Debate on relationship between sports, alcohol to be held in New Zealand

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Wellington, Jan 15 (ANI): A conference, aimed at sparking a debate on the role alcohol played in sport, is to be held in New Zealand..

A Massey University conference will bring together Government officials, research experts and industry stakeholders at the Albany campus from February 9 to 11.

Massey School of Sport and Exercise head, Associate Professor Steve Stannard, said the conference aimed to spark debate on the role alcohol played in sport.

"It's to bring people's attention to the ongoing relationship and problems between alcohol and sport - and it's really pertinent coming into the Rugby World Cup," Stuff.co.nz quoted him as saying.

Dr Stannard said attitudes towards alcohol in elite sports have changed since he attended the first alcohol and sports conference in 2005.

Sports clubs were increasingly sensitive to negative coverage about players' boozy behaviour and as a result teams were being educated on alcohol's effect on performance and recovery.

Dr Stannard said New Zealand, which is leading the world in researching and discussing the complicated relationship between sports and alcohol, was the only country to hold a conference on alcohol and sport.

NZ Alcohol Advisory Council chief executive Gerard Vaughan said the conference would be an excellent forum to generate and build on initiatives to reduce alcohol harm in the sports area.

"It'll be a great opportunity for people interested in alcohol and sport to come and share their work and learn more," he stated. (ANI)

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