Sports Medicine Bulletin
July 20, 2010

Active Voice: More Maternal Physical Activity May Lead to Leaner Pre-Adolescent Children
by James M. Pivarnik, Ph.D., FACSM and Erin Kuffel, M.S.

Active Voice is a column by ACSM experts in science, medicine and allied health. The viewpoints expressed do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of ACSM. NOTE: The research discussed in the following feature was presented at the 57th ACSM Annual Meeting June 2-5, 2010. Lanay Mudd and Sarah Bartholomew were co-authors on this presentation.

James M. Pivarnik, Ph.D., FACSM, is a professor in the Departments of Kinesiology and Epidemiology at Michigan State University. He directs the Center for Physical Activity and Health and is the University Research Integrity Officer. His research focuses on health aspects of exercise during pregnancy and the postpartum period. Jim is immediate past president of the ACSM and leader of the 2009-2010 ACSM “Exercise is Medicine™ On Campus” initiative.

Erin Kuffel is a doctoral candidate at Michigan State University. She will obtain her Ph.D. in Kinesiology with a specialization in exercise physiology in Spring 2011. Her research interests are the effects of physical activity during pregnancy on both the mother and child. For this particular project, Erin played an integral part in data collection, analysis, and interpretation. She is a student member of ACSM and presented part of this research at the 57th Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine.


The prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity is approximately 32 percent and behavior modifications are necessary to curb this epidemic. Oftentimes, child physical activity (PA) levels and diet are examined, as they are obviously the keys to energy balance. There is some evidence that the in-utero environment, including maternal physical activity during pregnancy, may also be involved with energy balance. However, this behavior has not been well-studied with respect to a child's body size. Our line of research on maternal physical activity during pregnancy on child health includes the effect on child’s body size at age 8-10 years. We found that a mother’s current aerobic fitness was inversely related to her child’s body mass index (BMI), percent fatness, and waist circumference at age 8-10 years. We hypothesized that the mother’s current aerobic fitness acted as a surrogate of pregnancy fitness level and possibly enhanced the in-utero environment. Thus, our study participants who were more aerobically fit currently were also fitter during pregnancy and currently have children with lower body size and fatness. This finding supports the notion that fitter women provide an in-utero environment that supports growth less likely to predispose their infant to high body fatness.More

Download Journal Articles on Your eBook Reader

You may now download and save articles from ACSM journals on your Apple iPhone®, iPad®, or other eBook device. Click on the green "EPUB" icon in the table of contents or article page to download an article in this format.

ePub currently is the most widely adopted eBbook format. In addition to the iBooks eReader application, the format is supported by the Stanza application, B&N Nook®, Kobo eReader™, and Sony eReader®. The Kindle™ does not currently support the ePub format.

Journal articles also are optimized for viewing on your mobile device so you can access them whenever and wherever you'd like. For more information, go to the "Mobile" section from the "Journal Info" tab on the journals’ sites.

To view full-text articles, members should first go to the ACSM website and log in to access their member journals.More

ACSM Collaboration with NIH Continues: Webinar and Workshop This Week on the Science of Measuring Activity

ACSM partners with NIH to advance scientific opportunity and public health progress in federal biomedical research related to physical activity and sedentary lifestyles. This week (Wednesday through Friday, July 21-23) that collaboration continues. The College is supporting an invitational workshop in conjunction with the National Institutes of Health Office of Disease Prevention and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While the workshop itself is an invitation-only meeting, a pre-workshop briefing session on the state of the science will be conveniently presented (July 21, 12:30-5:15 EDT) as a webinar in which all interested professionals may participate at no cost.

Organizers of the workshop, “Measurement of Active and Sedentary Behaviors: Closing the Gaps in Self-Report Methods”, are focused on the need to make meaningful progress in the key area of the self-report in physical activity research and assessment:

The two-day, invitation-only workshop following the briefing session will be focused on important and frank discussion about self-report measurement and developing novel approaches for difficult methodological issues. Conference papers will be published in a peer-reviewed journal supplement. In addition to ACSM, CDC and NIH, the workshop is supported by the National Cancer Institute and the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research.More

Regional Chapter Meetings: Save the Date

Several ACSM Regional Chapters have confirmed dates for their 2010 and 2011 annual meetings. For a complete list of dates and locations, see the ACSM website. ACSM Regional Chapters provide access to the ACSM expertise, research and practical information you need to stay current in your field. Plus, involvement provides opportunities to interact with professional colleagues and students across a variety of disciplines who might just be the key to your next research project or job opportunity. More

Policy Corner: House Committee Supports NIH; Senate Needs to Hear from You

House Gets the Message:
Last Thursday, the House Labor/Health and Human Services (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittee approved its FY 2011 bill by a vote of 11 – 5. The bill provides $32 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) – approximately $1 billion (3.2 percent) more than the FY 2010 level. In his opening statement, Chairman Obey (D-WI) referenced the fiscal constraints facing the subcommittee, noting that the bill’s total funding level is roughly $1.5 billion less that the President’s request. The chairman also said “A fifth theme [of the bill] is continued support for biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health, where the bill fully funds the Administration’s requested $1 billion increase. Within limited resources, this year’s bill puts the emphasis on translating basic research results into practical and available cures and treatments.”More

ACSM Research Awards Give a Boost to Emerging Scientists
Recipients react with surprise, humility

Recipients react with surprise, humility

Jim Pivarnik, Ph.D., FACSM, hands the gavel to Tom Best, M.D., Ph.D., FACSM. ACSM’s 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 presidents jointly presented the ACSM Research Awards at the annual awards banquet at the Annual Meeting in Baltimore.
ACSM annually honors individuals who have excelled in health-related research with the Charles M. Tipton National Student Research Award, the New Investigator Award and the Visiting Scholar Award. To find out more about each award, including application eligibility and deadlines, visit the ACSM Grant, Scholarship, Award and Fellowship Opportunities page at the ACSM website.

Four emerging researchers were honored in Baltimore as 2010 recipients of ACSM Research Awards. More
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Tips for Pregnant Runners
AOL Health
It wasn't long ago that women were strictly forbidden from running while pregnant out of fear that the fetus would be harmed because of a decrease in oxygen and blood flow to the uterus. Recent research not only proved those fears untrue, but found that rigorous exercise during pregnancy is safe and beneficial to mother and baby.

One study even found that at age 5, children of mothers who did vigorous exercise during pregnancy, including running, scored higher on tests of intelligence, coordination and language skills, compared to mothers whose only exercise during pregnancy was walking.

Dr. Robert Sallis, co-director of Sports Medicine Fellowship at Kaiser Permanente Fontana Medical Center and spokesperson for the American College of Sports Medicine said he can't emphasize enough what a positive thing it is for women to run while pregnant. More

Physical is a Test Kids Have to Pass
Indianapolis Star
Seeing a child's elation at hitting a home run, making a key football tackle or just learning to love a sport is one of the pure pleasures of parenthood.

But one of a parent's worst nightmares is seeing a child collapse on the football field, hit his head hard on the basketball court or slam into another soccer player.

Youth sports are all about teamwork, competition, discipline and fun. But the flip side can be grim: stress fractures, torn ACLs, concussions and, in very rare instances, even sudden cardiac death. More