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Sports medicine and related fields have found a niche in the health care community.

Carroll residents have a better opportunity to learn more about the field at two upcoming meetings.

Western Maryland College is the site of the 14th annual Mid-Atlantic Regional Chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine symposium Thursday and Friday.

"I think we have a good program lined up," said Samuel Case, professor of physical education at WMC. "We havesome of the best people in the country, if not in the world coming here. Our purpose is to convey knowledge to people who don't have thisknowledge about sports medicine."

It has taken Case two years to assemble 16 speakers and get the regional meeting to WMC. Case is expecting nearly 300 to attend the conference, with subjects ranging from heart disease in women to protein needs of athletes.

"We've got plenty of topics to cover," said Case. "One of the hot topics should be weight training and nutrition. I could come up with more topics, but we are limited on time."

Included as some of the guests speakers are Steven Fleck, director of sports physiology for the United States Olympic Committee, on "Physiological Considerations in the Design of Resistance Training Programs" and David Neiman, director of the Exercise Physiology Laboratory at Appalachian State University, on "Exercise, Infection and the Immune System."

"There is something on the program for everyone," said Case, "From the weekend jogger to the heart patient whose treatment can benefit from sports medicine."

Ifthe scientific aspect of sports is not enough, the clinical aspect will be presented at the Maryland Athletic Trainers Association Clinical Symposium from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 14 at the Days Inn here.

"Since it's the first, it gives us the opportunity for a true learning experience," said Paul Welliver, vice president of the Maryland Athletic Trainers Association. "We have selected the top orthopedic surgeons in the state to speak."

Welliver, program director of CarrollCounty Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Center, spent about five years putting the symposium together.

While Western Maryland's conference will deal with training and conditioning, the MATA conference will be concerned with the treatment of an injury.

"I think coaches, parents and athletes should feel free to join us," said Welliver. "There's a lot to learn. Everything from a

film on surgery, to things like 'When should my child return to a sport?' will be discussed."

Speaking at the ATA symposium will be: Dr. David Silber on "Runner's Injuries", Baltimore Orioles team physician Dr. Charles Silberstein on "Foot and Ankle Injuries in Baseball" and Dr. Kevin Campbell on the "Biomechanics of Throwing."

Welliver wants to establish a yearly get-together and develop a state licensing procedure for athletic trainers.

"Sports medicine has grown for this area with five high schools and two colleges," said Welliver. "We have taken care of kids that are going to Division I schools."

The 50 seats available will be sold out, said Welliver, with 30 already gone a month before the symposium.

Information: 857-2290 for the meeting at WMC; 876-1505 or 848-8744 for the ATA meeting.

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