LEE DIBBLE portrait
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, Health and Kinesiology
  • Professor, Physical Therapy & Athletic Training
  • Department Chair, Physical Therapy & Athletic Training
  • Adjunct Professor, Occupational & Recreational Therapies

Research Summary

My research is centered around 2 long-term objectives: Objective 1: Characterize the benefits of exercise in neurodegenerative diseases in terms of CNS effect and alteration of the trajectory of disability. Objective 2: Understand anticipatory and reactive postural control deficits in persons with neurodegenerative diseases. Google Scholar Link: https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=oJ7op6wAAAAJ&hl=en


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Exercise and Sport Science, University of Utah
  • Master of Science, Physical Therapy, Duke University
  • Bachelor of Science, Animal Physiology, University Of California-Davis


Education and Professional Training / Licensure:  I received a BS degree in Animal Physiology from UC Davis and a MS degree in Physical Therapy from Duke University.  I received my Ph.D. in Exercise and Sports Science with a focus on Motor Learning and Motor Control in 2001.  I have been a Certified Athletic Trainer since 1989 and a licensed Physical Therapist since 1991. I became a licensed as an Athletic Trainer in Utah when licensure legislation was passed. 

Clinical Care Experience:  Prior to my current tenure track position, I worked clinically as a dual-credentialed Physical Therapist and Athletic Trainer for 15 years.  My clinical assignments included positions at the Duke University Sports Medicine Center and Student Sports Injury Clinic, as a per diem Athletic Trainer for the United States Soccer Federation, as an Athletic Trainer and Physical Therapist for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, and as a Physical Therapist at the University of Utah Sports Medicine Center. 

Teaching focus: I previously taught Therapeutic Exercise within the Athletic Training Education Program from 2002 until 2007.  Within the Athletic Training Education Program, since 2015, I have taught ATSM 3402 (Acute Care and Emergency Management) and ATSM 3404 (Clinial Decision Making in Athletic Training) as well help coordinate ATSM 3403 (Advanced Topics in Athletic Training).  I have taught within the Physical Therapy program since 1993.  Within the DPT and MOT curriculums, I teach PhTh 7050 / OcTh 5090 (Neuroanatomy).    

Research Focus: My research agenda focuses on exercise and motor learning counter measures to combat postural instabilty and balance disorders.  Previously we have conducted studies examining eccentric muscle training in mobility limited populations (ACL reconstruction, fraility, Parkinson Disease, Diabetes, Total Knee Replacement). More recently, we are utilizing wearable sensors and measures of gaze stability to assess the effects of peripheral and central vestibular disorders on eye, head, and body movement coordination.  I have published over 70 research articles and received funding from intramural and extramural sources (foundation and federal funding).  

Administrative / Editorial Experience:  My University of Utah administrative positions have included co-directing the Department of Physical Therapy's Clinical Operations, serving on the University's Academic Senate and the University's Academic Senate Executive Committee, directing the College's College Council, and leading the College's Realignment Committee.  My professional administrative experience includes serving on the Utah State Physical Therapy Association Board of Directors for 6 years and serving on the Utah State Parkinson Disease Assocation Executive Board for 7 years.  My editorial experience includes serving as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Hand Therapy for 4 years and serving as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Neurologic Physical Therapy for 8 years.

I was promoted and received tenure in 2011 and was promoted to Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy and Athletic Training in 2016.