Sharing Knowledge with the Community

Tel Aviv University Joins ICSSPE
08/04/2021 18:23
We “virtually” met up with Professor Mickey Scheinowitz from the Tel Aviv University to get to know the Sports Center better.
ICSSPE: Could you please introduce yourself and Tel Aviv University?
Scheinowitz: I hold a coach diploma from the Wingate Institute and behind me are years of training. In addition, I am the head of Siim College for Physical Fitness Coaches and Instructors at Tel Aviv University Sports Center. I am also Professor in Exercise and Cardiovascular Physiology in the Department of Biomedical Engineering and Sylvan Adams Sports Institute, Tel Aviv University. My research interest focuses on how to improve athlete's performance and delay fatigue.
ICSSPE: Can you tell us briefly about the ongoing projects of the organisation?
Scheinowitz: Tel Aviv University has nine faculties. The university is known and is leading in the field of medicine and biology, and exact sciences (physics, chemistry) globally. We recently built a new Sports Institute; the Sylvan Adams Sports Institute. This is a high performance centre and put Tel Aviv University as the first and the only academic institute in Israel which has a Sports Institute for educating, teaching and research.
ICSSPE: How did the corona virus pandemic affect Israel?
Scheinowitz: Since the Sylvan Adams Sports Institute offers exercise training and testing to elite athletes, the lockdown has reduced the overall activity in the institute tremendously. This was also due to the fact that Tokyo Olympic Games were cancelled and Olympic athletes did not have competition goals locally or internationally. No flights, no training camps, etc. Also the research activity for graduate students was significantly affected due to the COVID restrictions that permitted only a small number of people in one room. On the other hand, teaching was not affected. All was done through ZOOM. It should be noted that since in Israel over 52 % of the population (16+) were already vaccinated, school system and universities were reopened and we hope that the general situation will improve from now on.
ICSSPE: What solutions or adaptations did you find?
Scheinowitz: We focussed on research activities that do not involve breathing measurements such as cardiopulmonary exercise testing. We devoted more time to educate the community on how to maintain exercise habits during lockdown. We provided webinars for professionals and coaches to support athlete's fitness level, and also submitted research grants and manuscripts for publication. 
ICSSPE: Will you be keeping some of the changes once the pandemic is over?
Scheinowitz: Probably I will use remote teaching, as well as some home activities, in part of my working week.
ICSSPE: Could you tell us more about Tel Aviv University?
Scheinowitz: Tel Aviv University is the largest academic institute in Israel with over 30,000 students studying in nine faculties across the Ramat Aviv campus. Consistently, Tel Aviv University is ranked in the top 20 in the world in terms of scientific citations and among the top 100 universities internationally. 
ICSSPE: How would you describe your organisation’s values?  
Scheinowitz: TAU students and faculty are encouraged to volunteer their time and energy to serve the greater Tel Aviv metropolitan area and Israeli society as a whole.  TAU graduates are leading in intellectual property and patents and start-ups per capita. Our alumni are connected with the university, its activities and its students, including mutual events of hackathon, mentoring young students etc. Tel Aviv University holds a very active and successful programme for talented young, high school students to study into an academic degree at very young age. In addition, we volunteer under various programs, reaching out into the community, holding open day and science on the bar events.
ICSSPE: What are the plans and goals?
Scheinowitz: Our goal is to disseminate the knowledge to the community, from early age and those who haven't yet entered or registered to Tel Aviv University and to seniors who graduated long time ago and need updated courses and classes. Another goal of ours is to allow minorities reaching higher education. 
ICSSPE: As a new ICSSPE member, what do you envision for future cooperation with ICSSPE?
Scheinowitz: To share mutual plans and interest to promote physical activity for children and adolescents as well as adults and seniors from both genders and across all sports disciplines; leisure and competition. I am also looking forward to becoming part of a global network for research and data sharing in physical education, physical activity and sports on an international level.
ICSSPE: What are you most excited about regarding the ICSSPE membership?
Scheinowitz: I am most excited about meeting people who share the same vision and interests and about understanding the diversity between countries worldwide and to see how can each one help promoting the same interests. 
ICSSPE: What can the ICSSPE membership jointly do to help in this context?
Scheinowitz: To share individual, institutional and national visions. To collaborate with stakeholders and leading global organisations such as WHO and UN, as well as professional organisations such as IOC and IPC. With such organisations and stakeholders; to support the implementation of the ICSSPE agenda.