Month: September 2016

Hydration Conference

By Luke Belval, MS, ATC, Director of Research, Director of Military and Occupational Safety, KSI


On September 15th and 16th, KSI gathered experts in the field of hydration to help clarify the hydration advice athletes, coaches and parents are receiving. The meeting, Practical Hydration Solutions for Sports and the Physically Active, was convened at the University of Connecticut to help provide situation specific information that can be easily interpreted and applied by those looking to optimize performance.

With representatives from the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and all over the US, KSI is working to change the way hydration advice is provided to those looking to improve their athletic performance. In light of increased attention to what, when and how athletes should drink, the purpose of this meeting was to help clarify what an athlete can do to optimize performance through hydration. Experts in the field went through over 20 different sports to help identify the specific factors that may influence hydration status for athletes in those sports. Specifically, the group evaluated the evidence to determine risk of dehydration and over hydration for each athletic situation to help athletes understand what hydration strategies may work best for their sports.

The roundtable meeting focused around two deliverables, a scientific publication featuring the overall results and one-page sport-specific documents that can be easily distributed to those participating in a given sport. It is our hope that these documents can help clarify what the best practices are for performance optimization through hydration in a given sports situation.

Reported youth soccer injuries doubled in the past 25 years. Why? (Christian Science Monitor)

A new study from researchers at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio finds that the number of young soccer players who made a visit to the emergency room for injuries sustained on the field has more than doubled over recent decades, rising from just over 100 per 10,000 in 1990 to some 225 in 2014.

That trend was especially pronounced when it came to concussions and similar injuries, with the annual rate skyrocketing over 1,500 percent over the time period examined. And as the study notes, a growing awareness of the “potentially serious consequences of sports-related concussion” might simply mean that more incidents end up with a hospital visit.

“I wouldn’t necessarily say that the amount of injuries has actually increased, I’d say the amount of injuries reported has increased,” says Samantha Scarneo, a director of sport safety at the University of Connecticut’s Korey Stringer Institute who did not contribute to the study.

Where people used to think that “getting your bell rung” wasn’t significant, she tells The Christian Science Monitor, a flood of new initiatives by public-health organizations and state laws calling for parents, officials and athletes to receive education on the health impact of concussions on youths have instilled a greater scrupulousness among members of the public.

But some experts also say that as children and their parents take a less catholic attitude toward sports, focusing their ambitions on one sport and playing it year-round, they might be putting kids at a greater risk for injury.

“In the 1990s, kids played for one season and then they were done. Now kids can play year-round and in multiple leagues so they don’t have a lot of time to recover,” said Tracy Mehan manager of transnational research at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, in an interview with ABC. “If you play one other sport, it allows a break mentally and physically.”

“They’re not thinking about playing the sport for the fun of the sport and being active, they’re thinking, ‘where is this getting my kid in life?’” says Ms. Scarneo. “I’m hoping that that mindset starts to shift, because playing multiple sports might be more beneficial.”

Concussions and other closed head injuries, which saw the most concentrated leap in reports, still accounted for only 7 percent of all injuries. And the study’s authors add that the findings underscore “the need for increased injury prevention efforts” among parents, administrators and players.

Part of those efforts might consist of public education on what researchers call “physical literacy,” a term that stresses the development of proper mechanics for moves spanning a wide variety of athletic activities. By getting coaches and educators to implement certain warm-ups as a standard, experts say they could prevent injuries from developing down the road, especially among younger participants.

“At younger ages – the 7 to 12 age range, or 7 to 14 – those kids are not learning how to move properly,” says Scarneo. “If we can fix their biomechanics at a younger age, then we’d probably be able to see a reduction [in injuries to their extremities] when they get older.”

Source: Christian Science Monitor

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!