News Archive

Miller Receives National Athletic Trainers’ Association Award

Sayers John Miller, III, assistant professor of kinesiology at Penn State, has received the 2012 National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) Continuing Education Excellence Award. The award honors an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the profession of athletic training in the area of continuing education. In particular, the award recipient must have demonstrated noteworthy commitments to continuing education via creative works, volunteer service, speaking engagements, and other distinguished professional activities. Miller will be presented with the award on June 27 during the NATA Annual Meeting & Clinical Symposia to be held in St Louis, Mo. more >>

Motivation to exercise affects behavior

For many people, the motivation to exercise fluctuates from week to week, and these weekly fluctuations predict whether or not they will be physically active, according to researchers at Penn State. In an effort to understand how the motivation to exercise is linked to behavior, the researchers examined college students' intentions to be physically active as well as their actual activity levels. "Many of us set New Years' resolutions to be more physically active, and we expect these resolutions to be stable throughout the year," said David Conroy, professor of kinesiology. Conroy and colleagues recruited 33 college students and assessed over a ten-week period both the students' weekly intentions to be physically active and their activity levels. During each of the ten weeks, participants were instructed to logon to a website and to rate their intentions to perform physical activity for the week ahead. To assess physical activity, participants were instructed to wear pedometers each day for the first four weeks. more >>

Physical activity yields feelings of excitement, enthusiasm

People who are more physically active report greater levels of excitement and enthusiasm than people who are less physically active, according to researchers at Penn State. People also are more likely to report feelings of excitement and enthusiasm on days when they are more physically active than usual. "You don't have to be the fittest person who is exercising every day to receive the feel-good benefits of exercise," said David Conroy, professor of kinesiology. "It's a matter of taking it one day at a time, of trying to get your activity in, and then there's this feel-good reward afterwards." more >>

Professor and Behrend Hall of Fame Baseball Coach Stoner Retires

Clarence “Shorty” Stoner, assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology, retired in September 2010. Read more about Stoner.

Graduate Student Wins EATA Oral Presentation Competition

John Vairo has been selected as the Graduate Oral Presentation Winner for the 2011 Eastern Athletic Trainers’ Association (EATA) Annual Meeting and Clinical Symposia, to be held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in January. Vairo’s area of graduate area of study is Athletic Training and Sports Medicine and his adviser is Dr. Bill Buckley.

New LB1 diagnosis more evidence of flawed science, researcher says

A new turn in the debate over explanations for the odd features of LB1—the specimen number of the only skull found in Liang Bua Cave on the Indonesian island of Flores and sometimes called “the hobbit”—is further evidence of a continued streak of misleading science, say Dr. Robert Eckhardt, professor of developmental genetics and evolutionary morphology at Penn State and Dr. Maciej Henneberg, the Wood Jones professor of anthropological and comparative anatomy at the University of Adelaide. Read more about Eckhardt's research.

Kinesiology student gets microscopic view of finger through research

Jessica Hughes is seeing the human finger in a new light through her undergraduate research project. A recipient of Penn State’s 2010 Undergraduate Discovery Summer Grant, Hughes has spent the summer studying the inner workings of one muscle in the index finger. Working alongside trained scientists, Hughes is getting experience with many new research techniques such as 3D computer modeling, ultrasound imaging, dissection, and muscle cell isolation. Read more about Hughes' research.

Graduate Student Awarded Ruth W. Ayres-Givens Scholarship

Amanda Hyde, Kinesiology Ph.D. candidate, is the 2010 recipient of the Ruth W. Ayres-Givens Scholarship provided by the College of Health and Human Development. The scholarship is awarded to a student who has achieved superior academic records, manifests a promise of outstanding academic success, and demonstrates the desire and insight to make a contribution to society. Dr. Ayres-Givens was professor emerita and head, Department of Clothing and Textiles (1952-1967). Hyde’s adviser is Dr. David Conroy, associate professor of kinesiology, and she studies in the area of Psychology of physical activity.

Kinesiology class connects motivation and exercise through research

In Dr. David Conroy’s Motivation and Emotion in Movement class, undergraduate students get a unique perspective on research by being participants in their own experiments. Conroy, an associate professor of kinesiology, is in charge of a kinesiology lab that focuses on psychology, where he studies the intersection of emotion, motivation, and physical activity levels. He studies people of all ages and physical activity levels, which not only means that students are suitable research subjects, but that his research is accessible—and interesting—to many of his classes, particularly for students who want to pursue a career in wellness or fitness. Read more about Conroy's class.

Student receives fellowship for physiological research

Stephanie Eldred, a Kinesiology student, is the recipient of a 2010 Undergraduate Research Fellowship through the American Physiological Society. She is one of only twenty-four students across the country to receive this honor, and she will be working under the supervision of Dr. Donna Korzick, associate professor of physiology and kinesiology, studying the link between estrogen levels and heart disease in older women. Read more about Eldred's fellowship.

Sport historian receives short-term residency at Musashi University

Dr. Mark Dyreson, associate professor of kinesiology, has been selected by the Organization of American Historians (OAH) to receive an OAH-JAAS Short-Term Residency at Musashi University in American sports history. Read more about Dyreson's residency.

Professor’s Teaching Contributions Honored with Two Awards

Dr. Scott Kretchmar, professor of exercise and sport science, has received two Penn State awards: the President's Award for Excellence in Academic Integration and the Graduate Faculty Teaching Award. Each award is presented annually to one faculty member at Penn State. Read more about Kretchmar's awards.

Attitude toward everyday activity important for healthy lifestyle

Exploring underlying attitudes toward everyday physical activity—for example, walking to a nearby co-worker's office rather than sending an e-mail—may open new opportunities for promoting healthier, more active lifestyles, according to Penn State researchers, including Dr. David Conroy, associate professor of kinesiology and human development and family studies. Read more about Conroy's research.

Video: Studying Altered Strides Gives Kinesiology Researcher a Leg Up

With the use of a unique dual treadmill a team of Penn Staters explore altered strides. The objective: keeping the pace and walking pain-free. Loss of a limb, an injury, pregnancy and aging are a just a few conditions that can cause people to favor a side or alter their gait, making walking both distressing and painful. Read more about Gottschall's dual treadmill.

The Influence of Penn State's Biomechanics Program

Through the study of biomechanics, researchers are seeing movement in new ways, and Penn State was one of the first places where the scientific discipline took form. Dr. Richard Nelson first established Penn State's Biomechanics Lab in 1967 in the building on the University Park campus known as the "Water Tower," which was later renamed the Biomechanics Teaching Lab. There, a number of groundbreaking activities took place that would eventually shape the field of biomechanics into what it is today. Read more about Penn State's Biomechanics Program.

Professor Explores Impact of Stadiums and Olympics in Two New Books

Two recently published books co-edited by Dr. Mark Dyreson, associate professor of kinesiology, explore the role of sport in shaping cultures. The Rise of Stadiums in the Modern United States: Cathedrals of Sport examines the history of and perceptions surrounding several stadiums built (or planned to be built) in the United States, and Olympic Legacies: Intended and Unintended explores how the Olympics have changed cities across the world—and how those cities have changed the Olympics. Read more about Dyreson's books.

Kinesiology class connects motivation and exercise through research

In Dr. David Conroy’s Motivation and Emotion in Movement class, undergraduate students get a unique perspective on research by being participants in their own experiments. Conroy, an associate professor of kinesiology, is in charge of a kinesiology lab that focuses on psychology, where he studies the intersection of emotion, motivation, and physical activity levels. He studies people of all ages and physical activity levels, which not only means that students are suitable research subjects, but that his research is accessible—and interesting—to many of his classes, particularly for students who want to pursue a career in wellness or fitness. Read more about Conroy's class.

Student receives fellowship for physiological research

Stephanie Eldred, a Kinesiology student, is the recipient of a 2010 Undergraduate Research Fellowship through the American Physiological Society. She is one of only twenty-four students across the country to receive this honor, and she will be working under the supervision of Dr. Donna Korzick, associate professor of physiology and kinesiology, studying the link between estrogen levels and heart disease in older women. Read more about Eldred's fellowship.

Sport historian receives short-term residency at Musashi University

Dr. Mark Dyreson, associate professor of kinesiology, has been selected by the Organization of American Historians (OAH) to receive an OAH-JAAS Short-Term Residency at Musashi University in American sports history. Read more about Dyreson's residency.

Professor’s Teaching Contributions Honored with Two Awards

Dr. Scott Kretchmar, professor of exercise and sport science, has received two Penn State awards: the President's Award for Excellence in Academic Integration and the Graduate Faculty Teaching Award. Each award is presented annually to one faculty member at Penn State. Read more about Kretchmar's awards.

Attitude toward everyday activity important for healthy lifestyle

Exploring underlying attitudes toward everyday physical activity—for example, walking to a nearby co-worker's office rather than sending an e-mail—may open new opportunities for promoting healthier, more active lifestyles, according to Penn State researchers, including Dr. David Conroy, associate professor of kinesiology and human development and family studies. Read more about Conroy's research.

Video: Studying Altered Strides Gives Kinesiology Researcher a Leg Up

With the use of a unique dual treadmill a team of Penn Staters explore altered strides. The objective: keeping the pace and walking pain-free. Loss of a limb, an injury, pregnancy and aging are a just a few conditions that can cause people to favor a side or alter their gait, making walking both distressing and painful. Read more about Gottschall's dual treadmill.

The Influence of Penn State's Biomechanics Program

Through the study of biomechanics, researchers are seeing movement in new ways, and Penn State was one of the first places where the scientific discipline took form. Dr. Richard Nelson first established Penn State's Biomechanics Lab in 1967 in the building on the University Park campus known as the "Water Tower," which was later renamed the Biomechanics Teaching Lab. There, a number of groundbreaking activities took place that would eventually shape the field of biomechanics into what it is today. Read more about Penn State's Biomechanics Program.

Professor Explores Impact of Stadiums and Olympics in Two New Books

Two recently published books co-edited by Dr. Mark Dyreson, associate professor of kinesiology, explore the role of sport in shaping cultures. The Rise of Stadiums in the Modern United States: Cathedrals of Sport examines the history of and perceptions surrounding several stadiums built (or planned to be built) in the United States, and Olympic Legacies: Intended and Unintended explores how the Olympics have changed cities across the world—and how those cities have changed the Olympics. Read more about Dyreson's books.

"Drama factor" makes for an engaging class environment

Although she doesn't watch much TV, Dr. Jinger Gottschall, assistant professor of kinesiology, has found that it can be a valuable resource for increasing students' motivation and learning. Using reality TV shows like Survivor as a model, Gottschall taps into students' competitive drives, pitting teams against each other for several weeks. Each week a class gets "voted off," and the last remaining team secures a perfect participation grade for the course. Gottschall use this and other TV-inspired approaches in two of her classes, and they are proving to be a big hit. Read more about Gottschall's classes.

Conference Reveals Complexity of NCAA Sports–Tax Exemption Debate

Whether or not NCAA sports should be tax exempt was the focus of a recent conference co-organized by the Department of Kinesiology. Several renowned experts convened to discuss some of the complexities of this debate. Participants discussed why NCAA sports are tax exempt, how tax exemptions are regulated in other organizations, and the relationship between financial revenue and colleges’ educational missions. Read more about the conference.

Bernardo Awarded Ruth Ayers-Givens Scholarship

Dominica Bernardo (Ph.D. candidate in Psychology of Physical Activity) has received a Ruth Ayers-Givens Scholarship from the College of Health and Human Development. This scholarship is to awarded to outstanding graduate students who have demonstrated deep concern for society. Along with their academic performance candidates are evaluated for their awareness of the interdisciplinary connections among fields of study, the importance of using their skills for the benefit of the public and courage in developing innovative ideas.

Center’s Inaugural Conference to Focus on Motor Control Research

The newly established Penn State Center for Motor Control will be hosting a conference, “Frontiers in Motor Control,” on October 30, 2009, on Penn State’s University Park campus. This is the first official event the center is hosting since its establishment. This conference provides an excellent opportunity to celebrate and learn about the new center. Read more about the conference.

Nike Scientist to Present Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series Lecture

Dr. Mario Lafortune, director of the Nike Sport Research Laboratory and Penn State alumnus, will present a lecture on Thursday, October 15, at 7:00 p.m. in the Bennett Pierce Living Center, 110 Henderson Building, on the University Park campus. The lecture is the third in the Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series sponsored by the College of Health and Human Development Alumni Society. Read more about Dr. Lafortune's lecture.

Researchers Seek Clues to Hypertension’s Origins, Impacts

Understanding how hypertension develops is the focus of a new study being conducted at Penn State. Dr. Lacy Holowatz, assistant professor of kinesiology, is the principal investigator on a five-year, $1.7 million grant funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute; $750,000 of the grant is part of the National Institutes of Health's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding. Read more about this study on hypertension.

New Historical Marker Celebrates Biomechanics at Penn State

If you’re walking around The Nittany Lion Inn, keep an eye out for a new blue-and-white landmark. On Thursday, August 27, Penn State’s newest historical marker was unveiled, next to the Biomechanics Teaching Lab (also known as the “Water Tower”—located between the Inn and the Nittany Parking Deck). The marker celebrates the history and significance of the Biomechanics Lab at Penn State. Read the full story.

Ph.D. Candidate Wins ASBMR Award

Holly Preston (Ph.D. candidate in Biomechanics) won a Young Investigator award for her research presentation, Differential Gene Expression in Mechanically Loaded Long Bone Cortices of C57BL/6J and DBA/2J Adult Female Mice. She presented at the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR) meeting titled "New Frontiers in Skeletal Research: Bone, Fat and Brain Connections" in Bethesda, Maryland.

Professor Aims to Understand and Fight Leading Cause of Death in Older Women

Donna Korzick, associate professor of physiology and kinesiology, has undertaken a large-scale project using a $1.8 million grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, to figure out why estrogen deficiency puts women in danger for heart disease. Read the full story.

Professor Receives Faculty Scholar Medal

Vladimir M. Zatsiorsky, professor of kinesiology, is one of five professors University-wide to receive the 2009 Faculty Scholar Medal. Zatsiorsky's medal honors his research in the area of life and health sciences. Read the full story.

Doctoral Student Receives Award

Giampietro "John" Vairo, Ph.D. candidate in Kinesiology, Athletic Training is the receipient of a 2009 Eastern Athletic Trainers' Association (EATA) Frank George Scholarship Award. John received his award at the 2009 EATA meeting and symposium in Boston, January 9-12, 2009.

Slobounov Named AAKPE Fellow

Dr. Semyon Slobounov was named as an Active Fellow of the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education (AAKPE) during an induction ceremony held on Saturday, September 27, 2008. The Academy’s membership is considered a “who’s who” list of the top individuals in the fields of kinesiology and physical education. In order to be elected into membership, individuals must be currently engaged in professional and/or scientific work in kinesiology or physical education, and have demonstrated competence in this profession/discipline over a period of at least ten years (significant contributions to scholarly and professional literature, leadership activities in professional associations and learned societies). The AAKPE was established in 1926 to recognize outstanding scholars in the study of physical activity. Since 1926, 491 individuals nationwide have been inducted into the Academy as Active Fellows.

Zatsiosky Receives Research Award

Vladamir Zatsiorsky, Ph.D., has been selected to receive the Jim Hay Memorial Award for Research in Sports and Exercise Biomechanics. Dr. Zatsiorsky will receive this award in August at the annual meeting of the American Society of Biomechanics in August 2008. The Hay Award selection is based on research's originality, quality, depth, and relevance to the field of sports and exercise biomechanics. The Jim Hay Memorial Award for Research in Sports and Exercise Biomechanics was established in 2004 through the support of the Hay family and additional donors to recognize outstanding career accomplishment and is awarded annually to an investigator who has conducted exemplary research in the area of sports and exercise science biomechanics.

Eight Kinesiology Undergraduate Students Receive Awards

The Department Scholarship Committee has selected eight undergraduate Kinesiology majors to receive summer funding awards through the Rumpelstielzchen Student Endowment and the Marie Underhill Noll Endowment for Undergraduate Research.

The Rumpelstielzchen Student Endowment is supportive of undergraduate summer internship experiences, and the intent is to “promote the concept of exercising for fitness by enhancing the professional competence of students preparing to enter the profession.” Rumpelstielzchen Student Endowment funds were awarded to Amanda Hess and Ashley Zielger.

The purpose of the Marie Underhill Noll Endowment award is to “promote exposure of undergraduates to a research environment and stimulate interest in graduate education research.” Noll Endowment funds were awarded to Michael Kalil, advised by Dr. Donna Korzick; Carolyn Reece, advised by Dr. Mary Jane De Souza; Emile Ott, advised by Dr. Steriani Elavasky; Allison Tolnai, advised by Dr. David Conroy; Thomas Novak, advised by Dr. Stephen Piazza; and Jessi Ritegno, advised by Dr. Jinger Gottschall. (June 2008).

Doctoral Student Receives Research Scholarship

Giampietro "John" Vairo, Ph.D. candidate in Kinesiology, Athletic Training is the receipient of a 2008 National Athletic Trainers' Association Research and Education Foundation Doctoral Scholarship. (April 2008).

Kinesiology Student Receives Leadership Award

Michelle LaBoda, senior Kinesiology major, has been selected for the 2008 Ralph Dorn Hetzel Memorial Award. This University-wide award recognizes achievement and potential of outstanding students who have demostrated the qualities of leadership. The awards ceremony was held April 5, 2008.

Gravish Receives Advising Award

Lori Gravish, instructor in the Department of Kinesiology and wellness coordinator for the Village at Penn State has been selected for the 2008 Penn State Excellence in Advising Award. The award, established by the Undergraduate Student Government's Academic Assembly and sponsored by each college, annually honors faculty and advisers. (April 2008).