Sports Medicine Bulletin
Sept. 6, 2011

Active Voice: Revisiting Dangers of Football Practice in the Dog Days of Summer
By Lacy Holowatz, Ph.D.
Lacy A. Holowatz, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of Kinesiology at Penn State University in University Park, Pennsylvania. She utilizes in vivo and in vitro approaches using human cutaneous circulation to examine the underlying signaling mechanisms mediating microvascular dysfunction with primary human aging, hypercholesterolemia and essential hypertension. This is the first of two articles appearing in consecutive issues of SMB that addresses the serious hazard of sports training and competition under conditions of high environmental temperatures. This contribution by Dr. Holowatz addresses physiological issues that increase risk of hyperthermia injury to athletes, a particular concern for the many young athletes around the U.S. who have recently started football practice. The second article, to appear next week from Dr. Scott Pyne, will focus on recommendations for prevention and management of heat-related exercise injuries on the field.

This summer, the majority of the U.S. has experienced prolonged periods of high environmental temperatures and high humidity. As humans, we have the ability to thermoregulate to maintain body temperature within narrow limits during exercise and exposure to heat. However, as of the beginning of August, two heat-related deaths in high school football players have occurred along with the collapse and untimely death of an assistant coach. Therefore, with two-a-day football practices taking place for both college and high school athletes, it is important to understand the physiological issues, dangers, preventative strategies and important safety recommendations to keep athletes safe. MOREMore

Policy Corner: Members Invited to ACSM's Sept. 18 Preconference for UN Summit, Emphasizing and Supporting Physical Activity in Global Health

In last week's SMB, ACSM announced that we, bringing together several key partners, will convene an invitational preconference on Sept. 18 as a prelude to the United Nations High-Level Meeting on Non-Communicable Diseases (see video) at the UN headquarters in New York. There, ACSM will announce a series of initiatives to ensure there is added infrastructure and resources to allow nations worldwide to heed the call of the UN to do more in combating risk factors for NCDs, especially physical inactivity. In addition, ACSM has been very active in a global consortium (the Non-communicable Diseases Alliance), and that collaboration will continue following the UN meeting.

Response has been strong from participants eager to interact and work strategically with thought-leading international health officials, business leaders, athletes and other panelists of influence. Emerging from the preconference will be a global platform to promote physical activity as a complement to other important national policy issues, such as healthy nutrition, tobacco control, urban safety, environmental issues and transportation.

There is no fee to attend, but space is very limited. Please RSVP to UN.Summit@acsm.org by Friday, Sept. 9. Future SMB articles will keep you posted on this emerging, international movement. For essential background information, see this agenda and rationale document.More

NIH Seeks Input on High-Risk, High-Payoff Ideas for Common Fund

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is looking for input from ACSM members to help them identify new programs for their Common Fund. ACSM members can weigh in on any of the 27 topic suggestions ranging from "artificial organs as tools for translation" to "research and development of new medications to treat chronic pain." The deadline for input is Sept. 14, 2011.

The NIH Common Fund supports exceptionally innovative programs that are inherently high-risk but that have the potential for high-payoff by catalyzing research across NIH and in the biomedical research community. The Common Fund currently supports 26 different programs and is looking for new ideas for 2013.More

Abstract Deadline Approaching for ACSM Conference on Physical Activity, Cognitive Function, and Academic Achievement

Don't miss an opportunity to showcase your research, programs and best practices! Submit your abstract for the ACSM Conference on Physical Activity, Cognitive Function, and Academic Achievement by Sept. 19, 2011.

The conference will be held Nov. 17-18, 2011, in Washington, D.C. Renowned researchers, educators and policymakers will share evidenced-based knowledge supporting the promising connection among physical activity, brain function and academic achievement. Attendees will have a unique opportunity to network with national experts in the field, participate in a town hall discussion, and learn how to implement policy changes and programming that will impact today's and tomorrow's students. Plus, there will be top keynote speakers, scientific abstracts, symposia and ACSM continuing education credits.

FASEB MARC Travel Awards are available for this conference! Award applicants must have submitted an abstract for the ACSM Conference on Physical Activity, Cognitive Function, and Academic Achievement to be eligible for the $1,000 travel award. FASEB MARC Travel Awards applications are due Oct. 10, 2011 at 5:00 p.m. ET.More

President Obama Lends Support to National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

On Wednesday, President Barack Obama signed a proclamation declaring September 2011 as National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. President Obama's backing of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month further emphasizes the importance of eliminating childhood obesity and ensuring the health and well-being of our country’s future.

President Obama's proclamation states: "As a Nation, our greatest responsibility is to ensure the well-being of our children. By taking action to address the issue of childhood obesity, we can help America's next generation reach their full potential."

ACSM joins a wide array of organizations to organize and promote National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, educating parents, policymakers and others about the problem and encouraging preventive action on childhood obesity. Check out healthierkidsbrighterfutures.org to get involved and learn more about National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month.More

Vigorous Exercise Burns Calories 14 Hours After Workout
USA Today
People who exercise vigorously get a bonus for their hard work: They continue to burn extra calories long after they're finished working out, a new study shows.

Researchers found that men who biked intensely on a stationary bike for 45 minutes burned an extra 190 calories over the 14 hours following their workout. This is in addition to the calories they used during the exercise.

"This is the best evidence we have that a lot of calories are burned after intense exercise," says the study's lead author David Nieman, an exercise researcher with Appalachian State University in Kannapolis, N.C. More

The MD: Many Factors in Finding the Right Doctor
Los Angeles Times
A few weeks ago, Valerie Ulene scheduled a consultation with a new physician she knew very little about. Her decision to see the new physician was based on nothing more than friends' recommendations, and, when the day of her appointment rolled around, she arrived at her office having no idea what to expect.

Before the physician even walked into the office where she sat waiting to meet her, the diplomas mounted prominently on her walls had me convinced I'd made a good choice. There were loads of them, from some of the best schools in the country: Undergraduate degree at Brown, medical school at Cornell, a residency at UCLA.

With training like that, she had to be a good physician, right?More

Prescribing Exercise to Treat Depression
The New York Times
Can a stroll help ease depression? That question preoccupied Dr. Madhukar H. Trivedi, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, after several of his patients, all suffering from serious depression, mentioned that they felt happier if they went for a walk. The patients in question were taking the widely prescribed antidepressants known as S.S.R.I.’s, for selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, but not responding fully. They remained, by clinical standards, depressed. Dr. Trivedi and his colleagues began to wonder if adding a formal "dose" of exercise would increase their chances of getting better.

Certainly the possibility was worth investigating. Clinical depression, as anyone who has experienced or watched a loved one struggle with the condition knows, can be stubbornly intractable. Even if patients have been taking an antidepressant for months, recovery rates tend to hover below 50 percent. More