The Mental Health Podcast and CASEMCON2019

I hope readers of this blog, and listeners of the podcast, have been following #CASEMCON2019 on their social media feeds this week. The Canadian Academy of Sport and Exercise Medicine (CASEM) has been conducting its annual meeting in Vancouver these past several days, and is scheduled to wrap up today, May 18.  I have learned so much from following this #, as well as following the feeds of CJSM Twitter friends including Drs. Jane Thornton  Margo Mountjoy and Laura Cruz.

The topic of mental health in sport has figured prominently in the CASEM proceedings:  for instance, Clint Malarchuk, a retired NHL player, is scheduled to talk today about the stigma of mental health in sport.

And so one of our more recent publications and our most recent podcast could not be timelier (published in our May 2019 journal): The Canadian Centre for Mental Health and Sport (CCMHS) Position Statement: Principles of Mental Health in Competitive and High-Performance Sport

Krista Van Slingerland, of CCMHS and the University of Ottawa

The CCMHS is a relatively new organization and, along with a similar group in Sweden, represents one of the first such initiatives on the planet.  The co-founder of CCMHS, Ms. Krista Van Slingerland of the University of Ottawa, is the lead author of the position statement. She graciously met me on Skype (she, in Ottawa, and I in Columbus) to conduct a podcast exploring the issue of mental health in sport and the work CCMHS is doing to bring further attention to this issue and begin treating individual athletes for the problems they are facing.

CJSM is committed to providing a platform for this important issue, one which has been relatively neglected for too long in our world of sport and exercise medicine.  In my training — and I would suspect in yours, too — the focus was primarily on musculoskeletal medicine,  Medical issues such as managing diabetes or exercise-induced asthma, screening for cardiac disease, etc. would demand our attention at times.  The issue of concussion and its sequelae have of course become central to our athletes’ lives and our practice.  But identifying and helping our athletes cope with anxiety, depression, suicidality — I received little to no training in sports medicine about this, and have heretofore relied on my training in family medicine to help.

The new position statement as well as the CJSM CME Module we have created will help clinicians, including myself, learn more about the importance of mental health in the athletes we serve, and will help us be better able to identify and address the issues uncovered.  High profile and tragic stories like that of the life and death by suicide of Olympic cyclist Kelly Catlin underscore the vital importance of improving our care.

Besides the timeliness of #CASEMCON2019 wrapping up today in Vancouver with Clint Malarchuk’s talk, there is a bit of additional serendipity to the publication date for the CCMHS statement and this podcast, as well, for May is #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth!

And so…..your action items for this weekend

  1. Follow #CASEMCON2019 on your social media feeds
  2. Listen to the podcast, which can be found on our journal web page and on our iTunes feed
  3. Read the position statement — one of the Editor’s picks for this month
  4. Check out the CME module CJSM has produced on the topic of mental health in sport

AMSSM Houston 2019 was Great! (We Already have Atlanta 2020 on our Minds!)

One of the many excellent talks at this year’s AMSSM meeting in Houston

Our Junior Associate Editor Dr. Jason Zaremski — well known to readers of this blog for his recurring journal club posts — was among several of the CJSM Editorial Board down in Houston recently for the annual meeting of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine.

Dr. Zaremski is a newly-elected member of the AMSSM Board of Directors as well as a member of the CJSM Editorial Board, and so he is uniquely qualified to give his fresh perspective on some the highlights of the meeting.

Have at it Dr. Z!


Jason Zaremski M.D.

Good-bye Houston! [see you soon Atlanta!]

The 28th Annual American Medical Society for Sports Medicine Annual Meeting just ended and it was a wonderful assembly of sports medicine physicians from the United States and around the world, all gathering in Houston April 12 – 17.

A wonderful addition to the conference this year was the Youth Early Sport Specialization (YESSS!) Summit, the exercise physiology pre-conference, and first Regenerative Medicine Symposium. The YESSS summit was a full day designed to review the current scientific knowledge related to youth sport specialization and develop a research roadmap to drive future research efforts based on existing evidence and knowledge gaps. Kudos to the AMSSM Leadership of the Summit, Jim Griffith, Stephanie Kliethermes, Col. Anthony Beutler and Drs. Daniel Herman, Neeru Jayanthi, and Steve Marshall. The Regenerative medicine summit, led by Dr Ken Mautner, provided evidence based research presentations on all aspects of this type of treatment modality.

Jordyn Wieber, one of the Keynote Speakers at AMSSM 2019, and UCLA Gymnastics Coach

The highlight of the first dull day of the conference on Saturday had to be Dr Jeffrey Tanji addressing the Larry Nassar revelations and Jordyn Wieber and her emotionally moving talk. AMSSMs members provided standing ovations for both of these powerful talks.

Sunday brought a return of the 5K fun run with nearly 200 participants and wonderful talks revolving around American Football, technological leaps in sports medicine, and many other topics, including the Hough memorial Talk by Dr Kim Harmon on Concussion Updates.

Monday, after a great day of learning including research podium presentations, and a powerful talk from Brian Fletcher on perspectives on thriving after childhood cancer, the AMSSM Foundation Party at the NASA Johnson Space Center commenced. We hopped in buses for the 30-40 minute drive and arrived for an evening of fun!

Tuesday brought the Sports Medicine Fellowship Fair and continued great talks, including a special session on Aerospace Medicine with the Presidential Keynote provided by aerospace medicine physician Dr Michael Berry!

There were 2 more fantastic sessions in Wednesday, including one by Lisa Fenn Mahooti highlighting the importance of community change with a direct personal involvement.

Special mention of Dr Jason Matusak and his planning committee for an outstanding 2019 annual meeting. We can’t wait for 2020 in Atlanta April 24th-29th!


Two special notes

  1. Regarding #AMSSM2020 (or will it be #AMSSM20 ?) — Dr. Zaremski is the chair of the planning committee for this event, and we’re sure Atlanta will be another in a long-line of excellent AMSSM conferences.
  2. And AMSSM is often where CJSM holds its annual Editorial Board meeting.  This year

    Cheers! From members of the CJSM Editorial Board

    2019 we gathered on the Tuesday evening for a couple of hours of food, drink, and thought over how to make CJSM a better resource for our readers.  The fruits of this meeting will be seen in future offerings we have coming your way!!!  In the meantime, please accept your virtual champagne toast to you, our readers around the globe!

5 Questions with Dr. Chad Asplund — President of the AMSSM

Dr. Chad Asplund, President of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (2018 – 2019)

The 2019 annual meeting of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM) commences in Houston April 12 and ends April 17.  Like many of hundreds of sport and exercise medicine (SEM) specialists around the world we’ve been looking forward to the event for months.

This meeting represents one of the high points in our field of SEM, a venue for sharing much of the most current, relevant, evidence-based information in our field.  And, as for most such meetings of a medical society, it also represents something of a shareholder meeting for AMSSM members (I happen to be one, as are many of the members of CJSM’s editorial board):  it’s a time for the society to gather and, perhaps change bylaws, discuss finances, introduce new executive and board members, and say good-bye and thank you to the service given by those individuals who are stepping down from such posts.

One of those individuals in any society is the president, the head dude/dudette. We have traditionally touched bases with the outgoing AMSSM president prior to the annual meeting, and this year we had the chance to catch up with Chad Asplund MD, MPH on the ‘year that was’ for AMSSM.


1. CJSM: We have to begin by asking you about your year as President of the AMSSM. What were your major challenges this year?  What were your high points?

Dr. Asplund (CA): The high points of the year were the finalization of the marketing and branding strategy with a new logo, member seal and messaging.  It was also great to meet and to hear from so many of our members throughout the year.  It was a humbling, but rewarding term as president and I am honored to have been selected.  There were no major challenges, other than media requests regarding the USA Gymnastics (Larry Nassar) and Ohio State (Richard Strauss) cases and the Maryland incident involving the death of Jordan McNair.

2. CJSM: Can you tell the readers a bit about your ‘day job’ – what do you do when you are not busy with AMSSM duties? Read more of this post

Medicine Through Movement — The CJSM Podcast with Dr. Jane Thornton

Jane Thornton, MD, PhD, of CASEM and the University of Western Ontario, Fowler Kennedy Sports Clinic. Twitter: @JaneSThornton

One of CJSM’s closest relationships is with our partner society the Canadian Academy of Sport and Exercise Medicine (CASEM).  After all, CASEM was the founding society for the ‘Canadian Journal of Sport Medicine’ (now the Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine).  We keep close tabs on what CASEM is doing because it’s sure to be of importance to both us and the world of SEM.

And so we’re excited to announce that just a few days from now — April 6 — CASEM will be hosting in Ottawa a special conference.  “Medicine Through Movement:  How Physical Activity is Changing Health Care.”

April 6 is, not coincidentally, World Physical Activity Day. The World Health Organization (WHO) named April 6 World Physical Activity Day in 2002 as part of in initiative to address the world-wide pandemic of physical activity.  We in primary care SEM are the troops on the ‘front lines’ waging battle against this pandemic.  We are always looking for effective tools to stem the tide.

One of the organizers of the Ottawa conference, and an expert in the field of ‘medicine through movement,’ is Dr. Jane Thornton, a clinician and researcher who most recently published in the pages of CJSM as the lead author of the CASEM position statement on the ‘physical activity prescription.‘  Always game to see research translated into practical action in the clinic and community, Dr. Thornton was a gracious guest on these blog pages three years ago.

We’re delighted to have her as CJSM’s guest again, and on this occasion she was able to sit down with us for a podcast conversation.  No small feat in her very busy life, I can assure you!

In preparation for the conference, or in its aftermath, take a listen to our conversation. Dr. Thornton weighs in on the highlights of the event, her research into the area of physical activity interventions, and tells us all about one of her heroesShe also shares her thoughts on ‘movement hacks’ — interventions that work for patients, and can be integrated into the busy, time-challenged clinics in which, I am sure, we all work.

If you’re not able to get to Ottawa, have a listen and by all means follow Dr. Thornton and the hashtag #MTM2019 on Twitter for the breaking information from that conference.

And before we forget, make sure to highlight May 16 – 18 2019 and April 29 – May 2 2020 on your calendars; these are the dates of the 2019 CASEM (Vancouver) and 2020 CASEM (Banff, Alberta) annual symposia. You won’t want to miss these, perhaps especially the 2020 event, when CASEM celebrates its 50th anniversary!

In the meantime, what are you waiting for?  Take a listen on iTunes or on our journal webpage to Dr. Jane Thornton on the newest CJSM podcast!

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