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First Master’s Degree Course in Europe for Child and Adolescent Sports

Press Release No. 175/2010
22 July 2010
Course run jointly by Heidelberg University and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology

Heidelberg University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) are joining forces to start up a new master’s degree course in the 2010/2011 winter semester. The degree in “Sports and Exercise in Childhood and Adolescence” is unprecedented anywhere in Europe. The aim is to produce highly-qualified sport scientists able to develop, implement and evaluate innovative strategies and programmes for child and adolescent sports. Cooperation partners are the universities of education in Heidelberg and Karlsruhe. Financial support for the establishment of the course comes from Dr. h.c. Manfred Lautenschläger.

According to experts, children’s regular physical and sports activities have been continuously impaired over the past few years by increasing restrictions on their physical exercise. The number of overweight and obese adolescents is sky-rocketing and palpable lack of exercise also has a detrimental effect on mental and cognitive development. The four-semester modular course “Sports and Exercise in Childhood and Adolescence” is a response to the significance of physical activity in our early years.

The new master’s degree course run by Heidelberg University and KIT concentrates on development and socialisation, learning and instruction, and performance and training. Graduates will specialise in the field of “prevention and rehabilitation”. Heidelberg University will also be offering the “development and talent” course component for the early stages of competitive sports. Prospective employers include nursery schools, schools, clubs, associations, health insurance facilities, rehabilitation units and commercial enterprises operating in the fields of sport and health.

Chief course coordinators are Prof. Dr. Klaus Roth (Heidelberg University) and Prof. Dr. Klaus Bös (KIT), both of them professors of movement and health science. They will be assisted by sport educationists Prof. Dr. Peter Neumann (Heidelberg University of Education) and Prof. Dr. Norbert Fessler (Karlsruhe University of Education). The Manfred Lautenschläger Foundation is supporting the new course by funding two staff positions devoted to course coordination between Heidelberg and Karlsruhe. This is yet another example of the foundation’s commitment to child and adolescent sports, such as the Ball School and SwimKids (Schwimmfix) projects.

Note for news desks
There will be a press conference on Thursday, 29 July 2010 to mark the beginning of the master’s degree course. It will be held at MLP AG in Wiesloch (Alte Heerstrasse 40) and start at 11 a.m. Alongside the academics and course leaders involved, Dr. h.c. Manfred Lautenschläger, honorary senator of Heidelberg University, will also take part.

Prof. Dr. Klaus Roth
Institute of Sport and Sport Science
Heidelberg University
phone: +49 6221 544642

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Press Office, phone: +49 6221 542311

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