Sports Medicine Bulletin
Jul. 24, 2012

Active Voice: Exercise Your Pain Away
By Dane B. Cook, PhD, FACSM and Laura D. Ellingson, PhD
Viewpoints presented in SMB commentaries reflect opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of ACSM.

Dane B. Cook, Ph.D., FACSM, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Kinesiology and co-director of the Exercise Psychology Laboratory at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. His research focuses on determining the psychobiological mechanisms of pain and fatigue and learning how exercise can be used to better understand and treat these phenomena in healthy adults and those suffering from chronic pain and fatigue.

Laura D. Ellingson, Ph.D., is a Post-Doctoral Research Scientist in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her research focuses on the influence of exercise and physical activity behaviors on central nervous system processing of pain in patients with chronic pain conditions and healthy individuals.

See the July, 2012 issue of ACSM's Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise® (MSSE) for the research report they authored with colleagues, entitled “Physical Activity is Related to Pain Sensitivity in Healthy Women.”

Pain is an increasing public health concern. At any given time up to 50% of adults are affected by various acute pain conditions (ranging from everyday aches and pains to serious injuries). Roughly 20% of the population suffers from chronic musculoskeletal pain. The consequences of living with pain are dire. Pain interferes with activities of daily living, negatively impacts personal relationships, decreases work productivity and increases health care utilization. Unfortunately, aside from drugs, there are few evidence-based options for dealing with either acute or chronic pain.More

September is National Childhood Obesity Month

Our shared concern over childhood obesity is well supported by data. More than 23 million children and teenagers in the U.S. are overweight or obese, according to recent measurements. In 2010, health and medical experts declared childhood obesity an epidemic. Also, while health consequences are concerning, the financial implications of childhood obesity are staggering. Obesity requires $14 billion per year in direct health care costs in the U.S.

An invitation to observe National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month
Can you and your organization observe National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month (September) and help spread the word? COAM is an informal movement of individuals and all types of organizations, drawing national attention to the childhood obesity epidemic that is a serious issue for U.S. youth. Across America, events and educational efforts throughout September will address the problem and offer solutions.

It’s simple to participate:

  1. Share with your members and community the fact that September is Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and provide a link to the downloadable toolkit filled with resources and ideas.
  2. Look for ways to observe COAM and encourage healthy lifestyles. Can you feature COAM in your newsletter, website or social media messaging? How about using a COAM theme in some of your regular events or activities?
  3. Contact for more information, to suggest a link to resources relating to childhood obesity, or to have your organization listed as a COAM partner. Look for an announcement soon about our new website,
Thank you for considering how you can observe National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and help all children enjoy the benefits of active, healthy lifestyles. More

Policy Corner: ACSM and Congressional Fitness Caucus to brief U.S. Congress on Lancet series, urgency of physical activity and health on Thursday

ACSM is teaming up with the Congressional Fitness Caucus this week to brief members of Congress and their staff on Lancet series relating to physical activity and health. The briefing will provide an overview of essentials and breakthroughs of health and economic benefits of modest changes in physical activity and diet, strategies that work for sports, schools, and worksites, and a briefing on key national and international developments in physical activity, healthy lifestyles, and disease prevention. Rep. Brian Bilbray & Rep. Ron Kind serve as co-chairs of the fitness caucus. To read the Lancet articles on physical activity, please visit Access to the articles is free, but you must create a login to view the PDF files.More

Maria Urso, Ph.D., FACSM, to receive prestigious PECASE award for research

ACSM congratulates Maria Urso, FACSM, who will receive the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, or PECASE, on July 31. The PECASE is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Urso, a researcher from the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, is among nearly 100 other young scientists and engineers who will receive this year’s award, which is based on scientific merit and involvement in the community.

Urso holds bachelor of science and a master of science degrees in kinesiology from the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, R.I., and earned a doctor of philosophy in kinesiology from the University of Massachusetts. She was then commissioned and served four years in the Army as a captain at USARIEM and has stayed on as a civilian since 2010. Urso’s research focuses on the physiology of skeletal muscle cells and muscle injuries.

Urso is an ACSM Fellow, co-chairs ACSM’s Cellular and Molecular Biology Interest group and serves on the Program Committee. She is also a committee member for the Women in Physiology group of the American Physiological Society. Maria enjoys running and is a member of the All-Army Women's Marathon team.

View news releaseMore

Physical inactivity can contribute to premature deaths
USA Today
Physical inactivity kills. It is causing about one in 10 premature deaths around the world annually, says an analysis out today.

The U.S. government's physical activity guidelines recommend that people do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week. More

Study: Knee ligament injuries may be more common in men
Men have a greater number of knee ligament injuries than women, despite research suggesting that women's knees are more prone to anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears and surgeries to fix them, according to a Swedish study.

The report, published in the American Journal of Sports medicine, counted the injuries across the entire Swedish population, not just among players of particular sports or in certain regions. More