Ice Dancing, Artificial Snow and Other Thoughts on the Winter Olympics

Ice dancing gold medalists Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron perform a non-overhead lift

Figure skating, ice dancing, bobsledding and fake snow take center stage as I look at a variety of topics related to the recent Winter Olympics. The 2022 Winter Olympics wrapped up nine days ago, concluding a global sporting event often overshadowed by issues beyond sports. An ongoing global pandemic, the … Read more

Myokines: Connecting Movement, Muscles and Well-Being

Diagram of the action of myokines from muscles to other organs

KineSophy explores connections between physical fitness and movement and non-physical qualities like intelligence, resilience and overall well-being. Some of these connections are observational—for example, exposing oneself to physical challenges makes a person better equipped to face non-physical challenges. Others are based on scientific research, such as the strong connection between … Read more

2021 Year in Review

The KineSophy 2021 Year in Review

One year ago, I closed 2020 hoping for an end to the COVID-19 pandemic and optimistic that we had learned some hard lessons from the previous year. While the first wish hasn’t come to fruition in 2021, I do believe the past two years have forced all of us to … Read more

The Limits of Human Endurance: A Review of Endure by Alex Hutchinson

Endure by Alex Hutchinson, a book about human endurance

How do the world’s top athletes and most daring adventurers push their bodies to the absolute limit over hours or days of relentless movement? And what lessons can the rest of us take from these astonishing feats of endurance? Those are the questions that motivate Alex Hutchinson’s Endure: Mind, Body, … Read more

Why Everyone Should Care About Physical Fitness

Why Everyone Should Care About Physical Fitness

No matter who you are or what you do or want from life, you should care about physical fitness. Here’s why. Two Arguments for Fitness We all get standard health advice from a variety of sources: friends, family, medical practitioners, the media. “You should eat well,” they tell us. “You … Read more

How Upright Walking Made Us Human with Jeremy DeSilva

Jeremy DeSilva, author of First Steps: How Upright Walking Made Us Human

Jeremy DeSilva is a paleoanthropologist at Dartmouth College and the author of First Steps: How Upright Walking Made Us Human. He is a part of the research team that discovered and described two ancient members of the human family tree– Australopithecus sediba and Homo naledi. He has studied wild chimpanzees in Uganda and … Read more

The Ethics of Fitness in Prison Populations

Physical fitness in prison

As part of my efforts to illustrate a complementary relationship between physical fitness and moral virtues, I previously detailed how practicing yoga benefits prison inmates. Specifically, research has shown that yoga improves positive mood and decreases stress, anxiety, depression and recidivism in prison populations. And yoga is not the only … Read more

More on Ethics, Fat-Shaming and Weight Loss

More on Ethics, Fat Shaming and Weight Loss

Last month, I published an article on fat-shaming and ethics. A few weeks later, I opened the latest issue of Philosophy Now to discover another article on the same subject. In “The Ethics of Fat Shaming,” Charlotte Curran attacks fat-shaming, fatism and a purported societal obsession with weight loss. While … Read more

Annual Medicare Costs and the Ethics of Physical Activity

Annual Medicare Costs and the Ethics of Physical Activity

A recent paper published in the BMJ (British Medical Journal) shows that adults who were at least moderately physically active from adolescence through middle age had significantly lower annual Medicare costs than those who were consistently inactive. I have previously argued that, for many reasons, exercise is an ethical behavior. … Read more