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Q&A with Olympic Torchbearer Steve Blair

Prominent scientist carries the flame, explains ‘The Kiss’

Steven Blair, P.E.D., FACSM, long has illuminated the connections between physical activity and health. On July 11th, he literally took up the torch for the cause, serving as an official torchbearer for the London Olympics as James Pivarnik, Ph.D., FACSM, had done for the 2008 games. SMB caught up with Dr. Blair after his service as a Torchbearer.

SMB: What did you find surprising or unexpected about the experience?

BLAIR: I was really impressed with the number of people and the enthusiasm they exhibited. There must have been thousands of people on the street over the ~5 km course that was the route of the group of which I was a part. The crowd consisted of infants in arms to very elderly people in wheelchairs. There were many school groups, from elementary to high school students. Many of the kids had Olympic Torches they had made.

SMB: How does carrying the torch relate to your lifelong study of physical inactivity?

BLAIR: I think I was given the opportunity to participate in the Torch Relay because of my research on physical activity and health. I am grateful that work in this area was recognized. more

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