Celebrating 50 years of science to practice in Canada

For over 50 years, curious academic investigators, their students and those providing exercise advice to Canadians have actively led the establishment, evolution and growth of a highly-respected organization. From the beginning, members have been the strength of the organization. From 200 founding members in 1967 to 6000 members today, they are truly dedicated to their research and the opportunity for it to impact the health and well-being of Canadians. Through their efforts, the Canadian Association of Sport Sciences / Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology continues to bring science to practice, influencing evidence-based policies and practice in research, rehabilitation, population health, fitness and chronic disease.

At 50, CSEP reflects on the broad evolution of the state of exercise physiology research and practice since its inception. CSEP continues to be a trusted resource of expertise and a family to many. This timeline highlights key milestones that we hope will provide background for some and generate fond memories. Thank you, to all members who have been a part of these accomplishments and to those who will help lead us into the next 50 years!

1961

FITNESS AND AMATEUR SPORT ACT

The Act is passed by the Government of Canada to improve the fitness of Canadians and Canada’s participation in international sports events. Act includes financial support for research.

1965

GROUNDWORK FOR A NEW ORGANIZATION

A nucleus committee representing the Canadian Medical Association and the Canadian Association of Health, Physical Education and Recreation is set up to lay the groundwork for the future Canadian Association of Sports Sciences. The objective, to establish an association of professionals interested in the scientific aspects of sports and fitness in Canada as well as to promote and advance medical and other scientific studies that support the effect of sports and other physical activities on human’s overall health.

1967

CANADIAN ASSOCIATION OF SPORT SCIENCES

CASS is formally inaugurated on July 24 during the fifth Pan-American Congress on Sports Medicine. A letter from HRH Prince Philip states that the establishment of CASS “shows that there is growing appreciation of the value of positive health in our modern easy going civilization.”

1971

JOINT CASS AND ACSM CONFERENCE

CASS and ACSM host the world’s largest gathering of experts in the field of sports sciences. Over 500 sport scientists attend the Toronto conference covering topics such as: Rules and Ethics in Sports Medicine, Organization and Conduct of Fitness Programs, Rehabilitation in the Service of Medicine and Metabolic Adaption to Physical Activity.

1975

CANADIAN HOME FITNESS TEST

Led by CASS founding member Dr. Roy J Shephard, a simple at-home tool is developed to establish the user’s level of fitness.

1976

FIRST ISSUE OF CANADIAN JOURNAL OF APPLIED SPORT SCIENCES

Following years of dedicated effort, the dream of creating a Canadian journal of sport and exercise sciences is realized. The first issue is released in January 1976 and inaugural editor-in-chief is Dr. Albert Taylor.

1978

PHYSICAL ACTIVITY READINESS QUESTIONNAIRE

The first validated screening tool of its time, the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q) is developed by the British Columbia Ministry of Health to determine those individuals potentially at risk when increasing their level of physical activity before undertaking exercise.

1978

CASS IS A FOUNDING MEMBER OF THE SPORT MEDICINE COUNCIL OF CANADA (SMCC)

Initially developed to provide physicians, therapists and medical equipment for Canadian athletes who would participate at the Major Games, the SMCC would evolve into a multi-faceted group of medical and paramedical personnel and sport scientists whose collaborative function is to support the development of amateur sport in Canada. CASS is one of the four provider groups that founded SMCC and went on to have resident status in 1982.

1979

PUBLICATION OF THE CANADIAN STANDARDIZED TEST OF FITNESS (CSTF)

The CSTF provides a simple, safe and standardized approach to assessing major components of fitness in apparently healthy individuals and interprets these assessments based on norms and percentiles for Canada.

1981

CANADA FITNESS SURVEY

Led by the Canadian Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institute (CFLRI) and supported by CASS members, the first national survey of over 13,500 households provides both a comprehensive picture of fitness levels of Canadians and establishes a benchmark for future research.

1982

CASS IS INCORPORATED AS A NATIONAL NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANIZATION ON AUGUST 16, 1982

1983

NATIONAL FITNESS APPRAISAL CERTIFICATION & ACCREDITATION (FACA) PROGRAM

CASS establishes the FACA program to address the need for safe and reliable physical fitness appraisals and training in Canada. This program would go on to see many changes, both in name and concentration.

1983

PUBLICATION OF THE PHYSIOLOGICAL TESTING FOR ELITE ATHELTE MANUAL

Written to standardize testing protocols so that athletes can be assessed in any lab across Canada with approximately the same results.

1984

ELITE ATHLETE LABORATORY ACCREDITATION

CASS is approached by Sport Canada to develop a standardized program for certifying high performance testing centres across Canada. These High Performance Testing Centres were a precursor to the current Canadian Sport Centres.

1985

ESTABLISHMENT OF THE CASS HIGH PERFORMANCE SPORT COMMITTEE

This unique national committee is created to focus on lab accreditation, sport specific research protocols, grant reviews for sport research and to assist National Governing Bodies in developing scientific committees.

1986

OVERSTRESS STUDY

CASS initiates a research project with funding from Sport Canada to examine overtraining by studying potential factors that are indicative of the overtrained state using a multidisciplinary approach. The Overstress Study final report was presented in 1989.

1987

CASS UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT AWARD

Recognizing the need to highlight the work of the next generation in sport science research, universities are invited to present the first CASS Undergraduate Student Award to a deserving graduating student in the sport sciences stream.

1987

CANADIAN REGISTRY FOR SPORT BEHAVIOURAL PROFESSIONALS

A registry of sport psychologists who were able and willing to provide sport psychology and mental training services to Canadian high performance athletes.

1987

SPORT NUTRITION FOR THE ATHLETES OF CANADA

The Sport Nutrition Advisory Committee (SNAC), led by CASS members is formed to provide sport nutrition advice to Canadian athletes and to provide leadership in nutrition education for individuals involved in sport & fitness in Canada.

1990

COMMISSION OF INQUIRY INTO THE USE OF DRUGS AND BANNED PRACTICES INTENDED TO INCREASE ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE

Following a number of high-profile cases of banned substance abuse at the Olympic level, the Government of Canada initiates the Commission of Inquiry into the Use of Drugs and Banned Practices Intended to Increase Athletic Performance (AKA the Dubin Inquiry). CASS provides written testimony and evidence in response to the recommendations made therein.

1992

CASS CELEBRATES 25TH ANNIVERSARY

CASS Pioneers gather in Saskatoon to recognize the organization’s first 25 years.

1992

MEMBERS VOTE TO RENAME CASS TO ‘CANADIAN SOCIETY FOR EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY (CSEP)’

25 years after its inception, many original sport science disciplines branch out to form their own organizations which better align with their specific area of research. The remaining CASS members, primarily focused on exercise physiology and human kinetics, lead the membership to change the organization’s name and mission to better reflect their mandate and focus.

1993

FIRST ISSUE OF CANADIAN JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSIOLGOY: PHYSICAL ACTIVITY, HEALTH AND FITNESS

With a narrowed focus to the areas of physiology, biochemistry, fitness, health and physical activity, The Canadian Journal of Applied Sport Sciences becomes the Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology: Physical Activity, Health and Fitness.

1993

PAR Q & YOU

A CSEP Expert Advisory Committee updates the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q), a self administered pre-activity screening questionnaire.

1996

THE CANADIAN PHYSICAL ACTIVITY, FITNESS & LIFESTYLE APPRAISAL

A successor to the CSTF, The CPAFLA resource includes the assessment and health-related interpretation of both physical activity participation and lifestyle behaviours.

1996

MEASUREMENT IN PEDIATRIC EXERCISE SCIENCE

CSEP publishes fitness assessment protocols appropriate to use with youth and children. The impetus for this publication was the Youth & Children steering committee led in partnership with Health Canada.

1997

CSEP.CA IS LAUNCHED

The first CSEP website is launched.

1998

CANADA’S PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDE TO HEALTHY ACTIVE LIVING

In response to the 1996 Surgeon General’s Report, CSEP and Health Canada develop Canada’s Physical Activity to Healthy Active Living. The Guidelines are launched at the CSEP AGM in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

1999

LECTURE TOUR

The first CSEP lecture tour takes place to help promote the dissemination of exercise physiology knowledge on a national scale.

1999

ACTIVE LIVING DURING PREGNANCY: PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDELINES FOR MOTHER AND BABY

CSEP publishes a comprehensive resource for pregnant women who want to maintain activity, or undertake physical activity as a component of making positive lifestyle changes to promote a healthy pregnancy.

1999

CANADA’S PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDE TO HEALTHY ACTIVE LIVING FOR OLDER ADULTS

In conjunction with the International Year of the Older Adult, guidelines for Older Adults are launched to address the distinct needs and capacities of adults over 55 years of age.

2002

CANADA’S PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDE FOR CHILDREN (6-9 YEARS OF AGE) AND CANADA’S PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDE FOR YOUTH (10-14 YEARS OF AGE)

2002

CSEP HEALTH AND FITNESS PROGRAM

The FACA Program changes its name to CSEP Health & Fitness Program (HFP) to reflect the greater range of certifications offered.

2002

INCLUSIVE FITNESS AND LIFESTYLE SERVICES FOR ALL disABILITIES

CSEP publishes a manual to enhance the expertise of qualified fitness professionals with specific resources to provide fitness assessment and active living counselling services to apparently healthy Canadians with a disability.

2006

APPLIED PHYSIOLOGY, NUTRITION, AND METABOLISM (APNM)

The journal gets a new name and is turned over to the National Research Council (NRC) Press to continue publishing. Moving forward, APNM would see an increase to over 1300 pages annually.

2011

CANADIAN PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDELINES FOR CHILDREN (5-11 YEARS OF AGE), YOUTH (12-17 YEARS OF AGE), ADULTS (18-64 YEARS OF AGE) AND OLDER ADULTS (65+ YEARS OF AGE)

2011

CANADIAN SEDENTARY BEHAVIOUR GUIDELINES FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH

The first, systematic evidence-based sedentary behaviour guidelines in the world are released. The guidelines provide recommendations to Canadian children (5 to 11 years of age) and youth (12 to 17 years of age) on limiting sedentary behaviour and screen time during discretionary time to reduce health risks.

2011

EXERCISE IS MEDICINE CANADA

CSEP hosts the first Task Force Meeting of Exercise is Medicine Canada (EIMC). With an objective of facilitating the collaboration between health care professionals and qualified exercise professionals in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease. CSEP becomes the official host of EIM in Canada in April 2012.

2012

CANADIAN PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDELINES & CANADIAN SEDENTARY BEHAVIOUR GUIDELINES FOR THE EARLY YEARS (0-4 YEARS OF AGE)

2013

CSEP PHYSICAL ACTIVITY TRAINING FOR HEALTH

The CSEP-PATH manual offers comprehensive evidence-based support for the training and work of CSEP certified members and other qualified exercise professionals.

2013

CANADIAN PHYSICAL ACTIVITY GUIDELINES FOR ADULTS WITH MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS

The Guidelines outline how a person with MS can incorporate safe, appropriate and effective physical activity into their daily routine. They also provide a reference to what are appropriate physical activity levels.

2015

CSEP PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS PROGRAM

The CSEP Health & Fitness Program is renamed to reflect program advances and reinforce CSEP’s commitment to raising the bar on the certification of health and fitness professionals and establishing nation-wide standards.

2016

CANADIAN 24-HOUR MOVEMENT GUIDELINES FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH: AN INTEGRATION OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY, SEDNETARY BEHAVIOUR AND SLEEP

The world’s first evidence-based guidelines to address the whole day. These guidelines encourage children & youth to Sweat, Step, Sleep and Sit the right amounts for a healthy 24-hours representing the new paradigm that emphasizes the integration of all movement behaviours occurring over a whole day.

2017

GET ACTIVE QUESTIONNAIRE

CSEP releases a new two-page self-administered, pre-participation screening tool to help move individuals along the path to becoming more physically active.

2017

CANADIAN 24-HOUR MOVEMENT GUIDELINES FOR THE EARLY YEARS (AGES 0-4): AN INTEGRATION OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY, SEDENTARY BEHAVIOUR, AND SLEEP

Co-launch with the Commonwealth of Australia November 20, 2017