Reflection of the Swiss Sports Medicine Day for Students

A place like no other

Each year, a hundred medical students from all over Switzerland come together in one place to experience a day about sports medicine. This year, it was in Interlaken, a magnificent city in the Bernese Oberland, where 60 students and even a guest medical student from Sweden, Moa Engström, met. Here are some words from her: “The day was super! The presentations were great, it was just the perfect level of difficulty so that I understood but still learned new stuff and the workshops were fun.”

Interlaken, Bernese Oberland in October

An educational morning

The day started around 9 a.m. First, we received the traditional goodie bags from our main partners. The day started with a welcome speech full of excitement by our new president Anne Cornevin.

The morning was followed by four thrilling expert presentations from various fields of sports and exercise medicine. The first dealt with “Exercise and retinal microvascular function across the lifespan” by Pr. Hanssen and we learned that retinal blood vessel contraction is directly related to cardiovascular disease, and we can use that to prevent cardiovascular disease. The second focused on “Nutritional considerations for an athlete with type 1 diabetes” by Dr. Flück who told us that it is important to check your glucose levels immediately after exercise as well as over a longer period, suggesting setting an alarm at night to avoid hypoglycemia. The next presentation was about “Meniscal rehabilitation in athletes”. Dr. Bonfantim explained that after an arthroscopic operation it is necessary to allow the knee time to return to its normal condition and that it’s important not to forget about physiotherapy. The last presentation on “How to become a Sports and Exercise Physician” was presented by our former president Dr. Carrard who told us about his medical career, tips, and pitfalls to avoid.

      

The presentations

A coffee break allowed the participants to connect with students from other cantons (parts of Switzerland) and an “active break” to move our bodies between the presentations to alleviate the mental exhaustion from the interesting new inputs and walk the talk in the fight against a sedentary lifestyle.

A sportive afternoon

After lunch we got the chance to participate at workshops dealing with a wide variety of subjects such as the clinical examination of a shoulder or an elbow, diabetes and physical activity, new insights into veganism for athletes’ health or even advice from a triathlete on the importance and ways to optimally combine exercise and studying for medical school. This moment allowed the students to have a more convivial moment of two hours in small groups.

The workshops

Every year, the final program point of the day is our Sports Event. This year, Chloé Joray and Olivia Seiler organized an orienteering race through Interlaken. The goal was to run through the city to find red balloons pinpointed on the map. We were able to admire the “Harderkulm”, a mountain from where an ancient cogwheel train leaves, the “Höhematte”, the largest park in Interlaken and the “Grosse Staatsschleuse”, an old wooden bridge. We were randomly separated into groups of two people and the aim was to answer questions about Interlaken such as: “What is the highest mountain in the canton of Bern” or questions about sports medicine. The final goal was not to win but to acquire knowledge as a team and get to know people from all over Switzerland. This year’s winners were crowned with a chocolate heart by a famous chocolate factory.

The orienteering race

A festive evening

After a well-deserved shower, the students met in the heart of Interlaken at Brasserie 17 for dinner and drinks, where excited discussions about newly learned topics continued in a relaxed atmosphere. We learned about everyone’s personal projects and interests and shared the passion for sports medicine. Also, the committee reflected on the success of this year’s event and opportunities for improvement for the following year, which we are already looking forward to.

Brasserie 17, Interlaken

The next event will be on Wednesday, October 25, 2023, in Interlaken. For those keen to learn more, visit our website: https://sems.ch/junior-sems . The Students Day is not exclusive to medical students, anyone interested can participate. We are looking forward to meeting you on this occasion.

The Swiss JSEMS committee 

Bibliography

Brasserie 17, Interlaken [Internet]. [cité 3 mai 2023]. Disponible sur: https://www.interlaken.ch/fr/gastro/brasserie-17-interlaken

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