USA Track & Field unites with American College of Sports Medicine to make America healthier

04-23-2010

Contact:
Vicky Oddi
Communications Coordinator
USA Track & Field
317-713-4670

INDIANAPOLIS - USA Track & Field (USATF) and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) announced today they will mutually support USATF's Win With Integrity program and ACSM's Exercise is MedicineÔ (EIM) initiative. The two Indianapolis-based organizations are promoting a healthier America and combating childhood obesity, which has tripled in the past 30 years.

"Exercise is such a powerful tool that it can actually help prevent illness and mitigate problems like childhood obesity," said James R. Whitehead, executive vice president and CEO of the American College of Sports Medicine. "It is important that physicians make physical activity part of each patient's health plan and that patients ask their doctors how to take advantage of the physical, mental and emotional benefits of exercise."

A study conducted by the American College of Sports Medicine found that nearly two-thirds of patients (65%) would be more interested in exercising to stay healthy if advised by their doctor and given additional resources. Accordingly, the American College of Sports Medicine celebrates May as the third annual Exercise is Medicine Month. EIM promotes empowering physicians to prescribe exercise to their patients. Nationwide and internationally, the program promotes exercise to improve public health and reduce long-term health care costs. To endorse this charge for a healthier America, USATF and ACSM will kick off Exercise is Medicine Month during the April 24th broadcast of "USA vs. The World" at the Penn Relays on ESPN2 from 8:00 - 10:00 p.m. EDT.

In turn, EIM will support USATF's community service programs, including the Win With Integrity initiative. Win With Integrity teaches youth, parents, educators and coaches about the positive results that come from leading a physically active, drug-free lifestyle while living with integrity. The program features Team USA champions who work directly with young people around the nation. The Win With Integrity program has evolved from a startup program in 2004 into one of USATF's most successful initiatives, and serves as a prominent component of National Running Day on June 2, which EIM will support.

USATF is now an official advocate partner of EIM, joining NBA FIT and USA Masters Swimming. EIM will highlight the partnership at the inaugural World Congress on Exercise is Medicine (June 1-5, Baltimore).

"We welcome this opportunity to work with the American College of Sports Medicine in promoting these highly successful and worthwhile initiatives," said USATF CEO Doug Logan. "Together, athletes and doctors can make a greater impact in fashioning a more physically fit society."

"We're proud to further develop our relationship with such a powerful sport governing body," said Whitehead. "Aligning our mutually shared goals makes this partnership a natural fit with strong benefits for the public."

USATF and ACSM encourage physicians and the public to visit www.exerciseismedicinemonth.org and complete the easy-to-use exercise prescription form as well as learn more about how to live a healthier life.

About USA Track & Field

USA Track & Field (USATF) is the National Governing Body for track and field, long-distance running and race walking in the United States. USATF encompasses the world's oldest organized sports, the most-watched events of Olympic broadcasts, the #1 high school and junior high school participatory sport and more than 30 million adult runners in the United States. Led by President Stephanie Hightower and CEO Doug Logan, USATF is a volunteer-driven, not-for-profit organization with a staff of professional program administrators at the National Office in Indianapolis.

About The American College of Sports Medicine

The American College of Sports Medicine is the largest sports medicine and exercise science organization in the world. More than 35,000 international, national and regional members and certified professionals are dedicated to advancing and integrating scientific research to provide educational and practical applications of exercise science and sports medicine.

For more information on USA Track & Field, visit: www.usatf.org.