Baby Boomers Turn 60 NATIONAL ATHLETIC TRAINERS’ ASSOCIATION (NATA) AND AMERICAN ACADEMY OF ORTHOPAEDIC SURGEONS (AAOS) TEAM UP ON NATIONAL ‘BOOMERITIS PREVENTION’ PUBLIC SERVICE CAMPAIGN
Groups Offer Tips to Help Active, Aging Baby Boomers Stay Injury-Free ROSEMONT, Ill. and DALLAS, Dec. 19 – After World War II, they arrived in droves and rocked the planet – more than 76 million in all – from 1946-1964. Now six decades later, the first battalion of American “baby boomers” turns 60 in January 2006 and isn’t slowing down. “As a whole, boomers are the first generation of Americans who are staying active on their aging frames,” said Nicholas DiNubile, MD, orthopaedic surgeon and Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS). “Because of their aging frame, however, many are experiencing ‘boomeritis’ – musculoskeletal problems, which include tendonitis, bursitis, arthritis and sports-related injuries.” To help America’s soon-to-be seniors stay strong, healthy and boomeritis-free – whether they are Kathleen Casey-Kirschling (the first American boomer) or President George W. Bush, Cher, Rev. Al Green, Diane Keaton or Donald Trump – the AAOS has teamed up with the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) for the Academy’s seventh annual national public service announcement (PSA) campaign. Kicking off on New Year’s Day 2006, the year-long campaign – spotlighting physically active boomers – will appear in major magazines, newspapers and on billboards at the Chicago and Atlanta airports and others nationwide. It will feature the provocative headline, “There’s a secret to beating injuries. Get the right team.” “The right team includes both certified athletic trainers and orthopaedic surgeons,” said Marjorie J. Albohm, MS, ATC, vice president of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association. “Athletic trainers are health care providers who specialize in the prevention, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries and illnesses that occur in active people of all ages. Orthopaedic surgeons are essential for diagnosing and treating bone, joint and muscle-related injuries and getting boomers back in action.” With no time to waste, boomers are joining health clubs at a stupendous rate – up 135 percent between 1987 and 2001, reports America Sports Data, Inc. They account for nearly one-third of all Americans who participated in bicycling, basketball, baseball, running and other sports in 1998, according to the latest statistics available from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. That same year, they suffered more than one million sports injuries, which amounted to nearly $19 billion in medical costs. Between 1991 and 1998, sports-related injuries among baby boomers increased about 33 percent. This translated into more than 365,000 hospital emergency room visits. “The most common types of injuries that occur to baby boomers are often the result of years of overuse to the musculoskeletal system; old injuries that occur again; the normal ‘wear and tear’ of tendons and joints; and muscle loss associated with aging,” said Dr. DiNubile. “Because of age-related changes, boomers’ bodies are just more vulnerable.” “It is important that baby boomers learn to listen to their bodies and seek expert help to prevent injuries from happening,” said Albohm. “NATA and AAOS hope this PSA campaign will educate boomers on how to stay strong and healthy throughout their golden years.” NATA and AAOS offer boomers the following tips:
- Customize your workouts based on your individual fitness level and goals.
- Find your "weak links" or points of vulnerability. They will need special attention in your workout design.
- If you have muscle, bone or joint problems, consider lower impact aerobic routines and lighter loads with weight training.
- Embrace cross-training for truly balanced fitness. Include aerobic or cardiovascular activities, strength training and stretching.
- Always warm up before exercise or sports.
- Take calcium and vitamins to keep your bones and joints healthy and strong.
- Learn to listen to your body. If you have problems with aches and pains, see an orthopaedic surgeon and certified athletic trainer who can help you on the path to recovery. Exercise shouldn't be a pain!
For more information, visit nata.org and orthoinfo.org. About the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS): With more than 28,000 members, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (www.aaos.org) or (www.orthoinfo.org), is a not-for-profit organization that advocates improved patient care, provides education programs for orthopaedic surgeons, allied health professionals and the public. The Academy’s 73rd Annual Meeting is being held March 22-26, 2006 at McCormick Place in Chicago. About the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA): Athletic trainers are unique health care providers who specialize in the prevention, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of injuries and illnesses. The National Athletic Trainers' Association (www.nata.org) represents and supports 30,000 members of the athletic training profession through education and research. NATA, 2952 Stemmons Freeway, Ste. 200, Dallas, TX 75247, 214.637.6282; 214.637.2206 (fax). NATA and AAOS are participating in the Bone and Joint Decade (www.usbjd.org), the global initiative in the years 2002-2011 to raise awareness of musculoskeletal health to 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.