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Larry Weber, Thomas M. Sherman and Carmen Tegano

Does early admission for scholarship athletes increase their chances of academic success? The findings from this 2-year study suggest that student athletes with low admission qualifications who participated in a summer transition program achieved higher grade point averages, more secure athletic and academic eligibility, and greater potential to graduate than similar student athletes not participating in the transition program.

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Larry J. Weber, Thomas M. Sherman and Carmen Tegano

In this research, faculty reported attempts to influence their academic decisions regarding student athletes. In most instances the pressure was not formal or frequently applied, and it appeared to have little influence on faculty judgments or their willingness to assist athletes. Except for isolated situations of a flagrant nature that are sensationalized by the media, the problem seems not to be a major one.

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Thomas A. Farley, Rebecca A. Meriwether, Erin T. Baker, Janet C. Rice and Larry S. Webber

Background:

Promotion of physical activity in children depends on an understanding of how children use play equipment.

Methods:

We conducted observations over 2 years of children in 2nd through 8th grades in a schoolyard with 5 distinct play areas with different amounts of play equipment.

Results:

Children were more likely to play in areas with more installed play equipment, with densities of children in equipped areas 3.3 to 12.6 times higher than in an open grassy field. There were no significant differences by play area in the percent of children who were physically active at all, but children were more likely to be very active in areas with basketball goals and an installed play structure than in an open field.

Conclusions:

Playground equipment appeared to have a strong influence on where children played and a moderate influence on levels of activity. To maximize physical activity in children, playgrounds should be designed with ample and diverse play equipment.

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Lauri M. Webber, William C. Byrnes, Thomas W. Rowland and Vicky L. Foster

Although delayed onset muscle soreness and increased serum creatine kinase activity (SCKA) following unaccustomed exercise is common in adults, little is known concerning these responses in children. The perception of muscle soreness and SCKA in children (n = 16) (M age = 10.4±.30 yr) was compared to a control group of adults (n = 15) (M age = 27.1±.87 yr) following a single bout of downhill running (30 min − 10% grade). Preexercise SCKA was not significantly different between the children (91.7±8.5 μmol•L−1•min−1) and the adults (77.1±5.9 μmol•L−1•min−1). The difference in SCKA (pre to 24 hours post) was significantly less (p<.01) for the children (68.6±16.2 μmol•L−1•min−1) than for the adults (188.7±36.8 μmol•L−1•min−1). When the groups were adjusted for weight differences, SCKA was not significantly different between the adults and the children. Regardless of age, males demonstrated a significantly greater increase in SCKA postexercise when compared to females. Soreness ratings (verbally anchored scale from 1 to 10) 24 hours following the downhill run were not significantly different between the children (3.8±.6) and the adults (4.5±.7). Following an eccentrically biased exercise task, children exhibited less of a SCKA response compared to adults that is related to body weight.

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Johann Auer, Robert Berent, Markus Prenninger, Thomas Weber, Klaus Kritzinger, Martin Veits, Gudrun Lamm, Elisabeth Lassnig and Bernd Eber

Context:

Effects of a single bout of exercise at moderate altitude on blood pressure (BP) are largely unknown.

Objective:

To evaluate the effect of a single exercise bout at moderate altitude on BP.

Design:

Prospective, observational.

Setting:

Field study, Alpine mountains.

Participants:

127 men, 71 women (138 normotensive, 60 hypertensive).

Intervention:

Exercise duration: 2.5 ± 0.4 h; 650-m difference in altitude.

Main Outcome Measures:

BP and heart rate (HR).

Results:

Hypertensives had (1) higher systolic BP (SBP) and diastolic BP (DBP) before exercise (P < .01), whereas this difference was lost during exercise; (2) increased HR during the entire duration of exercise; and (3) significantly decreased SBP and DBP (P < .05) throughout the entire period of exercise.

Conclusions:

Exposure to a single exercise bout at moderate altitude is associated with a transient decrease in SBP and DBP, which is more pronounced in hypertensives.