United States Sports Academy
America's Sports University®

The Sport Digest - ISSN: 1558-6448


The Healing Nature of Light


Light has been used for healing for many centuries, starting with the Greeks and Romans who recognized the positive effects of sunlight. Ancient Greek physician, Hippocrates even had patients recuperate in roofless buildings where they could soak up the rays of the Sun. Nils Finsen won the Nobel Prize in 1903 for “Physiology of Medicine” for his treatments of Lupus and Tuberculosis patients with ultraviolet light. And just recently modern-day scientists have come to understand more about the nature of light and its restorative capacity, and medical researchers have been able to develop techniques and devices that use light as an integral element of the healing process.

Being Unfit and Unhealthy Now an Epidemic

Unless you have been stranded on a deserted island for the last year surely you have heard all of the news lately released on CNN, newspapers, magazines and the radio about the state of our nation in regards to our health. Every week a new article on obesity, type II diabetes, coronary heart disease, children’s weight-related health problems, and other medical problems related to being sedentary comes out. Diabetes has recently been at the forefront with the blame being squarely placed on children and teenagers eating too much junk food and not getting enough exercise.

Effective Leadership and Successful Teamwork

The effectiveness of an individual as a leader and the creating of successful teamwork have been and still are the concerns of many organizations and educators alike. Vince Lombardi (O’Brien,1987) was so right when he stated that “the world needs more positive and inspirational leadership”. This holds true in every walk of life - business, government, and sports.

Mental Imagery in Basketball

Physical preparation for any sport is important. However, being mentally prepared and mentally tough is just as important, if not more important. In the sport of basketball, mental imagery plays an important role, and often separates the great players from the average players. With the “line” being so small as to whether an athlete makes it to the next level or not, mental abilities can be a major contributing factor for the few that do make the transition. Michael Jordan once said, “I visualized where I wanted to be, what kind of player I wanted to become. I knew exactly where I wanted to go, and I focused on getting there.” To read a perspective such as this from a legend like Michael Jordan is a testament to the importance of mental imagery for success in basketball or any sport.

Physiological Adaptations and Nutritional Concerns for Training and Exercising in the Cold


Exposure to extreme cold weather can produce significant physiological and psychological challenges. Cold is the primary environmental stressor concerning the implicit nature of various outdoor winter sports. This article briefly discusses the physiological challenges and provides practical exercise and nutritional guidelines for training in extreme cold environments (< 32ºF). Guidelines will be recommended to prevent such problems as dehydration, hypothermia, and insufficient calorie intake. These recommendations should be quite applicable in terms of training for alpine ski or cross-country events.

The Economics of Fitness

Did you know that although obesity is rampant in the United States (Mississippi is #1) that weight control remains low on the list of national public health priorities as it receives much less support in funding from the National institutes of Health than other widely established diseases? In 1995 the economic cost of obesity-related problems was $51.6 billion which translates into about 7.2% of the $715 billion cost of total illness. Current estimated total health-care costs have risen to almost $100 billion, or about 10% of the more than $1trillion dollar cost of remaining ill. Studies also show that as body fat percentages go up, so does the use of health-care resources.

Practical and Critical Legal Concerns for Sport Medicine Physicians and Athletic Trainers


In order to help sport physicians and athletic trainers understand the legal principles that may be applicable to injury treatment, this article examined the areas of liability that physicians and trainers may face in their delivery of care. Major topics which were covered by this article included: (1) informed consent and participation risks, (2) physician-patient relationship, (3) immunity issues, and (4) risk management. In conclusion, seven protective strategies were recommended for sport physicians and athletic trainers to insure the acceptable service standard. They were: (a) maintaining a good physician-client relationship with athletes; (b) obtaining informed consent and insist on a written contract; (c) educating the athletes, parents and coaches concerning issues of drug abuse, assumption of risks, confidentiality; (d) performing physical examinations carefully, and be cautious on issuing medical clearance; (e) formulating a risk management plan and properly document hazards and records; (f) participating in continuing education and recognize your qualifications; and (g) maintaining insurance coverage.

HOT TOPIC - OFF THE PRESS: The United States Sports Academy Responds to America's Obesity Crisis

In response to the recent alarming news, which cites startling facts revealing that obesity is rapidly becoming America’s most crucial physical threat, the United States Sports Academy (USSA) has re-instituted its Fitness Management program.

The March 10 edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association cites statistics in which 400,000 Americans died in 2000 due to lack of physical exercise and poor diets. This represents about 16.6% of total deaths. Leading the total category, there were 435,000 deaths due to tobacco representing 18.1% of the deaths.

Physiological Factors and Sports Science in Elite Power Athletes


The Research in the Sports Sciences has had a significant impact on Sports Training for Elite Power Athletes. Examples include Anaerobic Threshold Training, Strength & Power Training and Periodization Programs for Sport Specific Training. Scientific Sports Training is the key component for the success of Elite Power Athletes. Only when their cardio respiratory function, blood lactate system and their utilization of strength and power is well controlled can they show their potential and maintain high performance (Hiroyuki et al., 1999).

The United States Sports Academy Fitness Program

General Benefits of a Work-site Fitness Program

Today, many corporations and small business in the United States, Japan, Korea and other international markets incorporate “Wellness and Employee Fitness Programs” in their organizations, because they all recognize the benefits of employees being physically fit. Based on many studies, the benefits of these programs may include the increase of employee’s fitness, productivity, energy, and morale, and decrease of stress, job-related tension, health insurance cost, turnover rate, and absenteeism (Chang, 2003; Shephard, 1999; Lechner., de Vries, & Adriannsen, 1997; Parker, 1995; Mathes, McGivern, & Schneider, 1992; Hunt, 1992; Oden, Crouse, & Reynolds, 1989) . The United States Sports Academy, an educational institution that promotes the values of health and fitness thru the Study of Sport Sciences, exemplifies thru their Employee Fitness Program, the sincere desire for their employees to have the opportunity to practice what they preach and make daily physical activity a part of their lifestyle.