Korey Stringer Institute Participates in Ragnar Relay New England

By Rebecca Stearns, PhD, ATC, Chief Operating Officer, KSI


The weekend of August 26th found eight close members of the KSI family at Northfield Mountain, MA, ready to take on a grueling 121.6 mile trail relay.  The Ragnar Relay consists of a team of 8 people, who all run three distinct loops of varying distances to complete this race (the three loops amount to 15.2 miles total per person).  The team members take turns, running one at a time and through the night to complete each round of loops and reach the finish line. The most elite teams have finished this course in about 15 hours, but the KSI team only had 24 hours to complete the course to officially complete the race. Lucky members are able to even catch a few hours of sleep between their running loops.


As it would only be appropriate for a team of heat experts, the weekend proved to not only provide a logistical challenge (through a winding and hilly 2,700 feet of total elevation gain), but also proved to challenge the teams heat preparedness, with the starting heat index of 89°F.  The team’s running order and members consisted of the following individuals:


  1. Yasuki Sekiguchi, KSI Intern
  2. Rob Huggins, VP of Research, VP of Athlete Health and Safety, KSI
  3. Tutita Casa, Assistant Professor at Uconn’s Neag School of Education
  4. Yuri Hosokawa, Director of Communication, Director of Education, KSI
  5. Doug Casa, CEO, KSI
  6. Will Adams, Vice President of Sport Safety, KSI
  7. Megan McCollum, Research Assistant, KSI
  8. Jake Earp, Assistant Professor, University of Rhode Island’s Kinesiology Department


The KSI team finished in 22 hours and 44 minutes, which clinched the Corporate Team category by over 1 hour.  The team also placed 3rd overall for the mixed team division and 11th out of the 150 teams participating. The winning time this year, given the new course route, was 19:33.05.


In true team fashion, the rugged finish medals all create a Ragnar puzzle with fitted together.  A big congratulation to all the team members that participated!



Back in Falmouth

By Yuri Hosokawa, MAT, ATC, Director of Communication and Education

IMG_8657Twenty-seven research and medical volunteers from the Korey Stringer Institute, EC Lee Lab and University of Connecticut joined the 44th New Balance Falmouth Road Race in Falmouth, MA on August 21st. This was the fourth consecutive year in which KSI conducted a field research study at the race in conjunction with working in the medical tent treating exertional heat stroke patients. In this year’s study, we aimed to (1) investigate runner’s knowledge on heat and hydration and behaviors on race day and (2) investigate the use of real time gastrointestinal temperature feedback in altering runner’s behavior during the race. We also assessed participants’ readiness to exercise in the heat by measuring their cardiovascular fitness and their response to heat stress in our environmental chamber.



KSI’s Rebecca Stearns, PhD, ATC and Luke Belval, MS, ATC also spoke at the Medical Symposium hosted by the Falmouth Hospital, which was attended by many medical volunteers and local healthcare professionals. Dr. Stearns’ presentation, The Tale of Two Heat Strokes, introduced case studies of two runners who suffered from exertional heat stroke at the same race with distinctly different prognosis due to the different treatment they received. Belval’s presentation, The Fluid Needs for Today’s Athletes, provided evidence-based suggestions on hydration. At the Health & Fitness Expo, William Adams, PhD, ATC spoke on Optimizing Safety and Maximizing Performance During Running the Heat, which was attended by many runners who were going to be racing the following day.


We would like to thank the Falmouth Road Race Board of Directors for their continued support and partnership with the Korey Stringer Institute in supporting our mission to educate runners and continue our research in ways to optimize their performance and safety during warm weather road races such as Falmouth Road Race.