CollegeHumor vs. ACSM / Licensure Coalition Crumbles 

August was not a good month for the ACSM-NSCA agenda. They endured blows on both their sponsor-friendly hydration policies and anti-CrossFit lobbying efforts.

College Humor Takes on Gatorade-ACSM

College Humor and truTV’s “Adam Ruins Everything” took on Gatorade-ACSM hydration myths this week:  

The show’s message will sound familiar to The Russells Blog readers: drink when you’re thirsty, don’t when you’re not. And host Adam Conover even addressed the source of these hydration myths:

“Companies have portrayed dehydration as a serious threat for one simple reason: it gets us to drink more … Gatorade also sponsors sports science research at universities across America, and this can influence their findings … The American College of Sports Medicine once recommended ‘when exercising you should drink as much as tolerable.'”

It’s no accident that Conover discovered what CrossFit Inc. has proclaimed loudly for years. He recruited Dr. Tamara Hew-Butler of CrossFit’s 2015 “Exercise-Associated Hyponatremia Consensus Development Conference” to back up his claims in the video.

Dr. Hew-Butler has played a critical, even superhuman, role in correcting hydration myths for over a decade. The Oakland University professor served as lead author of the CrossFit conference’s consensus statement as well as lead author of the two industry-independent hyponatremia statements that preceded it.

The “drink when thirsty” message sadly remains necessary. U.S. Army 2nd Lt. Michael R. Parros died following a case of hyponatremia he acquired during Ranger School this July. While the Army has not yet linked Parros’ death to over-hydration, former U.S. Army Ranger Russell Berger had this to say about Parros’ case:

“This school in particular is plagued by poor advice to drink before thirst, beyond thirst, and to do both to prevent ‘heat injury.’ This is particularly true in summer cycles (I graduated in July 05′). All the ‘heat injuries’ I witnessed were, in retrospect, likely misdiagnosed EAH based on the symptoms we always saw (confusion, memory loss, vomiting of clear fluid).”

Videos such as College Humor’s will go a long way toward preventing further unnecessary deaths from over-hydration. The science has been done–but correcting the marketing damage done by Gatorade-ACSM will take years.

ACSM-NSCA Licensure Coalition Begins to Fall Apart

We have good news for CrossFit Affiliates. The organizations lobbying to regulate them have begun to fragment.

This August, the National Exercise Trainers Association left the Coalition for the Registration of Exercise Professionals (CREP). CREP is the organization ACSM and NSCA used to lobby for laws that would have made CrossFit’s affiliate model illegal.

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After the CrossFit community overwhelmingly opposed licensure in D.C. last year, ACSM tapped out. ACSM convinced CREP to stop lobbying for the licensure of fitness trainers. Instead, CREP turned its focus to ACSM and Coca-Cola’s Exercise is Medicine scheme. They’ll have a hard time accomplishing that now that fitness companies are leaving the coalition, and the press has picked up on Coca-Cola’s infiltration of the CDC and NIH. It will be difficult for ACSM to get Exercise is Medicine research funded and respected once the CDC and NIH fully purge themselves of Coca-Cola-connected officials.

Absent the promise of licensure-mandated revenue, why would CREP member organizations keep paying their dues? Does it make sense to pay to be publicly associated with Big Soda’s fitness proxies? And how do these organization’s certified trainers, some of whom are also CrossFit trainers and affiliates, feel about being added to CREP’s database without permission?

Our assessment remains the same: the ACSM-NSCA agenda is so insane that it could only succeed secretly. Thanks to the the CrossFit community, that will never happen.

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