Timothy Butterfield, PhD, ATC's picture
Timothy Butterfield, PhD, ATC
Office Location: 

Room 210D Wethington Building

900 South Limestone Street

Lexington, Kentucky 40536-0200

Office Phone Number: 
(859) 218-0840
Fax Number: 
(859) 323-6003
Position Title: 
Associate Professor

Tim Butterfield, PhD, ATC, completed his PhD at the University of Calgary, and post-doctoral training at the Ohio State University. He is currently an associate professor at the UK College of Health Sciences, in the Department of Athletic Training. His area of research is muscle mechanics, specifically strain-induced muscle injury and the plasticity of skeletal muscle.

Educational Focus
Muscle mechanics, muscle physiology, biomechanics

Scholarly Interests
Dr. Butterfield’s research interests focus on skeletal muscle function. The majority of acute musculoskeletal injuries seen in sports medicine clinics are injuries to muscle, with the predominant type being strain injuries. Fortunately, skeletal muscle has the amazing ability to adapt, and this property seems to be inherent to muscle fibers themselves. In abnormal situations such as long-term immobilization, the muscle attempts to retain its functional biomechanical properties specific to its new limited range of motion. Although debilitating once the immobilization device is removed, an understanding of the biomechanical properties of the muscle allows clinicians the opportunity to maximize the rehabilitation protocol to assure timely therapeutic intervention without causing further injury. Dr. Butterfield is exploring the potential role of directly measured fiber dynamics and force production during eccentric and concentric exercise on muscle damage and functional adaptation. His models include in-vivo ambulation and exercise models that allow the direct, real time measurements of mechanical properties and performance of skeletal muscle during modified use.

Dr. Butterfield resides in Lexington with his wife Cindy, stepsons Zachary and Aiden, and their two German Shepherds Lieben and Blume. He spends his free time outdoors in a variety of activities, his favorite of which is hiking and snowshoeing in cold and snowy mountain ranges.

Selected Publications

  • Lepley L, McKeon PM, Fitzpatrick S, Beckemeyer C, Uhl TL, Butterfield TA. Ankle health regulates lower extremity muscle behavior and coordination in freely walking rats. J Athl Train. (in press)
  • Schroder EA, Harfmann BD, Zhang X, Srikuea R, England JH, Hodge BA, Wen Y, Riley LA, Yu Q, Christie A, Smith JD, Seward T, Horrell EM, Mula J, Peterson CA, Butterfield TA, Esser KA.
  • Intrinsic muscle clock is necessary for musculoskeletal health. J Physiol. 2015;Dec 15;593(24)387-404.
  • Waters-Banker C, Butterfield TA, Dupont-Versteegden EE. Immunomodulatory Effects of Massage on Non-Perturbed Skeletal Muscle in Rats Journal of Applied Physiology. 2014;Jan 15;116(2):164-175.
  • Cunningham T, Frederick ED, Dupont-Versteegden EE, Desai N, Butterfield TA. Comparison of tongue muscle characteristics of preterm and full term infants during nutritive and nonnutritive sucking. Infant Behavior and Development. 2014;Aug;37(3):435-445.
  • Butterfield TA. Eccentric Exercise In-Vivo: Strain-Induced Damage and Adaptation in a Stable System. Exercise and Sport Science Reviews. 2010;38(2):51-60.