OHSU

Sports Illustrated, OHSU Announce Oregon High Schools Receiving Grant To Implement Atlas And Athena Programs

04/24/06  New York, N.Y./Portland, Ore.

SPORTS ILLUSTRATED and the Center for Health Promotion Research at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) today announced four Oregon high schools will be part of the model SI SCHOOLS steroid and drug prevention initiative designed for teen athletes. The schools chosen are Glencoe High School in Hillsboro, Pendleton High School, Scappoose High School, and Stayton High School.  

The SI SCHOOLS program is a result of OHSU's being selected to receive SPORTS ILLUSTRATED's first-ever SI Champion Award. The SI Champion Award is presented to a nonprofit doing exemplary work in the sports arena and includes a grant valuing $1 million in cash and public service announcements. The cash and PSAs will be used to implement OHSU's landmark ATLAS (Athletes Training and Learning to Avoid Steroids) and ATHENA (Athletes Targeting Healthy Exercise and Nutrition Alternatives) steroid and drug prevention/health promotion programs in SI Schools in four states across the country.

The selection of Oregon SI Schools was announced at a special SPORTS ILLUSTRATED/ATLAS and ATHENA conference hosted by the Oregon School Activities Association as an addition to the state's annual athletic directors conference, which was held at the Sunriver Lodge in Sunriver, Ore. Athletic directors, coaches and school officials from around the state were invited to learn more about teaching teen athletes healthy alternatives to steroids, sports supplements, alcohol and other drugs through the ATLAS and ATHENA programs. Speakers included OHSU's Linn Goldberg, M.D., and Diane Elliot, M.D., co-creators of the programs; SPORTS ILLUSTRATED staff; and Drug Enforcement Administration officials.

Oregon SI Schools will receive program training, including all ATLAS and ATHENA components for the 2006-07 academic year at no cost to the school, and national recognition from SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. Schools from throughout Oregon applied to become an SI SCHOOL.

"Activities in our high schools are education-based, and the ATLAS and ATHENA programs will go a long way towards enhancing the education of these Oregon high school students," said OSAA Executive Director Tom Welter. "We are grateful to SI and OHSU that the four selected schools have the opportunity to implement these scientifically proven programs for their students. We believe that these peer-led drug prevention and health promotion programs will have a tremendous, positive impact on these students both now and in the future."

The OSAA was one of four state high school athletic/activities associations selected to receive a grant from SPORTS ILLUSTRATED and the Center for Health Promotion Research at OHSU to inform educators about the problem of young athletes, drugs and sports, and to implement the ATLAS and ATHENA programs. The other state recipients are Florida, Michigan and Virginia.  The associations in each state and the Center for Health Promotion Research will announce a minimum of four winning high schools  for a combined total of at least 16 SI Schools.

ATLAS (Athletes Training and Learning to Avoid Steroids), a multi-component program for male high school athletes, first instituted in 1993, is scientifically shown to reduce risk factors and use of anabolic steroids, alcohol and other illicit drugs while promoting healthy nutrition and exercise behaviors. Proven results include: new substance use decreased 50 percent; new anabolic steroid use decreased 50 percent; occurrences of drinking and driving declined 24 percent; a lower index of alcohol and drug use; reduced use of performance-enhancing supplements; and improved nutrition and exercise behaviors.

ATHENA (Athletes Targeting Healthy Exercise and Nutrition Alternatives), which began reaching high schools for female athletes in 1997, features the promotion of healthy nutrition and effective exercise training as alternatives to harmful behaviors. The objectives are: reduce young women athletes' disordered eating habits; deter use of  body-shaping substances; improve sport performance with guidelines targeting the specific needs of young women. Proven results include: less use of athletic enhancing substances; less use of diet pills; less riding in a car with a drinking driver; greater seatbelt use; less new sexual activity; improved nutrition behaviors and reduced long-term use of alcohol, marijuana and tobacco.
 

About ATLAS and ATHENA

Drs. Linn Goldberg and Diane Elliot began investigating the reasons young athletes used anabolic steroids, alcohol and other drugs and how to prevent their use in 1987. Since that time their research has involved more than 7,500 high school students. After developing potential strategies they applied for and received two independent research grants from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Those programs, now known as ATLAS and ATHENA, have undergone randomized controlled evaluations involving more than 4,000 student-athletes in more than 50 high schools and have been disseminated for use in more than 60 schools in 31 states and Puerto Rico. The results of the programs are published in leading medical journals, including the Journal of the American Medical Association and the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

ATLAS and ATHENA are housed within the newly created Center for Health Promotion Research at OHSU and are the only programs recommended by the Anabolic Steroid Control Act of 2004, recognized as model curricula. Financial support for the center is directed through the OHSU Foundation, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation that funds the center's efforts to bring innovative and effective strategies to public service.

About SI

SI is a multimedia sports brand that takes the consumer into the heart and soul of sports. The SI franchise is anchored by SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, the most respected voice in sports journalism, which reaches a weekly audience of more than 20 million adults, and SI.COM, the magazine's 24/7 sports news Web site that delivers more than 150 original stories to its users each week. The SI franchise also includes SPORTS ILLUSTRATED FOR KIDS (sikids.com), a monthly magazine targeted to kids age 8 and up; SI PRESENTS, the magazine's specialty publishing division; as well as SI DIGITAL, SI BOOKS, SI PICTURES, SI PRODUCTIONS and SI EVENTS. Founded in 1954, SI is a division of Time Inc., the world's leading magazine publishing company and a subsidiary of Time Warner.

About OSAA

The Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) is a private, nonprofit, board-governed association comprised of 287 member and 25 associate member high schools.  The OSAA, sanctioned by the Oregon State Board of Education and a member of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), annually sponsors 80 state championships in 19 sports and activities.

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