Emily Attwood
Emily (emily@athleticbusiness.com) joined the Athletic Business team in 2011, a natural transition from her previous work at PFP (Personal Fitness Professional), a B2B fitness industry brand, and Inside Wisconsin Sports, a consumer sports publication. AB’s managing editor by day, Emily spends her nights typing away at what she hopes will someday turn into a novel that other people will find worth reading. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Emily continues to enjoy living in the city with her husband, Derek, and biking to work, except during winter, when she doesn't enjoy much of anything.
  • Wednesday, March, 26, 2014
    Military Stepping Up Fitness Initiatives to Become Wellness Leader

    The Armed Forces have long been seen as the epitome of fitness, trailblazing the way for new and evermore impressive exercise programs. Look no further than TRX and other suspension-training offshoots, bootcamp-style workouts and military-inspired obstacle runs, to name a few examples.


  • Tuesday, March, 25, 2014
    Inspections, Monitoring Key to Optimal Gym Operation

    When everything in a facility is in good working order and operating smoothly, it's all too easy for staff members to become complacent, trusting that everything will stay that way.


  • Thursday, March, 13, 2014
    Cracking $60M Stadium May Require Partial Teardown

    When “extensive cracking” in the concrete closed down Allen (Tex.) High School’s Eagle Stadium last month, no one knew just how serious the damage was, but anyone could guess fixing it wouldn’t be easy. The full report from Nelson Forensics on the stadium’s condition was released on Wednesday, and the news isn’t good. 


     

    According to the report, the damage was the result of "drying shrinkage of the concrete” — that is, the concrete was poorly cured. Cracks range in size from hairline to a third of an inch and have allowed water to seep into the floor joist system, causing further structural weakening. 

    "The cracking has decreased the service life of the structure and potentially decreased its structural capacity," the report says.

    Nelson Forensics proposed four possible solutions. The first and most expensive would be to completely tear down and rebuild the concourse level, replacing concrete slabs and adding additional fixes to the floor joist system. While it would also take the most time to complete, it would provide a long-term fix. 

    RELATED: Pogue Construction's Statement Regarding Allen Eagle Stadium

    The other options would provide different variations of temporary, bandaid fixes, relying on epoxy injections to seal the cracks. While each would be cheaper than partial reconstruction and be accomplished in less time, each would need to be redone on a regular basis.

    Additional testing is expected to take months to complete at an estimated cost of $100,000. The school district has not yet made a decision on what action it will take, nor whether the stadium will be open for the fall athletics season. 

     


  • Tuesday, March, 04, 2014
    Police Cadet Program Puts Extra Eyes in Parks

    With warmer weather somewhere on the horizon and construction at the city’s Festival Park wrapping up, police in New Baltimore, Mich. are preparing for an uptick in park activity. The department’s Cadet Program, started more than a decade ago, brings in the extra help the department needs and gives citizens interested in a criminal justice career an opportunity to gain experience. 


     “It’s really just a great opportunity,” one former cadet told The Voice . “You typically start in the summer and then work your way up in the field. As a cadet a lot of the focus is on the parks and you take on that responsibility.” 

    The cadets, paid $8 per hour, patrol city parks and also have the opportunity to experience other aspects of a police officer’s job, including parking enforcement, administrative office work and going on ride-alongs. In addition to the experience, the program opens doors for cadets to move into permanent law enforcement positions.

    “This is the golden ticket program,” says police chief Tom Wiley, who was also the program’s first cadet. “It’s a springboard into the profession.”

     


  • Thursday, February, 27, 2014
    Blog: Let Them Eat Cake, If They So Choose

    On Tuesday, the White House announced a series of new initiatives as part of the fourth anniversary of the “Let’s Move!” program. Many of them are a great step forward in the battle against childhood obesity and inactivity, including an expansion of the school breakfast program and a five-year partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association and Boys & Girls Clubs of America will provide 5 million children with healthy snacks and physical activity opportunities after school. 


  • Friday, February, 21, 2014
    Judge Sends O'Bannon Class Action Against NCAA to Trial

    Remember Ed O'Bannon, the former UCLA basketball player who filed suit against the NCAA more than four years ago, alleging it was profiting off of O’Bannon and other NCAA athletes’ likenesses found in EA Sports video games? After a long and winding road, a federal judge has okayed the class-action suit to go to trial, setting a start date of June 9. 

    While it is still possible a settlement between the NCAA and the plaintiffs will be reached prior to the start of the trial, the outcome of the lawsuit could have drastic consequences for the NCAA, college athletic conferences and television networks. At the heart of the lawsuit is the NCAA rule that prohibits student-athletes from profiting off of the use of their name, likeness or image.

    "We're not asking for any money to be paid," said Michael Hausfeld, attorney for the plaintiffs, during a summary judgment hearing on Thursday. "We are asking for the restraint to be removed ... and then the market will determine how it plays out."

    In January 2013, the lawsuit expanded to allow current athletes to join, as well as target other entities profiting off of athletes’ likenesses, including conferences and television networks. The plaintiffs are in the process of working out settlement details in their suit against EA Sports.

    Thursday’s hearing took into account various arguments by both sides, including the NCAA’s assertion that the First Amendment protected it from requiring athletes’ permission to broadcast their appearances at games. U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken also called into question whether the NCAA’s no-pay rule violated antitrust laws.

    "Up to this point you always heard the NCAA argue that these restraints are lawful -- purportedly," Hausfeld said. "We're done with that. There's no presumptions. This court is saying if we go to trial, you're going to have to prove that."

    Should a jury rule in favor of the plaintiffs, the results could bankrupt the NCAA, though a lengthy appeals process would first ensue. A less drastic outcome could result in concessions from both sides, with restrictions on athletes’ ability to profit from their likenesses removed or lessened, or schools agreeing to set aside a portion of revenues for athletes.  

     


  • Tuesday, February, 18, 2014
    Crowdfunding Basics for Athletic & Recreation Organizations

    Last spring, the City of Philadelphia launched its first crowdfunding project, raising $2,000 to plant a community garden at one of the city’s recreation centers. 

    Over the summer, 474 donors contributed more than $15,000 to help purchase a new mascot costume as part of Michigan State University’s Extreme Makeover: Sparty Edition crowdfunding initiative. A more recent MSU campaign raised more than $5,000 to create a softball scholarship in memory of a university employee and passionate softball fan who had lost a battle with cancer. 


  • Friday, February, 14, 2014
    Official Report Released in Incognito Bullying Case

    Just two days after Richie Incognito tweeted “the truth is going to bury you,” the truth is out, but it doesn’t look like Jonathan Martin is the one who’s going to be buried. The results of the NFL-sanctioned report investigating allegations of misconduct among the Miami Dolphins were released this morning. In his report, investigator Ted Wells concluded that Richie Incognito and two other teammates demonstrated a pattern of harassment against Jonathan Martin and others. 

    “The Report concludes that three starters on the Dolphins offensive line, Richie Incognito, John Jerry and Mike Pouncey, engaged in a pattern of harassment directed at not only Jonathan Martin, but also another young Dolphins offensive lineman and an assistant trainer,” Wells said in a press release. “The Report finds that the assistant trainer repeatedly was the object of racial slurs and other racially derogatory language; that the other offensive lineman was subjected to homophobic name-calling and improper physical touching; and that Martin was taunted on a persistent basis with sexually explicit remarks about his sister and his mother and at times ridiculed with racial insults and other offensive comments.” 

    He continues, “The Report rejects any suggestion that Martin manufactured claims of abuse after the fact to cover up an impetuous decision to leave the team. Contemporaneous text messages that Martin sent to his parents and others months before he left the Dolphins — which have never before been made public — corroborate his account that the persistent harassment by his teammates caused him significant emotional distress. The Report concludes that the harassment by Martin’s teammates was a contributing factor in his decision to leave the team, but also finds that Martin’s teammates did not intend to drive Martin from the team or cause him lasting emotional injury.”

    Wells’s firm, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, examined thousands of documents since its hiring in November 2013, resulting in a 144-page report. 

    Read the full report here.

     


  • Thursday, February, 06, 2014
    New Projects: Missouri-St. Louis | MSU | Fort Walton Beach

    BREAKING GROUND
    The University of Missouri-St. Louis (above) has begun construction of a new $36 million recreation and wellness center. Located just south of the student center, the 94,000-square-foot facility will include a three-court gymnasium, a swimming pool, training rooms and an elevated jogging track. The center, designed by St. Louis-based Cannon Design, is expected to be completed by fall 2015.


  • Tuesday, February, 04, 2014
    Keeping Up on Cardio Equipment Trends

    Group cycling has been the hot topic in group exercise for the past few years, its growth fueled by a celebrity following, a plethora of class formats and continually improving technology that allows for better tracking and more engaging audio/visual elements. But when the American College of Sports Medicine released its list of top 20 fitness trends for 2014, group cycling was nowhere to be found, suggesting to many that it was a fading craze. Meanwhile, whispers of a competitor have been growing from out of the shadows of the cardio floor. The rowing machine, a tried-and-true — if somewhat neglected — staple is being hailed by some as the successor to group cycling. 


  • Monday, June, 16, 2014
    AB's Architectural Showcase a Yearlong Affair

    The Architectural Showcase in June is the one issue of Athletic Business I look forward to most each year. It's also the issue I spend most of each year working on.


  • Friday, April, 04, 2014
    Blog: Wine at the Gym? I’ll Drink to That

    Cardio equipment? Check. Towel service? Check. Group exercise schedule? Check. Liquor license? Pending.


  • Thursday, February, 27, 2014
    Blog: Let Them Eat Cake, If They So Choose

    On Tuesday, the White House announced a series of new initiatives as part of the fourth anniversary of the “Let’s Move!” program. Many of them are a great step forward in the battle against childhood obesity and inactivity, including an expansion of the school breakfast program and a five-year partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association and Boys & Girls Clubs of America will provide 5 million children with healthy snacks and physical activity opportunities after school. 


  • Monday, January, 13, 2014
    Blog: Women-Only Fitness Zones Perpetuate Stereotypes

    Here at AB, it’s the editors’ job to stay on top of what’s happening in the industries we serve. As such, last Friday I came across an article about a gym in Vancouver getting some flak for its decision to close its women-only section. 


  • Thursday, October, 10, 2013
    Blog: If You Can't Beat 'Em… Beat 'Em Up!

    I was sitting in a hotel lobby surrounded by other people when I opened up my morning news alerts and saw an article announcing the Kentucky High School Athletic Associations' decision to suspend post-game handshakes, so I had to keep my disgust to a minimum - a casual eye roll and understated sigh. Seriously? These athletes are displaying poor sportsmanship, and the solution to that is to do away with the concept? That's like dropping math from the curriculum because the students aren't getting it.


  • Friday, September, 20, 2013
    Blog: Defending "The Slowest Generation"

    Friday afternoon, when I should have been hard at work on AB's November issue, I instead found myself fuming over an article from Thursday's Wall Street Journal sent to me by our company owner. The article deemed younger athletes "The Slowest Generation," and accused my generation of being too apathetic about performance and competition.