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December 2, 1961

Diseases Produced by Lack of Exercise—Hypokinetic Disease

JAMA. 1961;178(9):970. doi:10.1001/jama.1961.03040480100042

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Abstract

Man, laboring and straining for the bare pittance he needs for survival, has finally been able to change the face of the earth so that there are places not only where very little physical human labor is required in sophisticated modern societies, but also where exercise of any kind is looked upon as pathological. The obese think anyone who takes any avoidable exercise sickened—a diseased residue left over from an exuberant youth. They avoid thinking about the few queer people who still make an effort to stir the circulation, open the pores, aerate the nether alveoli, and strengthen the muscles by forms of physical work sufficiently vigorous to get up a sweat.

We see a race developing into a sedentary, flabby-muscled, obese, seemingly almost stupefied group, whose sole connection with sports and physical activity is as a spectator nation. The mobs seen now at sporting events resemble, on the negative

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