In early April 2015, my travels took me to Indianapolis to speak at the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Annual Convention, held in conjunction with the 2015 NCAA Final Four College Basketball Championships. This has become a tradition for me and a chance to educate basketball coaches on issues relevant to their health and the health of the athletes they coach. As a former college basketball player, I know that coaches can have a tremendous effect on the lives of the players they coach. I also know that coaches often do not take good care of themselves and do the things they need to do to stay healthy. So every year I give a talk on a topic that can help improve their knowledge as part of the NABC professional Development Series.
This year I spoke to the coaches on head injuries and concussions. This has been a hot topic in sports recently, especially as it relates to football, but we certainly also commonly see these injuries in basketball athletes. So I reviewed important points about the diagnosis and management of concussions in athletes, from the perspective of what a coach should know to help keep their players safe. I ended my talk with some information about the importance of healthy lifestyles for coaches and the things they need to do to stay healthy. Of course I emphasized the importance of walking every day to stay healthy. I think most coaches understand how important being physically active is to staying healthy, but like many of us they struggle to find the time to get it done every day. That is why I always emphasize that walking is often the easiest way to get the exercise you need and even short bouts of walking (10 minutes or so) can have a powerful effect on your health.
While in Indy I of course got to do my daily walking. The weather was cool and clear, but perfect for getting in a brisk walk and jog. I also got to spend time with my old college basketball coach Reggie Minton, who is the Associate Executive Director of the NABC and someone who had a major influence of my life as my coach, which continues to this day. I was also lucky enough to attend all the Final Four games and sit with ACSM CEO Jim Whitehead and his wife Janice, along with my great friend and college basketball teammate Bobby Sneath, who is a pilot for Southwest Airlines. So it was a great few days of catching up with friends and watching basketball, including Duke’s amazing run to the championship.
I hope this blog finds you well and walking every day!
At the Final Four with Reggie Minton, Bobby Sneath and Dr. Oderia Mitchell