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Departments: From the Editor


Roy, Brad A. PhD, FACSM

ACSM's Health & Fitness Journal: January/February 2017 - Volume 21 - Issue 1 - p 1
doi: 10.1249/FIT.0000000000000267
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As I begin my second year as Editor-in-Chief of ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal® and reflect on the past year I am deeply appreciative of our outstanding group of Associate Editors, Editorial Board members, and all of the talented authors that have provided exceptional content to the Journal. Each of you deserves a hefty “thank you”! As Editor-in-Chief I have had the privilege of reading through each of the articles and columns that appear in this issue of the Journal and while I highlight a few key points below, I certainly wouldn’t want you to miss out on any of the tremendous information provided in this issue. Thus, I hope the following highlights serve to whet your appetite to read this issue cover to cover.

  • 1. Our client’s perspective is critical to our coaching success. As experienced exercise professionals we are passionate about fitness and highly motivated to maximize our own health and well-being. We “know” what needs to be done and this passion typically bleeds into our client encounters as we strive to infuse our love for activity into their less-active lifestyle. But this “expert” approach, while genuine and passionate, isn’t working. This issue’s Business Edge column by Jennifer L. Bacon, M.S., in a very provocative way encourages us to start “thinking like a non-exerciser.”
  • 2. Green Exercise: Clean, healthy, and fun! Outdoor exercise is considered to be “green exercise” as these activities provide numerous benefits to each participant, can be refreshing and fun, and for the most part are easy on the environment. Be sure to read “Go Green with Outdoor Activity,” by Kelsey Brown, M.Ed. and Dixie Stanforth, Ph.D. to learn more.
  • 3. Exercise our creativity outdoors, it will enhance your physical and mental well-being. Creative ways to exercise are abundant in every outdoor environment – we just need to open our eyes and imagination. A few years back a colleague sent me a video link of an incredible, yet simple, circuit of exercises an elderly gentleman had created in his backyard. Consisting of activities that utilized balance, agility, strength, power, aerobic/anaerobic energy, and quick thinking – it looked like a fun challenge. Perhaps something I should consider putting together!
  • 4. Peruvian Andes: Outdoors but challenged by altitude. Mountain trekking, biking, and skiing while undertaken in scenic environments can be breathtaking, by both beauty and elevation. As we venture into the high places the relative weight of the air column decreases (expressed as the barometric pressure) and affects our ability to saturate our blood with needed oxygen, especially during exertion. Our rate and depth of breathing increases, physical exertion becomes more challenging, and symptoms such as nausea, headache, dizziness, and other discomforts may occur.
  • 5. Symptoms can be minimized with a little forethought and preparation. While you can’t change the environmental dynamics as you venture higher, you may be able to protect yourself with a little advanced preparation. I encourage you to read the article, “High Altitude Recreation: What to Expect at the Top!” by Devon A. Dobrosielski, Ph.D.; Madelyn Heyman, B.S.; and Angela Humpert, B.S. where you will discover a few important tips to pass on to your clients.
  • 6. Scope of Practice: Something to be conscious of. Practicing outside your specific scope of practice places you at risk of legal action, both criminal and civil claims, and these are associated with a number of potential penalties that can be costly, both financially and in regard to your professional career. This issue’s Legal Aspects column by Anthony A. Abbott, Ed.D., FACSM, FNSCA, provides some thought provoking information in this regard in part I of a two part column.
  • 7. Collaboration and teamwork is best. Exercise professionals and RDNs provide the best service to their clients when they work together as part of a medical, athletic, or fitness/wellness team. As professionals, we need to look for more opportunities to engage this collaborative approach and resist the temptation to provide coaching/counseling advice that is outside our scope of expertise. The feature, “Drawing the Line: Understanding the Scope of Practice among Registered Dietitian Nutritionists and Exercise Professionals,” is a “must read” article for all of us.
  • 8. A Key Resource: The Dietary Guidelines for Americans. While it is critical that fitness professionals remain within their specific scope of practice, we can help clients and patients with information that increases their awareness of the key recommendations presented within the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Barbara Bushman, Ph.D., FACSM, in her Wouldn’t You Like to Know column does a superb job of covering the 8th edition of the guidelines that were released in early 2016.

There is so much more, I sincerely hope you will enjoy reading through each feature article and column as I have. And, I encourage you to visit the Journal’s web site to garner additional content and video.

Brad A. Roy, PhD, FACSM,


Kalispell Regional Medical Center

© 2017 American College of Sports Medicine.