This month's American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Clinician Profile features Sandra Hoffmann, M.D., M.S., FACP, FACSM, who is an associate professor in the Department of Family Medicine and the team physician at Idaho State University. She received her doctorate in medicine from Michigan State University in Kalamazoo and is board-certified in Internal Medicine with a Certificate of Added Qualifications (CAQ) in Sports Medicine. Dr. Hoffmann currently serves on the ACSM Board of Trustees, ACSM's Medical Education Committee, and Strategic Health Initiative - Aging Committee.
YOU HAVE BEEN AN ACSM MEMBER SINCE 1990. HOW HAS ACSM GROWN AND CHANGED SINCE YOU BECAME A MEMBER?
ACSM has grown tremendously since I joined in 1990. The growth in membership, especially in the area of clinical exercise science, has added value to the interdisciplinary strength of ACSM. Additionally, there has been an explosive growth in physician membership, especially in the primary care areas such as family medicine. I believe this growth has strengthened the value of my ACSM membership. Where else can you interact with cutting-edge scientists, clinicians, and physicians at the same scientific meeting?
HOW HAS THE SPORTS MEDICINE FIELD GROWN AND CHANGED SINCE YOU FIRST BECAME A CLINICIAN?
The field of sports medicine has changed and evolved since I have become a clinician in two distinct ways. First, the development of Sports Medicine Fellowships and Certificates of Added Qualification (CAQs) has strengthened the science of our practice. Prior to this, any physician could just "hang out a shingle" claiming to be a sports medicine specialist. Now sports medicine physicians have rigorous training and experience in the discipline. Second, with the launch of ACSM's Exercise is Medicine™ initiative, I think physicians will have a unique opportunity to promote sports medicine for everyone!
HOW HAS MEMBERSHIP IN ACSM INFLUENCED YOUR CAREER?
Prior to going to medical school, I was extremely fortunate to have trained in kinesiology at UCLA with active members of ACSM. My training in muscle physiology in undergraduate and graduate school was a major influence in my choice of sports medicine as a career. My mentor in medical school was Douglas B. McKeag, M.D., M.S., FACSM, who encouraged me to become an ACSM member and to pursue becoming a team physician. Then after joining ACSM, I found mentors such as Mary Lloyd Ireland, M.D., FACSM, who helped guide my involvement in ACSM.
HOW DO YOU USE THE ACSM NETWORK IN YOUR DAILY WORK?
ACSM's network is important in my daily work as a physician. Foremost, there is a vast network of physicians I can call on when I have a diagnostic dilemma. Additionally, our residency program is embarking on a program called "Healthy Families" for which we will use a multitude of ACSM resources to help us promote healthy lifestyles in our community.
WHAT IS YOUR BEST ADVICE TO OTHER SPORTS MEDICINE CLINICIANS?
My best advice for sports medicine clinicians is to make sure to attend ACSM's Team Physician® courses. The most updated information from leaders in the field is exchanged at these conferences. I also encourage clinicians to become actively involved in Exercise is Medicine™ and promote physical activity to all people.
WHERE DO YOU SEE ACSM HEADING IN THE FUTURE?
I think ACSM is headed toward becoming the world's leading organization in promoting physical activity. As a member of the Board of Trustees, I am amazed at our strength as an organization in public policy and advocacy.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE ANYTHING ELSE WITH THE READERS OF CURRENT SPORTS MEDICINE REPORTS?
I also encourage clinicians to become active in ACSM. Attend the Annual Meeting and listen to a basic science or applied exercise lecture or symposium. Then network with your new friends. Join your Regional Chapter and offer to give lectures/workshops at the chapter meetings. Pursue Fellowship, and volunteer to be on a committee. Become involved in public policy and advocacy for physical activity in your community. Get involved!