Background and activities
- Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy, University of Utah, USA (1982)
- Doctor of Philosophy (Work Physiology), University of Trondheim, Norway (1995)
Previous academic positions
- Post-doc at Div. of Organization and Work Science, NTH, University of Trondheim, Norway (1995-1998)
- Researcher at Dep. of Public Health and General Practice, NTNU, Norway (2000-2003)
- Associate professor at Dep. of Public Health and General Practice, NTNU, Norway (2003-2010)
- Visiting academic at University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia (2006-2007)
- Visting academic at University of Utah, Salt Lake City, USA (feb-mar 2012)
- Professor at Dep. of Public Health and General Practice, NTNU, Norway (2010- )
Research is within musculoskeletal disorders primarily of the neck, shoulders and lower back. It entails basic science, method development, clinical trials, interventional studies, work rehabilitation and epidemiological cohort studies. Of major interest is to explore mechanisms behind neck and low back pain, both in an epidemiological sense, but also in basic science approches, i.e., how the brain in terms of motion and motor control adapt to long-standing pain. The long-term goal is to provide better prevention, diagnostics and treatment strategies for the target groups.
Current and recent research projects:
- The supportPRIM project: developing a computerized decision support system for management of musculoskeletal disorders. This builds on data collected in the FYSIOPRIM-project (see below) and an artificial intelligence approach with Case-Based Reasoning methodology.
- The FYSIOPRIM project (collaboration with University of Oslo and Trondheim Municipality):
- Describe patients and interventions, and investigating course and prognostic factors in neck and low back pain patients in physiotherapy primary care practice.
- Exploring collaborative models in primary care to promote research participation, knowledge and interest among physiotherapist in primary care settings.
- The effect of work-related rehabilitation on return-to-work is currently being studied in a RCT for patients sick-listed due to musculoskeletal or mild psychological disorders (The Hysnes Study).
- Developing advanced methods for detailed recordings of physical activity and quantifying sedentary life in the general population (HUNT 4 survey) and clinical settings.
- Self-management and development of a decision support system - selfBACK -based on predictive computer modelling in low back pain (EU-project 2016-2021, coordinators).
Teaching and supervision
- Lectures for master and medical students in applied clinical science and research methods and within musculoskeletal disorders topics. Supervising master and PhD students.
- Reviewer for a number of scientific journals: British Medical Journal, Spine, Journal of Applied Physiology, Journal of Rheumatology, Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine, BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, Manual therapy, Journal of Physiotherapy, Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, European Journal of Pain, and European Journal of Sports Science.
- Grant reviewer for South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority for for Northern Norway Regional Health Authority, and reviewer of grant application for The Health Research Board of Ireland.
- Appointed member of the External Scientific Board of the Swedish FAS centre; the body at work-from problem to potential (Centre of Excellence), Gävle, Sweden, (2011- ).
- Opponent at seven doctoral dissertations in Norway, Denmark and Sweden.
- Chair of Master in Clinical Health Science at NTNU (2009-2017). Member of the programme board for Master in Health Science and PhD programme boards in Health Science, Community Medicine and the central PhD committee at Faculty of Medicine, NTNU.
- Head of the Musculoskeletal Research Group at our department (ISM)
- Member of The National Council for Master and PhD Programs in Health Science, The Norwegian Association of Higher Education Institution.
- Head of the Primary Health Care and Social Medicine Research Group and member of management team at Department of Public Health and General Practice, NTNU.
- Managed the development of the first Centre of Competence in Physiotherapy Research at NTNU (at the Dep. of Public Health and General Practice).
- Contributed to raise US $ 18-19 million for previous, ongoing and current collaborative research projects.
- Awarded price for best research project in 2009 on neck and low back pain by The Norwegian Organization for Spinal Research. Awarded the Musculoskeletal price of 2013 from the Norwegian manual therapy service office.
- Approx. 60 publications in international peer-reviewed scientific journals.
- h-index 22, (Dec. 2018).
- Chaired scientific sessions at international conferences.
- Regularly poster and platform presentations at international conferences with review (USA, Canada, Australia, United Arab Emirates, Netherlands, Scotland, Denmark and Norway).
Scientific, academic and artistic work
A selection of recent journal publications, artistic productions, books, including book and report excerpts. See all publications in the database
- (2020) Inpatient multimodal occupational rehabilitation reduces sickness absence among individuals with musculoskeletal and common mental health disorders: a randomized clinical trial. Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health.
- (2020) Novel approach towards musculoskeletal phenotypes. European Journal of Pain.
- (2020) Rigid head-neck responses to unpredictable perturbations in patients with long standing neck pain does not change with treatment. PLOS ONE. vol. 15 (8).
- (2019) Changes in fear-avoidance beliefs and work participation after occupational rehabilitation for musculoskeletal- and common mental disorders: secondary outcomes of two randomized clinical trials. Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine. vol. 51 (3).
- (2019) Longitudinal associations of kinematics and fear-avoidance beliefs with disability, work ability and pain intensity in persons with low back pain. Musculoskeletal Science and Practice. vol. 41.
- (2019) Improvement in Work Ability, Psychological Distress and Pain Sites in Relation to Low Back Pain Prognosis: A Longitudinal Observational Study in Primary Care. Spine. vol. 44 (7).
- (2019) Frequency-dependent deficits in head steadiness in patients with nonspecific neck pain. Physiological Reports. vol. 5 (7).
- (2018) Improved expectations about length of sick leave during occupational rehabilitation is associated with increased work participation. Journal of occupational rehabilitation.
- (2018) Characteristics, course and outcome of patients receiving physiotherapy in primary health care in Norway: design of a longitudinal observational project. BMC Health Services Research. vol. 18 (936).
- (2018) Resistance training vs general physical exercise in multidisciplinary rehabilitation of chronic neck pain: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine. vol. 50 (8).
- (2018) Resistance band training or general exercise in multidisciplinary rehabilitation of low back pain? A randomized trial. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports. vol. 28 (9).
- (2018) Predictors for global perceived effect after physiotherapy in patients with neck pain: an observational study. Physiotherapy. vol. 104 (4).
- (2018) A Concurrent Cognitive Task Does Not Perturb Quiet Standing in Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Pain Research & Management. vol. 2018.
- (2018) Lower regulatory frequency for postural control in patients with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. PLOS ONE. vol. 13 (4).
- (2017) Associations between the readiness for return to work scale and return to work: a prospective study. Journal of occupational rehabilitation. vol. 28 (1).
- (2017) Effect of inpatient multicomponent occupational rehabilitation versus less comprehensive outpatient rehabilitation on sickness absence in persons with Musculoskeletal- or Mental Health Disorders: A Randomized Clinical Trial. Journal of occupational rehabilitation. vol. 28 (1).
- (2017) Multiple-joint exercises using elastic resistance bands vs. conventional resistance-training equipment: A cross-over study. European Journal of Sport Science. vol. 17 (8).
- (2017) Resistance training in addition to multidisciplinary rehabilitation for patients with chronic pain in the low back: Study protocol. Contemporary Clinical Trials Communications. vol. 6.
- (2017) Pasienter hos privatpraktiserende fysioterapeuter i primærhelsetjenesten;hvem er de?. Fysioterapeuten.
- (2017) The influence of multisite pain and psychological comorbidity on prognosis of chronic low back pain: longitudinal data from the Norwegian HUNT Study. BMJ Open. vol. 7 (5).