Archive for December, 2008|Monthly archive page

Sports Fans Dying Hard


By Benjamin Conniff
Getty Images

Getty Images

TUESDAY, Dec. 23, 2008 ( — With more than a dozen college bowl games left to play this season and the NFL playoffs and Super Bowl on the horizon, sports fans may be focusing on couch surfing, beer, and nachos. But they might want to take a second look at the exercise habits of the sports teams they support.

A new survey suggests that die-hard sports fans weigh more, eat fattier foods, and have worse health habits in general than folks who don’t care as much about sports.

“The irony is seeing unhealthy people watch athletes at the peak of physical fitness,” says Daniel R. Sweeney, PhD, an assistant professor of sport management at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock (UALR), who conducted the survey with Donna Quimby, PhD, an associate professor of exercise science.

The researchers conducted an online survey of 14,000 people at UALR, including faculty, staff, and students. They divided 515 respondents into two groups—die-hard fans and those who were less devoted to sports teams. About 70% were students.

“Those that highly identify with a team are more emotionally involved and personally committed,” says Sweeney. “They usually spend more time, energy, and resources on rooting for their team.”

Despite sports fans’ religious-like devotion to their heroes on the field, the researchers found that they didn’t appear to emulate their health habits. In fact, devoted sports fans had a higher body mass index than non-sports fans, and were more likely to be overweight, with an average BMI of 27.4, compared with the nonfans’ more slender 25. (A BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight.) Continue reading


Where are the Bonds of yesteryear?

from, 11/30/08

bondIn Quantum of Solace, James Bond is stripped of his credit cards, his passports, and his mission. Why didn’t they strip the name James Bond while they were at it? The creators of the most recent two Bond films have removed just about every vestige of the character I once knew. The high-tech gadgets are a thing of the past, as are Bond’s standard sidekicks, Q and Moneypenny (though Daniel Craig is lobbying for Q’s return). Bond’s bevy of willing women shrinks with each new installment. His only successful venture here is with the facile (in every sense of the word) Agent Fields (Gemma Arterton). The fiery, complicated Camille (Olga Kurylenko) is just the kind of woman with whom Bond should end the film locked in a passionate embrace. In Q of S [SPOILER ALERT] the girl just doesn’t give a damn.
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