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The genes of 600-year-old gingko trees are just as active as their teenage counterparts – Massive Science

On the West Coast of the United States, the coastal redwoods in Northern California can live more than 2,000 years. Giant sequoias in central California routinely reach over 3,000 years in age. The oldest living organism in the world old Methuselah, a bristlecone pine tree has survived for over 4,700 years.

Millenia-old trees have held their place on Earth long and steady, and scientists have been curious about how theyre able to survive for so long. Native to China, the Ginkgo biloba can also survive over 1,000 years. By studying these long-living trees, a team of collaborating scientists between China and the United States identified specific genes that explain how the trees stay virtually immortal and thriving. They published their results in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Ginkgo trees are biologically unique. Fossils resembling their elegant fan-shaped leaves date back over 200 million years. Paleobotanists have concluded the modern ginkgo tree has barely changed throughout their long history. The tree's closest relatives have all died out: Ginkgos are evolutionarily isolated, [so theyre] the single surviving species of a lineage that completely died out, explains Judy Jernstedt, a plant anatomist who studies ginkgo shoot architecture at the University of California, Davis and was not involved in the study.

But out of these distinct qualities, their most intriguing trait remains their longevity.

We went to a very local area in Hubei Province, explains Jinxing Lin, a plant biologist at Beijing Forestry University and a senior author of the study. To try to understand the biological reasons for how the trees could live for so long, the researchers wanted to compare genetic samples between young and old trees to bring back to their lab. However, they had to first determine the trees ages and find fitting samples to analyze.

Leaves, you know, can fall down every year and could not reflect the real age. So, we used the old vascular cambium, Lin said.

The vascular cambium is a ring of cells that form a layer underneath the bark. Theyre cells without specialized roles that will continuously divide and grow, either inwards towards the trunk as wood or outwards as bark. Even centuries-old ginkgo trees, can still divide several cells each year from the cambium, added Lin.

As a tree grows, the vascular cambium increases the girth of the trunk. Seasonal changes and growth patterns mean that this growth will produce about one additional ring in the trunks patterning every year.

Youve got to go in there and use a bore to go right into the center of tree and then pull it out, explains Richard Dixon, a biologist at University of North Texas and a senior author of the study, and then youve got to do the aging of the tree based on the rings.

With this method, the researchers collected samples from 34 ginkgo trees between 15- and 667-years old. They compared the ginkgo trees RNA in the vascular cambium to observe how their genetic activity changed between different age points.

In the 600-year old trees, genes associated with defenses against pathogens and disease resistance remained steadily active. The activity of other genes related to producing antioxidants, antimicrobials, and stress-response signals also didn't seem to be declining either. In other words, the older ginkgo trees appeared just as hardy as the younger trees. We really couldnt tell the profile for a 600-year old tree from a 20-year old tree, marvels Dixon.

Gene activity related to senescence the stage of life where cells lose their ability to divide and the tree begins to deteriorate and die also stayed consistent in the older trees, showing no signs of increasing with age. We thought after several hundred years they should go into senescence, recalls Lin. But genetically, the old ginkgo trees appeared as youthful as ever. We found the trees can still produce very good seeds and pollen, and theyre still in a healthy state.

These results are some of the first pieces of evidence pointing scientists towards the molecular underpinnings of aging, or a lack of it, in trees. Although the oldest trees in the study were about 600 years old, Dixon believes even older ginkgo trees estimated to be over 1,000 years old would show similar patterns of health and youth.

Bristlecone pine, redwood, sequioa, and gingko trees can all live for thousands of years

Photo by Juvian Duff on Unsplash

Similar genetic mechanisms could possibly be responsible for longevity in other long-living trees as well. Maybe people will now be doing these kinds of experiments in redwoods or in...yew trees or bristlecone pine trees, says Dixon.

To add to the ginkgo's list of quirks, the species is also notoriously hardy. Theyre unusually resistant to diseases, pests, and pollution, making them popular for city planners in urban settings. Famously, a small stand of ginkgo trees survived the nuclear blast from the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, and even flowered the next spring.

This biological phenomenon shapes new questions for Dixon and Lin. They say the next planned step for their research group is to study the somatic mutation rate of ginkgo trees. Somatic mutations are changes in DNA that are not inherited from sperm or egg cells, but rather acquired later on from environmental factors such as ultraviolet light or radiation. What protects the integrity of the ginkgo genome so well? For the genetic profile of a mature ginkgo tree to closely resemble a young one, does that mean somatic mutations are slower to accumulate?

Or, does something that lives a thousand years have to have a better DNA repair mechanism? Dixon wonders, If it did, that would be phenomenal, I think.

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Join Us For A Livestream Event With Jenni Rivett : A Healthy & Happy Body In Lockdown – Longevity LIVE

Longevity has teamed up with health and fitness specialist Jenni Rivett to host a livestream event, A Healthy and Happy Body In Lockdown. Jenni Rivett will share her insights and help provide essential tips for how you can manage your health as well as protect your happiness during lockdown.

Jenni Rivett, long-time womens wellness advocate and former trainer to none other thanthe late Princess Diana, specializes in transforming womens bodies down to the finestdetail.

Jennis professional fitness journey began before the concept of personal training hadofficially gained traction around the globe. Inspired by her mother, who was the firstwoman in South Africa to release a fitness LP, 17-year-old Jenni began to explore theworld of woman-centered fitness. Never one to delay her great ambitions, at just 19 years old, Rivett opened the doors to two studios in Durban where she taught aerobics classes. Then,five years later, her passion took her to the United States, where she completed her studies and awakened her immense talent for being a trainer.

Jenni Rivett: Chronic stress is an unnatural state for the body, and when its sustained or frequently repeated, cortisol levels get locked in high gear, leading to higher insulin levels and an around-the-clock appetite, typically for sweets and fatty foods.

Elevated cortisol stockpiles calories, storing them in fat cells, especially around the tummy area for future use. It also causes a drop in the brain chemical serotonin, leading to depression, irritability, and cravings.

She adds: If your health is important to you, then embarking on a regular exercise and healthy eating regime during these times is critical, not only to manage stress and sleep but for every aspect of your health. You cannot afford to ignore these facts, but finding the balance is key.

When: June 10, 2020, 05:30 PM Johannesburg, South Africa

Instagram Page: @GISELE_WERTHEIM_AYMES

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12 Easy Ways To Calm Your Anxiety During The Pandemic – Longevity LIVE

In a perfect world, our anxiety would only help to warn us in the face of danger, saving us from risk. However, more often than not, our anxiety only serves to cripple us and jeopardize our health. With the fear and worry plaguing us during these uncertain times, its clear that our levels of anxiety are more than likely to skyrocket in the coming weeks and months.

With the implementation of plans to reduce the spread of the coronavirus and prevent future contractions, its safe to assume that many of us will spend the next few weeks in a form of self-isolation in the comfort of our own homes. Now while this is meant for our own good, were all plagued by fears when it comes to the coronavirus, and those fears are likely to be heightened as we confine ourselves to our homes as we may begin to feel helpless and out of control.

Now while you shouldnt feel ashamed about your anxiety, in fact, its better to acknowledge it, it should be noted that you can place your health at risk if your anxiety reaches a debilitating level. So, if youre planning on spending the next few weeks in isolation but are worried about the impact on your mental health, below are tips that will not only help to ease your anxiety but may even help provide you with a new perspective on things.

Youd be surprised how your favorite song can help you alleviate some cabin-fever induced anxiety.

According to a study published in the journal PLOS ONE, music listening induces stress-relief, having a very calming effect on your body and mind.

If your favorite songs are a little too fast-paced for you, you can try listening to classical, Celtic, Native American and Indian music as they have been found to be the most calming (1).

There are different forms of deep breathing exercises, but the most notable is diaphragmatic breathing.

This form of breathing involves pushing the stomach out while inhaling.

According to a study published in the Frontiers in Psychology journal, diaphragmatic breathing helped to relax the body to the point where cortisol (the stress hormone) levels had lowered.

Another breathing exercise you can try is the four square breathing technique. Simply breathe in slowly to a count of four, then hold your breath for a count of four. Afterward, exhale slowly through pursed lips to a count of four. Following this, you should then rest for a count of four (without taking any breaths), before taking two normal breaths. Once done, start from the beginning.

It would be advisable to do this throughout the day, especially if you find yourself spending too much time on social media or working from home becomes too stressful. Speaking of which, that brings us to our next point.

The World Health Organisation declared the coronavirus a pandemic, so of course, its important that you stay abreast with all the latest news. However, theres a difference between staying informed, and obsessing over fact and tidbit that makes its way through social media. In fact, the latter will only serve to misinform you and increase your anxiety.

In fact, a study published in the journal Science Advances found that people can become more emotionally responsive to news reports of natural disasters or terrorist events, which then increases their anxiety and concerns about future occurrences.

Now were in no way suggesting that you should stick your head in the sand, as its important to know whats going on in the world. However, you should try not to get sucked into the sensationalized news that makes its way through your timeline. Rather, once or twice a day, get your information and updates from reputable websites like the CDCor the WHO.

Also, if you feel that the news you receive adds to your anxiety, practice breathing exercises, read a book or play some relaxing music.

If you have a stick of gum lying around the house, or in your bag, you may want to chew on it as you check the news for the latest updates surrounding the coronavirus. This is because chewing gum has been found to reduce stress.

In fact, research published in the Journal of Clinical and Translational Research found that chewing gum not only improved mood, but also reduced anxiety and even symptoms of depression.

The worlds leading medical authority has declared a global pandemic and various countries have implemented shutdowns in all spheres of life. Suffice to say, you most likely have a lot of feelings about this so perhaps you should write them down?

We all experience negative thoughts and feelings now and then but these thoughts can soon become toxic, especially if we continue to mull over them. However, recording these thoughts can help us to better process them. In fact, a study published in the Acta bio-medica: Atenei Parmensis journal found that writing helped to reduce both physical and psychological symptoms.

So, put aside some time before bed every day and grab a journal and write out your thoughts. In fact, dont just write about your fears and concerns. Go further by jotting down what youre grateful for, as practicing gratitude can help to ease some of your anxiety.

Yoga boasts a number of health benefits for individuals who practice it, and one of them includes inducing a calming effect.

According to a study published in the International Journal of Yoga, practicing yoga can help to reduce stress, lower anxiety and even improve depression symptoms.

Now chances are all yoga classes in your neighborhood have been cancelled but there are a number of freely available yoga videos online, as well as apps that will help you find your center and relieve your stress and anxiety.

In addition to yoga, practicing meditation can also help to alleviate any anxiety and stressed out emotions.

Meditation appssuch asHeadspace,Insight Timer,and Calm can help you combat the anxiety-inducing effects of negative thinking, and provide you with a more positive outlook on the current situation.

Now with you working from home, your sleep routine may be going through some changes but its important that you stick to your regular sleep routine. Anxiety can affect your sleep schedule so its important that you do your best to keep your sleep routine as consistent as possible.

Not doing so will definitely amplify your anxiety levels and sleep deprivation and high anxiety levels are the worst things you could do to your health.

Do your best to get at least 7 hours of sleep as this will help increase your ability to deal with stress and anxiety during the day.

As youre spending more time at home. your diet may be taking a hit as you begin reaching for caffeine, sugar and processed snacks. That said, its important that these foods may boost your anxiety.

So, instead of reaching for the sugary stuff, and drinking more glasses of wine than usual, rather consume a healthy, green-rich diet as this will help you keep focused throughout the day and keep your mood at an even level.

Exercise is the best thing you can do to combat your stress (and it can also help to strengthen your immune system). With most gyms closed down, you may find it harder to stay fit but there are ways you can keep fit in the comfort of your own home.

In addition to at-home exercise apps, such as Sworkit, there are some great at-home workouts that will keep you fit throughout your time at home.

It may be hard to do during this time, but you should definitely be laughing more at home. This is because laughing can not only improve your immune system, but it can also relieve stress and tension in your muscles.

Try watching your favorite TV show, or calling up an old friend and having a good laugh.

Just because you may be asked to self-quarantine in the following weeks, doesnt mean that you should completely isolate yourself. Yes, you may not be able to physically interact with your friends and family, but you should be doing your best to talk with your loved ones, friends, and even colleagues.

Doing so will definitely help to ease both your fears and it will also help remind you that you are not alone and whatever the new normal becomes, we will adjust and move on.

Our immune system is the most important system in the body, especially during these times. That said, a lot of us may be adopting habits that are harming, rather than helping it. If youre guilty of these 11 habits that are harming your immune system, then you may need to stop them and stock up on some vitamin C.

Jiang, J., Rickson, D., Jiang, C. (2016). The mechanism of music for reducing psychological stress: Music preference as a mediator, The Arts in Psychotherapy, Volume 48, Pages 62-68,

ISSN 0197-4556, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aip.2016.02.002.

Ma, X., Yue, Z. Q., Gong, Z. Q., Zhang, H., Duan, N. Y., Shi, Y. T., Wei, G. X., & Li, Y. F. (2017). The Effect of Diaphragmatic Breathing on Attention, Negative Affect and Stress in Healthy Adults.Frontiers in psychology,8, 874. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00874

Smith A. P. (2016). Chewing gum and stress reduction.Journal of clinical and translational research,2(2), 5254

ThomaMV, La MarcaR, BrnnimannR, FinkelL, EhlertU, et al. (2013)The Effect of Music on the Human Stress Response. PLOS ONE 8(8): e70156.https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0070156

Thompson,R., Jones, N, Holman,E, Silver R. (2019). A 3-year longitudinal study of a U.S. national sample shows that media exposure to mass violence can fuel a cycle of distress, SCIENCE ADVANCES, 17 APR 2019: EAAV3502

Tonarelli, A., Cosentino, C., Artioli, D., Borciani, S., Camurri, E., Colombo, B., DErrico, A., Lelli, L., Lodini, L., & Artioli, G. (2017). Expressive writing. A tool to help health workers. Research project on the benefits of expressive writing.Acta bio-medica : Atenei Parmensis,88(5S), 1321.

Woodyard C. (2011). Exploring the therapeutic effects of yoga and its ability to increase quality of life.International journal of yoga,4(2), 4954. https://doi.org/10.4103/0973-6131.85485

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Corona Face Masks And Acne: Here’s What You Can Do – Longevity LIVE

Corona face masks are what we have to start making an essential part of our daily attire. Thanks to the pandemic were now having to wear corona face masks to prevent the spread of the virus. Unfortunately, there are a few downsides to wearing these facial masks every day. Not only in terms of how you breathe but also the health of your skin. Doctors have been noticing an influx of patients experiencing acne from masks maskne. Acne breakouts from wearing a corona face mask.

While masks may be essential to protect us from the virus, sadly they are taking a toll on our skin. Breakouts are also showing up in the worst areas, like around the mouth and chin. Many people are experiencing a bad reaction to these masks and if you are too, youre not alone. Theres nothing wrong, in fact, doctors are saying its a very normal response.

These breakouts happen because there is a build-up of sweat, oil and makeup once theyre on your skin. This happens because the corona face masks cover these oils which cause them to become blocked. In addition, dermatologists explain that breathing into the mask creates a lot of humidity which just accelerates the process of causing acne. Fortunately, there are simple ways you can help protect your face from the mask. It comes down to the type of mask youre wearing and how often you wash it.

A lot of the time people are using their corona face masks, taking it off and plonking it down when they get home. Then they use it again. This process happens again and again without the person stopping to think twice about washing it and all the bacteria it is breeding.

Two things: First, if youre using disposable masks then you should not be re-using them and you need to dispose of them effectively and hygienically.

Your disposable mask must be gently washed regularly.

Second, dermatologists recommend exfoliating your face with a face wash twice a day.

If we have learned anything from this whole COVID-19 pandemic, its how to live with good hygiene.

Admittedly, this is a seriously nasty side effect of wearing corona face masks every day. The issue has become so common that its even given rise to the name maskne. The new name combines the words mask and acne and is springing up all over social media. Hundreds of people are struggling from the new blemishes and are venting their frustrations about the dilemma. This is particularly problematic for nurses and health-care workers who have to wear a mask constantly and are covered in the maskne.

This is an especially worrisome problem for those who have never encountered acne or breakouts before. The issue is not only affecting hormonal teens, acne-prone adults or health-care workers wearing heavy-duty N95 medical masks for hours at a time. Corona face masks are being worn by everybody now. Thats why dermatologists are noticing a major spike in acne cases, even in those who have never had a pimple previously.

The facial area is a very sensitive part of the body and now were wearing corona face masks on it daily. This is why even those whove never experienced skin problems are now. Dermatologists officially call it maskne, mechanica. It is caused by the combination of rubbing from the mask, which irritates the skin barrier, as well as the hot moisture trapped inside. This moisture dilates the pores and allows bacteria and oil to clog them up. Once the follicles are trapped in the muck, they become inflamed, leading to terrible breakouts.

Apparently, this is very common with athletes too who wear a helmet or a baseball cap. Also, if you play an instrument that rests against the chin area, you may have experienced this skin problem as well. Doctors explain that not treating acne and cleaning your mask can cause infections that require prescription medication to get rid of it. A dirty corona face mask is a breeding ground for yeast and bacteria.

However, your best bet is to ensure that your mask is clean before you even worry about the clogged up bacteria underneath.

If youre going to wear a cloth mask whilst you exercise, then you must wash it frequently.

Corona facial mask acne is not something you cant bounce back from. All it takes is a really great skincare regimen to help the skin repair itself from mask-inflicted congestion. Its recommended that you wash your face before and after wearing a mask. We also recommend choosing a gentle skin cleanser that is free of harsh sulfates which can strip the skin of its protective oils.

Note that loofah and abrasive scrubs are not a good option for you right now either. Stick to using your fingertips only and then pat your face down gently with a clean towel. Once youve finished this step, then use a lightweight, fragrance-free moisturizer with ingredients like glycerin and niacinamide to help strengthen the skin barrier. Doctors also suggest waiting at least 15 minutes before putting on a corona face mask so the skin can fully absorb the product.

Your face will be slippery from the moisturizer, which will prevent the mask from sealing closed on your face.

If youve just broken out into maskne then do your best to avoid any aggressive ingredients in your skincare routine. This includes serums and peels. Rather, start incorporating salicylic acid, or other beta hydroxy acid, to clean out the pores.

Also, limit the number of acids you use around the mouth area to prevent irritating the skin. Experts also recommend using a gentle exfoliating mask in the evening just once a week. You can then follow this with a night cream to restore moisture. Finish with a hydrating lip balm or serum to minimize chapping.

These steps might sound a bit tedious but experts believe the mask to be our new normal way of life. Corona face masks are an accessory were going to have to get used to. We dont foresee not wearing them anytime soon. Thats why its crucial we know how to handle the side effects.

Corona face masks or not, our skin is very unpredictable. You never know how it will react and even when you take care of it, it can still have a reaction. Unfair as it is, luckily we have benzoyl peroxide. This compound reduces inflammation, kills acne-causing bacteria, and helps open up pores. It also targets all the main causes of red acne caused by your mask. Just be sure not to overdo it with the benzoyl peroxide, because too much will cause irritation. Use it in the lowest concentration available, which is 2.5 percent. It will be just as effective as a high concentration without the side effects.

Theres no better time than now to give your face a break from makeup. We know its tough, especially if youre used to wearing foundation and blush daily. However, dermatologists advise against it because any kind of face makeup can lead to breakouts. Corona face masks can cause makeup to get trapped against your skin. This is because the environment is moist and humid.

Not good for achieving flawless skin. Moreover, its also difficult to fully wash off makeup that gets trapped in your corona face mask. Therefore, youre potentially just reintroducing more bacteria to your skin every time you wear it. If you are unable to wear no makeup at all, then at least choose an oil-free and noncomedogenic foundation. These are less likely to make you break out when worn under your mask.

More importantly, the kind of corona face mask youre wearing matters. Experts state that acne-prone clients should avoid cloth masks made of rough fabrics. They should rather opt for ones made with cotton fibres. Not only is cotton softer and less irritating on your skin, but its also breathable. This means less humidity will be created for breakouts to happen.

The bottom line: Make sure that youre washing your mask regularly! Using a dirty mask is not doing your skin and your health any favors. Its also best to clean your mask after using it with a gentle detergent thats dye-free and fragrance-free. Dyes and fragrance will absorb into the masks fabric and cause irritation and acne when pressed against your skin for extended periods of time.

The following details show how being in a lockdown can affect your skin, and what changes you can make to prevent it.

Maskne is real! How to fight breakouts if your mask is causing acne. New York Post. https://nypost.com/2020/05/12/maskne-is-real-how-to-fight-breakouts-if-your-mask-is-causing-acne/

Cloth Mask Acne Is a Real ThingHeres How I Cured Mine. Cosmopolitan. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/beauty/a32315443/cloth-mask-acne-covid-19/

Coronavirus: How to protect your skin from side effects of wearing mask amid pandemic. Eye Witness News. https://abc7.com/maskne-face-mask-acne-skin-irritations-protect/6149255/

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Withdrawing assets in a down market is one of the biggest risks to portfolio longevity – Business Day

About 100 years ago, people lived to the average age of 30. Nowadays, an ever-greater number of people are reaching their 100th birthday. Thanks to advances in health care technology over the past century, the worlds population has experienced a marked increase in longevity, and while it is rather unnerving to think of ones own mortality, most of us underestimate the investment horizon that needs to be planned for in retirement. Many studies have been done to determine how much and how long we need to save to ensure a sustainable income in life post-retirement.

Most of the research indicates that the prudent approach would be to plan for at least 25 to 30 years. While there are various factors such as inflation, withdrawal rate, level of initial capital, how long your capital will last as well as investment returns that influence the level of income you can draw in retirement, another important factor is the sequence in which retired investors earn their returns.

Weve seen a great deal of volatility in equities with the stock market reaching record single-day losses. If youre invested for the long term and youre years away from drawing from the money you have invested, you might not be too worried about short-term declines in performance. The smartest thing you can probably do right now is leave your investments, sit back and wait for things to stabilise. However, for investors who need to draw on their investments regularly, like those with living annuities, volatility becomes important.

The best way to think about this is if the value of your retirement savings declines near the outset of drawing an income, the amount withdrawn will represent a bigger portion of your investment than if you had experienced growth over the same period. The impact of this is that the base continues to decline with each additional income withdrawal leaving less savings to grow.

This could result in retirement savings running out much sooner than if the portfolio experienced positive returns at the start of the withdrawal period. The past few years have been difficult for investors, particularly those with exposure to the SA equity market as in many cases returns have been dismal. This means that many pensioners are now drawing an income in excess of the return of their investment, resulting in capital erosion.

The risk involved in withdrawing money from a volatile portfolio, termed sequence-of-return-risk, is lower when portfolio volatility is lower. The current market capitulation has highlighted the value of having the right mix of portfolios in reducing this type of risk without compromising too much on longer-term growth.

The 36ONE hedge funds can produce positive returns in both rising and falling equity markets (due to their combination of long and short positions) and therefore have the ability to produce asymmetrical returns, which is especially valuable in times of heightened uncertainty. Allocating a portion of your savings to the 36ONE hedge funds can help control the impact of market volatility on a portfolio and could be one way to reduce sequence-of-return risk.

For example: a client has a lump sum of R2m and decides to invest. He invests R1m in the 36ONE SNN QI Hedge Fund and R1m in the FTSE/JSE all share index at the start of April 2006 (the launch date of the 36ONE SNN QI Hedge Fund). The table below summarises what his investment portfolio would be worth on March 31 2020 in nominal terms:

Scenario 1: Lump sum scenario

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Tammy Sutton-Browns WNBA career was a long and successful one – Swish Appeal

When a WNBA team is drafting in the middle of the second round, its probably not expecting to land a major contributor. A rebounding or 3-point specialist, perhaps a player who could earn a roster spot if things go right in training camp but would ultimately struggle to stick around for very long.

This is what makes Tammy Sutton-Browns story so special. Drafted at out of Rutgers at No. 18 overall, Sutton-Brown was never known as a stats monster or superstar player, yet she still became a model of steady play and longevity across her 12 WNBA seasons.

When it was all said and done, Sutton-Brown had played 388 games and nearly 10,000 minutes. She still ranks near the top of the historical WNBA leaderboards in several categories, namely total offensive rebounds (708; 18th in WNBA history) and blocked shots (555; 7th).

The 6-foot-4 Sutton-Brown began her WNBA career in Charlotte, where she was drafted by the Sting in 2001. While Sutton-Browns draft position of No. 18 overall has not typically been kind to rookies over the years, Sting head coach Anne Donovan entrusted her with 20.8 minutes played and 21 starts.

Sutton-Browns volume increased in her second season, and with it her per-game stats. She averaged 11.9 points on 53.1 percent shooting in 2002, along with 6.0 rebounds (2.4 offensive) per game. It earned her a trip to the 2002 WNBA All-Star Game, representing the Eastern Conference alongside fellow up-and-comers Tamika Catchings and Penny Taylor.

Of course, Sutton-Brown never reached the legendary status of those players, but remained remarkably consistent for the Sting as their starting center. Per 36 minutes, she never averaged fewer than 11.7 points or 7.3 rebounds during her time in Charlotte, with her usage falling between 20.0 percent and 21.6 percent in each season. Sutton-Brown also became one of the better rim protectors in the WNBA, finishing outside of the leagues top 10 in blocked shots only once.

The unfortunate folding of the Sting franchise in early 2007 spelled the end of Sutton-Browns time in Charlotte, but her contract with the Sting had expired anyway, and she was thus ineligible for the ensuing dispersal draft.

Instead, Sutton-Brown signed a contract with the Indiana Fever, for whom she continued her steady play. Sutton-Brown was named to her second and final All-Star game in 2007, a season in which she averaged a career-best 17.1 points per 36 minutes for the 21-13 Fever.

While Sutton-Browns 2007 season was her last big one her usage rate declined from a career-high 24.3 percent in 2007 to 20.3 percent in 2008, 19.8 in 2009 and 17.1 in 2010 she continued to start for the Fever, and the Fever continued to win. Indiana made the 2009 WNBA Finals (where the Fever lost in five games to the Phoenix Mercury) and won at least 21 games in each of the following three seasons.

By 2012, Sutton-Brown was 34 years old, and while she kept starting on yet another successful Fever team, her on-court contributions were lessening. Sutton-Browns starting spot was usurped by Erlana Larkins in the 2012 playoffs, a move that proved crucial to Indianas upset of the Minnesota Lynx in the Finals.

The Fevers championship was a storybook ending for Sutton-Brown, who decided to retire following the 2012 season. She had been a solid WNBA starter for many years, falling just short of the ultimate goal in several of them, so it was only right that she finally won a title in the twilight of her career. Sutton-Browns WNBA story is remembered as one of both longevity and consistency, and to this day she remains the only No. 18 overall pick to be named a WNBA All-Star.

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