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Head injuries and concussions are the hot topic right now in the NFL and around the sporting world. Rightfully so as well. The incidences and the injuries are significantly increasing. There is no one best solution to this real problem, but limiting the hitting and tackling to a specific ‘zone’ within the body are NOT an answer in our opinion.

The game of football is violent by its very nature, it is part of the sport. It is what separates these incredible athletes from the weekend warriors and armchair qb’s. Permanant head injuries and paralysis are some of the most very unfortunate parts of the game.

Redefining the game is truly not the best solution to curbing head injuries, but rather redefining the protective gear is. With mounting pressure from the media, some fans, sponsors, some players and health care professionals, Commissioner Roger Goodell is bound to make changes. Let’s hope they are not in haste.

Head trauma and head injuries are some of the most under diagnosed and mis-understood afflictions in sports. As more and more data and information comes to light regarding athletes and concussions, the closer sports and medical professionals come to finding a workable solution and possibly better prevention methods.

Last month, former football player Chris Nowinski testified before the House Judiciary Committee, whose chairman, Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.), called for a hearing aimed at placing focus on the issue. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in his testimony, “We know that concussions are a serious matter and that they require special attention and treatment.” According to the NFL, about 175 concussions occur league wide each season.

More recently the NFL has suspended its in-house study of the long-term effects of concussions in retired players. In the face of heated criticism from outside medical experts, the players union and members of Congress (although Congress involvement is the last thing any sporting entity needs) because of suspect data and conflict of interest.

Gee, you think? The fact is, that the NFL has known for quite some time that concussive injuries are more dangerous with severe long-term aftereffects. So why is it only now, after numerous high-profile concussion injuries in 2009, to both NFL and NCAA stars has the NFL truly addressed this very serious issue. Like almost anything in life…it comes down to dollars.

“Protect the shield” as infamously echoed by the commissioner. Protect it indeed, at almost any cost, until it becomes so glaring and such a problem that action is needed to address the problem. The days of sweeping serious issues under the carpet are gone. In this world of media now, virtually no one or nothing can hide from the stream of real-time information.

Players are now supposedly encouraged to come forth and report and/or disclose any signs or symptoms that may be associated with a concussion. That may be true, but actually getting some of the tougher, hard-nosed players to admit a weakness may prove to be a stumbling block in itself.

Medically, the treatment of concussions are passive and depend mainly on allowing the brain to heal itself utilizing rest and a strict avoidance of activities that may induce a re-injury. It is completely unsafe and irresponsible to return to play while symptomatic in any way following a concussion. Return to play should follow a stringent medically advised step by step process. The prescribed progression will typically vary depending on the duration of post-concussion symptoms.

The Data

National Football League player concussions occur at an impact velocity of 9.3 +/- 1.9 m/s (20.8 +/- 4.2 mph) oblique on the facemask, side, and back of the helmet. There is a dire need for new testing procedures to evaluate helmet performance for violent impacts causing concussion.

Pendulum impacts were used to simulate 7.4 and 9.3 m/s impacts causing concussion in NFL players. An instrumented Hybrid III head was helmeted and supported on the neck, which was fixed to a sliding table for frontal and lateral impacts. Second, a linear pneumatic impactor was used to evaluate helmets at 9.3 m/s and an elite impact condition at 11.2 m/s.

The severity of the head responses was measured by a severity index, translational and rotational acceleration, and other biomechanical responses. High-speed videos of the helmet kinematics were also recorded. The tests were evaluated for their similarity to conditions causing NFL concussions.

It has been noted that football players from age 30 and up to 50 were 19 times more likely to be diagnosed with a memory disorder or dementia than the national average. Players over 50 were diagnosed with dementia-related illness at a rate of 5 times the national average.

A new linear impactor was developed for use by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE). The concluding results from the pendulum test closely simulated the conditions causing concussion in NFL players. Newer helmet designs and padding reduced the risk of concussion in 7.4 and 9.3 m/s impacts oblique on the facemask and lateral on the helmet shell.

The linear impactor provided a broader speed range for helmet testing and more interactions with safety equipment. NOCSAE has prepared a draft supplemental standard for the 7.4 and 9.3 m/s impacts using a newly designed pneumatic impactor. No helmet designs currently address the elite impact condition at 11.2 m/s, as padding bottoms out and head responses dramatically increase. The new proposed NOCSAE standard to improve football helmet shell and padding design is the first to address helmet performance in reducing concussion risks in football.

The fact is, that football has to invest in better designed and more protective helmets. Cost should NOT be an issue. With teams and the league itself worth billions of dollars, the cost of protective equipment should NEVER be a question or consideration.

Similar carbon fiber/kevlar and energy apsorbing technology and knowledge that is utilized for F1, MotoGP and other motorsport helmets with some version of a Hans type device needs to be incorporated into football helmet design and manufacturing in order to minimize the high rate of brain injuries suffered by football players worldwide.

data sourced from the NFL, Ovid, PubMed and NCAA.

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Brian Surtees on his TZ250


 2010 Winter Olympic Games | United States Medal Count

  • Gold:             9
  • Silver:          15
  • Bronze:       13 
  • Total:         37

 2006 Winter Olympic Games | United States Medal Count

  • Gold:            9
  • Silver:          9
  • Bronze:        7 
  • Total:         25

 2002 Winter Olympic Games | United States Medal Count

  • Gold:           10
  • Silver:         13
  • Bronze:       11
  • Total:         34

 

2010 was a record haul for overall medals in United States Olympic games history. Out of 24 countries competing, for a total of 258 medals won, the U.S. claimed approximately 14.4% of all Olympic medals handed out in 2010. The U.S., representing 4.125% of the competition, won 14.4% of the medals.

The percentage increase from 2006 was approximately        32.44%

The percentage increase from 2002 was approximately        8.11%

 das vidania – 2014…


 

When the checkered flag fell in the 48th Rolex 24 At Daytona, it was the No. 9 Action Express Racing Porsche that took victory.  Team drivers, Mike Rockenfeller, Ryan Dalziel, Joao Barbosa and Terry Borcheller covered a total of 755 laps of the Daytona International Speedway’s 3.56-mile road/oval course.

The key to victory was consistency, good car/pit management and reliability, as the team completed the prestigious, grueling 24 hour endurance race without any major incidents.

The newly formed team- which was a composit of the 2009 second Brumos Porsche team car along with some new personnel drove a Riley chassis-Porsche Cayenne V8 powered prototype to victory lane in its season début. Although instead of utilizing the new flat six Porsche power plant, the team opted to use a privately built 2009 Porsche V8 engine. No doubt guaranteed to be the chagrin of the Porsche factory!

This marks Porsche’s 21st overall win at the Daytona endurance classic event. Additional Porsche stats at Daytona show an impressive 62 class wins and 36 victories for the famed 911. Porsche also have the most consecutive wins- at 20 from 1966 to 1987 and the most 1-2 finishes at Daytona with 11.

First Daytona win | 1966

First overall Daytona win | 1968

Total overall Daytona wins | 21

Total class Daytona wins | 62

Porsche 911 Daytona wins | 36

1-2 overall’s at the Daytona 24-Hours | 11


As we wind down to the end of the year, we’ll depart slightly from our usual reporting and post some great links for health, wellness and fitness workouts.

The principles to being athletically fit are accomplished utilizing the four key components of fitness. What I like to refer to as the Four Block Foundation of Fitness© – Speed, Agility, Strength, flexibility.  Attain a peak level in each of these attributes and you will be a dynamic force.  Healthy, fit and ready to take on almost anything.

http://www.military.com/military-fitness/

http://www.active.com/nutrition/

http://www.menshealth.com/men/fitness

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/

http://www.livestrong.com/

These are some of the best sites around for fitness, exercise and nutrition tips and plans.

Not that it matters…but here is a quick guide to my winter time workouts.

Indoor Cardio workouts

These exercises are good for endurance and agility. Remember to warm-up and hydrate properly before any exercise.

Two to three minutes of jumping jacks, typical and military style work well. Followed by 10 easy push-ups, then run in-place at an easy pace for about two minutes. Follow that up with squats and standing calf raises. Move to (dynamic) general leg stretches- hamstrings, quads and glutes. Lastly, another minute or two of jumping jacks. Keep in mind, proper warm-up and stretching should be a part of any and all workouts (pre and post)

Jump rope:

One to two minute reps of at least three sets (more if you can) (60-90 second rest intervals between each rep)

Chair or bench hops:

Standing behind a chair or using a bench, place hands on the back of chair or bench, leaning slightly forward- hop side to side (both feet at the same time). Three to five reps of 10-12 each.

Modified run in-place:

From a push-up position, your hands just wider than your shoulders and your left or right knee pulled toward your chest. Then run in place- essentially pull your opposite knee forward while kicking your opposite leg back. At least five reps of 10 or 12 (or a timed set). You could also pull both legs up simultaneously.

Box run:

You’ll need at least a 6′ x 6′ space, but larger is better. This is a timed workout of at least five minutes. Try at least three reps. Starting where ever you like, run up then backwards, then laterally, then up, then laterally repeating any pattern you prefer. The key is to run in all directions- side to side and front to back with no rest during the five minutes. If you can go longer, by all means. Attempt at least three sets.

In-place runs:

This is a timed workout. Try for at least five minutes. This version will mix typical running with high-step running and sprints. (Intervals) Start out with a minuet of running, then go into a high-step (knees up as high as you can) for 45-60 seconds, then immediately sprint as fast as you can for 15 seconds. repeat as often as you can during the five minute set.

Side to side jumps:

Place a rolled up towel or anything that is straight- about two feet long and about 5″ to 6″ wide. Starting on either side jump with both legs/feet simultaneousness side to side over the towel, then side steps over the towel. Try at least three sets each of 10-12.

Cool down with a slow run in-place winding to a walk. Hydrate and stretch your body.

Resistance training

Push-ups, reverse chair dips/squats, leg squats-(in addition to normal squats, balance on one leg and do a set or two) chin-ups and pull-ups. If you have a resistance band- use it as well.

Weight training:

All you need is a set of dumbbells. If you have a barbell, even better.

Bicep curls, tricep extensions, side, shoulder lifts and chest fly’s.

One to two days of weight training, two days of cardio and one day of resistance training. This will give you 4 to 5 days of workouts with the proper recovery in between. Alternate workouts so you are not doing the same regiment more than a day in a row. Recovery is most important in weight training, despite whoever or whatever you may hear or read.

Your muscles need at least 24 hours to rebuild and repair in order to maximize the benefits of strength training. Don’t forget to eat a sufficient mix of protein and carbs (Either a 3:1 or a 4:1 ratio- depending on how agressive your weight training is) after working out, try to get at least 7 hours of sleep and eat a balanced diet.

Start slow, be consistent and build up to your maximum potential. Every so often change up the routines so as not to get bored or burnt out. I also highly recommend playing sports.


The Rutgers Scarlet Knights Football team is the oldest college football team in the nation, having the played the first official intercollegiate football game against Princeton in 1869. NCAA Division I Rutgers was an independent team for 122 years until 1991, then joining the Big East.

In 2005 Rutgers achieved a winning season for the first time in 13 long years. The last three years have also been winning seasons for the Scarlet Knights under New Jersey native head coach Greg Schiano, including their first ever post-season win- beating Kansas State in the Texas Bowl.

The original Rutgers Stadium was completed in 1938 and the team played there until 1992. 1994 saw the new stadium built upon the old grounds, and currently houses the football team as well as NCAA soccer and Lacrosse games. In 2008 the stadium underwent an expansion- upping seating capacity to 52,454. The last four years have seen a significant rise in attendance, mainly due to the recent success of the team.

Here is the breakdown so far of the six game home attendance statistics for 2009 and 2008 respectively.

2009

Date                    Opponent            Site                                Result      Attendance

September 7   Cincinnati            Rutgers Stadium  •  L 47-15      53,737

September 12  Howard                Rutgers Stadium  •  W 45-7      43,722

September 19  Florida Intrnl    Rutgers Stadium  •  W 23-15    45,273

October 10    Texas Southern   Rutgers Stadium  •  W 42-0       50,169

October 16    Pittsburgh              Rutgers Stadium  •   L 24-17     50,296

November 12   So Florida          Rutgers Stadium  •   W 31-0       48,057

Total Attendance for six home games 2009:                                  291,254

 

2008

Date                     Opponent              Site                                Result       Attendance

September 1     Fresno State         Rutgers Stadium  •  L 7–24      42,508

September 11    No Carolina         Rutgers Stadium  •  L 12–44    42,502

September 27    Morgan State     Rutgers Stadium  •  W 38–0     42,411

October 18    Connecticut              Rutgers Stadium  •  W 12–10   42,491

November 8    Syracuse                 Rutgers Stadium  •  W 35–17   42,172
 
November 22    Army                     Rutgers Stadium  •  W 30–3     42,212

Total Attendance for six home games 2008:                                    254,296

The delta from 2008 to 2009 is +36,958. Or, an increase of 12.69%

Average attendance during 2008 was:     42,383.6

Average attendance for 2009 to date is:  48,542.3

All data provided by parties other than Real Analytics is deemed reliable and true. Whenever possible RA verifies provided data with neutral third parties. https://realanalytics.wordpress.com/contingent-and-limiting-conditions/


Real Analytics compares the NFL’s top five Passer rating to overall standings.  Three of the top five quarterbacks/teams match up in the overall top five of each catagory. The overall passer rating as defined by the NFL, can be at times somewhat suspect and also misleading.

Although in this case at week 9/10  the two separate statistics are fairly accurate yielding a 67% ratio of the top five QB’s versus top five teams.

Teams at 6-2 were judged by + net points rather than percentage.

NFL Passer Rating (overall)

1. Drew Brees* – NO                   106.1
2. Brett Favre* – MIN               106
3. P. Manning* – IND                105.2
4. B. Roethlisberger – PIT      104.1
5. Aaron Rodgers – GNB         103.3

Standings

Overall W L T
New Orleans * 8 – 0 – 0
Indianapolis * 8 – 0 – 0
Minnesota * 7 – 1 – 0
New England 6 – 2 – 0
Dallas 6 – 2 – 0

(5-4 teams were excluded as both the Giants and Texans lost their last games)

For a more in-depth, analytical view:

http://classic17.wordpress.com/2009/10/19/nfl-passer-ratings/


In the whirl of wheels streaming by- spectators, cheers and late summer blue skies…The Race is on

Historic downtown Basking Ridge, NJ was once again the setting for the 18th annual Olde Mill Inn – Tour of Basking Ridge. The Labor Day race is always an eventful contest near the end of the road cycling season. The  event features 8 separate races accommodating all abilities- from pros to amateurs. Presenting Sponsor, Liberty Cycle puts on a great community event each year.

The 1.12 mile sweeping course features six turns around the bucolic borough. The Start/Finish line located on South Finley Ave and Lewis St., which is the front stretch of the short circuit- that rises and falls into turn 1-  a fast left onto on Henry St that leads to Turn 2- a quick left onto Rankin.

Turn 3 is a sweeping right/left combo onto Dyckman then a slight rise towards the left hander onto Colonial. The final corner, turn 6 is another left onto S Finley to the Finish line.

The final sprint race of the day was the  category 5 event. The competition was a short 5 laps that saw 36 riders line up for the start. Atop my Hutchinson-shod, Pro-Lite carbon frame, I lined up at the start line on the left, about midpack so I would have an inside line into T-1. Local guy Doug Ernst, Joseph Meyer-Fuchs of Oakland and Nick David from Hoboken were among the top favorites and all quickly went to the front at the drop of the starters flag.

Not being a true “racer” (this was the my first race of the season, and really had no training in my legs to speak of- read: I am slow) I planned my strategy around the design of the tight course. I knew that attacking the corners was the only chance I had of a top 20 finish.

As the pack tore off into T-1 I was mired somewhere in between the chaos of lap 1. Immediately I powered through 1, and 2 the left handers, closing up on the guys in front of me. As we headed onto the back part of the course I would lose a bit of ground. But dive bombing the turns would bring me onto the wheels just ahead of me.

I have found that some riders are a bit hesitant and stiff when cornering. I have found that I can exploit that weakness by not slowing and going as fast as I can through the turns- whenever possible. Eight seasons of motorcycle roadracing has its advantages.

The gap to the front grew as I watched the leaders quickly pull away. I settled into a sort of frantic rhythm dicing it out with 4 other riders- who kept the pace at about a 23 – 24 mph average. (good thing this race was only 5 laps!)

Doug, Nick and Joe were picking off riders at the front and waiting for their opportunity to take command. Yours truly was hanging on for dear life in 26th spot with 2 laps to go. The four guys in front of me would gap me on the straights and I would suck right back up in turn 1- a fast sweeping left, which I took at full speed, about 28+ mph.

More riders fell off the lead as Nick and Joe were moving up to the top spots. Lap 4- out of T-2 our pack of 5 pass two guys who seemed like they were standing still. So far I’m thinking- “This is cool, I haven’t been lapped and I actually passed a couple of riders” But I’m sucking wind hard, and my legs are burning with lactic acid.  This was it, the crux of race, gotta hold on one more lap….

Past the start/finish we begin the “bell lap” the final circuit…

The imperfect and often awkward synergy of Man and Machine…merge for a fleeting chance of perceived glory…fore now the battle is between heart and mind

I can hear the crowd but its muffled. My vision is tunneled as I flick the bars and lean the bike in for the hard left. The gap of nearly 50 feet quickly disappears as I close up. I’m sitting last in our group of 5, trying to draft and save any energy I may have left. I’m watching to see if anyone is going to try and jump- as we bend into the right/left combo T-3 & 4- so far nothing.

I wait for turn 5. I swing slight right of the pack and square off the corner. Arc it wide and keep pedaling through the corner, as this gives me the momentum I was looking for. I swoop up on the four riders in front of me and jump out of the saddle to add some power to the pedals- I move right and pass all four.

Meanwhile Joe and Nick had control of the last lap, sprinting towards the finish, as Nick popped up and made his move for the lead and the win. Across the line it was Joe who took the victory followed by Nick and Doug garnering the last podium spot in third.

As I set up for T-6 I glance back to see what- if any gap I might have. I tuck my chin into my left shoulder and see a substantial space between us. As I crest the rise on S Finley I spot another rider just ahead of me. I’m in the drops and keep my head down- but eyes up. I can see he is as tired as me-

Shoulders rocking, cadence faultering…”I have to get this guy, I have to.” I put every last ounce of breath and energy into the my weakening legs and watch the distance between us shrink. The finish line is in sight as I’m closing in on his rear wheel…once again, I swing right and pass the lonely rider- with a familiar grimace on his face.

I fly pass the finish, totally spent. Sitting up I try to catch an elusive breath and give a thumbs up to the guys around me- I make a feeble attempt to say “good race” but not much comes out as I am somewhat oxygen deprived. The guys at the front are not even breathing hard, while me and some of my similar competitors are shagged. smiley

 

My post race thoughts were a combination of satisfaction and disappointment- after finishing 19th of 36 riders. Sure that was a good result for my first race of 2009, but as a ‘competitior’ I wanted better. But what my mind wanted and what my body gave were just not equal- Yet still the moment was good, the day fulfilled.

And in the end, on dreams we will depend…

 

Machine Specs

Frame/Fork: Pro-Lite Carbon  | 53cm

Drivetrain: Ultegra 10 | 53/39 | 12/27

Wheels: Neuvation | M28 Aero 3

Tyres: Huchinson Equinox (slick rear) | Quartz (intermediate front)


Although a usual departure from our regular postings- please enjoy a time tested delicious favorite. Buona salute…

Ingredients:

4-6 Roma tomatoes

2 garlic cloves

Extra virgin olive oil

fresh basil leaves

Crusty bread (a loaf of brick over or french do well)

Sea Salt

Slice the tomatoes in half and squeeze out a bit of the seeds and juice. y Chop and dice coarsely. Chop 2  cloves of garlic then chop or tear basil leaves into small pieces.

Mix tomatoes, garlic and basil together with enough olive oil to moisten, add a half teaspoon of salt and set aside for 20 minutes to allow flavors to blend.

 Slice crusty bread into thick slices then toast lightly, rubbing each slice with a garlic clove.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Just before serving spoon tomato mixture onto bread. Bellissimo!

 

6 Roma tomatoes
3 garlic cloves
extra virgin olive oil (use the best you can find)
fresh basil leaves
crusty bread without too many holes
salt
 
Slice tomatoes in half.  Over sink, squirt out seeds and juice then coarsely chop/dice. Peel and chop 2 garlic cloves. Chop or tear basil leaves into small pieces. Mix tomatoes, garlic and basil together with enough olive oil to moisten, add a half teaspoon of salt and set aside for 20 minutes to allow flavors to blend.  Slice bread into thick slices, toast (or even better grill over gas grill or charcoal!) then rub each warm slice with a peeled garlic clove.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Just before serving spoon tomato mixture onto bread.  Enjoy with Sangiovese wine!

Man

The purest of design, an elemental matrix of muscle wrapped around bone, shelled by flesh and fed by blood. A mortal composite that blends to be one- yet in a whirling division of  structured cells- lies the complex man. 

Machine

Factories shape carbon and forge aero steel.  Heated, crafted and welded to form a working perfection- or perhaps just our perception thereof. Gleaming, sharp cogs mesh in unison and gears that hum with the energy of production.

But not alone, fore this mass of electrons and  particles remains still- until the matrix applies its human force. Utility, elegance and beauty melded into one- is essentially nothing without man.

United, Man Machine transforms the imperfect, somewhat awkward- but ever so fluid synergy of entities- one breathing, one unaware.  

Cogito – Ergo – Zoom

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