Reconnecting with Exercise Connection Founder David Geslak

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The last time AB spoke with former assistant collegiate strength coach David Geslak about his work with children and adults with autism, he was asked if the painstaking nature of introducing exercise to this population ever made him think seriously about quitting. It's a good thing he hasn't. Since that 2011 interview, Geslak's Exercise Connection has grown to a staff of six, developed an app (ExerciseBuddy), published a book (The Autism Handbook), produced an Autism Channel show ("Coach Dave") and launched a program (Autism Workforce) that uses exercise to prepare individuals with autism for employment. In all, he has made more than 400 presentations on exercise and autism to parents, paraprofessionals and other educators in the U.S., Barbados, Canada, Dubai, Egypt and Russia (twice). Nine universities are currently incorporating the app in their physical education curricula or in research, and the American College of Sports Medicine is looking at creating a certificate based on his efforts. His work has been profiled in the Chicago Tribune and The New York Times, and a piece authored by Geslak will appear in the March/April edition of ACSM's Health & Fitness Journal. AB senior editor Paul Steinbach recently reconnected with Geslak for an update.

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