By Ken Reed
Today, more than two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese. We love our sports in this country but most of us prefer to watch rather than participate.
As a country, we need to become more physically active, not only to improve our physical health but our mental and emotional health as well.
League of Fans has long pushed “sports for all” initiatives and more cardiovascular-based physical education in our schools. It’s important to get Americans participating not only in team and individual sports but a variety of other physical activities. It’s one of our top objectives.
As such, I was intrigued when I came across a new, in-progress study that is designed to help people determine which sports and other physical activities might be the most engaging and enjoyable for them based on the relative characteristics of various physical activities.
To make the study’s findings more robust, the study’s lead investigators are looking for more people to participate in the study by taking a short (usually five minutes or less) survey. They need your help.
Here’s a short introduction to the study, followed by a link that will take you to the page that will allow you to take part in the survey:
There are hundreds, maybe thousands, of distinct physical activities. When looking for something physical to do, a person could choose an American classic like baseball, or a less famous sport like lacrosse.
One problem is that very few people have the time to experiment with many different physical activities. Also, people have different priorities when choosing physical activities to participate in. Some people may be particularly averse to injury, whereas others may be less concerned about minor injuries if the activity affords a high degree of creative expression. As far as we are aware, physical activities have not been ranked on a selection of characteristics such as these. Our objective is to change that!
To that end, we devised a survey. So far, data have been collected from students at Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Virginia. Twenty questions ask about the relative characteristics of two physical activities. These data are digested by a statistical program to convert the relative ratings into absolute rankings. You can already explore early results.
So far, most of our data are from college students. However, our plan is to open up the study to people with more diverse experience. A great deal more data is needed, across all demographics, to cover a broader spectrum of physical activities with greater accuracy. You are invited to participate. Most participants finish in fewer than 5 minutes.
This study is being conducted as a public service. Once data collection is complete, anonymized data and data analysis reports will be placed in the public domain. You can expect to eventually see these rankings reflected on sites like Wikipedia.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #10 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: An Issues Discussion With Paul Dolan – Dolan is the Cleveland Indians Owner and CEO. He discusses the use of Native American names and logos by sports teams and the decisions to drop the Chief Wahoo logo and the upcoming change to the team name. Other baseball topics include health and safety, possible MLB rule changes and youth participation in the sport.
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Episode #9 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Issues With Ralph Nader – Nader is a consumer advocate and was named one of the “100 Most Influential Americans of the 20th Century” by Time magazine. He is the founder of League of Fans.
Episode #8 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Save College Sports From Overcommercialization and Professionalization? – The guest is Dr. David Ridpath, a sports business professor and past president of the Drake Group
Episode #7 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Brain Trauma and CTE Risk in Sports With Dr. Ann McKee – Dr. McKee works in the field of neuropathology and has demonstrated that “mild” repetitive head trauma can provoke chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a devastating neurodegenerative disease.
Episode #6 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: The Need for Quality Physical Education in Our Schools is Greater Than Ever – The guest is Clayton Ellis, one of our nation’s leading advocates for getting our young people to be more physically active.
Episode #5 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Youth Sports with Positive Coaching Alliance Founder Jim Thompson – Thompson started Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) in 1998 to help create a movement to transform the culture of youth sports from “win-at-all-costs” to a positive, character-building experience.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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