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Domhnall MacAuley: Top ten sports medicine publications in the last year

20 Sep, 12 | by BMJ

Domhnall MacauleyThe top ten publications of the last year in sport and exercise medicine? It is inevitably, a personal choice and I selected these papers because they challenge, educate, and question current practice.

Some papers—great papers—that didn’t quite make my top ten: Sudden deaths among competitors in big city marathons always prompt media soul searching. It is reassuring, therefore, that a paper in the New England Journal of Medicine found the incidence rate of cardiac arrest to be 0.54 per 100,000 participants. I enjoyed another paper in a later issue of the same journal showing that Tai Chi (which in his blog Richard Lehman compares to slow disco dancing) helps patients with Parkinson’s Disease. I am interested in the application of the principles of sport and exercise medicine into mainstream medicine and found a meta analysis in Circulation:Heart Failure showing that testosterone supplementation might improve functional capacity in heart failure patients particularly intriguing. more…

Frederick Stourton: No miracle diet for athletes

23 Apr, 12 | by BMJ Group

In a quiet house in Soho, where Charles Dickens reputedly wrote “A Tale of Two Cities,” C3 Collaborating for Health hosted a breakfast meeting last week on the importance of nutrition in athletics; a hot topic with the London 2012 games fast approaching. Breakfast reflected the theme, with not a bacon rasher or greasy pastry in sight, and Roger Clemens, president of the Institute of Food Technologists, and a former athlete himself, gave his views on how athletes could best prepare themselves. His answer? Optimum nutrition and optimum exercise provide optimum performance.

But what is optimum nutrition for any one athlete? Do athletes know what they are consuming, and how it is affecting them? What to eat? When to eat it? How much should they eat? What’s the right way to get to the weight they need to be? What supplements will boost their performance, and which will disqualify them? more…

Domhnall MacAuley: Science, shoeless, and a syringe culture. Some highlights from UKSEM

30 Nov, 11 | by BMJ Group

Domhnall MacauleyThe major UK sport and exercise medicine conference (UKSEM) took place this week in Excel. It was huge event that attracted most of the world figures in sport and exercise medicine. We at the BMJ are also keen to address the important issues that link health, sport, and exercise. While the sports media focus on elite athletes, we take a wider view and you will already have noted recent related research and editorial content. The UKSEM conference gave us further insight into some important developments and challenges. more…

Domhnall MacAuley: Doctors in this week’s sports headlines

29 Sep, 11 | by BMJ Group

Domhnall MacauleyCaught in a spat between a multi million pound footballer and a multi billion pound football club. Bet they didn’t warn him about that in medical school. Owen Hargreaves said he felt like a “guinea pig” while his injury was treated at Manchester United – and the club doctor, Steve McNally, was named in the media. We don’t know the details and can only interpret what is written, but in the Guardian report Hargeaves said his problems stemmed from his treatment with prolotherapy. Sir Alex Ferguson defended the reputation of the medical staff, and the club said they had some of the very best medical staff in world sport. more…

Domhnall MacAuley: Fitness, beauty, rowing, and reality

9 Sep, 11 | by BMJ Group

Domhnall MacauleyA festival of fitness, athleticism, and aesthetic beauty – the world rowing championships. After a week watching some of the world’s top athletes, you begin to think everyone is tall, muscular, toned, and tanned. Only for mirrors you might believe you were one too. Very few fatties to be seen and only amongst the coaches or supporters (who won chocolate chip medals?). It was a nostalgic trip to an event in which I competed before most of these competitors were born. And, I wasn’t the only one. I saw many former athletes in their forties and fifties, (competitors in the  ’79 and ’89 World Champs at the same venue)  looking wistfully across the water at their past. Youth racing by. more…

Domhnall MacAuley: Barefoot runners, Western habits, and GP records – more from ACSM

9 Jun, 11 | by BMJ Group

Domhnall MacauleyShould we abandon running shoes? Running shoes are a relatively new phenomenon – primitive man did not wear shoes when hunting in the savannah and would look in wonder at modern running shoes with their huge wedges, motion support, and cushioned soles. They have changed the way we run and, in spite of all the claims, running injury rates remain the same. Daniel Lieberman (Harvard) presented some anthropological and observational work that form the background to his paper in Nature, and Irene Davis (Harvard) took it a step further by advocating that we should try to run without shoes. Gait analysis and force plate studies are quite convincing: runners wearing shoes have a high impact heel strike and large wedges increase the moment arm accentuating pronation. Although the arguments were persuasive, I am not ready to abandon running shoes just yet. And, Irene did introduce some caveats – don’t run in the cold, where your numb feet will not feel injury, don’t run in the dark, and don’t run on a rough surface – which pretty much excludes most of my running opportunities. more…

Rebecca Robinson on being an athlete and sports and exercise medicine registrar

20 May, 11 | by BMJ Group

Rebecca RobinsonIt seemed like the perfect match: combining my dream job as a new registrar in sports and exercise medicine, with plans to develop my competitive career in international athletics. In August 2010, I’d just competed for GB in the Barcelona European marathon and was commencing a post as a new ST3.

However, six months later, injured, I found myself in the unexpected situation of becoming a doctor and patient simultaneously in the sports medicine field: an experience that, as an athlete, was utterly frustrating, but as a trainee, illuminating, and instructive for my future practice. more…

Kirsten Patrick: Sports medicine and the Olympic legacy

15 Mar, 11 | by BMJ Group

Kirsten PatrickI doubt that this is the first place you’ll read about the 2012 Olympics today as it is 500 days to the start of the games and the tickets go on sale today. It’s also unlikely that this is the first time you are reading that the 2012 Olympics were “sold” to Londoners on the back of the “legacy” that hosting the games will leave. We at the BMJ have wondered about whether that legacy will include an enduring health benefit to the British people, or at least to Londoners, especially if you consider the findings of a systematic review BMJ published last year that examined the health and socio-economic impact of major multi-sports events 1978-2008 and concluded that there wasn’t much of a long term legacy associated with hosting international sporting competitions. more…

Domhnall MacAuley: Was Jesus a jogger?

11 Nov, 08 | by BMJ Group

Domhnall Macauley It was his idea. But, neither of us was wimp enough to pull out. Dragging ourselves out of bed at 6.15am was a struggle, never mind the aching limbs from days of walking narrow winding sloping streets, and stomach cramps from unaccustomed food. more…

Domhnall MacAuley: World Congress on Sports Injury Prevention

27 Jun, 08 | by BMJ Group

Domhnall Macauley Far out. About as far away as you can get; 300 km above the Arctic circle in Tromso, Norway, at the World Congress on Sports Injury Prevention. more…

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