Thousands of students, faculty and staff from across the university heard from leaders in the fields of health, science, nutrition, medicine, and sport management as part of the 2016 Distinguished Lecture Series. This year’s focus was on the “Impact of Health, Kinesiology and Sport Management on Society.”
“We can’t take all of our students to a national conference but we can bring a national level conference to our students,” lamented Dr. Rick Kreider, professor and head of the Department of Health and Kinesiology. “The DLS provides an opportunity for world renowned scholars and leaders in our field to inspire and motivate our students to go out and make an impact on society though the study and practice of physical activity, health, and sport.”
Dr. Harold Kohl from the University of Texas Health Science Center opened the DLS on Wednesday morning. He is the co-author of the first textbook to clearly define the intersection of kinesiology and public health, Foundations of Physical Activity and Public Health. Dr. Kohl focused on the pandemic of physical inactivity.
Dr. Harry Edwards, Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of California-Berkeley spoke about his involvement in the 1967 San Jose State movement in which black students and faculty members leveraged athlete power potential in campus politics. Edwards is considered a leading authority on the sociology of sports and diversity and has devoted his career to studying the relationship between race and sports in society.
Four-time track and field All-American and Paralympic medalist John Register spoke about overcoming adversity. He talked about the injury that led to the amputation of his leg and the dark thoughts that went through his mind. Register said his greatest inspiration was his faith and his family who believed in him when no one else did. “True leaders will always find the opportunity. You can apply this to any leadership situation,” explained Register.
The DLS also featured several experts in the health, medicine and nutrition fields. One of those researchers, Dr. Melicia Whitt-Glover, spoke about her community-based research to improve health behaviors. “In order to fulfill your life’s calling, you have to take care of your physical, mental and spiritual health.”
Other DLS speakers included David Heath ‘76 (Under Armour), Dr. Robert Sainburg (Penn State University), Julian Mellini (NFL – UK), Dr. Susan Kleiner (Vynna, LLC), Dr. Rachael Seidler (University of Michigan), Dr. James Rohack (Texas A&M Health Science Center, former president of the American Medical Association), and Dr. Hirofumi Tanaka (University of Texas – Austin).
This year’s participants had the added benefit of registering for and attending the annual meeting of the Texas Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine (TACSM), which was held concurrently with DLS.
The event featured Dr. John Hall from the University of Mississippi’s Center for Obesity who was recognized as the 2014 SEC Professor of the Year and is co-author of the “Textbook of Medical Physiology”. Dr. Hall discussed how obesity affects health and is a strain on our healthcare system.
The second day ended with a presentation from Dr. Tim Lightfoot, Director of our Sydney and J.L. Huffines Institute for Sports medicine and Human Performance, showing us how performance anxiety affects the physiological demands of performance among musicians.
The final day opened with Dr. Larry Armstrong from the University of Connecticut who is the current President of the American College of Sports Medicine. He overviewed the challenges involved in assessing hydration and guidelines for preventing heat illness among athletes and the elderly.
The event closed with an update regarding new insights of creatine in health, medicine, and performance by Dr. Rick Kreider.
Other TACSM speakers included Dr. Lori Greenwood (Athletic Training Master’s Program, Texas A&M University), Dr. Scott Trappe (Human Performance Lab, Ball State University), Dr. Jason Zaremski (College of Medicine, University of Florida - Gainesville), Dr. Erik Richter (Copenhagen Muscle Research Institute), Brandi Smith-Young (Perfect 10.0), and Dr. Elena Volpi (UTMB-Galveston), .
You can see the full list of speakers and sessions, as well as videos from each session, at: http://hlkndls.tamu.edu/