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Official Positions

The American College of Sports Medicine publishes five types of official pronouncements reflecting the position or stance of the College on various topics. The pronoucement types each have different protocols for development and all undergo a rigorous review and approval process.  ACSM's Pronouncements are published in one of ACSM's official journals, and all are made freely available to the public. 

Translated Position Stands

Many of ACSM's key position stands have been translated into multiple languages. Those translations can be found here. The College continues to maintain a commitment to making our key scientific information available to a broad, diverse international community. Please check back often for developments in this area.  

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What is ACSM's Pronouncements Committee Up To?




The ACSM Pronouncements Committee (Mike Deschenes, Ph.D., FACSM, chair) has recently undertaken the task of overseeing the review of ACSM's position stands to identify information that may need updating.  Learn more in this video from Dr. Deschenes. 

Official Pronouncements of the College

Position Stand

ACSM Position Stands are developed using a specified evidence-based methodology on significant societal issues that merit interdisciplinary consideration and consensus within the College. Joint Position Stands are similar to ACSM Position Stands, but are developed in concert with at least one other not-for-profit organization or governmental agency.

Umbrella Review

ACSM Umbrella Reviews are developed using a specified evidence-based methodology on significant societal issues that merit interdisciplinary consideration and consensus within the College. Umbrella Reviews may be utilized to update older Position Stands when there is sufficient literature, with systematic reviews and/or meta-analyses. Umbrella Reviews differ from Position Stands in that they rely on a systematic review of systematic reviews and meta-analyses in a given area, rather than a systematic review of the primary literature.

Expert Consensus Statement

ACSM Expert Consensus Statements are developed using a blend of research evidence and consensus of expert opinion. The document provides a mechanism by which the College can make an official comment in a timely and efficient manner on topics of high importance or with broad impact. The goal is for the document to present a well-rounded summary of the topic under consideration.

Contemporary Issues

ACSM Contemporary Issues are developed using a specified evidence-informed methodology. Contemporary issues documents address emerging and “hot topics” in exercise science and sports medicine. These are statements on a prominent or evolving issue of interest to College members and the public at large. Contemporary Issues papers are meant to be quick turn-around documents that allow the College to comment in a timely manner.

Call to Action

ACSM Call to Action documents direct attention to a current scientific/clinical challenge or need and highlights a series of actions that can be taken to address the identified challenge. The intent of this document is to provide a mechanism by which the College can make a concise, clear comment and provide action-oriented direction in a timely and efficient manner on evolving topics of high importance or with broad impact.

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Learn About ACSM's Evidence-based Position Stand Development

A position stand serves as the College’s most authoritative and influential, evidence-based statement on a topic of relevance to those in the fields of exercise science and sports medicine. 

Position Stands are developed using ACSM’s approved Evidence-based Protocol for Position Stand development. This includes development of PICOT questions, a systematic review of the literature, evaluation of individual studies for freedom from risk of bias, and grading the overall strength of evidence. The Evidence-based Protocol manual also details specifics related to composition of writing group, reporting of evidence and use of the MOSAIC platform. The goal is for the paper to take no longer than 18 months from approval to publication.

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Official Communications of the College


The College has several other mechanisms for distributing key information. These publications contain information warranting promotion and dissemination but do not necessarily represent an official view/stance of ACSM.  These communications are typically distributed through ACSM.org, Sports Medicine Bulletin or the media. 

Roundtable Statements

are influential documents that provide clear consensus recommendations that define understanding of the topic, as well as highlight suggestions for future research.

 

Specialty Conference Summaries

are documents that provide a clear summary of conference activities, discussion, highlight gaps in the field, and can include next steps and/or a call to action.

Team Physician Consensus Conference
Statements

are statements dealing with select medical issues in the care and treatment of athletes developed by a distinguished panel of team physicians.

ACSM Viewpoints

are developed using expert consensus opinion and address breaking news or research in exercise science and sports medicine.

ACSM News Releases

are distributed by the college to media and promote strategic initiatives, publications, commentaries, partnerships and timely news pertaining to the organization.

ACSM Sports Medicine Basics

are one page documents for a layperson addressing timely, emerging, and hot topics in exercise science and sports medicine.