A-Z Index  |  Site Map  

About Transylvania

Saori Hanaki

Assistant Professor of Exercise Science; Pre-Health Committee Advisor

Beck Center 3019
Transylvania University
300 North Broadway
Lexington, KY 40508-1797

Phone: (859) 281-3505
e-mail Saori Hanaki


“One of the essential roles of a teacher is to help students establish meaningful connections between the subject matter and the student’s personal experience and ideas.”

Saori Hanaki is a perfect example of someone who has successfully integrated her professional and her personal interests. As a four-time Ironman triathlon finisher, she knows a little something about endurance training and the importance of efficient energy output, as well as the injuries that can thwart your dreams.

Exercise science is her passion and her career. She applies its principles every day as she trains and as she plans or analyzes her research. She has first-hand knowledge of the biomechanics behind an efficient swim stroke or pedal stroke. And, because she’s a competitor, she’s always thinking about what she can change to improve her performance.

Therefore, it’s no surprise to hear Hanaki talk about the importance of teaching and learning being authentic.  From her perspective, being “book smart” alone is of little use if you cannot apply what you know to real-life situations. Once you learn how to connect something from your own experience to something you learn in a classroom or a lab, then you’re on the path to becoming a lifelong learner. The material is no longer abstract for you. It’s real. And that’s what makes it interesting.

While Hanaki stresses the importance of finding a personal connection to the material you’re studying, she also understands the value of learning from others. As a professor, she relishes the opportunities she has to learn from her students.

“Teaching and learning is a two-way street. I enjoy getting to know my students, and I also like that my students get to know me. Sharing ideas and knowledge helps us all grow. I always look forward to learning something new from them.”

Hanaki’s current goal is to run a marathon in every state. With 39 to go, she’ll have plenty of opportunity to see more of her adopted country. And the training required will inevitably provide her with new insights into the “human machine” and the puzzles we have yet to solve. That should set her up for a lifetime of creative problem-solving, foot strike after foot strike.


Want to know more about Transylvania's exercise science program?

Academic history

Courses taught

Areas of research

Recent publications

Awards

Professional memberships

Academic history

  • Ph.D., Biomechanics, University of Kentucky, 2012
  • M.S., Biomechanics, Illinois State University, 2005
  • B.S., Health & Human Performance—Athletic Training, University of Montana–Missoula, 2000

Courses taught

  • Biomechanics
  • Injury Biomechanics
  • Lifetime Fitness

Areas of research

  • Biomechanics of human movement
  • Musculoskeletal injury biomechanics

Recent publications

  • Swank, M., Hanaki, S. "Injury Prevention: Biomechanics 101 for the Clinician." ACSM's Health and Fitness Journal, 2013
  • Davis, I., Ireland, M.L., Hanaki, S. "ACL Injury and Gender Bias." Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy, 2007

Awards

  • Bingham Start-Up Grant, Transylvania University, 2013-14
  • Provost’s Award for Exemplary Advising Nominee, University of Louisville 2012, 2013
  • Faculty Mentor Award, Athletic Association, University of Louisville, 2012
  • Athletic Training Fellowship, New Hampshire Musculoskeletal Institute, 2000–01

Professional memberships

  • National Athletic Trainers’ Association
  • International Society of Biomechanics in Sports
  • International Society of Biomechanics
  • American Society of Biomechanics
  • American College of Sports Medicine


 List of Faculty »

© 2003-2016 Transylvania University. All rights reserved.

Transylvania University admits students regardless of age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, national origin, or any other classification protected by federal or state law or local ordinance.Transylvania University is committed to ensuring that the institution is free of harassment and discrimination on the basis of race, color, citizenship status, sex, age, disability, pregnancy, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, national or ethnic origin, religion or religious belief or veteran's status, or any other category protected by applicable state or federal law or local ordinance. Click here to read our full non-discrimination policy. Title IX information