Funding for exercise research, is it a priority? ~ Dr. Steven N. Blair

We have a serious problem in exercise science and sports medicine.  This is lack of attention by funding agencies, at least in the United States, to research in these areas.  If this issue interests you, I suggest that you go to a website at the US National Institutes of Health to see how they spend their research dollars.  There are 233 categories of research spending.  The following slide includes spending for nutrition and food categories.

Note that in the current fiscal year, more than $2 billion are spent on Nutrition and Obesity.  Exercise, physical activity, or sports medicine are not even included on the list of 233 categories.  Isn’t physical inactivity at least a big a public health problem as Food Allergies (FY 2013 spending of $33 million as shown on the above table).  How does research funding for exercise, physical activity, and sports medicine compare with other topics in your country?

Dr. Steven N. Blair is Professor in the Departments of Exercise Science and Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina. Dr. Blair is a Fellow in the American College of Epidemiology, Society for Behavioral Medicine, American College of Sports Medicine, American Heart Association, and American Kinesiology Academy; and was elected to membership in the American Epidemiological Society.

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