College of Health and Human Sciences
<b>Biography</b><br><br>Dr. Eckard came to WCU from Chapel Hill, where he earned a PhD while researching injury prevention measures for NCAA athletes and military service members. Prior to that, he served as a physical therapist in the US Army for several years, practicing in acute care and orthopedic outpatient clinical settings in the US, Europe and the Middle East.<br><br>Dr. Eckard was drawn to WCU because of its reputation for teaching excellence and the authenticity and friendliness that are hallmarks of WCU and the wider Western NC region. When not working, Dr. Eckard likes to hike and spend time enjoying the amazing outdoor opportunities provided by the mountains of Western NC. He also enjoys trying to grow food and brew beer despite highly variable rates of success in each.
<b>Primary Teaching Responsibilities</b><br><br>PT 812 – Physical Therapy Interventions<br>PT 832 – Applied Pathophysiology<br>841 – Evidence Informed Practice I<br>842 – Evidence Informed Practice II<br>PT 899 – Doctoral Project<br><br><b>Secondary Teaching Responsibilities</b><br><br>PT 817 – Movement System Examination I<br>PT 818 – Movement System Examination II
<b>Research Interests</b><br><br>Dr. Eckard's primary research interest involves developing screening tools to identify athletes and military service members at high risk for lower extremity injuries. His current projects involve developing models to predict ACL tears and stress fractures during military basic training.<br><br><b>Recent Publications and Presentations</b><br><br>Condon T, Eckard T, Aguilar A, Frank B, Padua D, Wikstrom E. Lower Extremity Movement Quality Does Not Moderate Internal Training Load Response of Male Collegiate Soccer Athletes. <i>Journal of athletic training. </i>2020; doi: 10.4085/1062-6050-0322.20.<br><br>Eckard TG, Padua DA, DiStefano LJ, Marshall SW, Cameron KL. Trends in lower extremity movement quality among US Military Academy cadets, 2005-2017: a JUMP-ACL study. CSM 2020 American Academy of Sports Physical Therapy Platform Presentation Abstracts (SPL1–SPL118). <i>Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy. </i>2019;50(1):CSM30-CSM80.<br><br>Eckard TG, Padua DA, Miraldi SFP, Peck KY, Posner MA, DiStefano LJ, Marshall SW, Cameron KL. Association between performance on the landing error scoring system and bone stress injury risk in US Military Academy cadets. <i>Journal of athletic training</i>. 2019;54(6s):126.<br><br>Eckard TG, Padua D, Mauntel T, Frank B, Pietrosimone L, Begalle R, Goto S, Clark M, Kucera K. Association between double-leg squat and single-leg squat performance and injury incidence among incoming NCAA Division I athletes: A prospective cohort study. <i>Physical therapy in sport. </i>2018;34:192-200.