UAB / Lakeshore Foundation Research Collaborative

The UAB / Lakeshore Foundation Research Collaborative, funded by an investment of $2 million from Lakeshore Foundation, is dedicated to the development and evaluation of new programmatic and service efforts, the development and validation of new supportive technologies and seeks to identify and develop meaningful alternatives that improve life for people who have or will face chronic disabling conditions.

The collaborative is led by internationally renowned expert James Rimmer, Ph.D., the inaugural Lakeshore Foundation Endowed Chair in Health Promotion and Rehabilitation Sciences in the UAB School of Health Professions.

Rimmer is director of two federally funded centers – the National Center on Health, Physical Activity and Disability (NCHPAD) funded by CDC and the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Interactive Exercise Technologies and Exercise Physiology for Persons with Disabilities (RECTECH) funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR).

He is also director of the Exercise and Sport Science Lab and the Primary Investigator on the NIDRR-funded Disability Rehabilitation Research Project (DRRP) on Obesity and Obesity-Related Secondary Conditions in Youths and Young Adults with Disabilities.


The mission is to promote substantial health benefits that can be gained from participating in regular physical activity. The focus is improving the health, wellness, and quality of life of people with disabilities. NCHPAD acccomplishes this by promoting and facilitating participation in physical activity and recreation. Since 1999, NCHPAD has enhanced connectivity and information sharing in communication between disability service providers and local, county, and state public health programs.


RecTech uses emerging technologies to promote healthy, active lifestyles in everyone from children to adults with disabilities. It focuses on four key areas of research and development:
  • Increase access to healthy environments, equipment, and programs
  • Encourage greater participation in physical activity
  • Promote regular exercise
  • Explore how physical activity affects people with disabilities.

Exercise and Sport Science Lab

The Exercise and Sport Science Laboratory contains state-of-the-art equipment dedicated to comprehensive health promotion and research.The lab also contains telehealth coaching stations that monitor individuals as they are active in their homes and communities. The telehealth system is for individuals who cannot physically come to Lakeshore to work directly with a fitness coach and increase their fitness and function.