Sports Medicine Bulletin
Oct. 26, 2010

Active Voice: Exercise and Diet Promote Safe Weight Loss in Obese Older Adults
By Thomas W. Buford, Ph.D.
Active Voice is a column by experts in science, medicine and allied health. The viewpoints expressed do not necessarily reflect positions or policies of ACSM.

Thomas W. Buford, Ph.D., is an ACSM member and Lecturer in the Department of Aging and Geriatric Research at the University of Florida in Gainesville. His translational research focuses on investigating the causes of skeletal muscle dysfunction and frailty in advanced age, including exercise and dietary habits. Dr. Buford presented research related to this commentary at the ACSM Conference on Integrative Physiology of Exercise (IPE) held in Miami last month.

Recent census data indicate that the number of older adults (>65 years) in the U.S. is rapidly increasing and will continue to rise through the next half century. This increase in the older adult population will soon place significant strain on the country’s health care system, as age is an independent risk factor for numerous debilitating conditions. Additionally, approximately 35 percent of older adults are considered obese, putting them at an even greater risk for developing chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Thus, obese older adults are a particularly high risk group, and effective interventions are needed to improve body composition in these individuals.

Several studies have suggested that while dieting alone may induce weight loss, it may also exacerbate the loss of skeletal muscle in obese older adults and further compromise their physical function. Conversely, studies have shown exercise-only interventions to improve muscle function but not necessarily induce weight loss. Therefore, we conducted a randomized trial among obese older women to compare a weight-loss intervention that included both diet and exercise training to a control group that received education regarding healthy lifestyle choices. The trial examined the effects of the interventions on physical function, body composition and molecular signals relevant to skeletal muscle function. More

Last Chance to Submit Abstracts for the 2011 Annual Meeting, EIM World Congress

There are a just few days left to submit your abstracts for the 2011 ACSM Annual Meeting and 2nd Annual World Congress on Exercise is Medicine®. The ACSM Program Committee will accept submissions until Monday, Nov. 1, 2010.

Submit your scientific and clinical case abstracts here. The 2011 ACSM Annual Meeting will be held May 31-June 4, 2011, in Denver, Colorado. Please contact the education department at with questions.More

Policy Corner: ACSM Forms Advocacy Coalition for Physical Activity Guidelines Bill

The U.S. Congress is currently considering legislation (H.R. 3851, S. 1810) to require the Department of Health and Human Services to publish national physical activity guidelines at least once every five years, as they do with dietary guidelines. As science and medicine clearly demonstrate the benefits of physical activity and exercise, ACSM believes all Americans deserve to know how much exercise they need to promote health and combat obesity.

In order to support the efforts of Congress to pass the legislation, ACSM has formed a coalition of supportive organizations whose main goal is to pass physical activity guidelines legislation. The Federal Physical Activity Guidelines Coalition (tagline: “It’s Time for America to Move”) will create opportunities and provide Congress with the resources they need to advance the legislation. Key organizations who have already signed on as partners include:

State/Community Partners
Georgia Soccer
EMH Center for Health & Fitness
Massachusetts Association of Clinical Exercise Physiologists
Michigan Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance

National Partners
American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation
American Council on Exercise
American Heart Association
International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association
Medical Fitness Association
National Association for Heath & Fitness
National Association for Sport and Physical Education
National Athletic Trainers Association
Plus One
Pop Warner Little Scholars
Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association
The Active Network
The Healing Moves Foundation
United States Rollerskating
Youth Fitness Coalition, Inc.

If you, as an ACSM member, are a member of another professional organization with an interest in this issue, please consider working with their leadership and sending a letter of endorsement to ACSM to join the coalition. E-mail Sean Keefer, ACSM’s director of government relations and global policy at or 317-352-3843 for more information.

ACSM expects to publicly launch the coalition in the coming weeks and looks forward to working with all of you to pass this important physical activity guidelines legislation.More

An Inside Look: November 2010 Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise

Check out the November issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise® (MSSE), available online now. ACSM members can access the journal for free – simply log in at the ACSM website and click “My ACSM.”

MSSE Editor-in-Chief Andrew J. Young, Ph.D., FACSM offers his insights into the November issue: More

Help ACSM Expand Our Global Contact Network

To further our globalization efforts, ACSM is working to establish a greater presence in developing countries. We’d like to ask your help in connecting us with people who live in any of the following countries:

If you have colleagues or friends in any of these countries that would be interested in learning more about ACSM, please reach out to us via e-mail at

Hockey Urged to Ban All Blows to Head by Concussions Panel
The New York Times
A conference on reducing concussions in hockey recommended prohibiting contact to the head at every level of the game, including the N.H.L., and banning body checking by 11- and 12-year-olds to reduce the high rate of concussions among youth players.

“Behavioral change, cultural change won’t happen overnight,” said a conference organizer, Dr. Michael J. Stuart, the chief medical officer for USA Hockey and the father of three sons who played in the N.H.L.

“The clock is ticking,” he said. “If we say we need additional long-term injury research to validate any kind of recommendation, there will be a lot of athletes who’ll suffer. So we decided, let’s make a move to effect change.” More

Women Sweat Less Readily Than Men
Men sweat more easily during exercise than women, a new study finds.

Japanese researchers instructed male and female volunteers to ride an exercise bicycle at varying levels of intensity and found that men are more efficient at sweating. Basically, women need to build up more body heat than men before they start sweating. More

Exercise Science Students Help the Elderly Get in Shape
Rutgers Focus
For older people, it’s a chance to show they’re still physically vital.

For Rutgers undergraduates, it’s a moment of inspiration and an opportunity to get some hands-on experience in the field of senior health and fitness.

The New Jersey Senior Olympic Games, which took place in this month, drew more than 700 older athletes for 16 sporting events, including basketball, swimming, bowling, darts, billiards, fencing, track and field, and softball. More