Essay Sports Science and Sports Medicine
An overview of sports/exercise science and medicine, two fields that have only recently begun consolidating into distinct professions.
Sports has become a multi-billion-dollar business, and the ever-increasing competitiveness and challenges, both mental and physical, faced by the modern sportsperson has increased the need for a medical and scientific support system for athletes. This paper discusses two fields that have developed from this need: sports science and sports medicine. The paper shows that they are interrelated, the former being more of an investigative and experimental area, while the latter deals with the implementation of the knowledge and techniques developed by sports science.
“High quality sports performance depends largely on an individual’s movement pattern and is usually referred to as technique. Good technique not only produces an effective performance but also reduces the risk of injury. The effect of physical forces on the movement and on the size, shape and structure of the body is scientifically studied by biomechanists today in an attempt to help optimize athletic technique. (Stein, 2003) Through qualitative analysis via direct observation on film or video tape, a biomechanist will study an athlete’s performance with a view to diagnosing any problems which might be limiting sporting potential. In close consultation with the athlete’s coach, training patterns may be altered to incorporate elements which may help to rectify the problem.”