Youth Early Sport Specialization Summit (YESSS!)

Marriott Marquis Hotel
Houston, TX
Apr 12 - Apr 12, 2019


Sports specialization, defined as the intense training in a single sport to the exclusion of other types of physical activity, is increasingly common during childhood and early adolescence. Early sport specialization may be a natural pathway for elite participation in certain individual sports that require advanced technical skills (e.g., tennis, gymnastics); however the necessity of early sport specialization in other sports is lesser known. Increasing evidence suggests a higher risk of burnout and injury among youth who specialize in a sport at a young, though limited research exists regarding potential performance benefits and long-term health of these early-specializing athletes. The goals of this research conference are to:

  1. Conduct and present a rigorous review of the current scientific knowledge related to youth sport specialization; and
  2. Develop a "research roadmap" to drive future research efforts based on existing evidence and knowledge gaps in the field of youth athlete training and development.

AMSSM Research Summit on Youth Early Sport Specialization Travel Scholarships Available!!

The AMSSM CRN will award five travel stipends ($700 each) as follows:

  • TWO for underrepresented minorities
  • THREE for AMSSM junior members (within five years of fellowship)

Members with research interest or experience in the area of youth athlete training and development are specifically encouraged to apply. Applications open October 15th and close November 12th. Awardees will be announced in early December 2018.

For further information about the travel scholarships and how to apply, click here.

Travel Scholarship Application, click here. (You must be logged in to access the application located in the Member Only Content page under Research)

Please send any questions to AMSSM Research Director, Stephanie Kliethermes.


  • Session #1: Impact of early sport specialization on child and athlete performance and long-term development<;li>
  • Session #2: Effect of early sports specialization on injury risk and termination of sport
  • Lunch: Sport-specific break-out groups to address sport-specific needs and concerns related to youth sport specialization
  • Session #3: Alternatives, interventions and guidelines for youth sport participation.
  • Session #4: Knowledge snythesis and call to action

Youth Early Sport Specialization Summit Agenda - CLICK HERE

YESS Brochure


Marriott Marquis Houston • 1777 Walker Street • Houston, TX 77010

All of the educational sessions and exhibits will be held at the Marriott Marquis Houston in Houston, TX. Houston is served by two main airports: Bush Intercontinental Airport (AIH) and Hobby Airport (HOU). Bush Intercontinental Airport is approximately 26 minutes (19 miles) to/from the Marriott Marquis Houston and Hobby Airport is approximately 19 minutes (10.6 miles) to/from the Marrott Marquis Houston.

The hotel room block is now open. Look under Conference Details" on the AMSSM website for 2019 AMSSM 28th Annual Meeting for more information regarding the room block and for the online customized room reservation link to book, modify or cancel room reservations.



Executive Director 
Chair of CRN Leadership Team 
AMSSM Research Director 
Research Conference Co-Chair 
Research Conference Co-Chair 
Research Conference Co-Chair 
Jim Griffith, MBA, CAE, AMSSM - Leawood, Kansas
Col. Anthony Beutler, MD, Uniformed Services University Health Sciences
Stephanie Kliethermes, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Steve Marshall, PhD, University of North-Carolina
Dan Herman, MD, PhD, University of Florida
Neeru Jayanthi, MD, Emory University


Child & Athlete Performance and Development

Existing Knowledge & Current Research in ESS

Alternatives, Interventions & Guidelines

Neeru Jayanthi, MD§*
Emory University
Kyle Nagle, MD§*
Seattle Children’s Hospital
Jean Cote, PhD
Queen’s University
Avery Faigenbaum, PhD
The College of New Jersey
Robert M. Malina, PhD
University of Texas at Austin
Drew Watson, MD
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Brian Feeley, MD
University of California-San Francisco
Stephanie Kliethermes, PhD*
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Steven Marshall, PhD§*
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Cynthia LaBella, MD§*
Northwestern University
Mackenzie Herzog, MPH§*
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
Alison Brooks, MD, MPH*
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Mininder Kocher, MD
Boston Children’s Hospital
David Bell, PhD, ATC
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Dawn Comstock, PhD
University of Colorado-Denver

Daniel Herman, MD, PhD§*
University of Florida
Adam Tenforde, MD§*
Harvard University
Joel Brenner, MD, MPH*
Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters
Eric Carson, MD
University of Virginia
Gregory Myer, PhD
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital
John DiFiori, MD*
Hospital for Special Surgery
Vicki Nelson, MD
Greenville Health System
Alicia Montalvo, PhD, ATC¥
Florida International University
§ co-chair of writing group, *member of Summit planning and writing committee



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Phone: 913.327.1415

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