American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and National Athletic Trainers' Association Team to Promote Exercise for Lifetime Bone Health

ROSEMONT, Ill, and Dallas, Texas (October 10, 2002) - The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA), both founding members of the U.S. Bone and Joint Decade, are teaming up to promote the official Bone and Joint National Awareness Week, October 12-20, 2002. The AAOS and the NATA together are stressing the importance of good exercise and proper nutrition beginning at a young age and maintaining it throughout a lifetime in order to achieve proper bone health. "While bones are growing, weight-bearing exercises such as running, jumping, dancing or hiking help make bones stronger," explained Vernon T. Tolo, MD, president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and pediatric orthopaedic surgeon at Children's Hospital, Los Angeles. "It is comparable to making a 'deposit' in a savings account, so it will be there later in life when needed. Without adequate bone mass, conditions such as osteoporosis make bones fragile and susceptible to breaks that can occur along with osteoarthritis and other musculoskeletal conditions." "Certified athletic trainers (ATC) and orthopaedic surgeons nationwide are urging parents to make sure their children are getting adequate levels of physical activity," explained Julie Max, ATC, president of the National Athletic Trainers' Association and head athletic trainer at California State University, Fullerton. "Because ATCs are part of the allied health care profession and work in secondary schools, they are uniquely qualified to guide young people in injury prevention, which establishes their musculoskeletal health for a lifetime. Together we can help inform everyone of the importance of diet and lifetime physical activity." The Bone and Joint Decade worldwide consists of orthopaedic surgeons, certified athletic trainers, rheumatologists, physical therapists and medical and patient health associations that have joined together to advance the understanding and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders through prevention, education and research. President Bush has officially issued a proclamation designating the years 2002-2011 as the U.S. Bone and Joint Decade. The 26,047-member American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons ( or (, is a not-for-profit organization that provides education programs for orthopaedic surgeons, allied health professionals and the public. An advocate for improved patient care, the Academy is participating in the Bone and Joint Decade (, the global initiative in the years 2002-2011 to raise awareness of musculoskeletal health, stimulate research and improve people's quality of life. President Bush has declared the years 2002-2011 National Bone and Joint Decade in support of these objectives. Athletic training is recognized by the American Medical Association as an allied health care profession. Based in Dallas, the NATA is the voice for 30,000 members of the athletic training profession in the United States. Its mission is to enhance the quality of health care for athletes and those engaged in physical activity, and to advance the profession of athletic training through education and research in the prevention, evaluation, management and rehabilitation of injuries. ( For more information, contact: Todd Schuetz American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (847) 384-4032, Ellen Satlof National Athletic Trainers' Association (214) 637-6282, ext. 159,

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