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Jamaican student athletes and their reproductive health

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Last week marked a successful Inter-Secondary Schools Boys and Girls Championships meet where over 28 records were smashed. This has once again raised interest in the care of student athletes and there were some important revelations during a  special symposium dubbed "Managing Special Conditions In Children" held at the G.C. Foster College of Physical Education and Sport, recently. 


Dr. Ricardo Chong who is also a volleyball coach spoke about reproductive health and nutrition of female athletes.


"The female athletse do not eat too much and exercise a lot. So often, they develop hormonal problems where they see less menstruation and bone injuries. I recommend that when they are going to compete, they need to have a proper medical observation before a meet and most important eat well. A bun and cheese is not a full meal.  A meal consist of all the food entities: fiber, calories, protein. Carbohydrates, fat, micro nutrients etcetera," he said.


The audience consisted mainly of primary and high school athletes and parents. Dr. Chong urged caregivers and coaches to manage nutritional needs of athletes. 


"Some parents can't afford three solid meals so that's where the managing staff, coaches and the school steps in," he stressed


Rodi Richardson, final year student of the BTTE Education programme at G.C Foster, told Loop News it was part of their sports medicine course.


"This symposium is geared towards teachers, students and coaches and anyone who is involved in athletics. The causes of conditions and how they can manage them: obesity, diabetes, hypertension, asthma and epilepsy. When any of these happen in a classroom it can be very detrimental. So we need as teachers and students to be aware of the causes of these symptoms and how and how they can be managed and treated," Richardson said.


Other speakers were Dr. G. Parker who spoke on obesity, there was a presentation by Nurse D. Gordon on epilepsy, and Dr. I. Clarke on hypertension and Nurse C. Rose on asthma.


Schools in attendance were Ensom City Primary, Central, Spanish Town , Morant Bay and Old Harbour High Schools.


Sponsors were Jamaica Public Service, KS Chemical Distributors Ltd, Red Cross, Running Man Products Limited and G.C. Foster College of Physical Education and Sport.

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