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Expert Alert.

Expert Alert

U of M experts available to discuss the science behind the 2012 Summer Olympics in London

July 27, 2012

The world’s eyes will be on London when the 2012 Summer Olympics begin today. More than 10,000 top athletes from more than 200 countries are expected to compete in 39 events testing their strength, skill, endurance and will to win. These top athletes have been intensely training to hopefully perform at their ultimate best for Olympic glory.

But behind every top Olympic athlete, there is science to help explain their success and at times, their failures.

The following University of Minnesota experts are available to speak with media about the science behind the 2012 Summer Olympics. To schedule interviews, please contact Matt DePoint, Academic Health Center, at (612) 625-4110 or; or, Caroline Marin, Academic Health Center, at (612) 624-5680 or

Age and effect on performance; sports injuries; sports medicine; gymnastics
Suzanne Hecht, M.D.
Assistant Professor, Medical School, Family Medicine and Community Health
Hecht directs the University of Minnesota Sports Medicine Fellowship and sees patients at Fairview Sports and Orthopedic Care - Minneapolis. Hecht also teaches residents in sports medicine workshops and provides training room and sideline care to University of Minnesota athletes as well as the USA Gymnastics and USA Figure Skating teams.

Breathing and athletic performance; high altitude training; sleep

Michael Howell, M.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Neurology
Howell is a sleep and breathing expert and is well versed in the way sleep and breathing affect athletic performance. Howell is certified by the American Board of Sleep Medicine and by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Howell can discuss the relationship between sleep and athletic performance, and the importance of identifying and treating sleep disorders in athletes.

Track and field; general health

Bill Roberts, M.D., M.S.
Professor, Medical School, Family Medicine and Community Health
Roberts directs the University of Minnesota St. John’s Hospital Family Medicine Residency. He is past president and current foundation president of the American College of Sports Medicine; medical director for the Twin Cities Marathon; and chair of the Minnesota State High School League Sports Medical Advisory Committee.

Sports injuries; track and field; general health; sports medicine

Rob Johnson, M.D.
Professor, Medical School, Family Medicine and Community Health
Johnson, director emeritus of the University of Minnesota Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship, sees patients at TRIA Orthopaedic Center; teaches sports medicine workshops for residents and medical students; and provides medical care for University of Minnesota, Bethel University, University of St. Thomas, Eden Prairie High School, and Team USA Minnesota elite track and road racing athletes.

Obesity; orthopedic surgery

Steven Stovitz, M.D., M.S.
Associate Professor, Medical School, Family Medicine and Community Health
Stovitz completed a primary care sports medicine fellowship at Hennepin County Medical Center and currently is a fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine. His clinical work is divided between the University of Minnesota departments of orthopedic surgery and intercollegiate athletics, where he is a team physician for University athletes. Stovitz’s primary research involves a variety of issues in the study of obesity.

Sports injuries; ultrasound imaging; biomechanics

Grant Morrison, M.D.
Assistant Professor, Medical School, Family Medicine and Community Health
Morrison currently serves as associate medical director of the Twin Cities Marathon and a team physician for Hamline University and the University of Minnesota. Morrison has a special interest in the use of ultrasound imaging in musculoskeletal imaging and is also interested in biomechanics, joint injections, prolotherapy, nonsurgical fracture management, and injuries in runners.

Performance enhancing drugs

Dave Ferguson, Ph.D.
Professor, College of Pharmacy
Ferguson is the Associate Director of the Center for Drug Design and his work focuses on how chemicals affect the body. He is well versed on the role performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) work and their impact on athletes’ bodies both short and long term.

Tags: Academic Health Center

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