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Evidence Strong


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      Hi, I’m Alex!

      Evidence Strong supports weightlifting athletes, coaches, and parents by bringing research in a digestible form.

      Storytime - the ‘why’

      I always loved sports. Playing sports made me happy, confident, and … sore 😉. From time to time, it made me injured too. Why did the injury happen on this day, not on the other? Why me, not another athlete in my team/club? Could I have done something to prevent these injuries from happening in the first place? These thoughts never went away.

      Alex during a Kickboxing practice

      After a while, it was clear that I just had to learn more about the human body and sports injuries, so I have entered a physiotherapy (physical therapy) undergraduate course, and soon after that, a master’s degree course (both in the Wroclaw Medical University, Poland). Although I truly enjoyed learning and helping patients, many of my questions on “why?” remained unanswered.

      I did not see any other way than going into a PhD program. Little did I know that this PhD program (University of Otago, New Zealand) will change my life.

      University of Otago graduation

      Going through the years of schooling I was convinced that all we read in textbooks is 100% true. Oh, boy! I have not been prepared to discover a mashup of assumptions, misinterpretations, oversimplifications, exaggerations, and straight-up “not truth” presented to us during our education over the years.

      Spending these few years working on my PhD project and going deep into the world of science, has taught me how little we actually know “for sure”. We still have to assume many things or just go with our best guess. My PhD journey has shown me how much humanity needs science to constantly go back and forth, to progress our understanding of the world, including the understanding of our bodies.

      At the time of my undergrad, the Internet grew in popularity, and knowledge became ubiquitous. Also, the knowledge related to the human body and health. Social media have become the go-to news source, and a fleet of influencers emerged.

      The sea of knowledge on the Internet started to grow exponentially. Unfortunately, the growth was highly influenced by the profit that could be made. Even the information about health was increasingly used to sell products. Misleading and downright wrong statements become an obvious problem.

      This brought me to the realization that if scientists will not get involved in the creation of the content on the Internet, we are doomed. If scientists will not counterbalance the misinformation with their deep understanding and knowledge on the subject, we are lost. I felt a calling, a responsibility, and a passion to start writing about research on the Internet.

      Alex snatching (or not) 50 kg

      At the same time, I have fallen in love with weightlifting and was reading a ton on the topic. I was also working on a research postdoc project (Keio University, Tokyo) in sports injury prevention in young female athletes. By merging the two, the Evidence Strong was born.

      For whom?

      Evidence Strong is for weightlifting athletes, their parents, coaches, and medical and sports-related personnel. Whoever aims at broadening their knowledge to better assist the athletes in their journey to performance and optimal health may find it useful. You can use this website to stay on top of the ever-changing landscape of research in weightlifting and injury prevention. Enjoy!

      What you can expect from me?

      A promise

      I will provide you with evidence-based knowledge in a digestible way…

      … evidence-based knowledge from the sports medicine and sports science research literature that is relevant to athletes and their development as healthy, and successful weightlifters, but also Masters athletes, female athletes, and members of the general public who want to use weightlifting to optimise their health and longevity.

      Please remember that Evidence Strong does not provide medical advice (as I am not a medical doctor) and should not replace a consultation with your trusted qualified health professional.

      Types of content

      I have organized the content of this website into Categories, so you can easily find what you need. The categories I have now are:

      3 mins drill - a short summary of the newest, interesting, or important research papers on the topics of sports performance and injury prevention, mainly in weightlifting. Or just the ones that caught my attention and deserve to be promoted.

      What? Why? How? are my attempts to answer interesting questions on the topics related to sports performance and injury prevention. It’s a bit of a deep dive where I pull many research articles to give you the answers, or at least some guidance on what we know.

      Database of the exercise injury prevention programs - it is a database with links to the exercise programs aiming at reducing injuries in different sports and groups of athletes. Additionally, I have assessed the quality of each website these programs are hosted on, and the quality of the way this information is presented. I hope this assessment will help you to decide whether you can adopt the program as it is (high-quality programs designed for your sport, age group, sex) or modify and consult (lower quality programs or less targeted to your specific needs) the program with a specialist (coach, physical therapist, sports doctor).

      Evidence Strong Podcast where we go really deep into research. This involves conversations with the best researchers from around the World. You can find the interviews here.

      If you are looking for a specific topic please use the Tags page.

      Please feel free to send your suggestions on the topics or formats via the Contact form.

      Yours truly

      My name is Alex Mącznik, I am a researcher. I have a PhD in Physiotherapy (2015) from the University of Otago (Dunedin, New Zealand). I am a first-generation PhD in my family. To get my PhD I had moved from Poland to New Zealand, and then to Japan to do a postdoc in the Keio University. At the moment, I am working and living in Sydney, Australia.

      In my research, I investigate how exercises can be used to reduce the risk of sustaining injuries in female athletes. I also enjoy doing Olympic weightlifting.

      You can also find me here:

      www.AlexMacznik.com - academic publications and updates

      Final words and disclaimer

      All opinions presented through Evidence Strong are mine and are just that - the opinions. All the content on this website is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a medical, nutritional, coaching or financial advice, nor does substitute for advice from your health care professional/provider. Any actions you will take, changes you will make to your nutrition, training or health care, are on your own responsibility and not mine.

      I deeply care about the well-being of the athletes. This website is one researcher’s contribution to knowledge translation from research into practice. I hope to provide you with some free info, answer your questions, or maybe even teach you a thing or two, so you can flourish as an athlete or a supporter.

      If you have any suggestions or requests for the topics I cover, you can always contact me using the Contact form.

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