” 17th U.S. National Congress on Theoretical & Applied Mechanics, East Lansing, MI, June 2014.
  • Chagdes, J.R., Rietdyk, S., Haddad, J.M., Zelaznik, H.N., Raman, A., “Nonlinear dynamics and bifurcations in postural control on rigid surfaces and rotational balance boards,” Proceedings of the ASME 2012 Summer Bioengineering Conference, Fajardo, PR, June 2012.