Month: August 2020

Physical education in the age of online learning

For students from Meraki High School outside Sacramento, California, staying fit during the coronavirus pandemic has been as easy as playing solitaire.



a group of people playing frisbee in a park: Fitness trainer Myriah Volk (far left) of Sebastopol, California, leads a socially distanced gym class through her PE Express 101 business.


© Courtesy Jenny Pellini
Fitness trainer Myriah Volk (far left) of Sebastopol, California, leads a socially distanced gym class through her PE Express 101 business.

Since the school shutdown this spring, students have taken part in a modified physical education class with the help of a special deck of cards. Dubbed “Super Fitness Fun Cards,” the deck is comprised of cards with different exercises on each one: push-ups, squats and crunches. There are multiple games students can play with the deck; with most, students can shuffle the cards, take a predetermined number of them, then do the exercises that the cards depict.

The tool is the brainchild of Dan DeJager, physical literacy and wellness advisor at the school in Fair Oaks, California. DeJager is a self-proclaimed “gaming nerd,”

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How the University of Arizona used No. 2 to solve its No. 1 problem: The coronavirus

The University of Arizona made a bold claim this week: It stopped a coronavirus outbreak before it started.

Universities around the U.S. have struggled with outbreaks as they attempt to start the fall semester. But at the Likins Hall dorm, just across the street from the University of Arizona’s recreation center, two students were found to have contracted the coronavirus — and they were asymptomatic.

The university said it pulled this off by combining more common forms of coronavirus mitigation, swab testing and contact tracing, with a more exotic one: analyzing sewage.

The university had implemented a campus-wide initiative to conduct what’s known as wastewater-based epidemiology. This effort, which involves analyzing sewage samples for traces of the coronavirus, gave the university a way to quickly and repeatedly look for traces of the virus in discrete groups of people — in this case, dorms — as part of an early warning

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Prehistoric Marine Reptile Died after a Giant Meal

Hundreds of millions of years ago, reptilian predators called ichthyosaurs swam the seas. Their fossils look fearsome. But paleobiologist Ryosuke Motani of U.C. Davis says they may have looked more like friendly dolphins.

“Maybe in life ichthyosaurs would have been cute—at least the smaller ones.”

Motani’s team studied one such specimen found in southwest China. It was 240 million years old—15 feet long. But it seemed to have some extra bones in it—which Motani’s team determined to be the remains of a 13-foot-long thalattosaur, or “sea lizard,” the ichthyosaur had swallowed.

And, spoiler alert, the only reason they were able to see this animal in the belly of the ichthyosaur is that this gigantic meal never got digested. The ichthyosaur died soon after swallowing it.

Motani was careful to say they’re not sure exactly why the ichthyosaur perished. But the specimen has a broken neck. So he gave a speculative

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Brandon Marshall talks potential NFL return, new business venture and health habits during career

Brandon Marshall hasn’t officially retired from the NFL, but the six-time Pro Bowl wide receiver has remained exceptionally busy since he last caught a NFL pass two years ago. Marshall, the new co-host of “First Things First,” also has launched the “House of Athlete” brand dedicated to to support and enhance physical and mental health for the everyday athlete.

Marshall is extremely passionate about “House of Athlete,” which redefines the standard approach to lifestyle wellness, giving athletes from all walks of life access to premium resources and tools. This week, “House of Athlete” launched a premium range of five all-natural fueling supplements (mental fitness, immunity, rest, whey protein, vegan protein) that are set in the brand’s core values. 

An eight-time 1,000-yard receiver, Marshall recorded 970 catches for 12,351 yards and 83 touchdowns in 13 seasons. He’s currently 16th all time in receptions, 22nd in receiving yards, and 22nd in touchdowns. 

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The lack of Black leaders in New England college sports is ‘what institutional and systemic racism look like’

“It amazes me that these barriers have not been broken down by now,” Titus said. “It’s a prime example of what institutional and systemic racism look like.”

A Globe survey of 112 colleges and universities in New England found that only five, or 4.5 percent, employ a Black athletic director. Just one of the region’s 15 Division 1 athletic departments has a Black leader: Marcus Blossom at Holy Cross.

“It amazes me that these barriers have not been broken down by now. It’s a prime example of what institutional and systemic racism look like.”

On Aug. 17, Division 2 Bentley University named Vaughn Williams, a senior administrator at Boston College, as its first Black AD. The other Black athletic directors in New England manage lower-budget operations at Division 3 schools: Anthony Grant at MIT, Lauren Haynie at Brandeis, and Darlene Gordon, Titus’s interim replacement at UMass Boston.

The diversity deficit

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Colorectal Cancer Alliance Calls for Awareness, Education Following Chadwick Boseman’s Death

The Colorectal Cancer Alliance released a statement Saturday following the death of Chadwick Boseman, saying awareness and education surrounding the disease is “hampered by an intense stigma.”



a close up of Chadwick Boseman smiling for the camera: US actor Chadwick Boseman poses in the press room during the 2019 American Music Awards at the Microsoft theatre on November 24, 2019 in Los Angeles. The Colorectal Cancer Alliance released a statement August 29, one day after Boseman's death, calling for more awareness and education surrounding the disease that is “hampered by an intense stigma.”


© VALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty
US actor Chadwick Boseman poses in the press room during the 2019 American Music Awards at the Microsoft theatre on November 24, 2019 in Los Angeles. The Colorectal Cancer Alliance released a statement August 29, one day after Boseman’s death, calling for more awareness and education surrounding the disease that is “hampered by an intense stigma.”

Colorectal cancer is a cancer occurring in the colon or rectum. It is sometimes referred to as colon cancer for short, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The cancer occurs when abnormal growths form in the colon or rectum and become cancerous.

Boseman, 43, died following a four-year battle with colorectal cancer, which progressed from stage III to stage IV,

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Northrop Grumman weighing exit options for OmegA rocket

Northrop Grumman statement: “We will determine next steps once the debriefing process concludes.”

WASHINGTON — When Northrop Grumman unveiled its OmegA rocket in April 2018, the company was clear that it developed the vehicle for the sole purpose of challenging United Launch Alliance and SpaceX for national security space launch contracts.

The Air Force decided to stick with ULA and SpaceX to provide launch services from 2022 to 2027. Without a significant commercial business to fall back on, OmegA does not appear to have a future.

But Northrop Grumman says no final decisions will be made until after the Air Force briefs the company on the reasons why the vehicle was not selected.

“The post-award debriefing process currently is underway, and we are learning more about the U.S. Space Force’s evaluation decisions,” Northrop Grumman spokeswoman Jennifer Bowman told SpaceNews Aug. 21. “We will determine next steps once the debriefing process

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Scott Kingery hits first career walk-off homer after a month of struggles

Zach Eflin came through huge for his manager in the Phillies’  4-1 win over the Atlanta Braves on Saturday.

Then he threw him under the bus. So to speak.

Joe Girardi, like many managers, will have a team meeting now and then, you know, when he feels like his players need to hear something, be it soothing or tough, as a group.

But Girardi isn’t one to talk about those team powwows. He considers them private and doesn’t believe they need to be written about or talked about by nosy reporters. When Girardi has a team meeting, he won’t confirm it or acknowledge it, much less offer insights about what went on behind closed doors.

The Phillies won their fifth straight game behind Eflin’s seven innings of one-run ball and Rhys Hoskins’ three-run homer Saturday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park.

The winning streak, which has put the Phillies at the

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From 2006: Few minorities get the reins in college football

A former All-America football captain at Boston University, Talley pursued a career as a collegiate head coach by building an impressive resume: Eight years as an assistant at Dartmouth, Colby, and the University of Massachusetts.

His credentials were solid enough that he landed interviews in recent years for head jobs at Northeastern, Dartmouth, and Holy Cross. But like legions of other qualified African-Americans who aspire to lead college football programs, Talley was shut out, left clinging to his dream of one day entering a domain ruled and overwhelmingly populated by white men.

The statistics are staggering, both nationally and in New England. Of 616 football teams affiliated with the National Collegiate Athletic Association, only 16, or 2.6 percent, are guided by African-American head coaches, even though an estimated 19,667, or 32.7 percent, of the players last year were black, according to an NCAA survey (the figures exclude historically black colleges

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National Trust sacking education officers ‘will hit worst-off children’

Volunteers are accusing the National Trust of excluding deprived and minority ethnic schoolchildren from enjoying nature and visiting its properties with the planned sacking of the charity’s education officers.

The number of protests and petitions are growing over the trust’s controversial “reset” involving the proposed loss of 1,200 jobs, including its learning staff, as the charity plans to stop providing any curriculum-based content or learning activities for schools.

Volunteers, parents and children waved banners and cars hooted their horns outside Sheringham Park in north Norfolk on Friday to plead for the retention of one full-time education officer and the 22-strong volunteer team who host 6,000 schoolchildren at the property each year.

Related: National Trust denies dumbing down in drive for ‘new audiences’

At other National Trust properties serving urban areas including London and Birmingham, there is dismay at the proposed axing of education services, with volunteers accusing the trust of

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