You don't need to be signed in to read BMJ Blogs, but you can register here to receive updates about other BMJ products and services via our site.

Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK to host International Visiting Fellows

13 Sep, 17 | by BJSM

News Release

The FSEM (UK) will welcome three visiting fellows from the United States of America, on the 30 September 2017, for a two week programme. The travelling fellowship programme will take in centres of excellence in Sport and Exercise Medicine in the UK, ending with all three international guests presenting at the FSEM (UK) and BASEM Annual Conference, 12-13 October 2017, in the historical town of Bath.

The programme is an exchange between the FSEM (UK) and the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM), to encourage academic interchange, shared research and exploration of common clinical interests among Sport and Exercise Medicine leaders throughout the world. The experience includes the opportunity to view live patient encounters, tour Sport and Exercise Medicine facilities, share cases and spend time with regional experts.

This is the second half of the joint fellowship programme, during the first half of the exchange Dr Simon Kemp, MA, MB, BS, MRCGP, MSc (SEM), FFSEM visited sports medicine centres in Los Angeles, Seattle and the San Francisco area before serving as a keynote speaker at the 2017 AMSSM Annual Meeting in San Diego from May 8-13.

Dr Paul D Jackson, President of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK, comments“We are delighted to welcome our three visiting SEM fellows from the U.S .on this the first reciprocal AMSSM/FSEM travelling fellowship exchange. Our visitors will experience various aspects of SEM as it is practised across the UK including two of our National Centres, Headley Court, The National Football Centre and the EIS in Bath as well as the national conference.” 

AMSSM President Matt Gammons commented: “Hosting a physician with Dr. Kemp’s expertise and experience has added great value to our annual meeting. We are so pleased he was willing to serve as the International Traveling Fellow and allowed us to learn from his perspectives on the treatment and prevention of sports injuries.”

The second half of the exchange will include visits to centres of excellence in Sport and Exercise Medicine around the United Kingdom including the Institute of Sport Exercise and Health (ISEH) in London, the National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine in Loughborough, St George’s Park, Twickenham, the English and Scottish Institutes of Sport, the Royal Ballet School and the Defence Medical Research Centre in Headley Court.

The Faculty is looking forward to welcoming its visiting fellows:

Dr E. Lee Rice DO, FAAFP, FAOASM. Dr Rice will be joining as Senior Visiting Fellow, is an AMSSM Founder and Past President and Founder of the Lifewellness Institute. With over thirty years experience as a family and sports medicine physician Dr Rice is an internationally known authority in sports medicine, wellness and preventative medicine having authored numerous medical texts and journal articles.

Dr Ken Barnes MD MSc. Dr Barnes will be joining as a Junior Visiting Fellow and is a Sports Medicine Physician at Greensboro Orthopaedics focusing on the diagnosis and treatment of MSK injuries and conditions with a special interest in non-operative fracture management and sport related concussion. His current research is examining the impact of concussion history on balance, cognitive function, sensory processing, brain electrical activity and the influence of various genetic markers in both collegiate and high school student-athletes.

Dr Mederic Hall MD. Dr Hall will be joining as Junior Visiting Fellow and is Director of Musculoskeletal and Sports Ultrasound at the University Iowa specialising in the diagnosis and treatment of tendon disorders and other sport related MSK disorders with a special interest in the endurance athlete. An internationally recognised expert in diagnostic ultrasound imaging and ultrasound guided procedures. Dr Hall is board certified in sports medicine, physical medicine and rehabilitation, and is team physician for the Uni of Iowa Hawkeyes and the U.S. Ski Team.

The trip will conclude with the three AMSSM Visiting Fellows presenting at the 2017 joint conference of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (UK) and British Association of Sport and Exercise Medicine Sport & Exercise – Bringing us all together

The programme was made possible by the generous support of SEMPRIS in the UK and DJO Global in the US.

Professional Recognition in Sport and Exercise Medicine Now Available to all UK Doctors

14 Feb, 17 | by BJSM

News Release

13 February 2017

The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM) is opening its doors by enabling all medical doctors with skills in Sport and Exercise Medicine (SEM) to sit a new Membership Exam and apply for membership of the FSEM; the recognised, professional organisation which sets standards in SEM.

The skills base included in SEM; musculoskeletal (MSK) medicine, exercise medicine, physical activity assessment and team care are being increasingly recognised by the NHS and can provide much needed knowledge to help prevent and manage many of the common conditions and diseases seen today.

Dr Paul D Jackson, President of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine, comments: “We are pleased to be able to offer all doctors working across the spectrum of Sport and Exercise Medicine, the chance to be part of our specialty via a skills and knowledge based qualification.

“It is important that the FSEM supports the development of doctors working in musculoskeletal medicine, exercise medicine and team care at all levels. This will maintain standards of excellence and best practice for patients, which range from elite athletes to people recovering from illness and injury or managing a long term condition.”

The FSEM’s new Membership Exam will provide a national standard for those working in Sport and Exercise Medicine. This will allow those who appoint team doctors, or commission care, to identify those doctors with an appropriate level of training.

SEM has an application across both primary and secondary care. MSK Medicine and Exercise Medicine have the skills to help deliver ‘a radical upgrade in prevention and public health’[i]. The FSEM supports the ongoing skills, development and standards of SEM practitioners across the UK and sets the curriculum for higher specialty training.

The FSEM Membership Exam parts 1 and 2 will be available from September 2017. Further details can be found on the FSEM’s Membership Exam webpage.

[i] NHS Five Year Forward View 2014

Athletes with disabilities, movement is medicine, muscle imaging, tips for undergrads and more..highlights from the 2nd annual BASEM/FSEM conference

6 Apr, 16 | by BJSM

Undergraduate perspective on Sports & Exercise Medicine a BJSM blog series

By Ted Caplan

cardaff november 2015

With BASEM’s Spring Conference less than a week away, it is an apt time to reflect on the 2nd BASEM/FSEM Annual Conference in Cardiff (12th-13th November, 2015). This two-day event offered an in-depth look into: The Disabled Athlete, The Older Athlete, The Adolescent Athlete, Exercise in Health and Contact Sports. The programme also had sessions by the Society of Sports Therapists, FSEM, USEMS, ECOSEP and UKADIS.

The conference provided an excellent opportunity to hear from some of the leaders in the field of Sports and Exercise Medicine (SEM)- what follows are a few highlights.

Athletes with Disabilities Session

Boosting in Paralympic Sport – Protecting the Clean Athlete: Challenges for Education, Policy and Procedures (Prof Nick Webborn)

  • Boosting is the intentional induction of autonomic dysreflexia (AD) in individuals with spinal cord injuries (T6 or above) to enhance athletic performance via greater release of catecholamines, larger V02 max’s and higher peak power (1)
  • International Paralympic Committee (IPC) forbids athletes to compete in an AD state due to potential adverse consequences (e.g. cerebral haemorrhage, myocardial infarction and seizures). Interestingly, no reported performance-related AD adverse events.
  • IPC Targeting testing in sports where boosting is possible, and in athletes who can become dysreflexic
  • 7% of male athletes admitted to using AD to enhance performance (2), however no athletes found in a dysreflexic state in 7 year IPC screening programme. Perhaps screening protocols are not effective enough?

Activating Paralyzed Muscles: Necessary for Optimal Health? (Christof Smit MD)

  • Muscle paralysis only tip of the iceberg for spinal cord injuries (SCI); multiple complications (e.g. spasticity, incontinence, respiratory problems, blood pressure issues etc)
  • Arm exercises are unable to achieve sufficient intensity/durations and only activate small muscle masses
  • Functional electrical stimulation (FES) improves muscle size/performance and enhances circulation
  • FES activation of paralyzed muscles benefits individuals, attenuating several problems including pressure ulcers and low cardiovascular fitness
  • FES enables individuals to raise daily energy expenditure, necessary to reduce the high prevalence of obesity in SCI. Ideally should be incorporated into the daily lives of all individuals with SCI

The Role of Upper Body Physical Activity in the Prevention of Metabolic Disease in Spinal Cord Injured Humans (Dr James Bilzon)

  • Physical activity (PA) intervention can promote function and independence, whilst reducing biomarkers of cardiovascular and metabolic disease
  • Adults with spinal cord injury (SCI):
    • 4x as likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes (3)
    • 2x more likely to suffer from Cardiovascular Disease (4)
  • SCI individuals have reduced energy expenditure in comparison to able-bodied adults in multiple exercise/sport activities (e.g. weight training and table tennis) (5)
  • Future research should determine exercise regimes that facilitate adherence and participation

Undergraduate Sports and Exercise Medicine Society (USEMS) Session

A Birds Eye View of SEM (Dr Rhodri Martin)

  • In England, currently 41 trainees nationwide; Wales training programme is ‘on hold’. The current training pathway for SEM in the NHS is illustrated below:
flow chart


  • Currently, consultant level SEM physicians working for the NHS, Ministry of Defence, Institutes of Sport, Private Clinics, Professional Sport Teams and in Research
  • Top Tips for Undergraduates
    • Get involved at any level of sport (contact sport, trauma courses etc)
    • Become involved in physical activity promotion
    • Complete SSC/Research/Audits with relevance (ortho/rheum/cardio etc)

Movement is Medicine: The Bigger Picture – Movement as Medicine (Ms Ann Gates, @exerciseworks)

  • “Movement is medicine: for patients, for the public, and for nations”
  • Being aware of the big picture will enhance potential influence and leadership
  • Inequalities still exist in our communities in terms of access
  • Access to green spaces can increase physical activity for all ages, reduce health inequalities, increase levels of communal activity across different social groups and encourage active transport and community participation.
  • Work needs to be conducted with education systems and schools, to make physical activity part of the curriculum. Children can greatly benefit from school and community policy changes.

Staring into the Crystal Ball of SEM (Dr Rod Jaques)

Dr Jaques spoke about the future of SEM from personal experiences and reflected on the following:

  • The requirements of the SEM physician are ever-changing – learn to deal with uncertainty and adapt. “Be a chameleon”
  • SEM challenges for the future:
    • Look after your patients, not the sport
    • Learn to sell yourselves and your services
    • Inward-facing changes ahead – SEM curriculum, lack of jobs and training?
    • Outward facing challenges – wellness has been construed as an individual’s own responsibility (i.e. not the government’s); less need for SEM specialty?
  • Did the London 2012 Olympics help SEM? One positive outcome is that it has led to SEM specialty recognition 

Imaging Muscle Injuries – A Clear Picture (Dr Steve James)

  • Grading systems for injury determine the extent and severity of muscular injury, provide the clinician with prognostic information and guide therapeutic intervention (if required)
  • British Athletics has introduced a new muscle injury grading system (see
  • Poor prognostic factors for muscular injury on MRI:
    • Higher cross-sectional area involvement
    • Longer cranio-caudal length of injury
    • Intratendinous involvement of injury
  • Dr James’ approach to identifying and grading muscle injuries:
  1. Where is the injury? – Use axial fat suppressed/stir then axial T1
  2. Longitudinal extent of injury? – Use coronal/sagittal fat suppressed/stir
  3. Tendon rupture/ laxity? – Use coronal/sagittal T1

Top-,  in Ten Minutes (Dr Bryn Savill)

  1. Make Your Own Way – What are your goals? Tailor your time to your goals.
  2. Be Unique – How can you stand out? Highlight your strengths
  3. Find the Balance – Enjoy what you do; however, think about the here and now; make sure you pass all of your exams
  4. Absorb SEM – Undertake a wide variety of experiences, the more the better. Immerse yourself
  5. Find a Mentor and Make Contacts – The best way to do this is to Network. Network. Network


Ted Caplan BSc (Hons) Sport Science in Relation to Medicine is a 4th year medical student at the University of Bristol, UK.

Dr. Liam West BSc (Hons) MBBCh PG Dip SEM is originally from the UK and now is a Resident Medical Officer in Melbourne, Australia. He coordinates the “Undergraduate Perspective on Sports & Exercise Medicine” Blog Series for BJSM.

If you would like to contribute to the Undergraduate Perspective on SEM BJSM Blog, please contact Dr. West at

It’s National Obesity Awareness Week and now more than ever we need action.

14 Jan, 16 | by BJSM

By Stephen Morrison @HowManyMiles_

Now more than ever, we need action to prevent the growing trend in obesity and inactivity. Consider this as we encourage you and your peers to sign up for the UK’s National Obesity Forum’s JanUary campaign.

obesitySolutions put forward over ten years ago, are still being called for in new reports. How many reports have to be submitted and how many groups of experts have to gather to discuss obesity and inactivity before recommendations become policy?

“One third of children leaving primary school are overweight or obese, and the most deprived children are twice as likely to be obese than the least deprived. This has serious consequences for both their current and future health and wellbeing and we cannot continue to fail these children. There are many causes and no one single or simplistic approach will provide the answer. We therefore urge the Prime Minister to make a positive and lasting difference to children’s health and life chances through bold and wide ranging measures within his childhood obesity strategy.”

Powerful, emotive and encouraging words from Dr Sarah Wollaston, Chair of the Select Health Committee which published its report on child obesity on 30th November; read it HERE (1).

On the same day, the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (FSEM) announced that in coalition with a “ground-breaking group…of organisations from different but related fields, including medical, nursing, charity, and public health” it launched a new Obesity Stakeholder Group and produced a joint position to combat the epidemic of obesity.

As a Lay Adviser, to FSEM with special interest in obesity issues, and as a Jamie Oliver Food Revolution Ambassador, it is exciting to see this alliance of agencies work together. The joint position contains ten urgent interventions to hopefully influence the Childhood Obesity Strategy – expected to be published this month – and impact positively on our obesogenic environment. Read the position in detail HERE (2).

I say hopefully, because while the structure of the group is groundbreaking, the ideas are not. Obesity is not a new problem and these two reports are not the first attempts to influence UK Government policy on obesity issues.

Almost all of the recommended interventions called for in these reports were also considered to be urgently required twelve years ago, in a House of Commons Health Committee Obesity Report, which you can read HERE (3)

For instance, the first recommended intervention from the Obesity Stakeholder Group demands that:

“The Government should introduce a ban on advertisements before the 9pm watershed for food and drink products that are high in saturated fat, salt and sugar. Alongside this, regulation governing on-demand services and online advertisements should be tightened to align with broadcast regulations,”

Back in 2003, it was already accepted that advertising for less healthy foods was an issue:

“The Hastings Review offered stark evidence of the extent to which advertisers of less healthy foods were saturating broadcasting slots targeting children, who are often watching without any adult present. While we would not want to go so far as to call for an outright ban of all advertising of unhealthy food, given the clear evidence we have uncovered of the cynical exploitation of pester power we would very much welcome it if the industry as a whole acted in advance of any possible statutory control, and voluntarily withdrew such advertising”

The next intervention highlights the need to combat the pricing and promotion strategies of food retailers:

“Retailers should be set targets to improve in-store architecture to reduce the display of unhealthy foods in areas such as checkouts and end of aisle displays and increase price promotions of healthier alternative products.

In 2003, it was again recognised that the pricing and promotion of unhealthy food contributed to our obesity epidemic:

“As part of their healthy pricing strategies, supermarkets must commit themselves to phasing out price promotions that favour unhealthy foods, and also stop all forms of product placement which give undue emphasis to unhealthy foods, in particular the placement of confectionery and snacks at supermarket checkouts.”

The alliance also demands that:

“The Government should develop an independent set of incremental reformulation targets for industry, backed by regulation and which are measured and time bound. These targets should address salt, sugar and saturated fat levels. Compliance with these targets should be monitored and non-compliance should be backed by meaningful sanctions.”

This echoes the message in 2003:

“We recommend that, rather than targeting sugar and fat separately, the Government should focus on reducing the overall energy density of foods, and should work with the Food Standards Agency to develop stringent targets for reformulation of foods to reduce energy density within a short time frame. While we expect that reformulation could be achieved through voluntary arrangements with industry, and while we believe that the introduction of legislation in respect of labelling will encourage industry to make the entire product range healthier, the Government must be prepared, in the last resort, to underpin this with tougher measures in the near future if voluntary measures fail.”

In 2013, we were “appalled to learn of the desperate inadequacy of treatment and support services for obese children.” 

Fast forward to 2015 and we are still concerned about the provision of weight management services:

“The Government should commit to sustained investment to extend and increase the provision and quality of weight management services for families across the UK.”

I could cite more examples of the present repeating the past. And whilst both reports repeat very valid and necessary changes, there are questions about the lack of action at a policy level that should and need to be answered.

Why, twelve years later, are we still having to ask for these same interventions? How can we hope that today’s experts will be able to secure much needed policy changes.

How do we ensure that, this time, these interventions are implemented?

It is evident that we cannot rely solely on voluntary action by food manufacturers and retailers and that statutory regulation is now unfortunately necessary. The Responsibility Deal has had little effect and has confirmed that businesses are responsible only to their share-holders. Only through direct interventions, from Government or consumers, will they alter their practices.

A recent BMJ paper by Professor Theresa M Marteau highlighted the impact of product and portion sizes on consumer spending and consumption. It included the fact that ‘most national and international policies to prevent obesity highlight a need to reduce portion sizes’ (4). From this, and many other medical based papers, it is difficult to foresee a seismic shift in consumer behaviour without the Government initiating action. However, is there a climate for change within this Government and will they listen and act, or will the pressure placed upon them by other influencing groups prevail?

How many reports have to be submitted and how many groups of experts have to gather to discuss obesity and inactivity before their recommendations become policy?

The costs of obesity and inactivity are too high for these recommendations to be ignored again.

The formation of the Obesity Stakeholder Group is a significant step forward in the fight against obesity and it is to be commended for its bold report, but now, more than ever, we need action, not just words.

Join the NOAW JanUary pledge #dosomethinggoodforU and help turn obesity around


  1. House of Commons Health Committee, Childhood Obesity Brave and Bold Action. First report of session
  2. Obesity Stakeholder Group: Joint Position on Childhood Obesity published by the Royal College of Physicians London November 2015
  3. House of Commons Health Committee, Obesity, Third Report of Session 2003-04 10 May 2004
  4. Professor Theresa M Marteau (December 2015) Downsizing: policy options to reduce portion sizes to help tackle obesity, BMJ 2015;351:h5863


Stephen Morrison is Lay Adviser to the FSEM UK and works for the Department for Work and Pensions. He is an everyday Physical Activity Champion for HASSRA Scotland, a Fitness Day UK Ambassador, and Jamie Oliver Food Revolution Ambassador. Having turned his life and health around with exercise, Stephen’s agenda is to raise awareness of health inequalities and push for a more holistic approach to inactivity within community wide programmes. Stephen also champions the management of obesity with physical activity, the issues surrounding this in the public domain and a call for “a different approach”. Stephen is also a columnist for Man v Fat and charts his journey as a try athlete at

FSEM Supports Concussion Guidelines for the Education Sector

30 Jun, 15 | by BJSM

fsem_v_Variation_1The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM) is supporting new Concussion Guidelines for the Education Sector, produced by the Forum on Concussion in Sport and Physical Education in conjunction with the Sport and Recreational Alliance.

The guidelines have been created in order to alleviate parental concerns around the safety of school sport and to ensure a consistent and suitable management protocol is available to those working with children in the education sector.

Endorsed by an independent expert panel of Sport and Exercise Medicine, Neurology and Health specialists, the guidelines have a clear message on how to handle a suspected concussion in school aged-children and above, including the dangers of returning to play too soon. Concussion can occur during any physical activity and these simple guidelines will help those working in education to follow the four principles of concussion management:


Dr Mike England, Fellow of the FSEM, Community Rugby Medical Director of the Rugby Football Union and Facilitator of the guidelines comments: This has been a ground breaking initiative, with sport, education and health coming together to address a very important issue. We hope teachers will find these guidelines useful, as it is imperative that those working in the education sector know how to recognise concussion and take action. If I had to pick out one key message it would be if in doubt sit them out.”

Dr Roderick Jaques, President of the FSEM comments: “We identified the education sector as a priority area through our call for a national consensus on the prevention, assessment and management of concussion. We are now delighted to see the launch of concussion guidelines to help teachers, school staff, coaches, parents and carers to be aware of the danger signs and how a suspected concussion should be managed in the absence of a trained medical professional.”

The FSEM called for a national best practice consensus on concussion, for all sectors where concussion is encountered, last year and has been working with the UK National Sporting Bodies and Medical Royal Colleges. Easy to follow guidelines, like this, could be developed to deliver UK wide concussion guidelines applicable to anyone handling a suspected concussion.

View the Concussion Guidelines for the Education Sector at

Also see related BJSM material:

Consensus statement on concussion in sport: the 4th International Conference on Concussion in Sport held in Zurich, November 2012. Full text free online. (downloaded >100 k times)

Guest blog by @DrJohnOrchard. On Andre Villas-Boas, the unreasonable pressure on coaches/managers, and why player health should be in clinicians’ hands



Scotland’s concussion guidelines highlight the need for a UK wide approach

4 Jun, 15 | by BJSM

News Release – The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine

sealThe Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM) welcomes the launch of Scottish Sport Concussion Guidelines for the general public and for grassroots sports participants, where specialists in Sports and Exercise Medicine are not available to manage concussed players. The FSEM would like to see similar guidelines produced, not just for sport, but to improve recognition, assessment and management of all concussions in the UK.

Dr Roderick Jaques, President of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK comments:

Concussion is recognised to be one of the most challenging of injuries to diagnose, assess and manage. Best practice clinical pathways from injury to return to play, work or school for a concussed person, outside of the elite sports setting, are not always easily accessible in the UK.

“The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine fully supports the new Scottish guidelines for the recognition, assessment and management of concussion. We would like to see great initiatives like this developed to deliver UK wide concussion guidelines applicable to anyone handling a suspected concussion.”

Sport Scotland, the Scottish National Sporting Bodies, Medical Royal Colleges and the Scottish CMO have produced the guidelines that are intended to provide information on how to recognise sports concussion and on how sports concussion should be managed from the time of injury through to a safe return to play.

The guidelines stress that, at all levels and in all sports, if an athlete is suspected of having a concussion, they must be immediately removed from play.

Any player with a second concussion within 12 months, a history of multiple concussions, player with unusual symptoms or prolonged recovery should be assessed and managed by health care providers (multidisciplinary) with experience in sports-related concussions.

The overriding message is that ALL concussions are serious and if in doubt, sit them out!

The FSEM recognised the need for a national best practice consensus on concussion last year and has been working with a group including UK National Sporting Bodies and Medical Royal Colleges. The group would like to see consistent best practice, recognition, management guidelines and care pathways adopted from ground level up, across all sectors in the UK and by all health and allied professional groups, where concussion is encountered.

The role of exercise intervention in adopting a ‘choosing wisely culture’ in clinical practice

18 May, 15 | by BJSM


News Release – The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine

The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK (FSEM) supports the launch of a Choosing Wisley Programme in clinical practice by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges. As the NHS faces a £30bn funding gap by 2020[i] the need to tackle preventable illness and disease effectively and efficiently has never been greater.

Medical decisions based on the best match between what is known about the benefits and harms of each intervention and the goals and preferences of each patient is a common sense approach outlined in the Choosing Wisely in the UK report. However, the pressure on general practitioners and doctors to provide a quick solution is enormous, while sickness and absence rises with an increase in many preventable conditions.

A sustainable alternative intervention is available, which can improve public health for the long term and reduce the pressures facing the NHS. Physical activity and Exercise Medicine are under resourced and under used by the health profession and can provide cost effective prevention and intervention for many common conditions and illnesses [ii].

A good example of this in practice is the management of musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions, which account for up to 30% of all primary care consultations [iii]. Sport and Exercise Medicine doctors can offer alternative pathways in managing common MSK conditions. The majority do not convert to surgery or need disease modifying drugs and can be managed in different models of care which streamline the pathway for patients and can be more cost effective for commissioners, while still attractive for hospital trusts.

If the NHS routinely offered an effective and patient centred programme of physical activity and exercise medicine interventions, it could lead to a real reduction in the over-use of more established clinical treatments.

For further information view the FSEM’s Manifesto – Making the Physically Active Choice.

For further evidence of the effectiveness of exercise medicine in treating MSK conditions view – A Fresh Approach in Practice


[i]  NHS England 2013

[ii] A Fresh Approach – FSEM NHS information document 2012

[iii] A Fresh Approach in Practice – NHS Information document 2014


A preventative strategy to target “The Nation’s Hidden Health Threat” (physical inactivity)

7 Apr, 15 | by BJSM

News Release – The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine

The Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (FSEM) UK is asking MPs to recognise physical inactivity as one of the largest health threats in the UK. In its Manifesto to Improve Public Health, the FSEM sets out 8 priorities to put physical activity at the core of the UK’s healthcare system via a national preventative strategy.

kids-walkPhysical inactivity is now a major cause of ill health in the UK, equivalent to smoking and alcohol abuse[i], it is also a much larger health threat than obesity[ii] and directly contributes to 1 in 6 deaths.[iii] Currently, physical activity is not a frequently used health intervention in the UK and the FSEM calls upon politicians, policymakers and the next Government to address this.

Dr Roderick Jaques, President of the FSEM comments: “The healthcare agenda has been focused for too long on obesity whilst physical inactivity, a larger health threat, has gone largely unrecognized  Addressing physical inactivity through prescribed exercise provides a fresh approach to the prevention and management of avoidable diseases like cancer, diabetes, heart disease and many common musculo-skeletal conditions.

“Exercise medicine can also provide sustainable treatment for excess weight, obesity and mental health and it has an enormous application for workplace wellness and rehabilitation. Our manifesto includes essential priorities for the next Government to put physical activity at the core of healthcare and communities, providing a sustainable solution to public health and the pressures facing the NHS.”

The FSEM supports a recent study by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges[iv] recognising exercise as a “miracle cure”, too often over looked. The report focuses on the less well-known benefits of regular physical activity and the increasing risks of a sedentary lifestyle and asks doctors to take a leading role in the fight against a sedentary lifestyle.

Sport and Exercise Medicine is a relatively new and largely under-capitalised specialty in the NHS, it has a huge application across both primary and secondary care to improve public health. The cost of physical inactivity to the UK is now £20 billion per year[v]; putting physical activity at the heart of our healthcare system would not only save lives, it would save the NHS substantial amounts of money.

See Dr. Khan’s recent and related blog on the best ‘dose’ of physical activity HERE

Follow the FSEM’s campaign on Twitter, @FSEM_UK #HiddenHealthThreat


[i] Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow: Maintaining health and treating illness through regular physical activity January 2015

[iii] Public Health England: Everybody active every day November 2014

[iv] Academy of Medical Royal Colleges: Exercise the miracle cure February 2015

[v] All Party Commission on Physical Activity: Tackling Physical Inactivity a Co-ordinated Approach 2014

Professor Karim Khan Awarded Honorary Fellowship of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine UK

6 Nov, 14 | by BJSM

 By Beth Cameron, PR & Communications, Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine @FSEM_UK

Prof Karim Khan and Dr Roderick JaquesProfessor Karim Khan was awarded Honorary Fellowship of the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine at the BASEM/FSEM joint Annual Conference, Walk 500 Miles, on Thursday 2 October 2014. Professor Khan received the award in recognition of his international career in Sport and Exercise Medicine.

Professor Khan is a truly international sports physician. He was educated in Australia, and studied Medicine and Medical Research at the University of Melbourne. He was awarded a PhD in Medicine by the University of Melbourne with a thesis titled “The effect of mechanical loading on the musculoskeletal system: clinical and laboratory studies”.  More recently he has studied and completed an MBA from the University of British Columbia, Canada.

His career spans the globe. Starting in Australia, he moved to Canada and is currently working in Qatar as the Director of Research and Education at Aspetar Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Hospital. He is in his 7th year as Editor in Chief of the British Journal of Sports Medicine, which has become the leading international academic journal and digital media hub for the speciality.

Professor Khan is authorised as a Sports Medicine Physician by the Canadian Academy of Sports Medicine (CASEM) and the Australasian College of Sports Physicians (ACSP). He is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and Sports Medicine Australia. He served as Sports Physician to several teams, from a range of disciplines from Ballet to Basketball. His main research areas are in exercise promotion for health (including bone health and falls prevention) and pathogenesis and imaging of tendinopathies. He has published over 250 original research articles in addition to 3 books. He is a co-author of Brukner and Khan’s Clinical Sports Medicine, which has been published in three languages and is in its 4th edition. In 2001, Professor Khan was awarded the Australian Prime Minister’s Medal for service to sports medicine. In 2012, he was profiled in ‘The Lancet” with a biography titled ‘Good Sports’.

The FSEM awards up to two Honorary Fellows per year via its Members and Fellows Committee. The award of Honorary Fellow is made where there is an outstanding contribution to the specialty of Sport and Exercise Medicine throughout an individual’s professional career.

4 ‘must attend’ BASEM/FSEM conference sessions on physical activity and young people

6 Sep, 14 | by BJSM

By Beth Cameron, PR & Communications, Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine @FSEM_UK

action schools logoThis year’s joint BASEM and FSEM Conference, Walk 500 Miles, will include four, not to be missed, sessions covering paediatric medicine. The session starts at 2pm in Edinburgh’s historic Assembly Rooms, on Thursday 2nd October, with Heather McKay, Professor of the Faculty of Medicine University of British Columbia, opening with A School-Based Physical Activity Success Story – Action Schools! a trial based in British Columbia.

The Action Schools! programme uses a comprehensive health model (socio-ecological approach) to provide children with healthier opportunities for physical activity and healthy eating at school. Professor McKay’s presentation will cover 10 years of practical lessons from school based trials and evidence from efficacy, effectiveness and implementation trials from the inception of Action Schools! in 2004 covering 10 schools, to its scale-up covering 1500 schools.

The second session brings us closer to home with Dr Nicola Crabtree, Principal Clinical Scientist and Research Physicist at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, presenting Physical Activity during Childhood. Dr Crabtree will discuss bone as a living tissue, which responds to local and environmental stimuli and howphysical activity and mechanical loading plays an important role in the development of an optimal skeleton resistant to fracture, both during childhood and later adult life.

Neil Armstrong, Professor of Paediatric Physiology and the Provost of the University of Exeter, will follow this by asking: Young People are Fit and Active – Fact or Fiction? This presentation will provide critical analysis of what we know about young people’s physical activity and aerobic fitness in relation to health and well-being. The dose-response evidence underpinning the health-related benefits of physical activity and aerobic fitness during childhood and adolescence is not as compelling as that during adulthood. How many young people are fit and active enough?

The Paediatric session closes with Dr Karl Johnson, Consultant Paediatric Radiologist at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, talking about Imaging Acute and Chronic Injuries in Children and Adolescents. This talk will highlight the imaging differences between children and adults and illustrate the various imaging modalities available. In many instances, the injuries are specific to the paediatric age group as a consequence of the inherent weakness of the growing skeleton and the different dynamics of the paediatric musculoskeletal system.

To book your place at Walk 500 miles visit the conference web page at

Competing interest: This page was posted directly by @FSEM_UK via the BJSM Blog Editor – it was NOT commissioned by the Editor in Chief of BJSM Karim Khan, nor was it edited in any way by him. (arm’s length)

BJSM blog homepage


A peer review journal for health professionals and researchers in sport and exercise medicine. Visit site

Creative Comms logo

Latest from British Journal of Sports Medicine

Latest from British Journal of Sports Medicine