Month: December 2016

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Sports Medicine Facts

Sports medicine is an area of the fitness industry that is becoming more popular as the needs arise. With injury occurring more frequently in sports, the benefits of sports medicine are becoming more widely recognized.
Sports medicine is a specialization that mixes both the fitness and medical fields. It combines medical principles with sports science in an attempt to prevent injury and promote rehabilitation.
With the demands of sport and competitiveness of the athletic arena rising, injury is becoming regular in many sports. Sports medicine has the potential to save an athlete’s career, and possibly her life.
Sports medicine uses methods such as active-release technique and self-myofascial release. These two stretching techniques may be used in rehabilitation and prehabilitation of injury.
The typical job title used in sports medicine is athletic trainer. Athletic trainers work in a variety of locations, including high schools, universities and professional sports teams.
Working in sports medicine requires a strong educational background. The minimum requirements include an undergraduate degree in a related field, such as athletic training or exercise science, and a passing score on the state licensing exam.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2006 median annual salary of athletic trainers was $36,560.


Preseason Soccer Workout Plan

If you want to compete at your best at soccer, you need to commit to preseason training, so that your strength and cardiovascular fitness peaks in time for the first game of league competition. In preseason, players such as American men¡¯s team standout Jozy Altidore, who plays professionally in Europe, focus every day on a combination of conditioning, work in the weight room and scrimmages designed to increase ball skills and tactical understanding of the game. Even preteen players can follow a scaled-down workout plan to get ready for the season opener.
Your workout plan needs to be individualized to your soccer level and started about two months before the first game. The plan¡¯s elements need to work together to help your speed, flexibility, agility, balance, strength and core training. You¡¯ll need create a detailed chart of what exercises to put in your workout, how many sets and reps of each and which days to conduct them, based on either coach or trainer input or your own study of training principles. Ideally, you revise the program design when competition starts to build in rest from games.
This group, which includes young players age 8 to 13 with little or no training experience or soccer beginners, obviously needs a far simpler preseason workout plan than older soccer players, writes University of North Carolina conditioning coach Greg Gatz in ¡°Complete Conditioning for Soccer.¡± Speed training needs to focus on basic running mechanics. Acceleration drills can include runs up stairs, ramps or small hills. Agility and balance training helps young players learn how to stop quickly and the proper footwork to change direction. This can include rope jumping, forward and backward shuffling, crossover steps and single-leg squats. Strength and power work can involve two to three sets of 10 to 15 reps of presses, step-ups, body rows and standing medicine ball twists. A conditioning element is intrinsic to these drills, especially if they are conducted with minimal rest intervals.
Soccer players age 14 to 17 can continue with foundational fitness work with more soccer competition added to the mix, Gatz states. Speed drills can add light resistance such as a weighted vest or resistance cord. Add plyometric drills such as hops and jumps. Agility exercises can progress to using complex footwork drills with an agility ladder. Strength work begins to include dumbbell squats, lunges, step-ups and squat jumps. The body’s core, so crucial to athletic success, gets work with back extensions, medicine ball seated rotations and medicine ball vertical chops. The recommended frequency is two or three times a week in preseason, dropping to once or twice a week when the season starts. Conditioning can include 300-yard shuttles, dribble-and-shoot drills and Fartlek or similar interval training.
Athletes 18 years or older have mastered earlier forms of training and can get even more ready to compete based on preseason work. Speed work can include sled towing, S-curve runs and running that incorporates 180-degree turns and racing off again. Agility work involves sprints between two half-sized agility ladders and shuffling over mini-hurdles. Single-leg squats, barefooted or with eyes closed, help with balance. Strength work now adds Romanian deadlifts, stability leg curls and barbell back squats as well as intermediate-level dumbbell exercises. Sprints and one-versus-one games aid conditioning.


Touch Football Training Drills

Touch football is a high-paced and physically demanding sport played throughout the United States. Touch football allows the excitement of American football, with a reduced risk of injury compared with the full-contact version of the sport. Touch football training drills should work on the fundamental skills of the game such as passing, catching, defending and running with the ball. The fundamental skills are best learned in a fun and competitive environment.
This touch football training drill works on speed, agility and a quick change of direction. Mark a 5-yard box out using four cones, with a fifth cone placed in the center. Your touch football player starts on the center cone and runs to touch all four corner cones, sprinting back to the center cone each time. Teach your football player to keep a low center of gravity and shorten his steps on approach to allow for a quick change of direction. Time the players when they are doing this drill, and put them in races against each other to make it competitive. Keep scores on record, and revisit the drill to monitor improvements made by your football players throughout the season.
The Passing Skeleton touch football training drill allows the offensive and defensive football players to work on their passing game under game-like conditions. Begin the drill by having your wide receivers run routes unopposed and the quarterback throwing passes to them. Have the wide receivers run 10 to 20 repetitions of each passing route and catching a pass, working through all routes in the team playbook. Progress this drill to the wide receiver running a route while being covered by a defensive football player. The drill works up to a game-like situation, with the quarterback beginning each repetition from the 25-yard line. Four wide receivers run pass patterns, and four defensive football players play man-to-man coverage. The offensive team is awarded one point for each completed pass and 10 points for a touchdown. The defensive team is awarded one point for each incomplete pass and 10 points for an interception.
This touch football training drill teaches the skill of blocking, a crucial skill in touch football, where the defender only has to touch the runner to get credit for a tackle. Begin the drill by having your football player practice blocking technique. Progress the drill to a runner and blocker facing a defender inside a 10-yard box. The runner starts on one end of the box with the blocker two yards in front. The defender starts on the opposite end line. The blocking football player must block the defender and allow the runner a clear path to the goal line.


Length of a Youth Soccer Game

The U.S. Youth Soccer organization is a nonprofit agency that uses the sport of soccer to ignite a youth’s physical, emotional and mental growth. The American Youth Soccer Organization provides youth soccer programs in a fun, family environment. Both organizations have established similar set lengths of time for youth soccer games. In addition to the regular soccer games, there are also small-sided soccer rules providing for a smaller field and fewer players.
For youth younger than 6 years old, the AYSO recommends two 10-minute halves with a five- to 10-minute break between. US Youth Soccer uses quarter periods for youth younger than 6 and recommends four six-minute quarters. If the game is tied, no overtime is required. Both organizations allow a small-sided game, with a smaller field and fewer players. Game times are the same for the age 6 and under players, but the field is between 20 and 30 yards long and 15 to 25 yards wide. There are no goaltenders.
For youth younger than 8 years old, AYSO uses two 20-minute halves with a five- to 10-minute halftime. US Youth Soccer uses four 12-minute quarters for less than 8 years of age. No overtime is needed if the game is tied at the end of the allotted time. Total game time is between 45 and 58 minutes. Small-side soccer is played on a smaller field, 25 to 35 yards long and 20 to 30 yards wide. The game is divided into four quarters of 12 minutes each. Like the under age 6 games, there are no goalies.
For youth younger than 10 years of age, the AYSO and US Youth Soccer require two 25-minute halves. For youth younger than 12 years of age, the AYSO and the US Youth Soccer require two 30-minute halves. For overtime in an under 12 game the US Youth Soccer requires two 10-minute halves. Total game time is 55 to 60 minutes for younger than 10 and 60 to 90 minutes for younger than 12. The small-sided game field gets larger as the players get older, up to 45-by-60 yards for under 10 players and 55-by-80 yards for under 12 players. The game times are the same as regular games for each age group.
The AYSO and the US Youth Soccer associations require two 35-minute halves for youth younger than 14 years of age. The amount of time allowed for half time is determined by the referees, between five and 10 minutes. If the game is tied, the US Youth Soccer uses two 10-minutes halves for the tie breaker. Total game time is between 75 and 90 minutes.
For youth soccer games in the under 16 age group, the AYSO and the US Youth Soccer use two 40-minute halves. At the end of regular play, if the game is tied, the US Youth Soccer requires two 15-minute halves be played as a tie breaker. Total game time is between 85 and 120 minutes.
During youth soccer games for ages, 17, 18 and 19, the AYSO and U.S. Youth Soccer require two 45-minute halves. According to US Youth Soccer rules, two 15-minute halves are added to the game if the score is tied at the end of regular play. Total game time is between 95 and 130 minutes.


Pop Lloyd

Positions: Shortstop; First Baseman; Catcher; Manager Teams: Macon Acmes; Cuban X-Giants; Brooklyn Royal Giants; Philadelphia Giants; Leland Giants; New York Lincoln Giants; Chicago American Giants; Columbus Buckeyes; Atlantic City Bacharach Giants; Philadelphia Hilldales; New York Harlem Stars, 1905-1932
Pop Lloyd first jumped from semipro baseball to the black professional leagues in 1905 at age 21, and he was a good enough player to play semipro until he was age 58. He was a very good defensive shortstop for most of the early days in his career, and he showcased a line-drive stroke that drove his average to dizzying heights.

See more information on the Baseball Hall of Fame:

See the players in the Baseball Hall of Fame by position:
See the members of the Baseball Hall of Fame by team:

New York Yankees


Johnny Unitas

Johnny Unitas was cut by the Pittsburgh Steelers before he even got a chance to throw one pass in a preseason game. The Steelers’ ninth-round draft pick from the University of Louisville then played semipro football with the Bloomfield (Pennsylvania) Rams for $6 per game when Baltimore Colts coach Weeb Ewbank decided to take a chance on the kid with the crewcut. He signed him to a $7,000 contract.
Unitas (born 1933) got his second break when injury sidelined Colts starting quarterback George Shaw in the fourth game of the 1956 season.
Hoping to make the most of his opportunity, “Johnny U” got off to a rocky start when his first pass as a pro was intercepted.
A lesser man might have hung his head and quit, but not Unitas. He finished the game with his head held high, and within just a few seasons he was being hailed as pro football’s “living legend.”
Unitas, the NFL’s three-time Most Valuable Player, accumulated almost unbelievable statistics during his 18-year career with the Colts (1956-1972) and San Diego Chargers (1973).
When he retired, he held virtually every meaningful career passing record, including attempts (5,186), completions (2,830), yards (40,239), most 300-yard passing games (26), touchdown passes (290), and most consecutive games throwing a touchdown pass (47).
But without a doubt, it’s for his heroic performance in the 1958 NFL title game, often referred to as the “Greatest Game Ever Played,” that he is best remembered.
His tying and winning drives were textbook-perfect examples of what it takes to win under pressure. Late in the game, with the Colts trailing the New York Giants 17-14, Unitas completed seven straight passes.
That set up the game’s tying field goal with just seven seconds left. He followed that All-Pro performance with a perfectly executed 80-yard touchdown drive in overtime to win.
In 1979, with his election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Johnny Unitas completed his climb to the top, proving that sometimes all that is needed is a chance to play.


The Best Times for Crossfit Workouts

CrossFit workouts are constantly varied, functional movements executed at high intensity. This workout program has been adopted by elite athletes, military personnel and emergency response personnel from around the world. By designing the workouts with a broad, general and inclusive point of view, the list of CrossFit workouts is nearly endless in possibilities.
CrossFit workouts are also called the WOD for ¡°workout of the day.¡± CrossFit gyms post a new WOD for every day. Each workout is scored with a specific technique, including rounds completed, time or weight lifted. Benchmark workouts are the most common workouts used to determine best times, and include named WODs such as the “Girls” or “Heroes.” These benchmark workouts make the best times for CrossFit workouts universal among every CrossFit gym around the world.
Every CrossFit athlete has a personal record, or best time, for most CrossFit workouts. The personal records commonly focus on the benchmark workouts and are used to track and measure overall performance and improvements. As a result, CrossFit athletes try to set personal records for specific workouts by setting the best times. For example, your previous personal record might be 18 rounds of “Cindy” but, then you try to get a best time, or personal record, by breaking 20 rounds on your next attempt.
CrossFit athletes in the CrossFit Games are competing to be crowned ¡°Fittest man, and woman, on Earth.¡± As a result, these CrossFitters typically hold the all-time best times for most CrossFit workouts. For example, Joshua Bridges from La Mesa, California, has a “Fran” time of 2:04, while there are numerous other Games competitors around 2:10 to 2:20. Similarly, Rob Orlando from Monroe, Connecticut, has a deadlift of 593 lbs. with other top CrossFitters turning in a deadlift around 550 lbs.
CrossFit athletes use various resources to record and track their workout history. The resources include an online workout log or daily WOD planner. The online workout logs allow you to compare your best times with other top athletes from around the world. Any logging resource tracks your workouts and any workout specifics for future reference.


Can You Play Football With a Repaired Herniated Lumbar Disk?

Because of jumping and twisting and the high-impact hits that can hyperextend the spine, herniated disks in the lower back are common for football players. A herniated disk is when the nucleus of a disk that¡¯s positioned in between your vertebrae pushes against and at time squeezes all the way through the disk¡¯s outer ring, causing pain and numbness. Football players can return to play once they¡¯ve repaired their herniated disk, although how they treat their injury can influence their chances of returning.
Repairing a herniated lumbar disk involves either nonoperative treatment or surgery. Nonoperative treatment includes a period of rest, followed by taking anti-inflammatory medications and participating in physical therapy. A steroid injection can help reduce inflammation and allow a football player return to competition. Surgical treatment involves removing the herniated area of the disk, followed by physical rehab. According to Dr. Wellington K. Hsu¡¯s 2010 study, 72 percent of National League Football players were able to play football again after their herniated lumbar disk was repaired with surgery. Forty-six percent of professional players who treated their herniated lumbar disk with nonoperative treatments were able to return to play.


Does Participation in Sports Negatively Affect Academics?

Student athletes should be relieved to learn that, according to researchers at the Brown Center on Education Policy, a commitment to school sports does not have to translate into compromised academic performance. Although these students often feel substantial pressure to perform both on the field and in the classroom, the benefits of athletic endeavors seem to counterbalance the challenges they present. Nevertheless, many youth athletes become increasingly stressed as they strive to maintain academic eligibility while advancing through their school years.
In a 2005 analysis of stress levels in college athletes, Dr. Gregory Wilson and Dr. Mary Pritchard reported that time management factors were a significant source of academic-related stress. Many student athletes expressed concern over having insufficient time to study for exams and write term papers. Team travel was also cited as a stress factor because of missed classes and assignments. Some student athletes, however, seem to thrive on the pressure caused by tight schedules. During her senior year at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, field hockey player Leah Ferenc reflected on the role athletics play in academic achievement. ¡°Most of my peers believe that they perform at a higher academic level while participating in their sport and have felt more organized and motivated during their seasons to do well academically. I am more successful at completing my assignments during the season, because I know that I only have a certain amount of time to do so.¡±
Children and adolescents who pursue sports activities have been shown to exhibit more active brain function, better concentration levels and classroom behavior and higher self-esteem than their less-active counterparts. Understandably, all of these factors seem to support better academic performance. In 2002, the California Department of Education examined whether any correlation existed between standardized test scores and results from a state-mandated physical fitness exam. In its analysis of data from over 954,000 fifth, seventh and ninth grade students, the study found that students with higher levels of fitness performed better in school. Students who met three or more physical fitness standards experienced the greatest academic gains.
In a 2002 Brown Center report on American school performance, schools with top-ranked baseball, basketball and football teams were found to have better state achievement exam scores than those with less successful sports programs. Not surprisingly, public schools with both successful athletic teams and high academic achievement are found in areas with better financial resources: wealthy, suburban neighborhoods with predominantly white, non-Hispanic populations. According to the report, such advantaged schools are better able to integrate excellence at sports into a broader culture that encourages achievement.
Academic performance in student athletes does vary between boys and girls. Results of the California Department of Education study showed that all of the girls¡¯ teams had significantly higher grade point averages than their male counterparts. A 2010 study published in ¡°The Sports Journal¡± reinforced these findings and showed some interesting between-sport comparisons. Boys on the cross-country team had among the lowest grades of all the sports examined, but girls¡¯ cross-country teams had among the highest. Male students on the golf and track teams were able to maintain high grades but girls committed to these two sports fared worse academically.


Sure, sharks aren’t cuddly and you can’t milk them, but do they deserve to be butchered?


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We’re right smack dab in the middle of Shark Week,’s parent company, Discovery Channel’s week-long bonanza of shark programming. It’s a big deal around here: there are feeding frenzies in the break room, one guy in legal wears nothing but Body Glove all week long, there are live seals living in the podcast studio and no one seems to be entirely certain where they came from. But hey, it’s Shark Week.
We humans have a terrified fascination with sharks. The ones we’re most familiar with are huge and have enormous, sharp teeth. They look like swimming death machines to us. And for some people they have been. The Jersey Shore was the site of the deaths of four people (plus one who was maimed) in 1916. The year 2001 was called the “summer of the shark,” with 76 unprovoked shark attacks around the world, resulting in five deaths. Plus, there’s “Jaws.”
There’s also a certain sense of triumph of man over beast in our love for stories about thwarted shark attacks — like “Jaws.” A guy who was attacked in the Bahamas during the summer of the shark in 2001 went on CBS’s Early Show this morning to tell his tale of beating up the shark as it tried to drag him out to sea by his leg.
But there is a growing and vocal minority trying to let the world know that we largely fail to understand sharks. They point to data that millions of sharks are killed by humans each year, while even in the grip of the summer of the shark, five humans died. The University of Florida points out that 2001 actually showed a decline in attacks and fatalities over the previous summer (76 to 85, and 12 to five, respectively). It was Time magazine that dubbed 2001 the summer of the shark — and quite unreasonably, it turns out. It’s also become clear that the sharks we think of as vicious killers play an important role in population control among other species in marine ecosystems under the purview of Darwin. (Thanks for the heads up, T-Dub.)
Is it possible that as the facts continue to come out our morbid fear of sharks will come to coexist with the idea that most humans largely misunderstand them?
More on How Shark Week Works How Shark Attacks Work How Sharks Work What do most sharks eat?
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