Regular participation in physical activity is well recognized as an important preventative health measure. In contrast, in the last decade, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection has become a major global public health threat. The impact of HIV infection is likely to have a major effect on the South African population as a whole, including the sporting population. In this article issues relating to HIV infection and participation in physical activity are reviewed.
Because of the popularity of long-distance running in this country, the doctor is increasingly being faced with injured runners. Often the runner is advised by a doctor to lay-off for an extended period to allow an injury to recover. While this advice will benefit the patient, 'rest' is a dreaded 4-letter word to most runners.
In 1887, exactly one hundred years ago, F. Konig presented a paper about loose bodies in joints. He concluded that there were three causes for loose bodies in a joint. 1. Severe trauma causing a breaking off of a part of thejoint. 2. Lesser trauma which might contuse the bone giving rise to necrosis which then might separate. 3. Minimal trauma where some predisposing factor would appear to cause the separation. Not much has changed in 100 years.
The effect of anti-oxidant supplementation on the incidence of symptoms of upper-respiratory-tract infection (URTI) was determined during the fortnight following the 1993 Comrades Marathon (90km). Runners and sedentary matched controls were randomly divided into groups receiving 500mg Vit C.
Non-communicable diseases or chronic diseases of lifestyle are on the increase amongst all South African population groups. There are, however, disparities in the health profile of black and white communities which can be attributed to the discriminatory health care services of the apartheid era. Sport and exercise scientists who strive to enhance health and prevent disease and injury by facilitating participation in physical activity and sport, should therefore endeavour to address these imbalances.