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23 Oct 2001
IOC News , Press Release


Salt lake City, 23 October 2001 - IOC Medical Commission/Pfizer research now focuses on health and nutrition,as well as biomechanics
The Medical Commission of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Pfizer today announced nine Olympic research projects that will be conducted at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City. For the first time, the research conducted on athletes in conjunction with the Olympic Games will focus on nutrition and health, in addition to natural performance improvement and injury reduction. The nine research studies will be conducted in the following areas:

Health and Nutrition Studies:
- Anorexia and low body weight in ski jumping;
- Nutrition issues and inadequate diets during preparation for the 2002 Olympic Games in speed skating, skiing and bobsled;
- Prevalence of menstrual dysfunction in elite athletes preparing for the 2002 Olympic Games.

Biomechanics Studies:
-Pacing patterns in speed skating;
- Clapskate hinge position in speed skating;
- Quadruple revolutions in figure skating jumps;
- Double and triple twists in figure skating;
- Success in competitive figure skating performances;
- Flight trajectories and take-off characteristics of ski jumpers.

The IOC Medical Commission/Pfizer Research focuses on nutrition, performance and training to uncover valuable health and fitness insights for all members of society, from professional coaches and trainers to weekend action sports and fitness enthusiasts. By studying elite athletes in the height of competition, researchers can better learn how the body moves (biomechanics), how to prevent injury and how to improve natural performance.

“When top athletes are striving to break records and outperform each other, researchers can analyse exactly what happens when the best are at their best,” said Prince Alexandre de Merode, Chairman, IOC Medical Commission. “This research can benefit not only elite athletes but also those striving to learn a new sport or coach others using new techniques that reduce the risk of injury. We share a commitment with Pfizer to conduct this research to help all people live healthier and more active lives.”

Chosen from 25 submissions from 11 countries throughout the world, the nine studies were selected on the basis of quality, impact on the International Federation/sport and potential benefit to competing athletes. All researchers are established experts in their fields and are affiliated with reputable academic, health or sports institutions. Since the research methods do not require any physical contact, this will in no way interrupt the athletes’ performances.

“Research and development are the lifeblood of the Pfizer business”, said Randall Kaye, MD, Director of Olympic Affairs for Pfizer Inc. “Our support of the Pfizer/IOC Olympic Research is part of our commitment to further scientific research that underscores the importance of improving human movement, providing preventative care and better managing disease states for people who seek to live a healthy lifestyle.”

Biomechanics, a sports science application that studies human motion, traces its roots to such disciplines as engineering, anatomy, aerospace science, rehabilitation medicine and orthopaedics. Biomechanics researchers seek to enhance their understanding of how people move to help athletes perform more efficiently and suffer fewer injuries.

To date, Olympians in nine Olympic Games (four Winter, five Summer) have been studied in competition. This research programme was expanded during the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, when Pfizer and the IOC Medical Commission entered a partnership supported by a Pfizer endowment. Pfizer’s endowment of the Olympic research makes possible more in-depth and comprehensive analysis than was previously possible. Analysis of the Salt Lake research will be conducted after the Olympic Winter Games, with research findings to be presented at the 7th IOC Olympic World Congress on Sport Sciences scheduled for 2003.

Pfizer and the IOC Medical Commission share a commitment to research excellence that improves and encourages the health, well-being and athletic performance of all people. The Pfizer/IOC Medical Commission partnership aims to eliminate physical inactivity by enhancing the body, will and mind of athletes and people in general through further scientific study of movement, exercise and sport. In addition to the Pfizer/IOC Olympic Research on Sport Sciences, Pfizer endows three other IOC Medical Commission programmes, namely the IOC Olympic World Congress on Sport Sciences, the IOC Olympic Prize on Sport Sciences and the IOC Olympic Academy on Sport Sciences.

Pfizer Inc discovers, develops, manufactures and markets leading prescription medicines for humans and animals, as well as many of the world's best-known consumer products. Pfizer had global revenues of $29.6 billion in 200
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