Alzheimer's disease is a chronic illness characterized by clinical cognitive impairment. A behavioral strategy that is being explored in the prevention of Alzheimer's disease is physical activity. Evidence from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) testing the effects of physical activity for cognitively normal older adults supports that physical activity benefits cognitive performance. Evidence from prospective studies supports a protective effect of physical activity with reductions in the risk of cognitive decline ranging from 28% to 45%. RCTs with cognitively impaired older adults also generally support positive effects with greater benefits evident for aerobic interventions. Research examining the potential moderating role of apolipoprotein E (APOE) has yielded mixed results, but the majority of the studies support that physical activity most benefits those who are at greatest genetic risk of Alzheimer's disease. Future directions for research are considered with an emphasis on the need for additional funding to support this promising area of research.
Jennifer L. Etnier
Stephen M. Roth
Physical activity has long been touted as a means of reducing susceptibility to age-related disease and multiple studies have shown reduced mortality rates in individuals with a lifestyle including regular exercise. A variety of mechanisms for how physical activity reduces age-related diseases have been explored and multiple, redundant explanatory mechanisms are likely to emerge. Evidence has emerged that physical activity may impact directly on telomere biology, one of the primary theories of cellular aging. Telomeres are located at the ends of chromosomes and as cells divide, incomplete DNA replication results in telomere shortening; once shortening reaches a critical threshold, cell senescence results. Investigators hypothesize that part of the favorable influence of physical activity on mortality rates and age-related disease occurs through a direct impact on telomere biology, including delaying rates of telomere shortening. The present review examines key recent findings in this area and explores some of the unanswered questions and future directions for the field.
Ira Jacobs, Ethan Ruderman and Mackenzie McLaughlin
A traditional focus of exercise scientists studying the interaction of drugs and exercise has been on the effects of drugs on exercise performance or functional capacity. In contrast, there is limited information available about the effects of exercise on the efficacy of drugs that have been prescribed and ingested for therapeutic reasons. Those requesting the approval for the manufacture, distribution, and sale of new drugs to the public are required to submit evidence of drug effectiveness and safety to drug regulatory bodies. But, there is no associated requirement to include among that evidence the interactions of exercise with drugs. However, the physiological adaptations to acute and chronic exercise are such that there is good reason to suspect that exercise has the potential to significantly influence drug absorption and bioavailability, drug distribution within the body, and drug elimination from the body. This paper reviews the potential for interaction between exercise and pharmacokinetics.
School is an environment where children and adolescents spend most of their time during the day. The environment is characterized by a sedentary culture necessary for academic learning. In this article, I present research evidence showing the effects of four physical activity opportunities in this environment: school athletics, recess, classroom physical activity breaks, and physical education. Based on an analysis of research evidence on the four opportunities, I propose that the efforts to promote the opportunities should be coordinated into a concerted action to integrate a physical activity-friendly culture in the sedentary environment. Using an example of China's whole-school physical activity promotion strategy, I identify four areas for us to continue to work on: legislature-based policies, physical education as core content, creation and maintenance of physical activity traditions in schools, and integration of physical activity-friendly culture into the sedentary school environment.
Jay L. Alberts and Susan M. Linder
The acute and long-term effects of concussive and subconcussive head impacts on brain health have gained tremendous attention over the past five years. The treatment and management of concussion involves multiple providers from multiple disciplines and backgrounds. Varied backgrounds and approaches to assessing cognitive and motor function before and post-concussion are limiting factors in the efficient and effective management of concussion as discipline-specific rating scales and assessments serve as a barrier to effective patient hand-offs between providers. Combining principles of motor behavior with biomechanical approaches to data analysis has the potential to improve the continuity of care across the multiple providers managing athletes with concussion. Biomechanical measures have been developed and validated using mobile devices to provide objective and quantitative assessments of information processing, working memory, set switching, and postural stability. These biomechanical outcomes are integral to a clinical management algorithm, the Concussion Care Path, currently used across the Cleveland Clinic Health System. The objective outcomes provide a common data set that all providers in the spectrum of care can access which facilitates communication and the practice of medicine and in understanding the acute and long-term effects of concussion and subconcussive exposure on neurological function.
Wojtek J. Chodzko-Zajko
The proliferation of online courses and programs has impacted kinesiology programs across the country. The process of providing online instruction, while popular with students, is often daunting to the kinesiology programs that must navigate this process. Recommendations for transitioning courses and programs from face-to-face to online are offered from both the faculty and administrative perspective. Maintaining academic rigor in online kinesiology courses and program is also essential to the dialogue and for ensuring success. Many kinesiology courses and programs are well suited for online delivery and demand for these programs is high. Kinesiology faculty and administrators should understand both the facilitators and barriers to online implementation.
Todd A. Gilson and Jinhong Jung
The present state of higher education is in a period of transition as alternative forms of content dissemination via blended learning and exclusively online class models continue to expand. In addition, traditional universities face increased pressure to deliver content “on-demand” for the learner from an increasing number of nonprofit and for-profit organizations. In this article, key principles for creating and distributing content for online education are discussed. Furthermore, solutions used by the authors in their own teaching are shared as an additional resource for the reader. Finally, the benefits and drawbacks of two widely known software platforms are explored as they relate to the functionality of delivering content online to students.
Paul Keiper and Richard B. Kreider
Online education has become an increasingly popular means of delivering educational programs in health and kinesiology. It has helped departments meet increasing enrollment demands and provided additional resources that support students and faculty. A number of challenges, however, are associated with developing these types of programs. The purpose of this paper is to discuss some of the issues that Texas A&M University has experienced in developing extensive online courses and distance education programs. The paper discusses methods and models employed to develop online and distance programs in health and kinesiology and provides a case study of some of the opportunities and challenges that the Sport Management Division experienced in developing an online master's program. Issues related to efficacy, management, funding, and student success are discussed. Health and kinesiology administrators should consider these issues as they look to develop or grow online course offerings in the discipline.
Diane L. Gill, Pam Kocher Brown and Erin J. Reifsteck
The online EdD in kinesiology at UNCG evolved from the face-to-face EdD, which was designed as an interdisciplinary doctoral degree tailored to working professionals in kinesiology. The new online EdD, which is the only online doctoral program in kinesiology, retains that broad, interdisciplinary curriculum and focuses on developing practicing scholars in kinesiology teaching, leadership, and advocacy. The fully-online EdD program faces many challenges, including technology issues, faculty buy-in, retention, and dissertation completion. To meet those challenges, the EdD curriculum is structured in a four-year cohort model, emphasizing collaboration and connections from the initial campus orientation session through the dissertation defense.